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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 10:42 am 
Sanno
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When you told us about the divorce, I didn't realise it was that kind of situation. That sucks.


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 7:32 am 
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alynnidalar wrote:
Mine does too, but he's a cat, so I suppose it's expected.
It's freaking adorable when it's a cat though!
Anyway, now my room-mate has been to court. She gets to see her kids more but she didn't get her house, so she's still in my room and still homeless. One of my flatmates is pretty high profile and made a trivial joke on social media and he's managed to offend an entire balkan country and he and his family have been getting death threats. My other flatmate lost his key and it's complicated here but you can't just get a key cut - so we have to talk to the landlord.

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 7:32 am 
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alynnidalar wrote:
Mine does too, but he's a cat, so I suppose it's expected.
It's freaking adorable when it's a cat though!
Anyway, now my room-mate has been to court. She gets to see her kids more but she didn't get her house, so she's still in my room and still homeless. One of my flatmates is pretty high profile and made a trivial joke on social media and he's managed to offend an entire balkan country and he and his family have been getting death threats. My other flatmate lost his key and it's complicated here but you can't just get a key cut - so we have to talk to the landlord.

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 9:50 am 
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linguoboy wrote:
When you told us about the divorce, I didn't realise it was that kind of situation. That sucks.

I didn't realize this until last Friday either. I knew my dad was seeing someone, but not that they were trigger-happy enough to fly to Nevada and get hitched there to bypass Texas' 30-day waiting period after a divorce for remarriage...

I think what hurts most is the lack of communication and hearing about things either secondhand (or almost: if I would've opened my Facebook first, I would've seen the message from my aunt talking about the wedding pictures!) or after the fact. I know I'm an ocean away, but you would think that being his son would be enough to at least put me in the loop, but I'm really not surprised anymore.

(But thanks for the support.)

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 10:04 am 
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That's too bad. That is indeed pretty big news to not be told by your dad directly!

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 2:16 pm 
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To be fair, it's not uncommon for people - particularly fathers - to avoid awkward conversations with people they don't want to upset or offend. Or to assume that other people don't want to have anything to do with them, and hence make that a self-fulfilling prophecy by 'not imposing' on them.

Or he could just be an arsehole, of course.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:36 am 
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Salmoneus wrote:
To be fair, it's not uncommon for people - particularly fathers - to avoid awkward conversations with people they don't want to upset or offend. Or to assume that other people don't want to have anything to do with them, and hence make that a self-fulfilling prophecy by 'not imposing' on them.

Or he could just be an arsehole, of course.

I don't see these as opposed options. Avoiding an important conversation because it's "awkward" is an asshole move.

I understand that a lot of men have been socialised badly when it comes to dealing with emotional subjects. That's no excuse for not owning your shit and putting in the work to better yourself.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2018 7:30 pm 
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Yeah yeah, man up, mental health problems are cured just by "owning your shit and putting in the work", etc.

I guess I'm just not macho enough myself, because when I see people who are scared, confused, anxious, I find it hard to summon up the hatred to just write them off as "arseholes". Is it great that people are too damaged or fragile to be able to do the right thing in difficult circumstances? No. But there's a difference between being unable to do the right thing and not wanting to do the right thing - and when the obstacle in question is mental rather than physical, no amount of self-help sergeant-majoring about "owning your shit" is going to suddenly make a person mentally strong and healthy when it's a problem that has probably been with them the whole of their lives. You, I'm sure, have owned so much of your shit that you've got no limitations left and exist in a world of pure supermen, where you always think clearly and act decisively, assuredly, bravely and with flawless wisdom on all occasions.

The rest of us arseholes, however, are only human.



