We're all assholes sometimes. I'm particularly good at being a selfish asshole. Yeah, I know, surprising. A slightly narcissistic, emotionally charged, guy who lives and dies by those whom he loves gets into situations where he says dumb things... SHOCKING... /sarcasm
I was reflecting last night, and finally broke down and violated my media fast to get on social media and look at how people are doing. Social media sites love to take your address book and helpfully "suggest" people you should follow.
And when you have as many ex's as I do, seeing these suggestions is a trip down memory lane of broken relationships.
And nothing hits you in the side of the head to see people you loved but no longer have contact with enjoying their lives completely without you.
Of course, it's very biased. People like to put on their best faces on social media. Well, almost everyone. I actually don't do it very well as proved by posts like this.
And when you look at people who have curated the best events of their life without you, it can get pretty depressing, even when you are aware that the bias exists.
The people you look at are also struggling. There are few people in the world that are actually not struggling at all. But most people hide this side of themselves.
So how depressed did it make me feel? Pretty rotten. I don't feel that rotten very often, and haven't dealt with a mood swing like that months, and it was a shock.
But we have to learn to live with these mindsets... For some people, it drives them to think about suicide or hurting themselves. Me, it just drives me to think about nobody really caring if I exist, or hoping that I never existed.
And of course, this is biased as well. I have a wonderful girlfriend who appreciates me very much.
The trick is not to get yourself "out" of these feelings. The trick is to explore them without doing something stupid. The trick is to understand that your feelings are valid, that you are allowed to be sad or mad.
You are allowed to rant, to cry, and to think about what your life means and how you've lived it.
The mind works in two modes while we're awake. It runs in autopilot and it runs in conscious thought. And when you get into moods like this, you don't want to be running on autopilot.
You want to open up these feelings like a new city that you are unfamiliar with and trying to drive through. You want to slow down, look around, and make careful turns looking at all the signs. You want to pull over often.
Being polyamorous isn't going to protect you from this. I don't care if you are seeing 1, 2, or 20 people, you will still have regrets and people you miss deeply. You'll probably feel it more and in more unrecognizable ways than monogamous people.
You'll feel it more because you allow yourself to love many, which means that you're not likely trying to "get over" ex's, and still love them. And you'll experience this in less recognizable ways, because unlike many monogamous people who can bury these feelings by being around their new person, you don't get that luxury. You can't pretend that it's just a difference between being with someone and being alone. That's why codependency is so prevalent with the monogamous. It's a coping mechanism when you are standing on emotional cliff edges, a rope holding you to the mountain.
Polyamorous people might never be "alone" and actively fight against codependency, which means we often operate without a rope as we walk towards the edge. Sure, we have an expanded network of lovers and friends. And they are wonderful in giving us real support and not codependency ropes.
But sometimes, you have to sit down and look over the edge all by yourself. Because in the end, no matter who you are with or not with, nobody can share your brain with you. You can share your emotions, thoughts, feelings, and moods with others, but only you can live them for yourself.
So when you find yourself sitting there and staring at the eyes of the people of your past, remembering the smiles, remembering the anger, and seeing their current indifference, just remember one thing: They also have their own cliffs to sit on and look back at you on occasion, and you'll probably never see that pop up on their social media feed.