American society is not old, grown up, mature or independent or faithful enough to handle the technological advances that have and are occurring. In fact, they are making us more immature, inpatient and dependent. At least for me it’s that way.
Here’s how I know. It’s not unusual for me to have a spell of sadness or loneliness or depression as I go through my day. I have chronic major depression – so it’s normal, really. I’ve had it all my Life – except when I was a kid I was told it was called being “ungrateful” or “acting like” something’s wrong.
So, I send a text to a friend. It’s usually not an emotional spewing, just a “hey” to see if they are “there”.
Then, they don’t respond (gasp!). I go on working or sitting in front of the TV, or puttering around a procrastinated project, trying to not pay attention to how long it takes them to answer; but still checking my phone in 1 – 2 minute intervals. In my head this is going on:
“Wtf? Am I not important enough to respond to? I thought you said you cared. I though you said you’d be there. Unless you are ignoring me again – are we not talking and you didn’t tell me? WTF man!?”
And this is WITHIN the first ten minutes.
TEN freaking minutes – I‘ve taken a crap that lasted longer than that.
This is so cliché I could just kick myself, but I long for the good ol’ days . Those days when I would have these feelings – and there was no way to reach out to anyone.
There was no way to reach out to anyone. No method or device to use for immediate sympathy, or access to someone to “process it” with. There was a phone, but it only made phone calls and was in your bedroom – not your pocket.
So what did I do “back then” when the messy ick of being human was in my face? I DEALT WITH IT.
Those crappy abandoned, hopeless, worthless and miserable feelings that came up – I FELT THEM.
Today, we don’t deal or feel anymore; we text, email and blog about feelings and problems. But we never really sit down in the living room with our demons and challenge them in hand-to-hand combat.
No wonder we’re such a mess. No wonder I despise my weakness and inability to “deal with emotions in a healthy way.” I’ve conformed to society’s ways (again) and lost touch with myself (again). I had more emotional savvy and self-knowledge drunk and journaling than I do now sober and surfing the internet. This is change, but it is not growth.
It’s time for personal rebellion. It’s time to shut the laptop, leave the TV off, shut off the phone … and just sit. And breathe. And be. And feel. That is how you deal with feelings – you feel them.