Changes In The Passive Aggressive Household 2013

celebrate 2013Happy New Year everyone! I hope most of you made it through the holidays unscathed and are now ready to take control of yourself (your life) if nothing else. Something about a new slate for a new year definitely renews the energy, even if it has been several new slates over several new years. Even after all this time, I still have hope. LOL. As Joyce Meyers says “Sure the grass looks greener on the other side, but sooner or later you’re going to have to mow that lawn too.”

Things are about the same with the passive aggressive boyfriend around here. Same little petty stuff. Same passive aggressive behavior. I have gotten much better on calling him on the just so stupid, really blatant stuff. It doesn’t change a whole lot, but he knows I know, and he hasn’t gotten anything over on  me. Some of the things he was soooo blatant on, he’s been trying to correct and not be so obvious, but you know what they say about a lepeord changing his spots. LOL.

I don’t know what the outcome will be from this, but I have turned over the household finances to him. Yep. It’s time the passive aggressive got to stress and worry and figure it out, just like I have all these years. I hear a few of you out there who have “been there, done that” and ended up with a disaster on your hands, but I’m quite optimistic.

Since the passive aggressive is back on unemployment, our great state in all it’s wisdom puts his unemployment money on an ATM card for him instead of mailing a check. Shortly after he got his first money put on the card, I couldn’t help but notice that he hoarded that card as if it was gold plated. That gave me the perfect opportunity to hand over the bills that needed to be paid.

We all know what it’s like to get a passive aggressive spouse, boyfriend, or whatever, do something they don’t want to do. We have been going on this way for about 3 or 4 months now, yet every month I have to “teach” him how to pay each bill. Of course I know the typical passive aggressive behavior would be that he’ll “misplace” bills, forget to pay them, etc. I have an answer for that. The PA knows I keep an index file for tax purposes, so when he pays each bill, he brings me the receipts. If I give him the bills and I don’t get a receipt within a couple of days, I start asking for it. Trust me, there’s a lot less stress just asking for the receipts than it was shuffling everything around. Plus I have a bonus. Because he won’t let go of the card, he grocery shops and cooks most of the time.  SCORE! LOL.

Ok, your turn. How were your holidays (if you celebrate). Rant if you need to. What do you plan for 2013. I changed the poll over on the right hand side.  The answers to the last poll were:

Why Do You Stay W/A PA?

Love  30.14%  (88 votes)

Parent  15.75%  (46 votes)

Finances  38.36%  (112 votes)

health  1.37%  (4 votes)

fear  14.38%  (42 votes)
Total Votes: 292


After Leaving The Passive Aggressive…

Good morning! I don’t know if you’re like me, but I have a song for just about everything I do in life. Marg submitted the video and lyrics below, and I thought it was so appropriate, I decided to re-post it here. Enjoy=)

“Somebody That I Used To Know”
(feat. Kimbra)

Now and then I think of when we were together
Like when you said you felt so happy you could die
Told myself that you were right for me
But felt so lonely in your company
But that was love and it’s an ache I still remember

You can get addicted to a certain kind of sadness
Like resignation to the end, always the end
So when we found that we could not make sense
Well you said that we would still be friends
But I’ll admit that I was glad it was over

But you didn’t have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don’t even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and I feel so rough
No you didn’t have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don’t need that though
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

Now you’re just somebody that I used to know
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

Now and then I think of all the times you screwed me over
Part of me believing it was always something that I’d done
But I don’t wanna live that way
Reading into every word you say
You said that you could let it go
And I wouldn’t catch you hung up on somebody that you used to know

But you didn’t have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don’t even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and I feel so rough
And you didn’t have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don’t need that though
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

(I used to know)
(Now you’re just somebody that I used to know)

(I used to know)
(That I used to know)
(I used to know)

How To Tell If A Passive Aggressive Is Lying…

I have come to the conclusion if you want to know if a passive aggressive is lying, you just have to see their lips are moving. (Judge Judy says the same about teenage children. LOL)

I thought my passive aggressive boyfriend (roommate) had pretty much done the worst he could do when he hadn’t told me after being together for 11 yrs. that he was still married, but with a passive aggressive the “hits just keep on coming”.

