I’m poor, overweight, have bipolar disorder, and more than anything lately, I’m loaded with self-pity.
I don’t know why I’ve been feeling self-pity more lately than the past, but it doesn’t seem to be in any rush to go away. One strong possibility is the state of my country. The US of A is being led by narcissistic, bigoted, dishonest, ignorant bully. That man (I use that term lightly) leads a controlling party that secretly and cowardly passed a budget that, to put it simply, steals from the poor to give to the rich. Technically, the budget is not a 100% done deal, it has some hurdles before it becomes law, but it doesn’t look good.
On top of all that, our fearless leader is acting like a spoiled child on a playground taunting a North Korean madman who is capable of firing missiles into any part of our nation. I’m feeling a little edgy about that.
It’s been interesting talking to many of my liberal friends since the election and I keep hearing the same thing over and over. That is, they weren’t happy when Reagan won the election, or when either of the Bush’s won, but never have they felt the deep undying depression they’ve experienced since our last election.
Granted, I’m depressed all the time, and struggled with self-pity my whole life, but our current political climate has seemed to make it worse, and more than anything keeps me in a state of helplessness. I think the helplessness is what’s put the cherry on the top.
So, my theory is it’s the feeling of helplessness that’s reinforced my self-pity, but what do others say? Well, I stumbled on a delightful article on Oprah Winfrey’s website. It’s a weekly post by Deepak Chopra where readers are encouraged to ask him questions. I’ve never been a fan of Deepak, and his response to someone asking about self-pity was this:
The issue is dependency. Self-pity is the opposite of self-esteem. It arises because you feel no one will lift you out of your difficulties. With no one stronger, older, wiser and kinder to help you, there’s a tremendous sense of lack. You cannot find the same strength that these rescuers have—or you imagine them to have—and the ache of not being enough is felt as self-pity or ‘poor me.’
I shouldn’t get too upset with the man. His comments are pretty much what I said above, I guess it’s just the way he’s said it. It’s awfully condescending, and I don’t appreciate being told I act like a child.
His solution to self-pity is to “gather some riches.” I won’t go into how he suggests you gather these riches, but it’s the usual stuff we hear like saying affirmations, writing your feeling down then put where they’re coming from…and you’ve heard the drill. If you want to learn more, you can follow the link below.
For years I’ve declared I’m Buddhist, but despite the lovely Buddha figures I have throughout our apartment, I never really have been. I’ve never agreed with much that the various sects I studied, however I agree with the basic tenants, for the most part. One of the sites I check out regularly is Tiny Buddha. In an article on that website regarding self-pity, I found this:
Awful things happen. Dreadful circumstances or tragedies will affect most of our lives at some point. It’s okay to cry and feel sorry for yourself and your circumstances, mope around, or get angry. But at some point you must shake it off, let go of the past, and choose to not let it consume you entirely. Otherwise, you won’t be able to learn from the experience and move forward in a constructive way.
At first I thought the article was equally condescending to Deepak’s, but the author was wise enough to add “I am not addressing true clinical depression here…”
Before I wrote this post, I made a list of all the things I’m feeling self-pity over. I’ve decided to spare the details, but they were mostly affiliated with money, relationships, health, environment, and more, but, right now I don’t think it will serve any purpose. Perhaps later in the week I’ll find it necessary and will shock everyone by doing two posts in a week. For now I’ll leave it at that. Maybe I’ll follow Deepak’s suggestion and gather some riches.