I'm losing empathy for people, especially those in distress.

Discussion in 'I Have a Question...' started by TheBLA, Sep 24, 2012.

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  1. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    It looks like this will finally be a thread I'll make that will make everyone here hate me. :(

    I already pissed off someone today via a private message talking about this. I told that person that I feel my depression is on a different level than everyone else, that its just worse than everyone else's, how my circumstances are unique and that the advice they gave to me in which they were genuinely trying to help would just not work for me. That ended up really upsetting that person and I got met with a nasty PM in response. I was not trying to be hostile at all, but it sounds like I probably did inadvertently or the other person also may have acted hostile in response because of their mood at the time.

    I feel that because my depression is worse than anyone elses', that they can all be cured eventually and have a happy ending and I cannot. I think that only I must commit suicide and everyone else can be cured eventually. I realize this makes me sound very arrogant and stuck-up and I don't mean to be. I know that everyone's suffering is their own, no matter what level of it. For instance, I feel that other people's depression here may be caused by common things such as abuse, rape, neglect, abandonment, loss of loved ones, etc. Now, these are very tramautic things, and I feel for them, but I feel at least many have gone through these things relatively and can comfort and heal each other with their own shared knowledge and experiences. But what do you do when your depression and suicidal thoughts are caused by something that very few people in comparison have gone through, so you have this "rare" case where conventional advice and help probably won't work for you?

    I know that lets say a teenager may want to kill themselves over a relationship break-up and an older adult will say "Oh boo-hoo, grow up and get over it, my circumstances are far worse than yours. Try going through a bitter divorce after many years of marriage and then come talk to me", or something to that effect. Yet, this is exactly how I feel in response to many others who are depressed and suicidal. Like someone will be depressed and suicidal but at least they still have friends and/or a significant other to support them and I do not, so I feel even worse off than them but I can't feel empathy because they are still in a better place than me. They have some positive things still left in their life to help balance out against the pain. I feel on the absolute bottom of the totem pole.

    I recently read about this one girl who I am extremely envious of. She travels around the world to exotic locations, has many friends, had a BF, very smart and brave and adventerous. She just seems so full of life and zeal, every day she lives her life to the absolute fullest. But then I read a snippet of her blog and she wrote of her inner anguish and pain over losing a friend to suicide, how she wound up cutting herself, etc. But I couldn't feel much empathy for her because at least she had all those positive things that I feel would help to "cushion" out her pain and yet I have none of that. I couldn't understand her pain at all. Inside I felt "Oh boo hoo, whaa, whaa". I was trivializing her pain and I feel bad for that because its happened to me several times. Pain is pain, no matter what the level.

    In the end, we can only truly feel our thoughts and feelings the best. So we think our depression is the worst because we can only truly feel our pain and can only feel the pain of others partially.

    I feel so dirty and guilty at writing this, but I just wanted to let this out. Please forgive me, I don't mean to upset anyone. :(
    Depression has already taken away so much from my life like any hopes, dreams, ambitions, etc.
    I don't want it to turn me into a bitter monster as well. :(
    Depression was supposed to make me feel more empathy for those also suffering the same, to open my eyes to their plight, but it seems now its having the opposite effect. I think my depression is advancing further and it wants me to cut off ties from everyone either through just avoiding them or making them hate me, so that when I commit suicide, nobody will miss me when I'm gone. :(
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 24, 2012
  2. amk666

    amk666 Active Member

    Sorry, but I don't hate you, not at all.

    & I don't blame for feeling the way you do.

    I'm also glad you shared that, 'cause a lot of us measure our circumstances against those of others & find one or the other wanting, but such sentiments are usually suppressed.

    I believe that suicide & depression in 9 times out of 10 cases have very little to do with the things happening in our lives. Like a fellow who listens to "Suicide Solution" then kills himself, despair preceded the song, not the other way around. & so it is when we're in the trough we focus on what's wrong with our lives, not what's right.

    When I read up about people who have killed themselves--in many instances planned suicides without impulsiveness or apparent notification of loved ones prior--they're people who appear to have really good lives. Take one example, Marissa Imrie. Look her up. This member of her high school's cross country team decided she was a "fat, boring, disgusting girl," so took a cab to San Francisco & threw herself off the bridge.

    & stories such as her are all too common.

    Fact is that no matter how bad your life may be, there's always someone who has it worse, someone who isn't suicidal, either.

    I'm acutely conscious of having undeservedly good things in my life right now. But I really don't want to continue with it. Why? All I can say really that enough's enough.

    Still when your life really is in the shitter you're going to feel that way, how can you not? So props to you for being honest & expressing yourself. If people react badly to what you've written then I suggest that perhaps they haven't taken the time to think it through completely.

    I do hope things improve for you ... couldn't hurt, right;-)?

