Fun-Sized Advice

On more fun-sized advice

Why am I constantly looking for a husband?
Because that’s what you’ve been programmed to do.

What if I don’t find someone to spend my life with?
Share your life. Don’t spend it. Quit worrying about the what-ifs.

I burned all my bridges. I cry all the time. I don’t believe in self-love.
Sounds like a good place to start. (I’m not kidding. You’ve burned it all down and wrung yourself out. Now comes the change, the whole “rising from the ashes” part. Step out into some new shit. It’s time for what’s next. It’ll be scary, but you can do it.)

Just had amazing sex four times in less than 24 hours. A couple years ago I was sending you messages at 4 in the morning, crying and tortured about my experiences with sexual violence. Life can be good.
Yes it can. (And for all of you out there who are crying and tortured, just know that this can be you too. A couple years may seem like forever, but it’s not. Healing takes time, but shit really does get better.)

I recently realised that my entire identity and existence is based on/revolves around other people’s opinions on my worth, and buying shit to try and keep up with this. Like, the whole thing, and a constant inner monologue berating myself for not achieving this bullshit standard. I’m disgusted with myself and want to change. What do I do?
Keep realizing it, every day, over and over again, until the realization itself becomes a part of your identity. Nurture a sense of your own self-worth. Develop some fresh self-respect. Let those traits become the voice of your new inner monologue, and I promise, the change will come.

If New York is just eight million people agreeing to be uncomfortable with each other for the privilege of living in New York, and LA is twenty different cities swirled together, each with half a million people, none of whom are aware that the others exist, what’s the Bay Area?
The Bay Area is five million people who secretly think they’re better than everyone in New York and LA.

What are your thoughts on Deray McKesson running for mayor of Baltimore?
I think he would make an excellent mayor, and I would urge all of my readers in Baltimore to vote for him.

Do you have any exes that you would consider getting back into a relationship with?
Nope. There are a few I’d fuck for old times sake, but none I would ever revisit emotionally.

What kind of writing do you like best?
The kind that teaches me.

What is your deepest flaw? The worst of your bad habits?
At my worst, I’m arrogant, and I have a tendency to self-sabotage.

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47 thoughts on “On more fun-sized advice

  1. hm says:

    Arrogance and self sabotage are a prevalent issue. How do you work on them?

    I generally try to remind myself that there are people way fucking better than me–but it’s a habit that seems to make me fall into a superiority/inferiority cycle, which is admittedly unhealthy.

    • rainbow pony says:

      To combat your superiority (arrogance) you tell yourself that other people are better than you (inferiority). Instead, tell yourself that everyone is the same, including yourself.

      • hm says:

        But I don’t think I think everyone is the same. I felt that way for a while and then I had a cold blooming onion at a roadside Nebraskan diner with a room full of dead eyed people.

        It broke me.

        My solution has been the most successful when telling myself that it doesn’t matter if I’m better or worse, but I’m not sure if that’s a good call either.

        • mothbat says:

          everyone IS the same. all that other business is external and meaningless (meaningless when applied to the concept of inherent worthiness, anyhow). do you really think other people are worth less just because they react differently than you do to the pressures of society? we’re all just trying to get by. give other people a break. they’re people

        • Nina says:

          Do you take dead eyes to mean that someone is lacking in intelligence? Unless you talked to everyone in the diner you have no way of knowing that. Dead eyes are a strong sign that someone has lost hope.

          • Nina says:

            I think a roomful of people who have most likely had harsh lives, and are showing it, don’t need your judgement.

          • hm says:

            Are you like from Nebraska or something?

            Seriously–how have you decided what my literal experience (and the experience of every stranger in a restaurant) was via my vague and hyperbolic descriptive statement?

            Are you not being judgemental?

            Do I come off as someone whose had it easy?

  2. Stephen says:

    “Nurture a sense of your own self-worth. Develop some fresh self-respect.”

    Any tips for doing this? Because holy shit I could stand to do both. (I have a nasty habit of self-deprication, even when being paid compliments.)

    • Giuliana says:

      Why wouldn’t you respect yourself? Are you a deplorable human who kicks puppies? Say “thank you” when someone compliments you. Anything more than this brief, gracious reply is unnecessary at best and at worst will make you look foolish.
      I would suggest finding your talents, or recognising them if you’ve already done the former. Don’t allow yourself embarrassment over them, that’s childish. Good at cooking, able to repair a computer that’s near death, a quick reader who can retain information well… whatever your talents are, let them show you your worth, and don’t bother with any shame for being proud of them. I think it can help to have “evidence” in this way to bolster one’s sense of worth. And your list doesn’t have to be in relation to what it provides others. You don’t have to race out and fix all your friend’s computers to have worth.
      Respect yourself as you would a friend. Don’t speak to yourself or treat yourself in a way you would not treat a friend.
      Although frankly I think this quote from the Night Vale podcast is far more succinct and should be taken to heart: ‘Believe in yourself. You’ll exist either way, but eh, why not?’

