R U OK? A Rant About Why This Is An Important Question But Shouldn’t Be Asked By Some People

Today is September 8 – R U Ok? Day.

For those of you that may not have heard about it, it’s a day for recognition, conversation understanding, and support. It’s a day for checking in with your friends, family, coworkers and asking the question ‘R U Ok?’. The concept is to generate a conversation with somebody who might actually not be okay, and prompt them to talk about what’s concerning them; what’s weighing them down; what’s making them feel sad etc.

It’s by facilitating this conversation that somebody might have a better opportunity for ‘opening up’ rather than continue suffering in silence and keeping their problem(s) to themselves, in turn creating more issues.

Whilst I think it’s good to create a national campaign and a social ‘movement’, I don’t think it’s something that should be predominantly advertised and spoken about on just one day. It’s a conversation starter that should be had on a regular basis, well, providing you’re a decent human being who actually gives a shit about other people. And no, asking somebody if they are okay, before commenting on their hairstyle or fashion choices doesn’t count.


Browsing social media today, all I saw were posts about it. Images like the one above and all these people on my feed were making comments about ‘asking the question’ and ‘having the conversation’; linking to the RUOK website, and using #as #many #hashtags #as #possible, because #socialmedia.

But there was one post I saw that really struck a nerve, and it went along the lines of:

‘R U Ok?’

‘Well, actually, no I’m really not, I’ve been feeling…’

‘Okay my work here is done’

‘But I haven’t even told you what’s wrong’

And I realised that there were actually a number of people making posts about this day, that immediately fall into that particular category. The people who want to portray an image of being socially / morally responsible and caring etc, but really just do it to look good and ensure they get enough likes for their own validation and self worth. They are the sort of people that ask the question without any actual interest or concern in how the other person is feeling (when sometimes I think they are the ones who should be asked the question… ‘R U OK? I’ve noticed that you’re constantly concerned with how many selfies you’re posting on Instagram, and I’m concerned that you have absolutely zero self worth, and instead are trying to find self worth and validation from countless numbers of absolute strangers on the internet… ‘

Millennials and social media narcissists… I’m look at you!

Personally speaking, I’ve also found that a number of the people publishing these posts are also the people with the biggest gossipy mouths, so are automatically the WORST people to be having such sensitive conversations with, because that then works to their advantage within their social circles, and gives them plenty of gossipy ammunition with which to talk about you behind your back.

And for anybody that has previously, or is currently, going through a tough time, having people talking and gossiping about you behind your back is only going to make things worse.

Let’s pause for a moment. Could this sense of hostility possibly be coming from previous personal experience? Perhaps? 

Could it be based on observation of actual human behaviour within certain social circles? Absolutely.

Do I perhaps have trust issues with people from previous experiences? Undeniably.

Could this be making me sound quite biased? Shut up – nobody asked you!

To avoid any confusion moving forward, I’ll openly admit that I don’t currently classify myself as okay.

I M NT OK. 😕😩😞

#HotMess #WhereDoIBegin #WhatIsWrongWithMe #Numb #DeadInside

So there I am, sitting at my desk watching these posts pass through my newsfeed and each person that mentioned RUOK? I asked myself whether I could (a) comfortably open up to them about what is on my mind, (b) could I actually trust them enough to have a REAL in depth conversation with me about what’s wrong, or (c) would they just pass the buck and be like gurl, you just need to go see a #shrink or something, because you are #BatshitCrazy which completely defeats the purpose of the whole concept.

I’m not denying that there aren’t people in my life that I could open up to, but I’m not entirely sure I could trust them with the information that I would be divulging. Should I maybe go see a professional instead? Absolutely. However, that shit is ridiculously expensive, and it’s a luxury I simply cannot afford right now.

I, for one, can confidently say that if I ask you if you’re okay, I’m genuinely concerned about your response. I care about your wellbeing. Even if we might not necessarily be close friends. Sometimes you mind find it’s actually easier to speak to somebody outside you’re social circle, or working environment / industry, to be able to listen to what you have to say, and then be unbiased about it. Sometimes we need somebody to play Devil’s Advocate. Sometimes it’s easier to open up to a stranger. If you ever feel like something has got you down, I’ll always make time to hear you out and provide support, and know that whatever is said between us will remain between us. Shoot me a message and I’ll organise a time to talk!

I care about those suffering from mental illness. As somebody diagnosed with Depression and Anxiety, I completely understand anybody who says they’re having a rough time, or they’re feeling depressed or sad etc. I sympathise because I’ve been there. I’ve hung out with the Black Dog a number of times before, and am currently hanging out with him.