  3. normaljoe

    normaljoe Well-Known Member

    I think hate is a strong word, some people may be offended by this but I do not think anyone hates you. I do not hate you. I understand that whatever you are going through is going to be a lot more pressing than everyone elses situation. its normal to want to help yourself, especially given the issue. but if i could offer some words of mild wisdom. remember that different situations affect people differently and on many different levels. so the severity is all relative. other than that go by the good ole saying, if you dont have anything nice to say dont say anything at all. ie if you cant empathize just dont reply to them and wait until you improve your situation before you start trying to empathize with other people. :D i wish you the best of luck with what you are going through.
  4. ThatOneDude

    ThatOneDude Member

    I won't pretend to know how you feel because, well, I'm not you. I did however go through something similar to your situation, and I realized something: even if you don't have other things now just means you have to go get them. You want adventure? Go on a trip! Doesn't have to be somewhere fancy, you can just go hiking or cycling. When I was depressed, I threw all my energy into proving math theorems. This might not work for you, but there are always other solutions. I hope you find yours.
  5. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    I think its quite hard and difficult when your depression and suicidal thoughts are mostly due to having been heavily isolated for such a long period of time from everyone else, for almost all your entire life. Its just like having lived in a cave for a long time and just coming outside to see the outside world. I think it was formed due to having moved around a lot as a child, always losing friends and being the new kid in school and being the frequent target of bullying. That was always incredibly painful, like a knife in the heart. I think that really screwed me up and I wanted to isolate myself in my home from a young age.

    I also have very over-protective parents, "helicopter" parents who have meant nothing but well for me. But I think they've also inadvertently hurt me by always being there and coddling me and never really letting me fail and learn my lessons. They have guided my life because they were afraid I would really screw up if I went at it alone. But now even as an adult, I've become so used to it and spoiled and weak compared to others my age. I cannot do many things by myself that I should be able to at my age.

    I am vastly different from everyone else as a result and I can never have a normal life. There's just a point where when you've gone down the wrong road in life for so long that you can never repair the damage. Couple this damage with long-term depression where I have been complacent and not improving my life (learning new things, improving my education and/or career, etc) while everyone else around me is improving, and I am stuck in a very deep rut where suicide seems like the only option left. I hate to see those I know getting degrees beyond bachelor's, getting better jobs, getting girlfriends and wives, having children, etc. which I never can. But its not their fault but I am still so jealous of them.

    I already never did normal things like do dating, socialize in high school and college, etc. Now in the future, I will never be able to get a girlfriend or a wife, have kids, etc. What sane women would want to be with an isolationist freak like me who has lived in this remote bubble away from the world? What about any friends for that matter? What children would have to have such a freak father such as me that can hardly guide them and teach them anything because I know so little in the first place? I owe it to them never to concieve them. It would be better not to be a father than a poor one.

    What do you do when you are different from everyone else in the world, even others who are "abnormal"? I am even a "freak" amongst "freaks". I don't think most people here have depression and suicidal thoughts because of my circumstances, which are rare. They have it from much more common reasons like rape, abuse, breakups, loss of a loved one, other shock and trauma, etc. I know those are absolutely horrible things to go through and I'd be hesitant to wish them even on my worst enemies. But I feel because they are more common than my problem, they have a much larger support network of likewise people and treatments tailored around them. I think most methods of healing depression and suicidal thoughts won't work with me.

    I want to just slap that stupid girl I read about on her blog who has many friends, travels alone to exotic destinations, lives life to the fullest but is sad and depressed and cuts herself because of the suicide of her friend. I am very angry at her. I would love to be in her shoes instead. I don't think she could ever survive in my shoes. Its not like I am proud to have a trophy of the most depressed and miserable and pathetic person alive. I'm not trying to set such a record. She has all that great stuff and she cuts and I am lacking all of that and I still haven't. Maybe I should feel a little better that I am "stronger" than her. Its like if a millionare keeps comparing himself to billionaires and goes to a destitute village in Africa and whines about being "poor". Do you think he'll get any sympathy? Absolutely not. I feel that same way. I'm sorry, I just feel incredibly angry and bitter right now. I just needed to vent out this garbage, but maybe not to the public where other depressed people will hate me for saying such words. I don't even think I'm crying out to want pity from anyone. Its not like it'll help my situation anyways. I am also sorry if I am assuming certain things and if they are really incorrect. Please forgive me for everything. :(
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2012
  6. Calleo

    Calleo Well-Known Member

    Well I just saw this thread now. I'm just gonna quote what I said in response to a mod who notified me that Rahul had reported me for the PM. (No hard feelings, honestly, I'm not here to stir drama.)

    We all here know that any sort of "depression contests" are plain wrong, and that we can't and aren't supposed to feel happier or better about ourselves because someone else somewhere has it worse. We all know it doesn't work like that. Our own worries are the closest to us and no one else can dictate how badly or not we should be affected.

