When the fuck will I know what the fuck I want to do with my life?
Maybe never. Get cozy with your chronic, low-grade existential crisis.
Is constantly wishing to be dead part of that “chronic low-grade existential crisis”, or is it depression?
Yeah, that’s depression. Nothing low-grade about it. Get help.
Is high functioning avoidant personality disorder a thing?
Not really. It’s common for individuals to display avoidant personality traits, but it doesn’t really rise to the level of disorder unless those traits cause significant functional impairment.
I might have the opportunity to participate in an ayahuasca ceremony, during a very transitional period in my life. Should I go for it?
You’ve talked before about how your co-workers don’t know anything about your actual lifestyle. I just started my first job in a corporate setting and I’d like to divorce my work life from my personal life as much as possible (both to be professional, and because I don’t trust my co-workers). Should I just work harder at lying well, or do you have any other tips?
You shouldn’t have to lie. If you can’t keep your privacy with simple deflection and omission, then your co-workers are being nosey, and you should feel free to be rude.
is there any archive of your style blog? or any chance of a reboot? I’ve only been reading since last year and am kicking myself for not finding you sooner.
My old style blog posts are now just blended in with all my original blog posts. (Select “style” from the categories menu to see them.) I might occasionally post new style stuff. We’ll see.
Years ago you wrote some custom wedding vows. I’m very curious to know what you said.
Yeah, right here. They’ve been married for five years now. I even heard from them on their anniversary a while back.
I am sending my narcissistic mom a low/no contact letter today. I am standing up for myself. I am so scared. I want to cry and vomit at the same time. Send me good vibes, please. I don’t know why I’m sending this to you.
Good luck and good vibes. Sorry that your mom sucks. (It’s okay to cry and vomit.)
Why do I orgasm louder and deeper when I play with myself versus when I have sex?
Because you’re less self-conscious when nobody else is in the room.
It’s so weird…i really expected a post today.
44 thoughts on “On fun-sized advice”
Final letter writer willed this post into existence.
“When the fuck will I know what the fuck I want to do with my life? Maybe never.”
35 years old here; I still don’t know. Then again, I’m lazy as fuck, so… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
At the risk of sounding crunchy, it has become clear that whatever you’re doing is what you’re doing with your life.
I don’t think so. 35 is a perfectly reasonable age to still be wondering about what the hell you’re doing with your life.
I’m 20 and I’m giving myself 10 years to let the imperative of hard work, and curiosity guide my actions. Best case scenario at 35 for me seems at this moment to have a bunch of diplomas and being on the course of becoming a university professor and chief of X medical service or Y research team in my current city. Founding a family would be nice too. However other acceptable options include living half way round the world, working in a political or literary or technical job.
Personally I wouldn’t say I’m lazy (maybe sometimes more interested in my inside world than stuff that is actually happening). I grew up in an atheist family, with on one side the hindu traditional concept of the four stages of life, and the notion of duty, and on the other the anglican notion of personal betterment. I allow these paradigms to guide my course of action when they prove to be useful intellectual shortcuts leading to good actions.
However there is a sense of self-importance in those notions that I have left behind. It doesn’t matter what I do with my life. Somehow what happens with my life can have an effect on the rest of the world, but that doesn’t accord any intrinsic value to my life as a whole. Considering my life as a whole doesn’t even make any sense. Life is a flux of information, constantly changing, and 35 is an age like any other (that is, hopefully quick to be forgotten).
Reading this put me in mind of the time when I was 20 in a new city with a plan for what I would do with my life. The major themes were present but the details were all off and there were a bunch of detours. Now (approaching Exit 30) I’ve been hitting a lot of misconceptions about what I wanted from work in terms of environments and relationships. It’s getting easier to relax into what feels right instead of pushing myself to adhere to the plan.
Here’s the sad thing, if you don’t just do something…you may get to the end and wonder what you did with it. So don’t let not knowing be a barrier. Try shit.
That’s a very Coquette-like answer—and it’s honestly what I needed to hear.
This is closer to what I meant. It doesn’t matter what the hell you’ll end up doing. Yes, the 35 year old sitting on a stack of diplomas being the president of the world is a brilliant and bright fantasy, and working towards it is also illuminating your future.
What I’m getting at is that you can outweigh your “what the fucks (!),” with “this is it and I am okay,” you start to come to peace. For all intents and purposes, the future doesn’t exist and doesn’t matter (not saying you should quit your job and stop saving because nothing matters, blah,) but I am saying, what you are doing is what you are doing with your life.
It won’t be like that by the end of the day.
Just my 2 cents, since I agonized over this for the last several years and it really got in the way of living my life. Pick a goal, any goal, that you will find remotely fulfilling or satisfying. Don’t waste your time on building your life around something you don’t like/don’t care about. I fell into a “career path” a few years back because I was so desperate for a direction and, while I learned a lot and definitely benefitted overall, I spent two years hating my job and feeling really dissatisfied with life in general. Quitting that job gave me the space and time I needed to find a career path that I think I will genuinely enjoy, even though it involves going back to school which is super daunting.