For anybody that is serious about asking somebody R U OK?, I would highly recommend watching this video before hand to be more consciously aware of what you could potentially be getting yourself into. Having somebody trust you enough to really open up for you is more than just unwrapping a bandage and showing you a wound; it’s breaking the stitches and cutting through the scar tissue to really get into it in depth. This is something that makes the person feel extremely vulnerable; baring their soul. For the person asking, it can become an extremely uncomfortable and confronting position to be in so I would suggest you make sure that you’re committed and ready enough to ask the question, because it’s so much more than just asking the question. It can open a can of worms and show you a completely different side of somebody that you never thought existed, but they need to know that you’re there to support them no matter what.

We all need to feel supported, especially at our most vulnerable.

So please don’t just let RUOK? be a question reserved for one day of the year. Don’t let it be the reason you’re trying to get attention and likes on social media. Ask the question on a regular basis, but actually mean it when you ask. Pay more attention to the people around you, and if you notice a change in behaviour, don’t ignore it. Confront it.

It could be nothing. Or it could be something .

It could change a life. But not asking could cost a life.

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Daily Prompt – Trick Or Trick

It’s Halloween, and you just ran out of candy. If the neighborhood kids (or anyone else, really) were to truly scare you, what trick would they have to subject you to?

So, I’m one of those people who hasn’t really got any qualms about watching a scary movie… unless I’m in a big empty house, and I’m all alone and my mind is getting the better of me, then I’m a totally mess.

Continue reading

13 Aug – Forgetfulness

Is there anything good that comes from forgetting?

As I sit here thinking about this prompt, all that comes to mind are the negatives about being forgetful, as somebody who doesn’t have the greatest memory, all I know is that it pisses off Hulk so much, and he makes me feel like shit because I’m forgetful.  Continue reading

31 July – 10 Events

Tell us about 10 important personal events from your life from the last 10 years.

10 events from 21 – 31…

1. Turning 21 and having none of my friends turn up to my birthday.

2. Turning 21 and being dumped by the guy I was seeing because he had a boyfriend.


3. Having a massive falling out with my father resulting in not speaking to him ever again.


4. Getting fired from my first ever job because I threatened my boss.


5. Being diagnosed with depression.


6. Getting told I’d never dance again.


7. Discovering Les Mills.


8. My share-house experiences.


9. My ex-best friends.


10. Meeting hulk.

Daily Prompt – Freudian Flips

Do you remember a recent dream you had? Or an older one that stayed vivid in your mind? Today, you’re your own Freud: Tell us the dream, then interpret it for us! Feel free to be as serious or humorous as you see fit, or to invent a dream if you can’t remember a real one.

So the actual dream that first came to mind is something that I’ve previously written about…

Continue reading

Daily Prompt: Born to Be With You

Got a soul-mate and/or a best friend? What is it about that person that you love best? Describe them in great detail — leave no important quality out.

I know that when you’re in a relationship with somebody, there’s an expectation for you to write about them and explain how they are your soul mate and your best friend… but I don’t really want to do that… Don’t get me wrong, I could easily write about him, but I choose not too simply of of sheer defiance.

Instead, I’ll talk about my other soul mate – Crazy Cat Lady.

We have been working together for a few years now, and developed a great relationship / friendship. She’s one of those people who just gets me. If I turn up to work and she’s not there, then I feel rather depressed. Without her there, I have nobody to really talk to, or interact with. She’s the one that allows me to be neurotic and random. And I know that I do the same with her. I guess you could call it separation anxiety.

I’ve been away from work for the past week, and when I returned the other day, some of the other staff had commented how unhappy she had been feeling, and how much she had missed me. She is also just as random as I am, and when you’re so used to having that particular type of daily interaction with somebody, it’s something that helps get you through the day; it helps to subdue the rage; it’s something that we both look forward to, and also miss terribly when the other is not at work.

I found out today that Crazy Cat Lady has a few weeks of annual leave coming up, and it only really hit home this evening that she’s not going to be around. It’s undoubtedly going to be quite a hard few weeks to get through because I’ll have nobody to be random with. I’ll have nobody to talk gibberish too. I’ll have nobody to be neurotic with. I guess I can find solace in  knowing that although she’ll be away, she’ll still be checking her email, and she’ll continue to forward me links from her newsreader – usually videos about cats or something.