    At the same time, I think we can agree that to some extent it's normal to feel jealousy combined with unpleasant surprise when someone who has what we don't have dares express how terrible their life is.
    At that point we should just watch what we say. It's not the other person's fault that they have what you lack, and it won't make them less suicidal.

    You're wrong here. Of course we feel our own pain the worst but we can rationally think and understand that we're not any more special or different than other people.

    Like I told you earlier, I had clinical/chemical depression so I know what it feels like -- so I know that if someone here says that they have depression then I'm not going to judge by their life problems whether they have it better or worse than me. Let's say this person has friends and family, average looks and a stable job and has had no seriously traumatic experiences, but says he's suicidal because he's depressed. There's plenty of people like that on here. I feel for them. I don't expect them to justify being suicidal, I don't expect them to have gone through trauma, I wouldn't say that I would trade places with them. And it kills me to know that there's nothing I can do to help them because that's just what depression is. It can have no determinable real-life cause at all and it's still just as real and serious and painful.

    And it's usually always a combination of things. If anyone is suicidal then it's usually not just one chief specific reason. It's usually something like, "this thing about my life sucks so much that I can't deal with it and I don't know if trying is worth the effort since everything else pretty much sucks too".

    Rahul, you're definitely not the only one who's suicidal because of a complex web of reasons -- too complex to try to dissect and solve. It's like that for a lot of people. And/but being at the center of that web it's really difficult to see yourself from outside of that, to see yourself the way you see other people ("their problems are all solvable").
    I advised you to "pull your head out of your ass", I guess the more polite way of saying that would be: try to be at least a little more objective and rational. Just for a moment. You don't have to care about other people 24/7, but just for a moment, when you write these posts here, remember that other people have sh1t to deal with as well and that sh1t is/can be just as real and complex as yours. You don't even have to empathize, just understand with your rational mind.

    And if you really, really can't understand that at all then, yes, that makes you a self-important jerk. Your tone may be nicer than mine but the meaning behind your words isn't much nicer at all. So, sorry I'm not sorry.

    I'm not going to blame anyone who can't feel empathy for other people, especially if you're depressed. It's alright. We can't all have the capacity to care that much at all times. It's totally understandable.

    And if you're suicidal then at some point you can start sabotaging yourself -- consciously or subconsciously making your life worse so you'd have more motivation kill yourself so you could finally get it over with. I know this, I do that. But it helps to be aware of your own self-sabotaging behavior and keep it in check whenever you can.

    To speak of the specific issues now: I tried to ask you what exactly it is that makes you so much of a "loser" as you say, but you avoided my questions and replied in general that you're a hikikomori -- as if that by itself is a satisfactory answer. It's like you just see that WEB of reasons to be suicidal but don't even want to consider dissecting it. (Which is understandable, actually, but I'm just saying.) I used to be like that and still often am. I ask myself, why go through this effort and pain to try to fix this specific issue if the rest of my life is still gonna suck anyway?

    I'm totally aware that we're significantly different people, but I still think/thought that we have more in common than you could imagine. Starting with being socially inept and feeling that we're extremely unprepared for Real Life comparing to other people our age, that we've been secluded for years and can't even begin to imagine what it would be like to have a normal life, what that would even mean for us.

    PS. Just the fact that the word "hikikomori" exists means that you're not alone with your oh-so-unique issue. It's true that we don't exactly have a web of support but it's also true that so many other people have the same experience.
  7. Wispiwill

    Wispiwill Well-Known Member

    I think you're right when you say that your depression is making you cut off ties from everyone. I think (and I could be wrong here) that you feel that you're basically unlikeable and if people don't like you then it proves it and if they DO like you then it just shows that they haven't understood or seen just how completely horrible you are, at your basic core. Does that sound about right?
  8. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    I am sorry to hear about you having trouble with even a basic need such as getting food. I had absolutely no idea about this. I wish you the best of luck on that. Actually, my parents are slowly but surely getting more sick and tired of my lingering depression and suicidal thoughts. They are sick of me almost always moping and having a frown on my face, making very little to no progress in my life (eg. marriage, advancing my job, career, education, etc.) Slowly I am wearing their patience thin since at least 2005 when I first joined this forum, and am just waiting for them to finally kick me out of the house, where I will be completely and absolutely alone in the world. No friends, no other family nearby who would take me in (most of my extended family lives thousands of miles away and if they even would take me in anyways). My parents and little brother are pretty much all I have left in the world. I'll be absolutely lost without them.

    I actually feel some admiration for those who struggle for basic needs to survive, but are stronger and harder people as a result, like my dad. He was born and raised in a dirt-poor village where his father died when he was 12 and his mom didn't have an education beyond 5th grade. But he worked himself into going into a college in India with the prestige of Brown or Harvard and able to come abroad. He has a story to make a movie about.