Any of you who have been with me for any length of time know we just moved down to SoCal recently. When we got down here the PA’s employer decided they didn’t have any work for him down here, so I told him to file for unemployment. Of course that took some time, and some nagging, but he finally did it. While we’re trying to get some work going down here, and he’s supposedly looking for work, we’ve been living on my mother’s social security. As you can imagine, it’s not much for 3 people with bad habits. LOL. Any money from unemployment would be a plus.

They say in California it takes about 10 days to start drawing benefits. OK. I’m resourceful. We can live until then. So, after 10 days I am checking the mailbox, getting on the passive aggressive to call the benefits office to find out where his check is. Every day he tells me he can’t get through, not on the recorder number and not on the main number. He actually has me listen because I can’t believe that you can’t get through on a recorded number that is supposed to give information 24/7.

Finally, the passive aggressive gets up one morning, bright and early and drives to an office in another town a short ways from us. He comes back and tells me they’ve docked him 5 weeks because they are saying he’s the one that terminated employment. I ask him if he explained circumstances, etc. He says he did but they didn’t care.

When the second person I told about this mentioned an appeal process, I decided to look into it myself. I pull up the info on how to appeal and it says you have 20 days from the “Determination Letter” you receive from them. So I start asking the PA if he ever got this letter. He’s hem-hawing around, and finally asks me why. I explain I’m working on an appeal, and he finally breaks forth with the truth.

All this time while I’m checking the mailbox and on his butt to call the unemployment office, he had received a determination letter that said they were docking him 5 weeks because he got overpaid in April 2010. It had absolutely nothing to do with his employer. He had already appealed, without me knowing it, and he didn’t want to tell me because he “didn’t want to complicate things any further”.

I came unglued!! Complicate things any further? So it’s easier letting me think there’s a check coming that isn’t, and lying to me every day about not knowing why it’s not here? Instead of telling me it’s not coming and letting me figure something else out, just let me keep hoping every single day it was in the mail?

I must have called him everything in the book, language I haven’t used in a long time came spilling out of my mouth. (Going to church today to ask for forgiveness. LOL). I told him it was obvious he had absolutely no integrity, which I should have known after the “wife” incident, but I never guessed that he was still lying straight to my face, about our every day life!

I told him to go home to his eldest son’s. Of course I know that won’t happen right now, and I really don’t want it to right now until I have a little more income on my end coming in, but this definitely did it. We are through! From now on it will be my total concentration to figure how to make extra cash, where I can pull money from to put in savings, all building to a life without him. I’ll get there.

Problem Solving With The Passive Aggressive

Problem solving with the passive aggressive, their answer? Wait long enough someone or something else will take care of it.

I just realized looking at my posting, it seems my life has so gotten in the way that I’ve only been posting about once a month lately, although I have approved comments and made some comments of my own more often than that. I cannot believe how life just passes one by so fast, and so much time I can never get back.

Hear that people? Every day that you spend being miserable is a day you will never get back! Scary thought isn’t it? Especially when you think about the fact that we all have an “expiration date” even if we don’t know when it is. What would you do if the date on the bottom of your foot was, oh let’s say, 9/15/2011 (because we know almost everything is the first, the middle, or the end of the month. LOL)?

Okay, so on with what I was here to talk about. (I am still here, lurking in the shadows, paying attention. Oh, wait a minute, that sounds kind of creepy. LOL)

For those of you who had read my post about “How Deceitful Can A Passive Aggressive Be?” about my passive aggressive boyfriend not telling me for 11 yrs. that he was still married, that problem has been solved.

I wish I could say by him, but that’s not the case. He, in his typical passive aggressive behavior fashion, never did a thing to set things right after I found out the truth. Unfortunately, his wife passed away a couple of weeks ago. He’s at a memorial for her today. I say unfortunately because I actually liked her. I knew her before I knew he and her even knew each other, let alone had been married. I would have gone also, but I have a lady I watch out for that was expected home from the hospital today, and I have my mother here with me, which I could not leave for that extended length of time. One of the reasons they had split was because she had cheated on him, amongst other things. I have since learned a couple of other females he had been very involved with had left also. While anyone who has read my blog for any length of time knows I don’t condone cheating, with “walking in her shoes” I do understand it.

