Thursday, June 21, 2007

Is Anyone Out There Happy?

Sifting through a few more blogs this morning, I've become aware just how very sad most people, at least in blogger world, seem to be.

They denigrate their own physical and mental attributes more devastatingly than the most horrible grade school bully could hope to do.

One blogger I found the other day even entitles Her blog "Stupid Dumb Girl" or something similar.

Beyond blogger world, the number of people who self-medicate, who are on anti-depressants, or who ultimately commit suicide, is just staggering. And horrible, IMHO.

I'm just an average guy. I'm not brilliant but I'm not stupid. I'm not wealthy. My current job exists at the mercy of a budget cut that could come any day. I have certain deep frustrations and sorrows that gnaw at me every now and then.

But nonetheless, I'm not a chronically sad person. I don't hate myself. I don't care much for my currently squishy tummy but the rest of me is quite trim and decent looking, again IMHO.

I find almost everyone around me, with a few exceptions, to be similar or excelling me in intelligence; and even very few people who I would consider physically ugly -- when they are, it's usually because of the selfish life they've lived, not the genes they were born with.

Why can't simple contentment be more common among humankind, at least those who aren't sifting through hot dust for spilled UNICEF rice grains in a refugee camp or trapped in North Korea?


Chase March said...

I think it is hard for people to see the big picture. Everyone has problems, troubles, and worries but if we allow ourselves to step back from them for a moment, we can see them in a new light. Things are never as bad as you think they are. Someone is always in a worse situation.

I think the goal of life is to be happy where you are. I know that that is not always possible but that is what dreams are for. With work and dedication you can lift yourself out of anything. Happiness is something we all have right now. People are already, and have always been, happy. I think some just lose it along the way. Step back and see the big picture and find happiness again.

I know it sounds easier said than done, and for some people it will be. But I wish you all the happiness you deserve.

chipazoid said...

Well, in my opinion, a lot of people blog to release tension. Perhaps it's their therapy, just to write it all out and talk to someone, anyone out there who might chance by their blog and just listen.

eastcoastdweller said...

Thanks, Chase and Adena.

My thought was that I don't understand why chronic misery and self-hatred seems to be so endemic to humanity, even those who are well-fed, clothed and not plagued by a painful disease.

Society is awash in alcohol and other drugs used and abused to dull the apparent daily sorrow of life.

And when these fail, people shoot, gas, poison, hang or fling themselves to death.

A few years ago, I came to work one morning and found the place abuzz -- a young employee, a smart man, a man who appeared jovial and happy, no some unsociable loner, had hung himself in the break room overnight.

Alexis said...

I read a quote yesterday that said something along the lines of "There is no such thing as happiness, only moments of happiness." And I'd like to say the same goes for sadness, but that doesn't always seem to be the case. One of my friends tried to commit suicide in seventh grade. Why? I'll never understand how anything could ever be that bad.

chipazoid said...

Well, things can be really horrible. I've felt like suicide many times in my life, doesn't mean I have attempted, but I did feel like dying at various points. It doesn't make you weaker, or make you less aware of the bigger picture.

Sometimes you're dealt horrible cards, it's insensitive to say things like, I don't understand how things could get that bad, because sometimes they really do and instead of judging the person, perhaps all they really want is someone to give them some attention and not to belittle the way they feel for once.

eastcoastdweller said...

The lowest point in my life came when I was 17. I'd left home unhappy, feeling like a failure -- no social life, no driver's license, no real friends in that town, since we were new move-ins.

I was in military boot camp and every effort was being made to break me down.

My lifelong poor coordination skills were made painfully clear -- I couldn't shoot the damn machine guns properly, I marched left when they said right, and, though I was in the best physical shape that I have ever been, I couldn't keep up with their demands for 100 pushups at a time.

Under all that pressure, I seriously considered suicide for the first time in my life. I made a plan. But I didn't carry it out.

A few weeks later, I had improved enough to graduate and my life has steadily gotten better.

So the point to my long ramble is that only under those extraordinary, horrific conditions was I ever low enough to consider suicide to end my misery.

I can't understand how so many people who are not under that kind of pressure can hate themselves and hate their lives.

eastcoastdweller said...

Thanks, BTW, Alexis, for your comment.

eastcoastdweller said...

Adena said, and rightfully so:

"Sometimes you're dealt horrible cards, it's insensitive to say things like, I don't understand how things could get that bad, because sometimes they really do and instead of judging the person, perhaps all they really want is someone to give them some attention and not to belittle the way they feel for once."

Judging and belittling such a person is certainly wrong, and counterproductive. I'm not trying to judge, I'm not saying sad people ought to be happier and have no right to feel sad.

That would be like telling someone, "Be happy, dammit, or I'll kick your %$#!"

What I'm wondering about, is that proverbial "deck of cards" that you mentioned, Adena. Is a bad hand really that common in the game of life, is it the dismal reality for the majority of humankind?

My question is not: Why is Person X so "down" on him or Her self?

It's why are so many people, even perhaps a majority, so down on themselves, that alcohol, cocaine, and, tragically, suicide are endemic to apparently every town and city across the planet?

Is the general human condition so awful?

chipazoid said...

Well, they say that nobody's perfect, I'm assuming that a person's imperfection probably causes another person some pain. My horror stories are my own, and I slowly publish them when I feel better or more inclined to talk about it.

You'd be amazed, the amount of pain and suffering that goes on behind closed doors. It could be something like, a child being abused, a woman suffering because her husband neglects her, a housewife working 2 jobs to support her family. A child who is a social outcast, all stuff like that.

It's not uncommon, and everybody has problems. Perhaps the misery is there, and it is very real, but we have to learn to overcome this and move on with our lives. That's the only thing we can do.