But as much as I look forward to getting into my future career, it still is not what I want from life. It is a career that I think will enable me to live the kind of life I find fulfilling. Something that will pay the bills, allow vacation time for travel and (hopefully) someday allow me to own my own home and start a family. But none of those are end goals, if that makes any sense, those are all just steps along the path to a meaningful life for me personally. I don’t expect to buy a home, pop out a few kids, and suddenly be able to celebrate that I’ve accomplished the meaning in life I set out for. The point of life is to live it, and putting too much emphasis on what you are going to “do” with your life can really get in the way of just enjoying your existence.
In the meantime, while preparing to go back to school, I am taking steps to ensure that the life I am living right now brings me joy. I am reconnecting with friends, pursuing activities that I genuinely enjoy, and not letting the burden of my student loans crush me anymore. I put my life on hold for too many years out of fear and anxiety over how I could afford a future. But fuck it, I’m going to live for today while I build the future I want because I’m tired of regretting all the good times I missed so I can pay off one more tiny fraction of debt.
…wow. Another great, inspiring-me-to-do-shit response. Thank you.
I check this blog multiple times a day but I often have a sixth sense when I’m actually likely to find something new. Not sure why it is, could definitely just be my brain playing tricks on me, but yeah, like you said…
Hi Coquette! Big shout out. It’s my first day teaching in a high school today (Australia) and I recommended your blog in a religious studies class (Year 8 – 14 year olds). Unsurprisingly, it was banned by school servers. However, I got them interested enough to check it out at home. I know they’re gonna have fun here.
Thank you very much. (Nothing gets kids interested faster than being banned by the school.) Hope you’re having a wonderful time teaching!
I am. We made cupcakes this morning and in ten minutes, I will be teaching my first lesson on water (geography Year 7). Thank YOU!
I’m always surprised by what you teachers manage to get away with in religious studies classes.
Yes. I’m surprised that a Catholic school includes evolution and other religions in RE.
God, I remember more or less constantly fighting in high school with the administration about scandalous stuff that happened in or as a result of religious studies in my lovely catholic school.
On one occasion, we all got a small pseudo scientific manual from a barely disguised pro-life organization claiming that basically all forms of birth control apart from barrier methods were abortifacients. During the law for legalization of gay marriage, we all received an email telling us how bad homoparentality was for children (I made a fuss about it, came out on the school FB page, did eventually get an apology from the director of the entire school group). The fatter and older of the two priests had a nasty tendency to casually insult other religions and cultures, which could get me really pissed off. There was also my ongoing battle since middle school for more sex education and facilitated access to birth control methods, which failed for obvious reasons.
But now talking to friends who work as teachers in religious schools as well as religious friends who volunteer for catechism, I feel like this new generation of kids is getting the cool aunt treatment. Frankly I’m jealous.
I think the new pope has something to do with it. Apparently he said “science is true” or something like that
Catholics have been ok with evolution for a long time. They are hardly the most antiscience religious group out there.
Can’t someone constantly “wish” to be dead without depression?
I mean, is it impossible for someone to just be tired of their circumstance? Not upset about it, without sadness or fear but just be done?
I’ve felt like this for 15 years. I am not (and I truly hope OP is of the same mind) considering suicide. I won’t actively persue death, but in my mind it sure sounds nice.
You are describing depression.
I don’t feel depressed. The specialists I’ve seen don’t think I am depressed…. I have a successful career, family, social life… I just happen to not enjoy life, and have no fear of death.
I am very sick. And have been for 15 years, I’ve beat the doctor’s time line for my life and feel that that is enough.
Do you have a good resource you could recommend to prove that I am depressed? If I am able to start life in a new direction I am so game. At this point I feel like I have tried everything.
Have you tried to see a psychiatrist who specializes in mental health issues secondary to chronic illness ? Mental health issues are severely under diagnosed in chronic patients, one of the reasons being that they present themselves differently than primary diagnoses. I’ve seen this is my own family and probably once a week since I started working in hospitals. I do think someone with the right professional experience could drastically improve your experience of life.
To end on a more personal note, I really appreciate the fact you are alive. You are articulate and thoughtful, and you deserve to appreciate your own life too.
Best wishes, Anna.
Anna, I have to say that I have been reading coque for a long time and have been impressed by you time and again in the comments section. At a young age you seem to have a grasp of life. Life outside your 20’s.
I haven’t always agreed with the tone of your comments but have always admired your ability to exude your confidence!
Thank you for being you, and offering help and direction to an old(ish) bag like me. It really, really touched some part of me that I can’t always get to myself. Thank you.
Thank you for your kind words. IRL I’m an immature self-conscious idiot, but I’m getting better at pretending otherwise 😉
I’m glad if I could help in some small way. You seem very much on top of things, and I was afraid of sounding presumptuous but I really hoped a gentle nudge could help, and it looks like you’ve gotten plenty of helpful nudges here from ppl who know more about this than I do. I hope you pursue some of the options mentioned in this comment section, and that you start feeling better about this situation soon ! And I sincerely hope to hear from you again (not quite sure how, but we’re both long time readers so we’ll “meet” again).