He has told his kids he needs a copy of the death certificate. My curiosity has me wondering what he plans to do with it. I am surprised he even thought enough to do that. As you all know, the passive aggressive doesn’t usually think that far ahead.

Now, where do I stand? Do I want to marry him if he should be dumb enough to ask? The answer would be an obvious “no”. It’s too late now. He should have married me before I put the “I can see you’re very passive aggressive” glasses on. LOL. (The rose-colored ones wore out).

But, at the same time, I’m having a hard time because I’ve been “living in sin” for 11 yrs. At the same time, we don’t have sex, rarely even sleep in the same bed, so is that the same as really “living in sin”? I’ve told him and you how we’re really just roommates. (If you live with someone and you’re not married, I am not against that. I am not judging anyone here. This is my own thing). Who would really be dumb enough to actually marry a passive aggressive when they know that’s what they are? NOT! LOL.

So we go on as we are, until things are situated and he can go his way and I can go mine. Like many of you who feel trapped by finances, etc. I understand completely, but he does know, or at least I’ve told him, once things are taken care of, we’re done. In the meantime he buries his proverbial passive aggressive head in the sand as if everything is just fine.

What worries me is there are a couple of things I have to count on him for, so will he make excuses because he knows that? Or will he try harder hoping to make up for the passive aggressive behavior in the past? So far it’s not looking so good. LOL

The Passive Aggressive Covertly Rebels

He doesn’t tell me that he resents the hell out of me because I work from home, but he is a passive aggressive that is covertly rebelling. LOL.

I don’t know how many of you have had teenagers, but when they rebel, it’s pretty open and you deal with it. When a passive aggressive rebels it’s very covertly, and you either miss it or you figure out how to deal with it as it comes. My passive aggressive, I just let him know I’m on to him.

We have a deal, so to speak. First off, he’s the one that let me know when he first moved in with me, taking out the trash was a “man” thing. Ok. I was raised like that. Except the last several years has been a “it’s trash nite” “I know. I’ll get in the morning” sleep through the morning, I take out the trash. Then it’s “it’s trash nite” “I know. I’ll take it out in the morning” “Yeah, but you don’t get up in the morning so maybe you should put it out tonite”. Sigh, sulk, do it. Or…not do it and the famous passive aggressive “Oh I forgot. I’m such an idiot” (head hanging low thing).

Since the passive aggressive BF has been working, there has been basically an unspoken rule that when he’s off on the weekends he cooks and does the dishes, and I work. This last weekend I guess he decided he didn’t like that arrangement. I did all the grocery shopping and said about it would be great if he cooked blah, blah, blah. All he had to do was cook and it’s in a crockpot, so it’s not that tough. Evidently he didn’t appreciate cooking Saturday nite because the dishes stayed in the sink from Saturday, Sunday until I did them Monday morning. I had put all the food away, emptied the dish drain, etc. All he had to do was the little bit of dishes and cook Sunday nite, which he usually does. Evidently that was too much.

I would rather he just bitched at me so I could respond instead of this stupid, passive aggressive stuff. I treat him as if he works his butt off all week and he takes first priority over everything. The truth is he barely works part time and he has plenty of time off, so you would think the weekend wouldn’t kill him!

God forbid we should interrupt football for chores. By the way, my rear view mirror is hanging from the windshield absolutely useless, (he usually fixes it) because the passive aggressive covertly rebels.

Passive Aggressive, Sociopath, or Both?

passive aggressive manA friend of mine brought to my attention a couple of weeks ago, that she thought the passive aggressive man she’s involved with may be a sociopath. She came to this conclusion after reading an article on the subject.

According to clinical psychologist and former Harvard Medical School instructor Dr. Martha Stout, about 1 in every 25 people in America is a sociopath. Maybe not the murdering kind, but definitely the kind without social conscience. I have to admit after reading the article and doing the research, I myself can see similarities that could cause one to think this could be one of those over lapping, combo personality disorders. In many instances it looks like the Passive Aggressive Personality Disorder and the Sociopath Personality Disorder could very well go hand in hand.