She really is one of my best friends, and I can’t imagine not having her in my life.

 

And if you’re reading this, Magoo, well golly, you’re the bees knees, and I think that you’re pretty swell. Now, how bout we have a giant cup of tea and three-hundred biscuits and talk about cats… and the salmon… in the Yemen… or you can just geeeeettttt oooouuutttt

😉

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/03/29/prompt-born/

Daily Prompt: Forgive and Forget?

Share a story where it was very difficult for you to forgive the perpetrator for wronging you, but you did it — you forgave them.

Perhaps I should just say that I’m a Scorpio. I don’t forgive people. Even when I say I forgive people, I’m not really sure that I forgive them… I think I just get over it and move past it, but I will never forget whatever it was they did to wrong me.

Scorpio’s certainly know how to hold a grudge. We also know how to take things to extremes. In saying that, people generally don’t do anything that requires me forgiving them… they just know not to get on my bad side because I’ll lose my shit.

I think one example of me forgiving somebody was an ex-friend of mine who ‘outed’ me to a group of people. I remember telling her something that I thought was in confidence. Unless you’ve dealt with the stress, the inner torment, the anxiety of ‘coming out’ to people, you probably won’t understand – however, to those of you who have, you know what I’m talking about.

It was hard enough coming out to my own mother, and even that in itself took twelve months to happen. It’s something that you need to do in your own time when you’re ready to; when you’re comfortable enough.

This bitch robbed me of that. I told her this in confidence. Granted, it wasn’t news, but for me to confirm it, was like having a small weight lifted off my shoulders… and I had a lot of small weights that needed lifting. So even after the long discussion we had about me not being ready to tell other people, especially other friends (well, now ex-friends) of mine until *I* was ready, she pretty much hung up the phone and told them all. Later that night I got calls and text messages from them…

HOWEVER, they were all upset and angry at me, wanting to yell at me for not telling them; for not feeling comfortable enough to tell them, and instead, choosing this particular friend over the rest of them.

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Here I am feeling quite vulnerable and you’re yelling at me for it??  Oh HELL NO.

I was pissed. How could you rob me of this moment? I know that she was excited, and really happy for me, and yes, at the end of the day I was going to end up telling them anyway, so I did look at the bigger picture and forgive her for doing what she did. She was young and naive.

…and I was foolish for thinking that I could trust her.

However, that was one of the last conversations that I had with that group of people.

 

Like I said, I may forgive, but I will not forget.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/21/prompt-forgive/

Dec 12 – Spending Time

Would you rather have one more hour with someone you like, or one fewer hour with someone you can’t stand?

Without a doubt, one more hour with somebody I like.

One of the worst feelings is when you meet up with friends / family and you only have limited time together before you have to part ways. Even worse if you haven’t seen them for a while.

For example, a couple of years ago I was interstate on a work trip, and knew that once I had gotten to my hotel from the airport, I would have a very limited window of free time before my meeting later that afternoon. My cousin had only recently given birth to her so-cute-it-hurts baby boy. I hadn’t seen my cousin for a number of years, and this was the perfect opportunity to at least see her and the baby, albeit briefly.

Naturally, once I got there, time absolutely flew by and before I knew it, my alarm on my phone was going off, telling me that I had a thirty-minute window to get in a cab and head off to me meeting.

If only I could’ve spent another hour with her. Oh who am I kidding, I would’ve loved to have spent the whole day with her and bubba. I’ve always wanted to have another opportunity to go back and visit her again, but it’s been too difficult. Sometimes there’s really cheap flights up, and I’ve either got no money, or I can’t get time off work. Or when I can get leave, flights are ridiculously expensive.

Now that my mum is living up there as well, not far from my cousin, there’s now even more reason for me to head north for a visit. Ideally, I would have loved to have gone up to celebrate Christmas Eve (which is when we do christmas), but of course, flights are so incredibly expensive. I even thought about going up first thing Christmas Eve and then catching the last flight back, but it’s not looking like it’ll happen.

It’s actually making me feel somewhat uncomfortable, as it’s the first Christmas in at least 15 years that I haven’t spent Christmas Eve with Mum.

It’s giving me anxiety. :-S

Apart from wishing I could spend time with family, I would be more than happy to just have an extra hour in the morning so I can cuddle Hulk. It’s something so simple, and yet something that I take for granted. Sometimes I wish I could just spend a whole day in my pj’s, curled up in bed with him, falling in and out of warm cosy slumber all day. *sigh* oh that would be heaven.