    I have been extremely pampered and coddled and am the furthest thing from an independent person imaginable. Its nothing to admire and be jealous of, its truly a very terrible thing. Its especially embarrassing at my advanced age at how few things I can actually do by myself. Some may feel jealousy towards me for what I have now, but its only because I am still in a safety net of my parents. Once that is soon gone, then I will have absolutely NOTHING. I will have been too weak to survive out all alone in this harsh, cruel world and will quickly perish. I am just living on borrowed time.

    So, even this one "benefit" in my life of having a loving and supportive family that some will be jealous of me for will soon be gone once they abandon me or pass away, on top of not having friends, a significant other, good job, education, etc that many others even other depressed/suicidal have and that I feel jealousy towards. I don't know what a person on the absolute bottom of a totem pole would do. At least they can make others feel better about their life in comparison. I am especially on the very bottom in comparison to all those I know in real-life and who know me. This is especially why I want to isolate myself from them, and never get close to anyone, so they won't find out about all the things I lack and will never get and cannot laugh and feel pity for me. I cringe at the thought of meeting with family friends, family relatives, etc. and finding how they are naturally advancing at life (getting a GF/Wife, having kids, great job, graduating with a Masters degree, etc.) and I have been stuck in neutral position since forever. My isolationist status begets further isolation.

    I understand your anger and frustration at me for complaining about higher level needs, when you have trouble with even to get food whereas I do not. I felt the same frustration when you said you had gotten a boyfriend, fulfilled your sexual and romantic needs, etc. and I never have and likely never will. But I didn't know you struggled with someone such as obtaining food. Lets just have a truce eh? :)

    I guess what I meant to say is that I myself haven't really met others with the same issue. Again, due to the nature of the illness itself, I want to seclude myself from others, even from others that suffer like me and can help and relate to me the most. Good luck for isolationists to ever meet up in an isolationist support group. ;)

    I was not trying to be secretive, evasive on purpose. I was not avoiding you intentionally, please do not feel that way. Since last month, I have been feeling more depressed than usual. Also, when we first started talking last week, after your first supportive PM on advice for me to "get girls", we were talking while I was at work. So I was also preoccupied with my work on top of feeling extremely crappy. So I am sorry I just gave you a short answer to go by with the cause of my depression and suicidal thoughts. You are more than welcome to keep PMing me and inquire and talk further and I'll be happy to oblige, once I feel a bit better and more receptive to open up, and also at home and not busy.

    I am really thankful for your first PM last week. You went out of your way to help me and give me advice and I am extremely sorry now that I was the furthest thing from appreciative for it and completely, unintentionally started a fight with you. I guess I replied negatively because I was already in a bad mood, just like you replied very angrily because you were also already in a bad mood and my PM had set you off. Your PM reply had made me feel much worse on top of everything else, and I am sorry that I reported you to the staff.

    I wish I could turn back time and have replied much differently to your PM than I did. Thank you very much again and I look forward to further communications if you wish.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 1, 2012
  9. Calleo

    Calleo Well-Known Member

    I am/will be (hopefully) busy these days, improving certain job skills, so I don't have much time for this.

    It's easy for you to write these elaborate posts on how and why you're so hopeless, but I think that if life gave you a swift kick in the butt then you would be capable of at least a little more than that. I would be just like you, I'm pretty sure of that, if my father hadn't died while I was still in high school, my family has been financially unstable since then and there's no one close to me that I could count on. I really really really have to become independent -- there is no other option (besides suicide of course). You still more or less have the feeling that you have the option to drag this on a little longer, because you're not in immediate danger.
    (I'm not saying this to make you feel bad/guilty, it's just true.)

    We weren't having a contest.

    "fulfilled" -- not exactly. (But I wrote about this stuff in a PM because I don't want it up in public threads. So please don't bring up things here that I told you in private.)
    Shortly: after the guy broke up with me, I felt more terrible than ever. I'd never felt so miserable in my entire life. And that says a lot, given that I've been suicidal since I was 14. Basically, in addition to everything else, I also had to deal with a broken heart and a broken ego. I'm a smart girl but I didn't/don't know how to deal with that, I've never gone through that before. For the first time in my life I felt lonely, like I needed someone. Again, this sh1t coupled with everything else that had already made me suicidal, it's indescribable. I seriously thought things like, "if he doesn't contact me by Thursday, I will surely kill myself". I don't know if you know what it feels like, to care about someone so much when that someone won't even let you near them.

    (I digress, sorry, had to rant. There's more to it but I don't want to get into details. I'm always paranoid someone will find me here.)
    Basically: before this, I didn't even know what I was missing. Now I know. And some days I wish that I didn't. "Fulfilled" hardly describes this. I need more than I needed before. And I know that I must've just gotten lucky and that I'll never in my life again find anyone who I could care about like that and who would treat me as nicely as he did. It's never gonna happen again. I don't know what I could possibly want to live for anymore, it'll never be better than this.