Disclaimer: I am not in any way or any form a clinical psychologist, psychiatrist, or any kind of degreed therapist. This is just my personal observation based on my own research. I am not saying that every passive aggressive is a sociopath (although sometimes in my own mind I may think it. LOL).

The Passive Aggressive Personality is usually caused from an environmental dysfunction in childhood such as drug or alcohol addicted parents, or any type of environment where it wasn’t safe for them to express their anger and frustration.  There appears to be evidence however that the upbringing of a sociopath has little or no effect on them. Like a passive aggressive elements of a sociopath’s personality first become evident at a very early age, but they appear to be due to biological or genetic factors. According to the book for medical diagnosis, one can not be diagnosed as a sociopath until the age of 15 or older, yet as stated above, there have probably been signs through out earlier childhood.

Now for some of the similarities. It is truly amazing at different points in the discussion concerning both personality disorders.It’s also pretty scary.

Let’s start with an easy one. Most of us know what makes a sociopath a sociopath is a lack of conscience. According to expert Robert Hare, author of the book “Without Conscience” the sociopath lacks guilt.

They often see themselves as victims, and lack remorse or the ability to empathize with others.

Passive aggressives also see themselves as victims. Everything that happens to them is someone else’s fault. They cannot feel remorse or empathy for others because they never believe the problem is them.

Lets try another one.  According to the psychopathy checklist of H. Checkly and Robert Hare, a deep seated rage is at the core of the sociopath. They see others around them as targets and opportunities.  With the passive aggressive, they too have a suppressed anger that they have never learned to or been allowed to express openly. This is what leads to the covert abuse and sabetoge of their victims (us).

This is getting kind of long, but lets go for number 3.

According to Martha Stout who wrote “The Sociopath Next Door”, most sociopaths would be described as “the most charming, charismatic, sexiest, or maybe the most interesting” person you ever met. Isn’t that a common reason we end up staying in a marriage or relationship with a passive aggressive for so long? Sure there are exceptions, but for the most part don’t they drive us crazy until we’re ready to walk and then they charm us back in for another period of time? In most cases didn’t we fall in love with them because they seemed so loving, so caring, until we married them or got involved? Doesn’t it really feel a lot of the time that it’s just a game to them? That’s how it is with a sociopath. It is a game. A game purely of manipulation.

There is more, and I may do a part 2 to this, but this is long enough for now. If you like, follow the link above to one of the articles regarding sociopaths and do some of your own comparisons. Then, if you would, come back and share your stories with us. Like I always say, we’re here to learn, get encouragement, and to help each other.

The Passive Aggressive And Commitment

People have been asking about the passive aggressive and commitment so I thought I would write a little about it now.

If you’re looking for true, real, deep down commitment from a passive aggressive (like the I’ll love you till I die kind) you’re looking in the wrong place. While you may get them to marry you, which I have to say the shack-ups (no offense. I’m one) outnumber the marriages by my tally, they still never really commit. They don’t know how and they’re scared to death of it.

I’m a prime example. I’ve been engaged to my passive aggressive BF for almost 10 yrs. He told me from the beginner he’s a “sticker” meaning he sticks in the relationship for as long as I’ll put up with him, but actually walk down the aisle, forget it. (Thank you, God). And he is. He sticks like frickin’ glue. LOL. He doesn’t hardly socialize. He doesn’t go out and he doesn’t have any friends that he keeps in touch with. At the same time, he doesn’t cheat, he doesn’t come home drunk after hours at the bar, and he doesn’t beat me. There are some good things.

Here me LOUD AND CLEAR. A passive aggressive does not commit. They are afraid if they do they may get dependent on you. The also don’t know how to commit emotionally to anything or anyone. If you’re in the dating stage, you may think he’s committed, but don’t make the mistake of thinking that’s true. He probably wants to be, but he doesn’t know how and in most cases isn’t willing to learn. What’s really hard about the passive aggressive you fall in love with is most of the time their so damn good at hiding how passive aggressive they are.

