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Open Thread for Personal Stuff, 5/16 Bearcat Edition

catbear
Best Friends 4 Ever

A long overdue Open Thread for Personal Stuff. (There’s also one for non-personal stuff.)

As always, no trolls or MRAs. Let me know if any show up.

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Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

That picture needs a tiger; oh my!

Nothing very exciting happening with me. Just so busy work wise. So dazed this morning I put toothpaste on my razor. Luckily realised before I hacked my gums off (or ended up with a minty fresh scalp).

Skiriki
Skiriki
6 years ago

It is getting horribly hot here (I don’t deal well with high end of temperatures, so anything above +20 C is “horribly hot” for me; on the other hand, I can wander about in 0 C weather in a t-shirt just fine). Cats are melting. I need to get that safety net for my balcony so I can air my apartment better during those scant cool hours.

Carisma is cranky and pissed off for some reason, and keeps making creaky complaints about everything. When I took a nap, she climbed Mt. My Butt and sat there and kept complaining. I’ve tried to play with her, but she loses interest with almost all toys after a while, only laser pointer has worked for her, and even that is losing some of its shine by now. She likes to play “chase”, and the toyboy Bob who was here as her beau knew how to play it. I mean, “run around apartment and chase each other”, not in some sort of MRA fantasy, just plain game of tag between girl cat and boy cat.

Didi doesn’t play chase. It’s not a game for her. She occasionally humors Carisma with it, but it tends to end up in small fights, since Didi is a tank and she has even less brakes than Carisma and collisions are imminent.

Nequam
Nequam
6 years ago

We had to put our cat down Monday morning. I think I cried most of it out that day but there are still pangs.

EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

I’ve been astronomy blogging. It’s enormous fun. I’m now uploading the essays onto my personal blog a day at a time.

In other news:

My fairly-toxic ex has come back into my life recently, claiming that she’s done a lot of self examination and is no longer toxic. I’m not a hundred percent sure of what to do, but she was a very fun, very smart person to be around at times and part of me wants that back. Not sure what to do.

EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

Hugs, Nequam.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

@ nequam

Oh my heart goes out to you; that’s so horrible. My doggie of 16 years passed away last month and it was devastating; so I really empathise.

Chiomara
Chiomara
6 years ago

So, these were tough two weeks, with the fire and everything…
My PTSD is crazy strong, I can’t sleep, I am startled like a kitten 24/7. I put my bed by the side of my parents’ and obsessively hear their breathing until the morning. And then I spend the day cooking, cleaning or medicating, and running after my mother, who insists on doing stuff she is not supposed to do, either because I don’t do it right, fast enough, or happily enough to her taste, and then she guilts me for “making” her do “more stuff than me” when she is sick.
Dialogue goes like:
-Mom, go back to bed, I cook, just wait for me to come back from the pharmacy.
-I am hungry, you can’t let us starve, we are sick.
-All right, then I begin cooking right now.
-You have to go to the pharmacy. We can’t wait for the meds, we are sick.
-All right, mom, then I run to the pharmacy and come back to make a faster food.
-No way, have you seen your face? You are lethargic. You look weak. You should rest.
-How would I rest?
-HAHAHA, HOW?!? You rest the entire day! You rest more than us, who are sick! You even LOOK sick! I have to do EVERYTHING around here!
Repeat this ad infinitum. This is literally a dialogue we’ve had. So, all in all, it’s been very stressful and tiresome, but I find time in my day to just look at my still standing house and family and feel so grateful and lucky, and find some more patience and strength to go through another day.

I have good news too (other than me and my family being alive and my house still standing, of course). They stayed in a very good hospital and the psychiatrist who talked to us wants to make me a study object in rape in the best university of my country. On the negative side, my case and behavior will regularly be discussed by many students. On the positive, I will be treated by the best psychiatrists in the area for free, and my case may help other rape victims!
And the bestest News: CLOE FINALLY LEARNED HOW TO SMILE AND LAUGH and will brighten our days even more with her toothless little mouth ^^

http://i.imgur.com/dTMfQEJ.jpg

Skiriki
Skiriki
6 years ago

Nequam:

Oh, so many support-hugs. 🙁 That’s horribly sad. 🙁

Chiomara:

Also, hugs to you too!

Viscaria
Viscaria
6 years ago

Nequam and Allan, I’m so sorry for the loss of your pets. They were lucky to be so loved.

EJ, I hope that your ex is telling the truth, and really has done a bunch of work on herself to become a better person. If you want to reconnect with her, though, I would probably recommend caution. Maybe set some pretty rigid boundaries, like yes I’d like to see you, but only for coffee for an hour; yes you can text me, but please no texts at 4 in the morning; please no big dumptrucks of emotion straight to my inbox. Or whatever makes sense for your situation.

Also, I’m sure you know this, but even if she’s made some really great changes you still don’t owe it to her to be her friend. It sounds like you want to connect because it would be positive for you, but just in case… You’re allowed to not trust her because of how she’s behaved in the past, even if she’s better now. You’re allowed to not forgive her. That’s assuming she has meaningfully apologized, which I hope she has.

