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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Shoot the Messenger

(Or, The Self-Loathing Narcissist)

I’ve been meaning to write something since the week after the election. It was going to be called “21st Century American Jesus,” because that’s a great string of words, and it was going to be about all the stupid shit I watched you people post in your mindless outrage. The New Hope/Empire/Return of the Jedi vs Obama/Trump/Bernie memes that a fucking 12 year old would be embarrassed to even pretend to count as a political discourse. The outrage over DAPL somehow being suddenly coupled with “welcome to Trump’s America,” as if the guy you’re all so proud to have elected twice before him can’t do anything to stop what’s going on (“Change” my fucking balls). The meme after meme lamenting famous people you never fucking met but somehow care about more than your own families, or reducing complex issues to bipolar shit-slinging blurbs. You people make me fucking sick, and for two god damn weeks I mulled and churned over how to present that in a way where you’d hear me, and that didn’t reduce me to your level or make me sound like a petulant teenager.

But I can’t. And it’s not because I’m wrong to feel that way, or because I don’t have the verbal skill to tone down my message to something digestible you can learn from. It’s not even because I am, ostensibly just an overgrown petulant teenager. It’s because there’s only one person in the world that I hate infinitely more than each and every one of you. There’s only one person that I would re-elect a thousand Trumps just to see drawn, quartered, and scattered to the ends of the earth, his name stricken from every record, and left buried with all of humanities other pathetic wrong turns. And that person is the one typing these words you read right now.

“Oh, but you’ve got so much potential! So much talent! If you just stopped thinking that way, I’m sure you’d rise to great things!” You couldn’t be more right. If I didn’t think this way, I’d have this life on fucking rails. Too bad that this is the way I think, and it’s developed over a lifetime of experiences none of you were there for. My “self-sabotage” – as it’s been referred to by everyone who has known me to any moderate extent or (god forbid) cared about me over the years – isn’t some arbitrary impulse I pulled out of thin air and decided to cling to for the next two decades. It’s the logical conclusion I’ve come to in the question of what it is I deserve, based on how I’ve treated all of the people who were important to me or tried to help me throughout my life. And my refusal to try, for fear that I will, yet again, fail, and disappoint no one except the only person that matters (that unforgiving shitbag), might be convoluted and self-perpetuating, but it’s not irrational. I’m not insane. I do the same thing over and over again, expecting the same results, and achieve them; my misery is perpetuated. But that’s a far cry better than trying something different over and over and also garnering the same, much worse result: soul-shattering disappointment.

I’ve spent the last year trying to think of reasons to not give up. Cool your fucking “all life has inherent value” jets, and get a grip; I’m not going to take any direct action to kill myself, because I’m far too much of a coward. But I have spent this time on the brink of the decision to give up, fade away, go work my Monday to Friday job for the next 20 years, drink myself to sleep every night, until the pent up rage starts sprouting tumors and rids me of this miserable life I’ve already wasted half of. If you’re still reading this (and I hope to sweet fuck you aren’t), you’re probably growing steadily more concerned and warming up some comment along the lines of, “Well I think you’re pretty cool, and have a lot to offer, and have made my life better. So fuck you, too.” Words can’t describe how much worse that makes me feel. Understand this in no uncertain terms: None of your love or support or encouragement has meant anything beyond confirming that I’m a fuckup who could/should be doing better. Every show of support or shoulder to lean on is just further proof that I’m not good enough because I can’t beat this and I can’t keep pushing on my own.

So why the fuck am I wasting your time? Well, technically, I’m only wasting my time, and you’re wasting your own time reading it. You shouldn’t. I probably should have made that more clear from the get-go. I just wanted to write this down, so that it’s written down. If you could hear the inside of my head, you’d understand why it helps. It’s like a snapshot of where my head is at right now, and about 40% of the rest of my waking hours. Maybe I’ll email it to my shrink and that’ll give us a whole lot to talk about next week. Or maybe he’ll commit me for it, put me on meds, and make it that much easier to slide into oblivion. The reason I wrote it is that one very important person to me told me I have to do something – anything – and in this moment, this is all I could do. Maybe I’ll go make some food and be fine in an hour. Maybe I’ll find a kinder, gentler way to write the “Jesus” thing, and keep pushing like I always have; just enough to keep moving forward, but not enough to make myself believe there’s a point in continuing. Maybe that’s the same thing you all do day in and day out, you’re just better at keeping it all bottled up than I am. I’m a narcissist. And I fucking hate myself. For that, and everything that comes with it.

But I know I owe it to her to try. Fuck that, not even “owe it.” I want to be better, for her, even though I genuinely don’t believe that I can and don’t see any way of getting from here to there. But right now, this is all I’ve got. And she wanted me to do something, so… there’s that. I’m trying.

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