If you’re in a relationship with a man who
1) has no interaction with the family he was born in to
2) has no interaction with a family he created in the past
3) was abused in his childhood and didn’t rebel
4) has really old fashioned views on discipline based on how he was raised (really harsh)

odds are you’re dating a passive aggressive. And if you’re like me and you’re the one making all the moves sexually, don’t expect that to change either. At first I thought the passive aggressive BF was just “old fashioned” and being polite. I had listened to different sayings he had and the way he talked, so I thought he just really cared for me and didn’t want to scare me off. WRONG. After we got together he didn’t reach for me either. I used to talk to him about it. He just said he had been accused of being an animal before so he wasn’t like that anymore. BS.

He was never like that or his first wife wouldn’t have been caught cheating on him. His girlfriend after that that he really cared for wouldn’t have left for another man, etc. He’s just been lucky with me in the way that
1) I’m too old and lazy to start training again (altho I may revive)
2) I’m too busy to care about anything else right now
3) When I had so many opportunities the relationship was still new enough I always thought of him first
4) Last but not least, I believe in breaking things off first, before I go messing around (although that could change at any minute. LOL)

If you’re looking for a man that does what he says, is devoted to you like we see in the movies (which we all know is a fairytale but some are better than others), and wants to only be with you, do things with you around the house, be social with your friends, blah, blah, blah, you’re looking in the wrong place if you’re involved with a passive aggressive person. They don’t have and probably will never get, a clue.

Don’t forget to check out the new Recommended Reading List (heading at the top of the page) and please, we would love to hear your story or leave a comment on the post. Always glad to learn and share ideas.

Update: Passive Aggressive News

First of all sorry to everyone for not being in touch for a few days, but I’m using a new WiFi system for my internet and it can be rather hit or miss. I haven’t been able to get a good enough signal to really do anything on the blog, but right now it’s working well so I’m taking advantage. LOL. I’ve approved and answered all comments so if you left something here and it took me a couple of days to answer, I am very sorry. I’ll be settled down here soon and not so sporadic.

So now, on with the Passive Aggressive News. LOL.

So in my last post I wrote about sibling rivalry and passive aggressiveness. I got confirmation this week from my almost sister-in-law through the passive aggressive BF’s email they definitely aren’t sending the money his brother said he would loan us. That is fine. I have no problem with that. More people than not are having economic troubles these days and I totally understand. What I’m having a hard time with is the fact that he let us sit for almost 2 weeks before his wife finally came out and said “no”.  (I didn’t really sit for 2 weeks, only 6 days before I got a clue).  The BF emailed her back saying thank you anyway, blah, blah. I asked him if he told her how much deeper into a hole his brother put us by not just saying no to start with, but of course he didn’t. Oh well.

So we are moved into our new place anyway, Yeah! Thank goodness for friends with big hearts. You would think things would be better for everyone as the stress should be lighter not having to pay for the hotel everyday, etc. Instead the passive aggressiveness is raging, and I did today what I tell you guys not to do.

I LOST IT! I had gone to a town about 45 minutes away to see a girlfriend in a hospital and get some papers signed. I left a little after 9 am. All he had to do was move the car that was in the driveway to the street in front of our house so I could pull in the driveway when I got home. We live now in a neighborhood where parking is at a premium, so we park 2 cars on the street, and the one we use most often in the drive so we always have a place to park. 3 hours later when I got home the car was still sitting in the drive and I had to park in the street. This was like the straw that broke the camels back. I am so sick of the words “I was just getting ready to do that” I could gag! I ended up moving the cars myself, which is fine, I’m not crippled, but that’s not the point.

A couple of days ago I had been trying to get a hold of him on his cell phone. No answer of course. When I got home I made mention of only calling him again in the future if I was feeling suicidal, because anytime I really need him I can’t get an answer. He lightly threw his cell phone on the table to let me know he was unhappy. I picked it up and threw it across the livingroom and it shattered into 4 pieces. He got it back together and it seems to work much better now. LOL.

My point being is he got the very reaction he wanted from me, whether he consciously knew it or not. He got me crazy. This is exactly what a passive aggressive needs to feel he is in control. It gives them satisfaction at your expense and if they’re “winning” it just gets worse.