I’m glad you’re having fun with the astronomy blogging! I’ll check it out when I get some time (not that I’ll understand it XD).

pitshade
pitshade
6 years ago

Hugs to Nequam and Chiomara!

Sinkable John
Sinkable John
6 years ago

Heart goes out to Nequam and Alan, it’s a horrible thing when hairy-faced friends die 🙁
Had to put down one of my cats last week – he adopted me when I was 6 and I’ve been living in his house ever since, so he’d been here for pretty much all of my life and died aged 18. I think even the other cat cried – he wakes me up in the middle of the “night” (that is, the afternoon these days) meowling in unusually high pitches, it’s kinda distressing.

In other news, while running errands in town I spotted nazis again. Like, actual nazis with swastika tattoos (thought those were illegal in most of Europe but I keep seeing them ?). I think the absolute worst part is that of all the people standing or walking by, I seem to have been the only one actually shocked. Good thing I’m moving to another town soon.

Freemage
Freemage
6 years ago

Nequam: My deepest sympathies. I still get the occasional pang for Legolas, three years later.

EJ: Free advice, and worth every penny: Keep in mind that even if she’s changed how she acts while not around you, a big part of toxic behavior is pattern-based. So getting back together with you might also be a trigger to fall back into old (bad) habits. (After my own toxic relationship, I resolved to never date someone with a flash temper, because I knew my own habit of lying to prevent a blow-up would come back, as well.) Move with caution. At the same time, don’t necessarily shut yourself off from a potential Good Thing. Suggest you start as friends, maybe in group activities with other mutual friends (ideally, including other single friends so you are not automatically being ‘paired off’) for awhile, to see how you interact.

My Own Bit:

As I mentioned in the other thread, I’m going to be a volunteer greeter/escort at a PP clinic. After completing the approval process (very thorough–background check, personal and professional references, and both a phone and a Skype interview) and dealing with some side-issues at work, I am going to a training session in two weeks, and will be spending at least one Saturday morning a month (I’m probably going to do 2 or more; 1 a month was their minimum commitment).

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
6 years ago

If y’all recall, I felt guilty over having a shiny new awesome job when my friends were still stuck in the old, crappy job. Turns out they are all getting shiny new jobs. So no more (irrational) (silly) guilt for me.

@Nequam

Grief over a pet is real grief, and there is no timetable for “getting over it.” I am still not over a pet who passed away in 2005.

pitshade
pitshade
6 years ago

@ EJ & Freemage

I second the Patterns thing. I was somewhat of a misanthrope in high school and shortly after. A few years ago I tried reconnecting with an old friend from back then but had to stop. It really felt like some if the old patterns were coming back and it didn’t help that he had gotten a bit worse.

Nequam
Nequam
6 years ago

No, but we gave her 6-1/2 years of love after her previous family abandoned her (the vet thought she was about 12). I was taken aback to find that at some point, probably between her abandonment and our finding her, that she must’ve been hit by a car or something equally traumatic; when the doctor showed me her X-ray and how she was having fluid buildup in her lungs and abdomen, her ribcage was asymmetrical! We knew she had suffered an injury to her left hind leg, but now I wonder what she had soldiered on through before we took her in…

autosoma
6 years ago

It’s been a long time since I commented here (Autosoma), so Hi All, I’ve missed you. I start a new job on Tuesday. I haven’t worked in six months due to depression, brought on by my partners decent into alcoholism. Its going to be tough as the issues caused by the alcoholism haven’t been resolved and there are huge chunks of denial. I’m not confident about how things will be at home while I’m out at work, given that my partner gets “lonely” about lunchtime, which rapidly turns into wine’o’clock, which means turning up at the schoolgates shitfaced drunk to pick up the kids. I have some major trust issues to face.

I’m gobsmacked that I’ve got us to this point with no major financial problems, it’s been an “enlightening” experience living off UK ESA benefit and housing benefit.

The big ray of sunshine on the horizon is that I’ve booked a holiday over Christmas and New Year to Aquaworld Budapest http://www.aquaworldresort.hu/, so now I have six months to save up and pay for it.

My sprogs are doing well, my eldest has joined Brownies, Cubs and Sea Cadets (Royal Navy) (and is thinking about becoming a Royal Marine Cadet at 13) and has met the Mayor of our city three times since we moved out of London, she discovered that she can become a City Councillor at 14 so is aiming to become involved in politics. My youngest is only doing Brownies and Cubs ( for the non-UK readers Brownies is the junior Girl-Guides and cubs is Junior Scouts), she can only join Sea Cadets when she gets to 10.

So as always life has its ups and downs.

ej
ej
6 years ago

Internet hugs for anyone who needs them.

I’ve been pretty quiet around here lately because my life has kind of imploded. I’m coming up to the end of my PhD and I have to submit my thesis in September, which is coming up fast. Meanwhile, my fiance left me last month. We’d been together for over three years and most of it was long distance. He decided not to tell me that he was unhappy with certain things and instead tried to subtly influence the changes he wanted to see in the relationship. Of course, it didn’t work and he just got more and more frustrated. Meanwhile, I didn’t even know there was a problem. Every time I asked if something was wrong (because he would go quiet and withdraw during conversations), he told me he was fine. So, by the time I found out anything was wrong, he had pretty much already decided that the relationship wasn’t worth the effort any more, even though I hadn’t even had a chance to try to fix the problems he had.