    Anyway, don't worry at all about what or how you said to me, I really have bigger concerns than this. I can deal with it if people don't find my advice useful, I hardly even expected it to be useful at all, I just thought I'd message you anyway, to give you something to think about and let you know that someone had read and considered some of your posts (I guess it's nice to get some attention and messages here even if they're not always practically useful).
  10. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    Good luck with everything and I am still open to talking and PMing, etc. If you don't wish to, I understand. See you if/when I see you. I know you may at least slightly feel I am spoiled rotten and just complaining and spouting off lengthy paragraphs for the time being. But as I mentioned, when I am eventually left by my family and out in the streets alone, I will be in very dire straights as you are already facing. I am a bird who has far overstayed in her mother's nest and hasn't learned even the basics of flying. When I am inevitably pushed out of that nest, I will be going directly vertical into the hard ground below. The time is soon coming that life will be giving me a swift kick in the butt, if it hasn't already happened. If push comes to shove, maybe my survival instincts will kick into gear and I will persevere and survive or just give up and kill myself.

    I can only partially understand the heartbreak you have gone through, as I have gone through heartbreak only so far with several relationships on the internet. I can't imagine the far more intense pain if any of these were actually in real-life and we had gone further than just text, voice and video chatting. Good luck again.

    Now, I really did find your initial PMs and the advice they contained to be useful and I have thought about what you said. I am glad that you read and considered my posts, and very few people have gone out of their way not only to reply to my posts on the forum, but to send me private messages and attempting to assist me further. So, I thank you for that and would like to atone for my actions and possibly repay you. I feel very guilty in the way that I replied and set off an unintentional fight with you.

    Does anyone else have any thoughts? :)
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 2, 2012
  11. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    I don't hate you, or think you're arrogant or stuck up or anything like that. I used to feel exactly like you, that my situation was different, that I was a freak, hopeless, conventional advice was useless to me. The thing is, we convince ourselves of these things because we believe them to be true, based on our experience. Our past experiences shape our self image, and that is the image we present to the world, and eventually we identify ourselves as this freak that we imagine ourselves to be, letting everybody around us know (subconsciously) that we are this kind of hopeless loser. Now, of course, if you think of yourself as a hopeless loser, and you present yourself to the world as a hopeless loser, then people are going to view you / treat you as a hopeless loser.

    Step outside of yourself for a minute and read some of your own posts, from the perspective of an "outsider". "What sane women would want to be with an isolationist freak like me who has lived in this remote bubble away from the world? What about any friends for that matter? What children would have to have such a freak father such as me that can hardly guide them and teach them anything because I know so little in the first place?"

    Come on, seriously man? I mean, I get it, I used to feel the same way. I'm not much to look at... I was just told by my boss this weekend that I look like Steven Carell... AKA the actor from "The 40 Year Old Virgin". Hah, a bit ironic, that is... couple that with social anxiety and a messed up childhood that caused me to forfeit my potential... I shared the same experiences as you through adolescence, never dating, few friends, etc. Coupled with the fact that I was raised by a poor single mother, I was bullied mercilessly, ignored by my parents and abused daily by my stepfather.

    But, of course, as has already been mentioned, this is not a "my life is worse than yours" pissing contest. If it was, I would be a top contender... and yet, there are still others who have it much worse than me. So what's my point? My point is that, in spite of my lack of higher education, my lack of any specialized job skills, my lack of friends, my lack of social skills and utter lack of any recognizable redeeming qualities, I have managed to do alright for myself, if only through sheer determination. Yes, I am older (and I might argue a bit wiser) than you, but I have been in your position and felt exactly how you feel. In my youthful ignorance, I didn't even realize just how toxic my own attitude was to my existence. You are so convinced that you are hopeless, a "freak among freaks", that you have made yourself so. The circular road of depression is paved with self fulfilling prophecies. One almost has to wonder if secretly you want to see yourself as this abomination, as it absolves you from taking any responsibility for your own station in life. Forgive me if that sounds harsh, but as someone who has dealt with depression for years - the bulk of that depression stemming not from my childhood abuse, but rather the fact that I felt like an outcast in the world - I can honestly say that part of me enjoys being depressed and viewing myself as a pariah, to think that I was specifically chosen by God to be punished for some unnamed sin, to hold myself up as a martyr... but it's all bullshit. Yeah, I had a crappy childhood. Yeah, I missed out on a lot of things. Yeah, I'm not the best looking or most charming guy around. But no matter how bad I had it, somebody else had it worse... and chances are, that somebody is out there doing more with their lives in a week than I've managed to accomplish in 10 years.

    Whatever it is that you think makes you uniquely cursed, I can assure you that you are wrong. Your only curse is your attitude. What are your issues? Lack of friends... well, that can be fixed, but it would require going out and getting involved in something other than feeling sorry for yourself. No girlfriend? You and I both know from experience that desperation is a HUGE turnoff to women. Get that fixed, and your luck will improve tenfold. No job, skills, education? Maybe you are used to being pampered, but these things do not just fall in your lap; you have to work for them.