The one thing I did do was when I blew my top today, I laid all the cards on the table. I told him I knew what he was doing sabotaging every effort, holding back the I love you’s when I said I love you, the whole bit. I told him it was quite obvious he didn’t love me anymore (to which his face gave a look of protest, but I never gave him a chance to say anything. I told him I was tired of his crap and I wanted it to stop NOW. I didn’t want to play anymore.

So my friends, we will see if it makes any difference or not. I believe that we have to confront this behavior as it’s happening so they know we know what they are doing, but I usually advise to do it calmly. Sometimes I guess calm doesn’t cut it, then a person’s gotta do what a person’s gotta do.

Coming soon, a review of a book on passive aggressive relationships. So far it’s pretty good as far as defining a passive aggressive and giving some examples.

Feel free to comment. I’ll try to be faster on the replies. If you feel you need to get some answers right away, feel free to email me anytime. Just remember, I’m not a therapist, just one of you living through it a day at a time, with 10 years of days experience. LOL.

Sibling Rivalry and Passive Aggression

Sometimes doesn’t show up for years. Sometimes a lot of years. Sometimes it blindsides you and you never see it coming. That’s where we are today.

My passive aggressive boyfriend grew up in a home with a brother just a few years younger than him, 2 sisters, then a sister who is 9 years younger, and finally a “menopause” baby boy who is 16 years younger.

They grew up most the time on a farm, or moving around, and the father ruled with an “iron fist”, literally. Nowadays he would definitely be prosecuted for child abuse. Some of the stories I’ve heard are incredible. I just never thought about any of them applying to anyone but my BF.

The BF joined the service right out of high school, as they did back then (he’s kind of old. LOL). That of course leaves the next boy to pick up the slack. The BF gets back from Viet Nam, hangs out for a year and takes off for California. As I’ve explained many times on this blog, there is not really an emotional connection with a passive aggressive. Once he took off for California he never called anyone in the family, not Mom, not siblings, not anyone. So who does Daddy rule next? The next brother.

When his Mom got up there in age, he started going back to see her every year on her birthday and of course it was like a family reunion, and he was like the prodigal son. He did this for several years. I even went with him the first couple of years we were together. Great Mother, great family, and I felt so accepted. The father had passed long before I came along. When the BF was out of work and money was tight, I still made sure he went every year even though we couldn’t afford for both of us to go.

The PABF’s mom passed a couple of years ago. I don’t think he’s been in touch with anyone since. I keep in touch with his youngest sister, email his sister that’s the second oldest, and that’s about it. We had to call his brother last week for a HUGE favor. They were always really close when they were younger. This is when you find out passive aggressive behavior runs in the family.

The BF’s brother said “Sure. Just give me a couple days because I’m on my way out of town in the morning. I’ll take care of it as soon as I get back”. We waited. Come 5 days later, the BF put in a call to him. No answer, no call back. Tuesday the same. It doesn’t take a brick to hit me in the head to start getting a clue, but I was still holding onto a little bit of hope. Today’s Wednesday. No word.

Why not just say “no” to start with? Why not even make up a lie as to why not, and then say no? Because this is how a passive aggressive gets even. This is so typical passive aggressive behavior. They say sure, or yes, and then blow you off. Sound familiar? Screw up people’s lives by doing that? Hell ya.

I learned a new lesson about passive aggressiveness this week. I learned that the odds are if the one in your life is passive aggressive, it probably runs in their family. It makes sense. If it’s a passive aggressive parent that caused your loved one’s behavior, then the siblings also have been influenced by that same parent. Many times it’s the passive aggressive parent they take after or admire, because children are very smart. They see how that type of behavior works for the parent using it. If a parent was so rigid in their discipline as to cause your loved one to be passive aggressive, there’s no reason to believe that the siblings would be any different. Drawing from my own childhood, my sister and I were treated completely different and we were two girls. I never gave a thought that the next boy in line would probably receive the same treatment that caused my BF’s passive aggressiveness.

I’ve learned another meaning to “dysfunctional family”.

6 Easy Steps To Lift Yourself Up When In a Passive Aggressive Relationship

If you haven’t read it already, you can read “Depression-A Side Effect of Passive Aggressive Relationships” right below. Once again, I am not any kind of doctor and if you are in a really deep depressive state with any thoughts of suicide or any thing else that would be detrimental to your health, please see a therapist or your family doctor right away. In the meantime if you’re depressed but do a lot of “self-help” read on.