EDIT: I know, I know, you're going to say that just because deep-seated psychological impediments cause someone to irrationally avoid certain social situations that they want to not avoid, even when that avoidance can cause serious harm to them (through damage to relationships, or even to health (c.f. chronic unwillingness to discuss certain intimate health issues with professionals)), that doesn't mean they're "mentally ill" or should be treated with any compassion. They're just arseholes who need to man up [or insert equivalent phrase here]. But I'd really ask you to reconsider that attitude. First, because I think you're underestimating both the force and the consequence of the handicaps you dismiss as "not being properly socialised" (weird use of talking-as-though-people-were-dogs dehumanising language there, btw); and, second, because I think we as a society need to challenge this idea that mental health is a binary issue, and that everyone with problems is just an "arsehole" who needs to be berated, until they get a clinical diagnosis at which point they mustn't be regarded as responsible for anything. In reality, just as with physical health, mental health is a continuum. Saying that someone who anxiously avoids difficult conversations just needs to "put the work in" and take responsibility is exactly like saying that someone you've never met who gets out of breath quickly when running just needs to put the work in and take responsibility. Sure, exercise is good. But not everybody is able to go to the gymn - life can get in the way, for many people. And some people may be overweight for a medical reason that exercise won't help, or they may have asthma or lung damage. In exactly the same way, it's possible to improve mental health through appropriate exercises - but we can't know that a given mental lack-of-breath is just the result of laziness or arseholery, because we don't know the details of their situation and their broader health profile. Encouraging someone to go to the gymn is one thing; saying that they're out of breath because they're lazy is another. Likewise, encouraging someone to try to improve themselves mentally is one thing; saying that they're avoidant because they're arseholes is another. So I'd really encourage you to try to summon up some compassion or charity next time you see someone who is damaging their life through irrational actions or inactions. You don't always see the whole of the story from the outside.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:20 pm 
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Avoiding an awkward conversation ≠ mental illness


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 4:44 am 
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Vijay wrote:
Avoiding an awkward conversation ≠ mental illness


I refer you to my previous post, which addresses that objection in detail.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 7:36 am 
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...by assuming that avoiding an awkward conversation necessarily is mental illness?

The point of the post you were responding to isn't whether it's easy to have these conversations. The point is that we need to have them. Your analogy doesn't work because you're not taking into account people who don't have a mental illness but still refuse to have "awkward conversations." EDIT: It also fails to acknowledge that having a mental illness doesn't preclude people from having these conversations; it is absolutely possible to have a mental illness and still do this. Having a mental illness and having certain kinds of conversations are two separate issues.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 11:53 am 
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No, I argued the case through reference to generally accepted definitions and through generally accepted analogies.

...OK, maybe I needed paragraphs or something. Let's try again.

--------------------

First, I don't think it's helpful to have this extreme dichotomy of "has a mental illness" (not his fault) vs. "doesn't have a mental illness" (arsehole!).
In the same way that people are not simply either physically healthy or physically unhealthy, but rather have a particular level of physical health along a continuum - so too, people have a certain level of mental health, on a continuum. It's not as simple as just "X = mental illness", "X ¬= mental illness". That's an unrealistic approach, and it's frequently harmful (both by treating those who 'qualify' as mentally ill as agency-less basket-cases, and by treating those who don't meet your threshold as undeserving of any compassion or concessions). [Even the DSM notes that, while they haven't yet worked out a sufficiently straightfoward way of describing continua to be clinically useful now, they expect to move toward a continuum model in future editions]

In particular, mental health problems are not always immediately visible - there's not a one-to-one correspondence with behaviour. So labelling a certain behaviour inherently "non-mentally-ill", or arseholery, is naive.

Again, it's the same as with physical fitness. If someone has difficult performing a certain physical task, it's fair to question whether they are physically fit. If they're not physically fit, it's fair to say that certain courses of action might improve their fitness. If their lack of physical fitness leads to a failure to perform actions it's their responsibility to perform, it's fair to say that they SHOULD if possible take those steps to get fitter. But what is not fair is to say that anyone who is unfit must be an arsehole, because there's no excuse for not owning their shit and getting fitter. Because you don't know the full circumstances of their case - you don't know their underlying physical and mental conditions, and you don't know their socioeconomic context.