    Sorry for the bit of tough love here, but I figured the only way to show empathy for someone who has no empathy is to not show him any empathy... hah. I don't mean to offend you in any way. Trust me, like I said, I have been in your position before and felt exactly as you do. You have a choice... you can accept this fate that you have sealed for yourself, or you can stand up and say, "no, fuck this, I'm not going to settle for living like this, I'm going to do something with my life". Of course there are no guarantees of success... life doesn't come with a warranty or a refund policy. But you never know what you can (or can't) do until you try, and try, and try again. And if you fail 100 times, try 100 more. You only live once, and the game isn't lost until you're dead. From the looks of it, you ain't dead yet. So what the hell are you quitting for? This game isn't over yet. You've got to actually play if you ever hope to win.

    Yeah, I know you probably have a lengthy response lined up to explain to me exactly why you are so utterly hopeless... just think how successful you could be if you put the same amount of effort into improving your life that you put into making excuses. I don't care how ugly or weird or socially awkward or whatever you think you are, there are probably at least a billion people on the planet who make you look like Don Juan by comparison. So stop thinking of yourself as the belltower hunchback, and maybe people will stop treating you that way. There are lots of great women out there who are just looking for a good man who will treat them right, it's not all about looks or money my friend, I assure you. If the women you talk to seem preoccupied with those things, then you are clearly talking to the wrong kinds of women anyway.

    Not sure if this post is helpful at all or not... probably not. I haven't been around much these days, so I'm not really sure if I'm of any use to anyone here anymore, but your thread caught my attention, and I can relate to it in some ways, so I figured I'd give it a shot.
  12. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    Thanks for your reply TheLoneWolf.

    There's no real metric to measure "loserdom" in people, so its hard to describe how anyone is worse than someone else and more of a "loser". For instance when I'd go to India, my dad would point out those living in slums and how they broke their backs working day after day just to survive and how I was lucky not to be in their shoes, that I was still better than them. But yet, they were actually still happier than me, in fact, happier than most of us living here in the 1st world. They had more spiritual wealth than material wealth, which is much more important. They were still always surrounded by close-knit family and friends in those slums that made their life worth living. Yet, many of us living in 1st world countries with our fancy smartphones, social networks are truly the alone and miserable ones. We see so many suicides from those in Western, industrialized countries and many from these third world countries are happier than we are.

    You may think that what I wrote is ridiculous and far-fetched, but I really think of it as being true. Also, why do you think what I am saying is so silly, if you used to feel it yourself? For anyone who has been isolated away from everyone else for a long time, its very difficult, if not impossible, to ever integrate into normal society again. Again, what girl would seriously want to be with a man who has been isolated for many years except maybe for a girl just in my same situation? That's probably the only hope I will ever have, to find a girl just like me, and to just flat-out ignore all the "normal" girls out there. What kid would really want to have a father who was also very isolated and can't teach his child anything, because he is so ignorant and dependent on others himself? There's plenty of bad fathers out there and I'd rather not be a father than a poor one. There's an extremely low chance I will ever have a significant other and/or kids, and maybe it would actually be for the best, especially the not having children part. Besides, being a husband and a father isn't a guarantee to being happy and fulfilled in life. Many of these folks are really miserable and many who are single are very happy.

    Let me ask you something. I know that this forum actively discourages suicide and tells all of us that there is always hope for everyone, no matter what. That we can get better from our problems. In fact, I feel that way for everyone else here except for myself, that only I can't be fixed. However, don't you honestly think that out of over 7 billion people in the world, that not everyone can be "saved", not everyone can have a happily ever after ending? That some people will have horrible lives until the day that they die? It stinks, but its probably the truth. We always want to hold out hope that everyone in the end, gets a happy ending, but it just cannot happen. Don't you think there are some people out there, for example, who have no chance of attracting a girl, no matter how positive their attitude, how much confidence they exude? That applies to many Chinese men for instance, because of the big gender imbalance problem in their country. It stinks for them, that thousands of Chinese men will be lifelong bachelors, for no fault of their own. All they can do it just sit back and accept their fate and try to be happy. Anyways, having a girl is no guarantee of being happy. Girls are not everything, its just one facet. Though everything in my life is lacking.

    Yes, it does feel "convenient" if I was truly the biggest loser alive and my circumstances couldn't be bettered and my fate was sealed, so I could act as some victim, a pariah and just sit back and do nothing. I wouldn't have to make any effort to improve my life because it would all be futile. It would really stink that if I had (have?) the chance to have a better life and I never take it and time keeps on passing me by until it really is too late. I really hate if its true that my life can get better and I never seize it. I "hate" those who have come from "worse" conditions than me and still emerged victorious and happy, like my father. Because their attitudes and will made it all possible and then I look really bad if I have had more to start with than them, a better life when I was young and I screw everything up.

