The Field Guide to Me
COPIED FROM MY LJ, DATED DEC. 22, 2005, REV. JAN. 6, 2009
- How can I tell if you are angry?
I'm probably being very nice to you, at least I seem nice. If you know me well, you're probably most afraid of me when I'm quiet and calm. The screaming anger is the safe anger, it's the anger I have with someone I know will still love me after I've been angry, after we've fought. That's the secure anger, the anger where I yell and curse, and I curse a lot when I'm that angry. The quiet, calm anger is the kind where I'm pretty much done with whatever the situation is and I've made up my mind to just abandon the issue. Also, if we're speaking, listen for my speech patterns. I tend to become very formal when I'm angry, I stop using contractions, my sentences are longer and have more phrase, and, if I'm typing, I am properly punctuating everything. The more formal I am, the worse trouble you're in.
[I am learning better how to deal with my anger now. I'm trying to express it more without feeling as if I am not allowed. I am far more likely to tell you I am angry or upset than ignore it and pretend everything is fine, so if I'm angry, you'll know.]
- How do you want me to behave when you are hurting emotionally? How is it best to comfort you?
Please don't. I can't stand it. When it's taking everything I have to hold it together I can't handle being comforted. If I am hurting that much, just understand that I need all my resources to keep myself from falling apart and that I will feel responsible for you, even as you are trying to comfort me. You can, if it's a slightly lesser pain, try to joke with me, or talk about something completely different. Some of you know how to do this very well. The one thing you can do for me, the one thing I need, is for you to listen. If I want to talk about it, all I ever need is for you to listen. You don't need to solve my problem for me, I'll figure that out on my own, but it will help me if you listen to me. Sometimes, rarely, you can hug me, but I can think of maybe three people I wouldn't kill for hugging me when I'm that upset:
Alex, Adair, Simona. Okay, four, because my Dad would be okay at this, too, although he tends to stroke my hair instead of hug.
[I'm also learning how to accept that my friends offer comfort because they want to, not because they feel obligated, and I'm learning that I deserve that comfort. It's a process.]
- Are there things we should not discuss?
Pony things. We should not discuss pony things unless I specifically ask you to discuss it or unless you are included on that filter. We should not discuss my marriage.[We should not discuss A unless I bring it up.] If you are a close friend of mine you may say anything you like if it's a case of you being concerned for my well being. Unless you are that close a friend, do not try this, because I will not take it well.
- How should I treat you if you are physically ill?
You do not want to be anywhere near me when I'm sick. I am so bad at it. I refuse to acknowledge that I'm sick, so there's that at least twenty-four hour period where I deny my illness all the while being very, very ill.
You should maybe do what Alex has done in the past and boss me around.Just tell me I'm sick and that I should shut the hell up about it and go to sleep. When that fails, be prepared to talk while I listen until I finally feel mentally well enough to admit I'm physically sick and go to bed. You could also bring me tea. I like tea.
- What makes you happy, that's in my power to grant as a friend?
Hugs. Physical contact makes me very happy. Listen. Tell me funny and silly stories about your life. Just say hi every now and then.
- How would you like us to recognize your birthday?
Um... I don't know. I would just like you to recognize it, and any way you choose to do that is great.
- Are there any standing categories of presents that would be appropriate or unwelcome?
Nope. Except I get uncomfortable when people buy stuff for me. [Again, I'm learning how to accept that. I'm still very bad at it, though.]
- Are there times of the year that are difficult for you? Please explain if you are comfortable.
My father's birthday (Oct. 14), the date of his death (May 23), and father's day. I also get all introspective and annoying around Samhain (Halloween). And, of course, midterms and finals make me cranky.
- Who are the most important people in your life to whom we should defer when making plans on your behalf?
That depends on what you mean by this. There is no person who has control over my life, so if you want to know anything, ask me.
However, if you're looking to see if I'd like something or if something might be okay by me, do what "The Circle" does and say, "What does Alex say about this?" If you can't find him, Adair would probably know.Ask Adair, Alyssa, or Simona what I like and enjoy. You could also ask Dawn, Jenn, and Sonya their opinions.