I am proud of myself though. I forced him to actually break up with me. He tried some emotional manipulation in that last conversation. I don’t think he was doing it maliciously, but he was trying to ease some of his guilt for what he was doing. He tried to say that he wanted a 6 month break and that we could “re-evaluate” after I move back to America. I, of course, told him this wasn’t logistically feasible (because I don’t have a job lined up yet and a long-term, committed relationship would be a factor when I’m looking for jobs). He told me he didn’t want to influence that decision, so that tells me that he didn’t really want this, but he didn’t want to actually have to break up with me. I wasn’t going to give him the opportunity to ghost on me and I wasn’t going to let him break up with me, but still keep me on the hook. I held firm and said, “Either you want this or you don’t.” And he didn’t.

It’s just really frustrating because my plan was to move in with him after I finish here. My whole future plan was built around the fact that I expected us to get married. I got rid of most of my furniture and things when I moved because I didn’t think I was going to need them, since we’d be living together. Now I’m basically starting from scratch again. I have started putting in some job applications. It’s still early for that, but I’ll see what happens. The one good thing about the breakup is that I don’t have to restrict my job search to one location.

In family news, my mother is having heart surgery in 2 weeks. Luckily, I am headed back to America for a conference in a few weeks, so I can be there to help out after she gets home from the hospital. She’ll be about 2 weeks post-surgery by the time I get there, but I’m sure my dad will be happy to have some extra help.

Scildfreja
Scildfreja
6 years ago

Gosh, my heart goes out to all of you – Chio, that sounds incredibly hard to keep up with. You have a lot of loved ones to take care of right now. I hope you’re able to take care of yourself too. The opportunity for the psychiatric help is great, too! It sounds like a really positive thing, and I hope it helps as much as it seems to. You deserve it! <3 You're incredibly strong.

Neqam and Alan, losing pets is so hard :c I am worried for my kitties, they sometimes seem like my only friends. I hope that time will bring peace for you.

As for me – I am getting more exercise and it seems like I've finally landed a non-academic work contract that I can do on the side, which is really nice. Academia's wonderful and all for the blue-sky research, but the pay is terrible and it's much more about science-as-social-standing than actual discovery. I could use the cash to pay down some bills. (And have been invited for a vacation to Japan this winter, which I'd love to do if I can afford it!) So, information scientist for hire!

On that note, I'm glad that your circle's gotten some great jobs, PoM! Feeling guilty for doing better than everyone isn't irrational or silly, it's a normal thing. We don't want to leave our friends behind, or enjoy good fortune without them. I'm glad you don't have to feel that anymore!

Scildfreja
Scildfreja
6 years ago

@autosoma, I’m glad to hear from you! I’ve been wondering how you have been doing. It sounds sort of rough :s I hope that you can get some help for your wife, alcoholism can be quite a trap. I’ve almost gotten lost in it twice now. Self-medication is a bad, bad business. <3 Take off whatever time from the blog you need. It sounds like your little one is a very bright light, though! I hope that helps.

@ej, that sounds really rough :\ . It seems like a common end-of-PhD story, somehow – a great number of them hit some really big rocks in life as they're sailing to the end of the thesis. He should have been more clear with you from the start :\ painful all around. I'm sorry you're going through that. I hope that you can see the bright future ahead of you, though! No plan doesn't mean no future, it just means that you've got a clean canvas to work with. I hope it all works out. And I hope your mom’s surgery goes well!

mockingbird
mockingbird
6 years ago

I plan to read this after showering and putting nugget down for a nap, but before I do either of those:

Anyone up for helping me bat around the pros and cons of some career-type stuff?

Scildfreja
Scildfreja
6 years ago

Sure, mockingbird, sounds fun.

autosoma
6 years ago

@Scildfreja – Ta muchly.
@mockingbird – always up for giving people career advice (though often I can’t take my own).

Anyone who’s interested this is an interesting article on Marginal Revolution http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2016/05/what-in-the-hell-is-going-on.html – an economics professor (and a very good one at that) has a think about our current global state of affaires

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

@ mockingbird

Sure. Remember the general rule though: “Listen to Al’s advice; do opposite” and you won’t go far wrong.

Skiriki
Skiriki
6 years ago

autosoma:
I… what the hell is with that page. o_O

Also, the comments. Ugh.

ej
ej
6 years ago

Thanks, @Scildfreja. I am trying to see the bright side of things, like being able to apply for jobs wherever I want to. I’m a planner, though, so having my plan wiped out like that is really rough for me, especially at such a critical time. My emotions are such a distraction and I have bad days where I just can’t focus, which of course makes me more anxious because I’m not getting things done. I’m trying to be more patient with myself when I need to take time for self care, but looming deadlines do not help.

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