Make me Laugh

bipolar humor

When I look back on my earliest posts 7 – 8 years ago I notice a couple of things. First, I notice how dramatically better my writing is today compared to back then. I guess writing for 8 years helps one to hone their craft. The second thing I noticed that bothers me more than a little bit, is that I seem to have lost my funny.

Now I don’t know if I ever found my blog all that funny, but I had a good number of people tell me that they followed because of the humor, despite not being affected by mental illness. It doesn’t make sense to me. In 2008 I was a mental, emotional, and physical mess. I was newly diagnosed and my mind was spinning as we tried med after med after med to see which ones worked and which ones didn’t help me. How could I go through that, one of the most miserable times in my life, and write funny stuff? Why today, when I am dramatically more stable, is it so difficult for me to write humor? Some psychologists believe they have an answer.

In an August, 2014 Psychology Today article, Diana Raab Ph.D. had this to say about Robin Williams,

While he was making the world around him laugh, he was hurting inside. It is an interesting phenomenon that those who are the funniest on the outside are so often the ones hurting most on the inside. When used on a regular basis, can humor be considered a mask for internal demons? Some say yes, but humor may also be considered a coping mechanism, allowing the depressed individual to function. Having a sense of humor also has its rewards because it places the focus on others or on a specific situation or set of circumstances. When our focus turns outward, we can avoid the pain of turning in and so it can be seen as an escape from one’s own problems.

This does make sense. Many use humor as a coping mechanism and I’m sure it helped me at the time. One odd thing, though, is that I am able to write humor these days. The novel I’m writing has lots of humor which is validated by fellow writers. Why am I able to write funny stuff in my novel, but not in this blog? I haven’t a clue. The last thing I want is for my blog to be dry and boring. I don’t think it is, but I want to be sure that doesn’t happen.

I don’t have any expectation that I be funny every day. I wasn’t funny every day back then. But, I’d sure love to be funny more often. I don’t want this just for you, my readers, but for me as well. There’s nothing I love more than to laugh and I am thrilled when I can pass it on to others. I’ll have to seriously look into this problem of being too serious.

I’m looking for more funny blogs. Preferably related to mental health, but open to all. Any suggestions? I need some laughs.

18 comments on Make me Laugh

  1. Well… I’m not biased, but I think my blog has been getting funnier lately, and this week’s post is certainly going to be entertaining. I don’t think I’m posting until Thursday or Friday. If I think of some good funny blogs for you I will definitely let you know. I’m kind of blanking out right now as I am half-awake! :0

  2. p.s. I wrote two of my favorite posts that were my attempts a humor that got good responses. One was a contest to come up with new names for psychiatric medications. I recieved some great comments. The other post (which might not be your brand of humor) is my television show concept called “Bipolar House” hosted by Adam Ant, Carrie Fisher and Tom Cruise. I would put up the direct links, but I’m using my phone, and I don’t know how to do that.

  3. I totally use humor as a coping mechanism. For instance, when I had my miscarriage at 6 months, I told my friend “Oh, the baby just said, ‘uh-oh… wrong womb!” As morbid as it was, it was funny to me, and helped me cope with a horrible experience. A lot of people have remarked about my humor in my writing. I’m not trying to be, it is just who I am. I’ve dealt with a lot of horrible things in my life, and trying to find the funny in it helps me immensely. I wish my blog was more funny. And sadly, I can’t point you in a direction of funny. But if you find something, please share! 🙂

    1. I think it’s wonderful that you were able to use humor to cope with must have been a very painful event. I’ll definitely keep you posted when I find some funny blogs.

  4. I don’t know that I do it as often in my blog, but I am constantly using humor in “the real world.” I am constantly making jokes and (what I believe are) witty comments. I don’t really feel like I could deal with this ol’ life too well without humor. I don’t read any blogs (I don’t think) that are really humor blogs exactly, but it seems like I always get a kick or two out of the large group that I follow daily. Maybe it is an issue of just reading MORE blogs, you know, quantity, not quality. 😀

    1. I’m with you. In the real world I make jokes and laugh a lot. Obviously, I have my bad moments, but I couldn’t imagine having to go back to the days where I could barely crack a smile.

  5. I’ve had a similar experience in looking back at my social media posts from a couple years back. I was going through hell with my stability, but I was clever and funny about it. I think it’s like looking back at old photographs. You never realize how good you looked back then until now.

  6. I miss Robin Williams so much. He was one of my inspirations, not least of all because of his performance in Dead Poet’s Society. That film, and his character, instilled a lot of hope and dreams in me, and an appreciation of poetry and art in general. Robin was the quintessential sad clown it seems. I hurt every time he comes up in conversation. What a huge loss for the world. I get so upset thinking about how he must have been suffering around the time of his death.

    1. I think of all the same things, Anthony. He gave so much to the world through his humor, it’s sad he left us so soon.

  7. I think when you’re depressed you see an irony and absurdity to the world that isn’t as visible when you are functioning with more balance. Plus there is that perverse creativity that can come with it sometimes. If you’re not down too deep in the hole, other people get it and find it funny, at times hysterically so. When you’re too far gone they look at you funny. It’s disconcerting to feel crazy and find everyone else is just going along and treating you like you make sense, but it’s even more disconcerting when you think you are “passing” until you see that look in people’s eyes that lets you know your crazy is showing.

    1. Good points all. It is an unpleasant shock when you think you’ve got them fooled and then realize they see how crazy you are

  8. I cringe when I read over my old stuff. Blogs should probably self-destruct every 3-5 years, just as any savvy person will burn her journals with at least the same frequency.

  9. I am one of the ‘show me the funny’ when I’m down or rolling from mood to mood. Not when significantly depressed. At that point I can’t even smile or talk, let alone be funny. But do use humour to cope, yes.

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