Okay, I’m done indulging myself and today I’m ready to talk about how to pull yourself out of the “black hole”. These are my “6 easy steps to lifting yourself up when you’re in a passive aggressive relationship“. I hope you find something helpful.

First of all let’s all say together, out loud, “This sucks!!” Wow, didn’t that feel good? LOL. Don’t you feel your mood lifting already! It is what it is. Recognize it and then deal with it. The place to start is by taking care of your needs first. I know that’s not what we’re taught and for a lot of us this goes against every grain of our being. You’ll get used to it. You know the saying “If Mama ain’t happy, nobody’s happy”? Well that applies especially here.

1) As I’ve said here many times, at the top of my list is a “support system”. Either a good therapist, Al-Anon, close friends, or family, we all need someone we can talk to.  This needs to be someone or somewhere you can totally trust and unburden yourself. The load is always lighter when you have someone to share it with you.

2) If you don’t have any friends, make some. No, you can’t dump all your problems on someone you just met, but as you meet new people and develop relationships there will be people you can share with comfortably. The first step here is to get your butt out of the house. This will work 2-fold.

  1. Time spent outside the home with other human beings is crucial for your mental health. We were meant to be communal. “No man or woman is an island” as they say.
  2. Taking time to enjoy something you love to do is not being selfish. It will elevate your mood, give you more patience, and concentration when dealing with the situation at home.

3) My all time favorite is humor. There are days I either turn on the comedy channel and watch some good stand-up comedy, or if that’s not available there’s always YouTube. There are a couple of ventriloquists on there that make me laugh so hard I couldn’t keep it in if I tried. After spending so much time being serious about life, it feels so good to have a gut-wrenching laugh. Proverbs 17:22 says “a happy heart is good medicine”. You just can’t be angry or upset and laughing your head off at the same time. I think it’s a physical impossibility.

4) Music is good. Pull out some of that old stuff you used to sing at the top of your lungs with, and enjoy it. I know for me this is great because I usually do it while accomplishing something, whether it’s in the car as I’m going somewhere or home, cleaning house, let the music carry you off. If you’re singing to the music you certainly won’t be dwelling on the things that are upsetting you. Joann says this works really well for her. She says once at least one area of her life is in order, then the rest seems bearable.  Thanks Joann.

5) Sleep. You really need to make sure you are getting plenty of sleep. For me, I sleep more when I’m depressed. It’s sort of a defense mechanism. It can also be a problem if you’re living with someone who throws it in your face all the time. It is so important. It gives the body and mind a chance to heal, build itself back up for the battle, and “per chance to dream.”

“The Depression Cure,” Stephen Ilardi, Ph.D. writes:
“When laboratory rats are experimentally deprived of slow-wave sleep [a deep, restful form of slumber] for several days at a time, their brains start to malfunction and they become seriously ill. Humans react in much the same way. After just a few nights of slow-wave deprivation, most people report intense, aching fatigue. After a few more days, they begin to feel physically ill.”

6) Guilt. If you’re feeling guilty, and we all know when you live with a passive aggressive, instilling guilt is one of the things they do best, Therese Borchard at Beyond Blue says to “label” it. I had never heard this tip before and thought it was a great idea. She says to label it “helpful” or “not helpful”. It it’s not helpful, the kind where you just beat yourself up, let it go. Tell it goodbye. If it’s the helpful kind, like “I should have had this better organized” then maybe you should listen to it. Do something about it to make your life easier the next time the situation arises. We all know how damaging negative “self-talk” can be, those little voices in our heads, make a vow here and now to stop it. Cut it off as soon as it starts or as soon as you realize what you’re doing. Sometimes I have to just go “lalalalala” in kind of a melody to stop it, but it works. Sort of like “lalalalala. I can’t hear you” type of thing.

This is a good start to a long list of stuff we can do to be pro-active and help ourselves, but I know there’s many more and I’m open to suggestion, so feel free to share what works for you in the comments section below.


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