In exactly the same way, this is true of mental illness too. If someone has difficulty performing a certain mental task, it's fair to question whether they are mentally fit. If they're not mentally fit, it's fair to say that certain courses of action might improve their fitness. If their lack of mental fitness leads to a failure to perform actions it's their responsibility to perform, it's fair to say that they SHOULD if possible take those steps to get fitter. But what is not fair is to say that anyone who is unfit must be an arsehole, because there's no excuse for not owning their shit and getting fitter. Because you don't know the full circumstances of their case - you don't know their underlying physical and mental conditions, and you don't know their socioeconomic context.

----------

Second: no, mental health and patterns of behaviour are NOT separate issues. Not at all. Indeed, this is a paradigm case of how mental dysfunctions (mental health problems) are seen in everyday life for many people.

There are three key parts to identifying a mental disorder:
- a significant pattern or thoughts or behaviours
- leading to distress, and/or an impairment in an area of functioning (such as impaired interpersonal relationships, impaired social standing, etc), or increased risk of these things
- reflecting a behavioural or psychological dysfunction. "dysfunction" can be defined in various ways - the authors of the DSM5 suggest (following Fulford) that a dysfunctioning is simply functioning for the worse, as evaluated against the individual's conscious life goals and values. They also mention Wakefield's definition as a failure of a faculty to function in the way it has evolved to function - faculties like will enactment and rationality, mood control, etc.

What we have in the case of male conversational avoidance exactly fits that (DSM!) model:
- a pattern of avoiding certain conversations
- resulting in distress and impaired interpersonal relationships (and often risk of social, mental or physical harm)
- reflecting not a series of intentional preferences, but (in most cases) a dysfunction. By avoiding these conversations, the men in question are generally failing to achieve their own conscious goals - this is dysfunctional. And their failing to achieve their conscious goals because they are acting irrationally.


Common examples include:
- unwillingness to expose emotional truths to others, for fear of rejection. People may try to avoid this by framing their emotions through actions - as rejection of an action can be characterised as disagreement rather than essential rejection. For instance, people will often avoid saying "I want to do X" (exposing a private desire), but be comfortable saying "I have done X" (relating a factual action, without discussing the reasoning).
- similarly, unwillingness to discuss embarrassing or intimate subjects, from fear of scorn or from excessive self-disgust
- unwillingness to be seen to fail to adhere to allotted social roles, in particular to be seen to fail to be appropriately "manly". This is particularly acute in dealing with those who are directly involved in that role. For instance, men are often deeply resistent to revealing male "failure" to partners and children.
- anxious avoidance of disagreement.

These are all absolutely mental dysfunctions. They are absolutely the sort of thing you can get help with through therapy (or by other means).

They are NOT the same as just 'being badly socialised'. A lack of training in social situations leads to unpleasant experiences, which can provoke an entirely justified caution. But in situations where the long-term consequences of avoiding a conversation are potentially far greater than the potential brief awkwardness of the conversation itself, we're not talking about natural caution anymore, but about full-blown anxiety at best, and often more deep-seated issues.


I don't know why vampireshark's father avoiding telling them about their romantic emotions, avoided telling them that he planned to get married imminently, avoided telling them he was about to get married, and seemingly avoided telling him even that he had got married until the last possible moment before he'd have been 'exposed' by third parties. But given how upset most children would be by this - and given that he DID feel it necessary to confess eventually - it's unlikely to be the result of a fully rational assessment of costs and benefits.

Maybe he just doesn't care about vampireshark and it never occured to him to say anything - though even then a psychologist would probably suspect narcissitic disorder. Maybe he was being intentionally malicious for some reason (there's a bunch of disorders there). Or maybe it's nothing personal and he just never got around to it (procrastination, depression, Haltlose disorder, etc - or even bipolar, I guess).

