Thursday, May 24, 2012

Bottled

Warning: Offspring Spoiler Alert. 

I'm watching episode six of Offspring.

Nina has received some devastating news while at work.

She doesn't rush home to go into bed and cry.

She gets through her day.  She sees patients. She listens to them and gives them advice.

Nina comments to herself.  Amazing how you can function as a professional person at the same time your insides are crumpling.  

I can relate to that.

Although not completely, since I'm not a professional person.

I can though relate to crumpling on the inside while on the outside I present a different picture.

I sometimes go through private dramas without people suspecting anything.

A part of me thinks that's bad and a part of me thinks it's not so bad.

What are the alternatives?

I could sit in my room and cry all day.

That's kind of wasting the day.

I could try to talk to someone about it. I'd say there's a 1/50 chance that the person I tell will make me feel better rather than worse.  I'm not sure the odds are worth it.

I can write about it—get my feelings out that way.   But I could also just think about it.   Does it really help that much more to type or write it out?  With venting, do you really need to get the words out of your head?   

I mean I did a lot of venting when I was having my medical drama a few weeks ago.  Does it really matter that I initially only vented to myself?

I whined in my post about not having anyone to talk to.  But would it have made me feel better to talk to someone?   They'd probably talk on and on, talking about their own experiences and giving me advice.  I'd pretend to listen while obsessively thinking my own thoughts.

I actually had a nice weekend that weekend.  I sang with my sister and cousins. I took nice walks and saw nature things. I played in the pool. I joked around with family members.  At the same time, I was feeling a bit crazy and terrified inside.

But what if I had opened up?   What if I told Tim, my parents, sisters, etc. exactly what was happening and how I was feeling?   What if they chose not to minimize and invalidate my feelings?   What if they gave my problems a ton of attention? Would that have made the weekend better?

Probably not.

Sharing the sorrow might not minimize the sorrow.

I recently blabbed on and on to a friend about a problem...an old problem.

I was lucky.  She was one of the 1/50.  She responded in a very kind and helpful way.

Why was I talking about an old problem?

Because I'm not over the old problem.

Maybe finally having the sympathetic and insightful response I desired will finally give me closure.

Or maybe not.

Maybe I'll still be tormented by this problem decades from now.

Maybe I'll never be over it and it doesn't matter how much I talk about it.   

If I do feel better about things, will it be because I talked about them (for the billionth time) or because the person I told said smart helpful things?   

I would guess it's the latter.  I would also guess that prior venting, which elicited less helpful responses, actually made the problem worse.  

I'm sort of thinking this is a horrible post.  What am I doing? Recommending that we all keep our problems to ourselves, paste on a smile, and get on with it?

It sounds so shallow.

I don't think we should all fake happiness all the time.

Sometimes we need to cry and not cry in the closet.

Maybe what I'm thinking is that it's not necessarily horrible to deal with things privately...at least temporarily.  We don't need to fear that we'll immediately implode from our bottled up emotions.

I'm sure Nina is eventually going to open up about.....

I didn't want to put the spoiler way up in the beginning of the post, because it would be too hard for people to avert there eyes.

But I'll say it now......

It seems that Nina has gotten dumped by Patrick.

I have to watch the rest of the episode to know for sure.

I left her at the pub.  The poor girl keeps getting greeted with mentions of Patrick.   Her friends and family don't realize it might be over.  I'm guessing eventually she'll say something.

But personally I admire her for not rushing home to cry.  I admire her for keeping her problems to herself and getting through her work day.  I like that type of strength.

On the other hand, I don't like people who hold in their emotions indefinitely.  That's kind of scary and annoying.   So it will be nice if Nina eventually has a release.   Hopefully she can find someone who will make her feel better rather than worse.  Or at the very least, I hope she can have a nice private cry.  

Or better yet, maybe it will all be a misunderstanding and there's really no break-up.  

If there's a break-up, I can handle it.  Probably.

I won't say the same for Mick and Billy. I fear Mick's going to have an affair with the singing lady.    I hope I'm wrong.