    So, what make you gain this epiphany after suffering for a long time, that you did not want to give up and keep fighting and try to find reasons to keep on living? What made you from going from utterly hopeless thinking just like me to the way you are now, while you still fight and help others in the process of your own recovery? Where did this sudden burst of optimism come from?

    Again, I apologize for still being really negative and a downer, even in the face of other depressed people here who have more optimism than I ever will and do their best to help me. I get this feeling that everyone will get tired of me, if they feel that my depression really is uncrackable and impenetrable. Everyone has their limits. I appreciate the help of everyone, always, for trying and maybe it will work eventually for me.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 3, 2012
  13. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    You are right, there is no metric measure of such things. Family, friendship, love, spiritual wealth, etc., these are all far more important than the things people obsess over in the first world. You are absolutely right. I don't even have a smart phone or a social networking account, nor do I want either one. I no longer have any great desire to be wealthy, I just need enough to keep myself fed, clothed, sheltered, etc.

    I did used to feel as you do, and sometimes I still do, but I was not as hopeless as I believed myself to be. Negative attitude and negative self image contribute to making yourself even more of an outcast, unfortunately. You say the only hope is to find a girl like you... well what is wrong with that? My dream has always been to find a girl like me. Isn't that the goal? Why would you want to be with someone who didn't understand you anyway? As for being a father, I think you are measuring the quality of a parent by the wrong criteria. My parents were "normal", more or less; they had friends, decent jobs, etc., but they were far from good parents. A good father is one who loves his children and does his best to raise and take care of them. The only "poor" fathers are the ones who neglect their children. You don't have to be a perfect man to be a good father, you just have to have a good heart and love for your family. As for the family/relationship not always bringing happiness, I wholeheartedly agree... I have been in an unhappy relationship for 10 years, and it has made me miserable. Why did I end up in an unhappy relationship? Because I was a desperate lonely isolationist who thought that no woman would ever want me, until I met one who did. That didn't turn out so well for me, and I would caution against you making the same mistake. This is why it's important for you to improve your attitude and self image, to ensure that you end up with somebody that you actually want to be with, instead of settling for the first woman who comes along.

    I do agree with you, that not everybody can be saved or have a happy life. But you're not one of those people. There is nothing you have said about yourself that I don't see as being completely reversible. You don't live in China, as far as I know you're not dying or disabled, you're not a slave, or a mutant, or a moron, or any kind of special case that is beyond redemption. Yes, you are right, having a girlfriend is no guarantee of happiness... I am sure that many of those Chinese men you mentioned have realized that; I'm sure most of them have found contentment in other ways. And if you don't believe that having a girlfriend would make you happy, why bother even worrying about it? You should be focused on what WOULD make you happy. Usually the men who have the most success with women are the ones who don't obsess over them all the time anyway, they are the ones who are independently happy and pursuing other interests. Not to mention that pursuing other interests would make you more social, more interesting and well rounded, it would make you less of an isolationist and get you out in the world meeting women, some of whom might take a liking to your shy awkward nice guy personality (or however you project yourself).

    It's never too late to change, and you don't have to keep letting your life pass you by. I've been doing that for 33 years, but I can change that. Not that change is ever easy or without bumps in the road, but it can be done. Forget the idea of people coming from nothing and making a wonderful life for themselves; life is not a contest. We all falter; I have missed out on a lot of great opportunities and squandered many of my talents. That doesn't mean that I'm a failure. You're only a failure if you fail yourself. Success is completely subjective. How do you measure success? What do you want out of life? Focus on that, don't focus on what other people are doing with their lives or how much better or worse off they are than you. It doesn't matter. Somebody will always have it better or worse than you. If you insist on comparing yourself to others, you will never be happy. We all have our own unique experiences in this life, no one can say what you should or shouldn't have accomplished without actually having walked in your shoes. I apologize if it sounds like I'm judging you, because I'm not. It's easy for me to imagine what it's like for you because I have been in your shoes before... not exactly, no two peoples' experiences will ever be identical, but I definitely see similarities between how you feel now and how I used to feel. I'm trying to be helpful; I realize that my advice may not help, but it's worth a try.