Or, far more likely, he's just one of the countless men (and many women) who have a specific dysfunction in this area. Perhaps he has an irrationally extreme anxious aversion to unpleasant conversations; perhaps he feels guilty, or fears rejection, over a flagrant failure of masculinity (leaving one wife and rapidly marrying another one in Vegas is generally frowned upon); perhaps he instinctively fears exposing his emotions; perhaps he feels vampireshark has already rejected him and he's doing them a favour by not 'bothering' them with personal information. There are many reasons. They're probably bound up in social anxiety disorder, avoidant or dependent personality disorder, depression or similar. There's many different dysfunctions that could explain that weird behaviour. But what they have in common is that they are not cured simply by "owning your shit".

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But the river tripped on her by and by, lapping
as though her heart was brook: Why, why, why! Weh, O weh
I'se so silly to be flowing but I no canna stay!


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 7:14 pm 
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a) Saying someone is an asshole is not necessarily an extreme statement. b) You're still over-ascribing things to mental illness.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 9:45 pm 
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my eyeballs just rolled out of my head

hang on let me feel around under my bed--yep, there they are, let me just wipe the dust bunnies off and pop them back in--darn it, Sal's post is still there. I was hoping I'd imagined it.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 5:17 am 
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The usual high level of rational argument. Can we maybe just get you to sign a list of protest somewhere, that counts as making a facile "but you smell of poo" one-liner to every post I make? Because it's tiring on the scroll-finger to scroll past the inevitable post every time. But thanks at least, I guess, you two, for not even bothering to disguise it with a shred of good-faith counterargument - that at least makes the motivations clear.

On this occasion I know for a fact I'm in accordance both with the DSM criteria and how these problems are considered by professionals in practice, so the hate-posts are not going to have any impact on me. But I guess that wasn't the point.

If I thought you were actually posting about the topic, I'd urge you to educate yourself about mental health, for your sake and for the sake of those around you, because denial and judgementalism only make these problems worse, and mental health isn't just an issue for a small number of lunatics, it's something that effects everybody (in the same way nobody is perfectly physically fit, nobody is perfectly mentally fit either).. But given recent trends, I doubt it had anything to do with what I actually said.




In other news, returning to the topic of the thread, I had a nightmare again last night. I often have nightmares in the conventional sense - the running from an imminent threat kind - but I rarely actually mind those. I usually "win", and even if I don't, it's exhilerating - maybe it's my subconsious' way of compensating for a lack of heart-racing excitement in my waking life.
But now and then I do have genuine nightmares, and I just had the worst one again. I needn't go into the details, because it's the underlying dynamics that are the same. You get into an argument with someone, and they refuse to engage rationally. The more you try to appeal to their decency and reason, the more they ridicule you or treat you as insane - either way, not engaging in the substance. Everybody else is on their side. Existence as a human becomes impossible - they refuse to treat you as a person by taking your words seriously (the worst way to be silenced is to be allowed to talk, but have everybody agree not to listen), and the only way out is a total surrender of personhood (conceding that they are right simply because they said so - that is, conceding that they have authority over what you are and are not permitted to say). Either obey and give up your personhood, or defy, and have personhood taken from you. Eventually, via much shouting and threats of sectioning or other setting-appropriate dehumanisation, you usually end up agreeing to just give in and kill yourself in a literal sense as well. I think probably it's the worst thing that can happen to a person. Fortunately I don't have that nightmare very often.

But it does make me think I ought to stop coming here. My problem is, I have no emotional memory. Whatever people say or do, in a few hours I can't hold it against them. I remember that outside of the internet (even in large parts of the internet) there are people who aren't just driven by bigotry and close-mindedness, and who still converse like normal people; and I forget that coming here is like bashing my brains out against a brick wall of everyone's derision and contempt. [and that people here can say with a straight face that calling someone an arsehole isn't extreme for them at all - and the sad thing is, I can believe it]. But it wears you down, notch by notch.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 6:21 am 
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Given your desire for rational debate, let's address your post.

