Indifference

I was talking to a friend a long time ago, she was talking about her ex-boyfriend and said something like “the opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.”  Something like that, I forget how she put it exactly but it was really profound.  Her point was that she knew was over this guy because she no longer gave a crap what happened in his life.  For a long time before that talking about him would make her upset and angry.  I have OCD(obsessive-compulsive disorder) which makes things terribly difficult to completely let go of.  It takes me a long, long time – sometimes years – to completely let go of something.  This is the way I have been since I was a teenager.  It’s just the way I am.  I wish the stroke took my OCD away, but no such luck.  I wrote about something a while ago, I forget what specifically I was talking about, but I was writing something about cutting toxic people out of my life.  Barb made a comment and said that she disagrees because she feels that when people are really mean, that’s when they need kindness the most.  I think that’s wonderful.  If you can do that, do that.  I cannot do that.  When someone is mean to me I react instead of responding and my reaction usually ain’t so good.  I’m mean right back, usually quite a bit meaner and then I feel even worse later on after I have calmed down.  I HATE this.  I hate, hate, hate, hate this about myself.  But I am fully aware of this about myself.  There are some people/situations from my past that I am now indifferent about and don’t give a crap about.  There are some people/situations from my past that still make me very angry and upset when I talk or think about them.  So if you’ve wronged me, believe me you want me out of your life, it’s better for both me and you.  But like I said, I am very much aware of this about myself and trying to change it.  There are some people who I know that are older than me, some much older, who have absolutely no awareness of their faults and would never admit them, let alone try to change them.  This awareness and attempt at changing my behavior, I believe, is a sign that I have reached maturity.  If you know better, you try to do better.  If you know better and don’t try to do better, well…that’s a motherfucker of a problem and will probably cost you dearly in your life.



Categories: Health

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15 replies

  1. Thanks for the mention. I too, used to beat myself up after saying something mean (and clever) in response to meanness. Now, to prevent saying /doing something I’ll regret, I just keep my mouth shut when I’m mad. I. Just. don’t. Speak. Works every time. So, beware if we’re talking and I go silent.

  2. I used to be OCD about everything and was excessive about making lists. Not anymore, the stroke eliminated almost all of that. I don’t think I’ve made one list since the stroke (except for groceries) which is probably a good thing since I can’t write worth a crap. But, I used to make lists in my head all of the time, as well as on paper and on the computer and that’s completely gone now. I’m actually quite thankful for that.
    I’m still a bit OCD about things on my dinner plate touching each other- I don’t like the mixing of food.

    Anyways, do you think that your stroke affected your OCD at all? Did it possibly make it worse? Do you get more angry now than before or do people just irritate you more because of their misunderstanding of stroke situations? Does that make sense…

    • Good question! I don’t think the stroke affected it directly but as a result of the stroke and not being able to do anything for 2 years except sit on the couch and live in my head, things got worse. Just because I ruminated about everything. And my tolerance for people’s insensitivity pretty much disappeared. I just can’t tolerate it anymore.

    • Lori, I used to and still do, make lists for EVERYTHING, but have never considered it to be a symptom of OCD. Yes, lists are very comforting, especially when I’m ruminating at night – then I make a mental list and work on memorizing it. Inevitably, I feel accomplished in the middle of the night, only to have a mind-blank in the morning – no list, afterall.

      And when I go to water therapy, it’s very unsettling to not be able to follow the exact same procedure each time – every step must be done, including putting my phone in my right shoe in the locker, sock on top to hide it from locker-room-thieves. And so on. And, afterward, having someone in MY shower means I have to use a different, less familiar, one.

      As a matter of fact, I know a guy who is OCD to an extreme – and I’m NOT like him. I actually consider myself very flexible.

  3. I have always thought if someone truly hates someone else, there is something there, but if they have apathy for that person, there is nothing there. It’s the same thing you said in the beginning of your post. It’s true of ex’s (mine and others), family members, friends…. Words to live by.

  4. So many parts of this post are I credit fascinating to me! I have an ex… One of those really crappy exes. He didn’t physically injur me, but he did stalk me, mentally abuse me, threaten people I was interested in (well after we broke up). Anyway, he is in jail now and is an addict. It is SO hard for me to believe I was involved with him for four years, my “first love”. I still care a fair amount for him. I can’t say that I am apathetic or indifferent, I care about him because he is a human being and one that was a part of some of my most formative years. But, I know I cannot (and I don’t want to) have a relationship with him. So that’s a game changer. Meaning, the way I act on my care is to wish him well from afar and say a prayer for his well-being and recovery whenever I think of him.

    On a seperate note, I find it interesting to think about all of the ways that zack has changed since his injury. He has changed completely. He really is not much of the same person anymore… At least not in his expression. Allll of his emotions are muted, though he does have the occasional “moment”. He is still funny, kind, caring, loving, and thinks the best about people, he just can’t express it like he used to- he literally does not know how. And I don’t think he feels it like he used to either. He has never been an overly ambitious person- always very content- and that has increased u would say. It takes even more now to get him fired up than it did before. And he is definitely more easily frustrated and likely to snap. Which was never a part of his personality before.

    I love that man more than I did before, despite the changes. I’m not sure how or why. But I do. I am mad about him. And I am thankful for that. These changes have been the most difficult for me to navigate, because I look at him and am around him everyday yet that truth coexists with a deep longing for him. I miss him terribly. You guys give me hope that I will continue to see him more and more as the weeks, months, and years pass.

  5. Travelling to Edmonton is very close to “Indifference”… 🙂

  6. Indifference was a part of the emotional evolution of not “loving” my ex husband. It went something like this from one to the other: love/adoration, to disgust, anger, sadness, apathy, indifference, gratitude, empathy. When his “girlfriend” showed up at our front door one night, I was instantly not in love anymore and totally disgusted…it as a slow process but I wouldn’t change the turn of events any. All I’ve been through has brought me to today…and I LOVE my life today. Yes, I wish I wasn’t so damn tired all the time but all in all life is good!

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