What you’re describing is called dysthymia, and Anna is right, it sounds like it’s secondary to your chronic illness. Also, you don’t have to “prove” that you’re depressed. You aren’t enjoying life. That’s enough to seek help. I don’t know what kinds of specialists you’ve seen, but if I were you, I’d aim for help that was more clinical than medical. You have enough doctors. Get a decent therapist who can help you on a mental, emotional, and spiritual level rather than just a physical one.
You are right, I have more than enough medical doctors. I hate them, can’t trust them and I am tired of fighting with them to get the end result that I am looking for. I guess that is why I haven’t looked for any other support outside of the ‘medical’ profession. The trust has been lost and sometimes this city feels like a really small town.
You seem like the safest place to go. Your entire readership has told you that and I don’t think you take that lightly.
Thank you for all of your words.
I wonder about acupuncture for shifting your mood / energy
girl, acupuncture ? really ?
“shifting you energy” ? seriously ? girl.
I’d love to open fire with the lols cannon too but if it’s just mood, maybe a little placebo effect will work. It sounds more serious than that however. But god help the next person who suggests chiropractors cuz that is some serious bullshits.
On that note, I’d like to remind that the placebo effect doesn’t “work”, it just happens from time to time.
It is small, unpredictable, and studied only to be sure to observe the actual effects of a treatment by getting rid of it in the data.
It’s background noise to the Song of Healing, and if you can only hear it, you’re just listening to 4’33” with shitty headphones.
Dude, placebo affect works so well in clinical trials that you can routinely expect a placebo to be effective in 20% of participants. Yes, it really does work, especially in mild cases like dysthymia.
No it doesn’t, as the whole field of biochem will tell you (giving little results in 1/5 of the population isn’t “working”).
Also dysthymia is certainly not a mild condition, it may seem like it because it is so low-key, but being low-key depressed for weeks and months is certainly no mild thing. A mental health professional is still your best bet to get out of it.
I also am chronically ill and have had trouble with not enjoying life – it’s a rough hand we’re dealt and it’s sometimes hard to enjoy it. But after a few tries (spanning years), I did find a therapist who specializes in chronic illness and works closely with my team of specialists (she went to nursing school – I cannot put into words the relief to not have to teach my therapist about my quality of life and symptoms from the ground up). It’s still a hard row to hoe, and the illness doesn’t do me any favors, but I have noticed I physically feel better on days when my outlook is better. Not 100%, and barring flares or bad days kicking me in the teeth – but I would recommend the extra layout of effort to find a therapist who specializes in chronic illness. I wish I would have done this years ago for dealing with my own illness and all of the stress from that – plus stress from life that certainly doesn’t vanish. Good luck, and I hope you feel as well as possible for as long as possible. Gentle Jedi hugs if you want them.
Chronic illness is a bitch. I am at a point in my life now that I have often felt thankful for it, does that make sense?
I feel like I have been given a perspective on life that I wouldn’t have otherwise had. I know that this sounds completely backwards from what I’ve said in my previous comments but I mean it (and everyother comment I’ve made).
I feel privileged to have beat the odds, or the time line I was given by other (very well educated) humans.
I am thankful that I was capable of putting ‘mind over matter’ at a young age and essentially giving my team the finger. (I am somewhat annoyed that I still consider them “my team”)
I am happy that I was able to encourage and give hope to other people through my determination.
My problem hasn’t, and as far as I’ve been told can not go away. So is it really that big of a deal if I don’t care anymore?
I am just straight up venting here, but haven’t I done enough?
I feel like I am either the most sane or the most insane person in the room at all times.
I feel like I should feel accomplished in my life. I have what the majority of the North American population is looking for (no not wealth, “happiness”.)). My secret?! Fake it. I am so, so tired of faking it.
I have severe MDD, and I describe my experience of depression as watching my life on a TV screen with the saturation too low and the volume too high. Simultaneously too little and too much. But I don’t feel sad, just exhausted and irritated and suicidal because I don’t want to keep forcing myself to cope. What you’re describing sounds a lot like what I feel when I’m depressed. I agree with all the advice above. Look for someone who specializes in treatment of mood disorder comorbid with or secondary to other chronic illness and/or a good therapist. I’m not sure what your illness is. It’s possible your desire to die is rational, depending on which illness you have, but pursue treatment for depression first. Coke said one time that making a decision to die is only morally justifiable if you give your loved ones an explanation BEFORE you do it, but no explanation will be good enough for them (or for me, for whatever the opinion of a stranger on the Internet us worth) if you haven’t tried everything else first.
How does the second letter build on the first letter? Don’t they all come out at once?
She posted something about it on Twitter.
“Get cozy with your chronic, low-grade existential crisis.”
This is weirdly comforting and also very unsettling to read. This hits super close to home and I’m not sure if I’m happy to see my feelings articulated like this or if I’m upset because you pinned me down so well and don’t even me. Whatever. I just got a new mattress pad and pillows for my bed situation, gonna go ahead and get cozy.