So far as I can tell, the crux of your argument is the following:
1) avoiding awkward conversations can be symptomatic of a mental dysfunction
2) we don't know if vampireshark's dad has such a mental dysfunction
3) if he does have a mental dysfunction, we can't fairly blame him
4) therefore we shouldn't blame him

Points 2 and 4 are clearly true and/or follow logically, so it's points 1 and 3 that people have objection to, I think 1 in particular. So I decided to look up DSM-5. Now, I couldn't actually find spelled out whatever part it is you're basing your argument on, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt, since the Wikipedia article isn't that thorough, and it could certainly be somewhere in the references to previous DSMs. However, further down the same page was a section entitled "criticism". I am very curious if you read this, because I saw this interesting line in the "British Psychological Society response":[quote=Wikipedia]It also expressed a major concern that "clients and the general public are negatively affected by the continued and continuous medicalisation of their natural and normal responses to their experiences... which demand helping responses, but which do not reflect illnesses so much as normal individual variation".[/quote] Of course, it's not just this one line, much of the rest of the (rather quite long) section is similar. So I have to wonder if these criteria are even as valid as you claim they are.
I also have some reservations about point 3. In particular, by your own argument, mental illnesses are a very broad category, ranging from severe to fairly minor in scope and effects. This "dysfunction" in particular certainly does seem to be on the more minor side, since it only seems to affect vampireshark's dad's ability to engage in awkward discussions. Given this, is it right to conclude that he'd be free of all blame? That he shouldn't have to take any responsibility for his actions, and instead blame it on his "dysfunction"? That's a dangerous and slippery slope, in my opinion, especially combined with the medicalisation of normal behavioural patterns alluded to above - what's to prevent everyone who'd otherwise engage in arseholish behaviours from performing a "self-diagnosis" of sorts to shoehorn their typical behaviours into one or another category, and then excuse themselves by citing their possible mental illness, and they can't possibly be blamed for it until they get it checked out (which, of course, won't happen).

Another point of contention that occurred to me while writing this is the implicit assumption that if vampireshark's dad did have a genuine avoidance of awkward conversations, then there'd be no way for him to easily inform vampireshark at all. Now, as it happens, I do have such an avoidance - ever since I realised I was trans, I've been more or less unable to start any sort of conversation with my parents about it. I have consistently required them to start talking to me first before I'm actually capable of replying. However, I've just as consistently found a small loophole in whatever it is underlying this avoidance, namely that I can freely write anything I want, including any comments about my being trans or any related topics. Now, it wouldn't be logical to suppose that vampireshark's dad has this exact same condition and the exact same loophole, but the anecdote does lead me to believe that this isn't as clearcut as everyone seems to have assumed either. But then, you'll probably dismiss this by saying "oh, but we can't know so we have to assume he doesn't have any get-outs".


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 7:20 am 
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That was a particularly rude response and I apologize for that, but your argument is absurd. As Kat has pointed out much more politely, you’re essentially saying that we can’t ever call any behavior rude or unacceptable, because it’s theoretically possible that the person in question has a mental illness or needs a therapist. And that’s silly. Sometimes people are just jerks, or don’t care about others’ feelings, or don’t want to better themselves. For example, when I was rude to you in my post last night, it wasn’t because I needed a therapist to overcome my deep-seated inability to read posts about the DSM without making mean comments. It’s because I was in a grouchy mood and took it out on a post I deeply disagree with.

Beyond all of this, I also deeply disagree with argument #3 in Kat’s post (that is, that mental illness is basically a free pass on appropriate behavior). It’s obviously true that mental and physical illnesses can cause us to have difficulty with certain aspects of life that to others might seem straightforward and simple! But that doesn’t insulate us from the consequences of our actions. We still can’t take our problems out on others. If I have physical problems that make it difficult for me to walk, it’s my responsibility to figure out a way to interact with the world around me; I certainly can’t expect everyone to carry me around and do things for me (unless I have prearranged this with someone and am confident they are okay with the arrangement). If I have anxiety that makes it difficult for me to communicate with people, I still need to figure out a way to communicate necessary information and avoid deeply hurting my family members and friends.