    I've suffered for depression on and off for many years, and I'll admit, right now I'm not feeling depressed. So that's one reason for my optimism, is that I am not currently mired in the disease that has a tendency to taint everything it comes into contact with. It's like sticking your head up above the clouds for the first time and seeing the clouds for what they really are... it's not that the sun is gone, it's that you're unable to see it from down there. I don't expect you to magically have some kind of epiphany; that's not exactly how it worked for me. Age has some to do with it... as you get older, you start to relax a little and care less about the things that used to bother you. I didn't really start to feel this effect until about the age of 30 or so. Maybe it's that all those crazy youthful hormones are finally calming down, I don't know. Why did I keep fighting and keep on living? To be honest, I don't know. Maybe I was afraid to die, or at least afraid to take my own life... maybe I'm secretly such a narcissist that the idea of self termination is simply inconceivable... or maybe I was just hanging on to a shred of hope the whole time... who knows? Why are you still here? Why are any of us? Living isn't easy, but then neither is suicide... if these things were easy, this forum would have no reason to exist. As for what changed my mind about myself... well, finding a woman who was willing to be with me did go a long way towards dispelling the notion that I was hopeless and would always be alone. You yourself mentioned that you've had online relationships, yes? I know you're thinking that's not the same thing, but my marriage actually came as the result of an online relationship... so yes, they can become very real. It took years for me to finally gain confidence in myself... it hasn't been a perfect process, believe me. But I guess one day I just woke up and realized that I still wasn't satisfied with my life. And I now know that I am not hopeless... I have had some success with women, I do get along with people better now than I did when I was young and awkward and unsure of myself, I do excel at most things I do when I put my mind to it... you're a smart guy, and from what I gather a nice guy as well, you can do these things. You are not hopeless... but just look at your signature on here. It screams of someone who wears his low self esteem almost as a badge of honor. It is a bit bizarre to be proud of the fact that you have no pride in yourself, is it not? There may have been times when I liked feeling sorry for myself, but I never liked being insecure. It sucks, and I have worked hard to try to overcome my insecurities. I'm sure I still have a ways to go, but I'm a thousand times better off than I used to be, and that is reflected in how people interact with me now. I get more respect now that I have respect for myself. You don't have to be arrogant or full of yourself, you just have to learn to like yourself and believe that you are a worthy human being. Almost everyone has some sort of redeeming qualities, and if you did a bit of self reflection, I'm sure you'd find that you probably have more than the average person, as much as that may come as a shock to you. You're not a bad guy, but as long as you believe that you are, you will focus on the things that reinforce this belief.
  14. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    FOR THE RECORD: I did not mean to offend anyone who is suffering from something that they cannot change. I have yet to meet anyone here who is hopeless. I was simply trying to put the OP's plight in perspective to make him realize how lucky he really is, since he seems to think his situation is so much worse than anyone else's. But as usual, in trying to reason with one person, I managed to offend others. I actually do have sympathy and empathy for people who are suffering, though apparently I lack the ability to effectively communicate such. So I will stop trying.

    I apologize for anyone who was offended by my post. It seems I never should have come back here, as my words will ALWAYS be misinterpreted.
  15. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    I am sorry you feel this way, TheLoneWolf. But I am also not sure what has caused you to feel this way.

    I have non-existent self-esteem and always feel that my words as well are useless or offensive to people. I don't think you have said anything hurtful and especially, I can tell that it was never your intention. I know even sometimes, "tough love" has to be given to people here, the harsh truth sometimes has to be handed out, because it is what it is. :(

    Although I still disagree with you that my life is not the worst and I am not the biggest loser alive. :mhmm:
    I may need to give you some more details of my life so you can further analyze me, haha.

    I remember walking into a mental health support group about two years ago. They asked me what was new with me lately and I had told them I had recently graduated from college and with honors, despite suffering from crippling depression and suicidal thoughts throughout college, and one of them wondered what the heck I was doing there if I was so "successful". But I had not told them of other facts such as I have basically no friends, no social or love life, no dreams, goals, ambitions, do nothing with my life, a severe recluse, etc. If they knew these, they would understand me a lot more and empathize and sympathize more. Just as I get confused when I see seemingly happy people who have everything in life are miserable, self-harm or even kill themselves and I can't understand it. Because I cannot see their personal demons, only the good they project onto others. I only see the mask of happiness they put on for others to hide their misery. Only I truly know all the good and bad in my own life.

    Maybe a lot of people know too much about the good things in my life, and not enough about the bad, so they think I am doing better than I really am. I am doing terrible.

    Its all a matter of perception. I will look at people who may be "worse" than me, and find anything positive left still in their lives just to use against me. Such as with many poor Indians who live in slums in India who I have seen and my dad tried to compare me to them to make me feel better. I will look at them and notice most of them are still happier than me, despite lacking many material comforts I have. I will point out they still have friends and family who love them, whereas I have only one friend and my nuclear family and I am at a risk of losing them soon. I don't focus on their abject poverty to make myself look better in comparison and feel better. First, that seems highly arrogant but also my depression convinces me that everyone else is better than me and its becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy as it keeps me from advancing in life while my peers march ahead, so then I truly do become a "loser" that my depression has told me since the beginning that I am.

    It is just amazing the power of an attitude which can turn someone in the most squalid of conditions into a happy person who may get out of it someday, like it did to my dad. It can also turn someone who has all the material comforts at least, into a miserable, empty hulk who may lose even those things and then have nothing left in the world, like myself.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 5, 2012
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