All I want for Christmas is to feel warm again.
All I want for Christmas is to feel warm again.
I know we have been fed by the media to believe Christmas is a magical benevolent time, full of warmth, frankincense and myrrh, but this is not the case for everybody.
Maybe you’re worrying about the calories in the food; maybe you’re against the idea of institutionalised bingeing on Christmas day; maybe you’re stuck with people you hate who constantly trigger you, like a racist grandparent, a bigoted relative, or a manipulative in-law; maybe you know that your family will get drunk and start a fight with each other - you are not alone in this.
If you know you’re going to have a shit Christmas, please remember hundreds of other people are in the same boat. It’s not only you who isn’t having the sparkling Christmas like the one on TV. There is nothing wrong with you.
You are not alone. You are never alone. It’ll be a very long day but you will get through it.
All I want for Christmas is a cut-free 2014.
Cover sketch inspired by the Stephen King quote: “Monsters are real, and ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win.”
Hey there, good to hear from you again!
I’m so sorry to hear that you’re thinking of breaking up with your girlfriend. How long have you felt this way? What have your friends say - are they supportive or do they think you should reconsider? Why do you believe leaving each other would be like coming off an addiction?
I don’t know enough about your situation to feel like I can give you any specific tips, so I would try to help you as though you were any other friend going through a break-up, or considering breaking up with someone:
* Talk to your girlfriend about your thoughts and fears, and see if both of you are willing to change enough to salvage this relationship.
* If this is really what you want, then break it off as swiftly as possible. Don’t linger, it will make it messy.
* If you do break up with her, don’t talk to her for a couple of months, and don’t reply to her messages unless it’s urgent. You need space to get over each other and stand on your own feet again. If you do speak with her, keep it light and non-committal. Maybe you’ll realise you need her back; maybe you’ll realise how much more you’ve grown since you’ve been apart. But you need to be apart to realise all this.
* Throw away all your tools, or invest in an excellent first aid kit, if you think you’re at risk of hurting yourself as punishment. Prepare a huge list of “instead of cutting” activities, and make a list of people you can message if you need support.
* Know you will always have your friends and they have your back! Arrange to do something with one or many of them, every weekend, or every free night during the week. In the beginning, don’t give yourself the time to feel lonely. You might think you’ll be fine, but loneliness can come down on you like a sack of bricks, and by then you might feel too sheepish to call up your friends. Always have a back-up social activity for your free time.
* Take good care of yourself: don’t berate yourself, judge yourself, or tell yourself that you’re a bad person, or that you deserve to be alone, or that no one could love you again, or any other sort of negative self-talk. Not all relationships work out, and it’s no one’s fault. You still need to treat yourself with respect, as though you were caring for your best friend during his or her break up.
* Accept that you’re human and it’ll be tough: it’ll be a shock to your system (physically and mentally) not having your girlfriend around anymore. So you’re going to have to be really patient with yourself. Let yourself miss her, let yourself grieve that it’s over. Don’t let yourself be hard-hearted or think it’s ‘weak’ to be sad over it. You’re allowed to be as sad as you want, and vent to as many people as you want.
I hope this helps a little! Please do some off anon and write to me some more, if you’d like. I also added a Submit tab, where you can write longer messages than Ask, and you’re more than welcome to provide a fake name and email.
Wish you all the best. You can survive this: things fall apart so stronger things can fall into place!
Thanks so much for your comment and support. I know my well-being is paramount, which is why I’m taking this break. But thank you for reminding me too, because sometimes I do doubt myself.
On the other hand, I also recognise that continuing to draw is also a good method of keeping myself grounded, and focusing on an end-point. I’ve read that even when people (artists, particularly) get depressed, stressed, or unmotivated, they should at least do produce everyday to make them feel accomplished. But right now, the mere thought of producing something just feels so daunting! I’m spending so much energy sorting out my personal life, and keeping my professional workload in check, that the pressure of having to produce anything else just feel like I might be tipped over the edge. Which is why drawing has taken a backseat at this moment, while I resolve everything else (the boring bits) in my life >_<
But thank you again - and everyone else who wrote such lovely, caring, encouraging comments - for reaching out to me. Please be assured that I’m looking after myself very well. I look forward to my personal dramas being over and coming back to you guys :)
I’m currently going through a really rough, uncertain period, and don’t know when it’s going to calm down or sort itself out. I need to put my well-being first, which means for the time being SI+ME is on hold. I imagine it would only be a month or two months at most, though I cannot say for certain. I’m really sorry to be such a flake, but I need some time to look after myself.
I’ll still be updating my personal blog, and adding more “instead of cutting” hints. Please drop me a message if you want to chat too.
Take care of yourselves, as I’m doing now. Remember: self-love and self-respect is not a sign of weakness, it’s strength.
I hate it when my friends accidentally (on purposely) try to upstage me…
This week there will be an update on Friday instead of Tuesday, due to my disgraceful time management. Many apologies to keep you all waiting!
Take care and look after yourselves please!
What’s the point of family if not to make you feel like utter shit? ;)