Certainly this isn’t always possible; that’s the nature of life (and it’s easy for non-ill people to hurt those important to them as well!). But when we’ve hurt people close to us, it’s important to do things like apologize, make amends, find an alternate way to approach a situation in the future, etc., and if this hurtful behavior continues for an extended period of time, of course people are going to stop overlooking or casually forgiving it. Because it’s not okay to hurt people, even if I have a mental illness that drives me to do so, and it’s reasonable for people to call me out on my hurtful behavior.

You are one hundred percent in the right to call my post out for being rude and uncharitable. And I believe vampireshark can call his father’s behavior rude and upsetting too—even if his father has a mental illness. Which WE STILL DON’T KNOW IS THE CASE.

EDIT: maybe a different way to phrase this is that mental illness may (may!) be an explanation for hurtful behavior. But it’s not an excuse.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 9:28 am 
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School's coming to an end, I'm struggling in it. Years ago I was on track to have 4-6 APs in junior year and get into a very good university. I'm studying material below my grade level in insultingly easy classes yet I struggle to get enough credits to graduate because I still have anxiety and depression from when I failed harder classes. In some subjects I might even already be advanced enough (knowledge wise) to skip college courses.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 9:58 am 
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That sounds like a difficult situation to be in all right. So you're saying you're struggling to graduate from high school? Have you considered seeking professional help? Maybe online therapy? I personally have found Lantern very helpful (at least back when it could be used on desktop computers, too).

If it helps you feel any better, I struggled with AP courses in high school, too, especially AP US History (I don't know about elsewhere, but here, I have always heard this called "APUSH"). I came close to flunking it because we had quizzes in it every day and fairly frequent tests, and I really, really suck at standardized tests (I spent years practicing/studying for the SAT only to barely pass and took a Princeton Review course so I could pass the GRE, and even then I had to try twice and settle for the fact that at least my scores had improved). I never even tried any math or science AP courses. I mostly just got credits by taking foreign language AP (courses and, when available, their corresponding) exams.

Would you like to talk more about what your experience with those harder classes was like? (You don't have to if you don't want to, of course, but you're free to if you do).


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 12:41 pm 
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I get the impression that Sal's argument is not to excuse VampireShark's father, but to propose the idea that mental health may be a potential factor in the evasive behaviour of some people, mostly men. He is proposing that part of the reason for a general trend among men to not disclose potentially emotionally damaging information. He also proposes the idea that mental health, like physical health, is a continuum; that it's more an analog thing rather than a digital one.

People can still agree or disagree but I don't think Sal is interested in just excusing VampireShark's dad off the (vampire) bat.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 1:28 pm 
Smeric
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jmcd wrote:
mental health may be a potential factor in the evasive behaviour of some people

It is.
Quote:
mostly men

It's not "mostly men." It's people of all kinds.
Quote:
He is proposing that part of the reason for a general trend among men to not disclose potentially emotionally damaging information.

I don't understand this sentence.
Quote:
He also proposes the idea that mental health, like physical health, is a continuum; that it's more an analog thing rather than a digital one.

And it may well be.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 3:27 pm 
Avisaru
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(attempts to hide under the table as a result of the argument)

Anyways, something I’ll also add a bit to the conversation: if you know you have a problem, whether mental, emotional, or otherwise, then the only way to change is if you first recognize or admit there’s a problem. No amount of therapy really is going to help unless that person takes the first step in realizing that there’s an issue that needs solving.

Ultimately, I don’t know if something psychological really is the issue. And I don’t want to do textbook psychoanalysis to try to divine an answer (because that rarely works well). What I do know is that I do my best to keep channels of communication open, but my father’s never seemed approachable or really someone who’s really willing to connect with either me or my brother on an emotional level. This might be residual from his military service or earlier trauma, such as with the loss of his parents; I don’t know. Right after I started graduate school (six years ago AAAAAAH), I got a strange e-mail from him saying that he was sorry about not really being “there” and the lack of a very good relationship between us (after he moved out to Colorado due to military stuff) and how he wanted things to change… but they actually really didn’t, especially between then and when he ended up leaving my mother about three years later. And they still haven’t. And he’s been telling me a lot as well about other things, such as assorted miscellanea about fishing and when he actually moved to Texas and some of the struggles with my grandfather (his stepfather), so the communication channel about some topics is there. He knew that I knew about his then-girlfriend (now-wife), so that kind of awkwardness had been gotten out of the way (I hope). And he at least e-mailed me to tell me he was divorcing my mother. But… really, I don’t know.

I'm currently working on an e-mail to send him and should do it within the next few days. I'm really mentioning that my major issues are the lack of communication and finding out things secondhand. (Honestly, the fact that he remarried so soon after the divorce also hurts, but less so than the feeling of not mattering or that he just doesn't really care...)

Salmoneus wrote:
But it does make me think I ought to stop coming here. My problem is, I have no emotional memory. Whatever people say or do, in a few hours I can't hold it against them. I remember that outside of the internet (even in large parts of the internet) there are people who aren't just driven by bigotry and close-mindedness, and who still converse like normal people; and I forget that coming here is like bashing my brains out against a brick wall of everyone's derision and contempt. [and that people here can say with a straight face that calling someone an arsehole isn't extreme for them at all - and the sad thing is, I can believe it]. But it wears you down, notch by notch.

I mean, that's actually not a bad thing (the not holding grudges); I know I hold them and carry them around for far too long. But not all of us share derision and contempt for you and some of us value you (long posts included).

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2018 4:03 pm 
Smeric
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I'm seeing a therapist twice a week. My problem was that I knew material well but was terrible at getting work done and then not losing it. I am both lazy and ADHD (inattentive type), but at the time I only knew the first half. My anxiety and depression came from a variety of reasons, but grades were by far the most significant.

EDIT: accidentally wrote day instead of week. I was tempted to leave it like that because sometimes I feel like I'm there that often.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2018 11:37 am 
Smeric
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Vijay wrote:
jmcd wrote:
He is proposing that part of the reason for a general trend among men to not disclose potentially emotionally damaging information.

I don't understand this sentence.
Yes, of course. That's because I forgot to reread it and complete it: "He is proposing that mental health is part of the reason for a general trend among men to not disclose potentially emotionally damaging information."


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:04 pm 
Sanno
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vampireshark wrote:
Anyways, something I’ll also add a bit to the conversation: if you know you have a problem, whether mental, emotional, or otherwise, then the only way to change is if you first recognize or admit there’s a problem. No amount of therapy really is going to help unless that person takes the first step in realizing that there’s an issue that needs solving.

That was also what I was trying to add to the conversation: own your dysfunction. If you genuinely want to have a better relationship with someone, do what you need to do to get there.

I watched my father struggle with this all through adolescence. He was never close to his father, who was a quiet man who never shared much about himself. Granddaddy was also in the military (WWII) and never really talked about it. At some point, Dad realised his inability to connect with us emotionally was harming the relationships he wanted to have. This was apparent to him (and he started working on it) even before he and my mother divorced, but after that he redoubled his efforts.

We did not make it easy for him. At first his approach seemed really artificial (he was trying to put in practice what he'd read in books and learned in therapy) and we felt manipulated. It took me another decade to accept that he was coming from a genuine place, let go of my resentment, and start cultivating a close relationship with him (and even that took the urging of my partner at the time, who was estranged from his two sons).

vampireshark wrote:
I'm currently working on an e-mail to send him and should do it within the next few days. I'm really mentioning that my major issues are the lack of communication and finding out things secondhand. (Honestly, the fact that he remarried so soon after the divorce also hurts, but less so than the feeling of not mattering or that he just doesn't really care...)

That sounds like a really good response.


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