      • Stephen says:

        “Why wouldn’t you respect yourself?”

        To put it succinctly: I am a consistent fuck-up who has more issues than the Playboy archives. (And having been one for…shit, a couple of decades? Going all the way back to my teenage years? That doesn’t help, either.)

        • mothbat says:

          try to focus on what you can do now, in the moment, and respect yourself for your potential. what matters is the present moment, and you always have the ability to change. you are not your past.

          • Giuliana says:

            Maybe don’t identify as a fuck up with a lot of issues? You’re not incapable of improving yourself. I agree with mothbat, and will add maybe some active work with a therapist on fixing your deleterious behavior patterns would help with the self worth and respect – when you are actively making choices you can feel proud of, those things will come easier.

  3. Esme says:

    “The Bay Area is five million people who secretly think they’re better than everyone in New York and LA.”

    Hah! I don’t think they are hiding it very well. And I also suspect they think about NY and LA more often than the reverse.

    • Cellardoor says:

      Yeah I think there is a raging inferiority complex that causes people in the Bay Area to constantly bring up how much better we have it here.

      That being said, it is pretty fucking lovely.

    • J Lynn says:

      The characterization is pretty right-on, especially for SF and the Valley, but FYI the Bay Area has about 7 million people. http://www.bayareacensus.ca.gov/bayarea.htm

      Most of that is in the City, the South Bay (includes San Jose) and the East Bay (includes Oakland). The North Bay (Marin, Napa, etc) counties are part of the region for planning and federal-dollars purposes, but their cities are smaller and there’s still a lot of undeveloped land up there.

    • The Coquette says:

      Chicago is five million people agreeing to be miserable together out of a misplaced but powerful sense of pride.

      • J Lynn says:

        I love Chicago, despite itself and myself. As in, I kind of love that misery for some reason. I have the fondest memories of trudging up the L steps after a 9″ snowfall. Probably because I’m from the Midwest and love winter; maybe you need to get that cold chill inprinted in your bones as a tiny little baby. I also love the gruffness, like getting yelled at for not ordering fast enough in a diner.

        Edit, so yes, I agree with that characterization!

    • The Coquette says:

      Miami is half a million people stuck together on their own little island because the alternative is either Cuba or the rest of Florida.

  4. Chi says:

    Thank you for the advice about sharing your life. I’m 32 and single in NYC. I also identify as asexual bexause it’s easier and faster than “dude, at most I may put out once a month if we get to that point because I consider sex messy and gross and chances are if it happens, i’m doing it just to get you off my back and I like women too but I’m not bisexual because it’s not about sex”. It also makes it hard-er to date. So, I join meetup groups geared towards my interests and hobbies and spend nights hopping from one end of Manhattan to the other doing things. I’ve made casual connections a lot of people in fashion and media would kill for from these meetups. I volunteer so much I have burned out.

    I don’t know if it’s quite enough. If I’m sharing my life because there are certain groups I refuse to interact with: religious, social conservative, Hilary-hating people with no boundaries.

    So, is it enough? Should I shut my mouth, date someone and have sex and hope I like it? And no, I’ve never been sexually abused or assaulted. I just never understood the whole ‘people think about sex on average once a day’ or something. Should I stop writing those people off and hope they realise there’s a place and time for their freedom of expression and religion?

    • rainbow pony says:

      Girl, just use that time to write the next great American novel. yeah, there are probably some things you are missing out on, but do you know how much opportunity I’ve missed because I’ve had my head up my ass thinking about some dumb boy? Everything takes time and energy. You have so much more freedom in how you allocate yours.

  5. Chi says:

    Re: looking for a husband:

    In my opinion, there’s nothing wrong with that. Just make sure you’re looking for the right reasons and you don’t think finding one will fix all your problems or will complete you(ugh). And be ok with not finding one.
    Also, if you can, marry up. I don’t mean that in a gold digging way. Marry someone who can help with the bills or has income potential. Marrying up also means the guy has good financial sense because he didn’t get where he is by wasting his money. Trump, for example, might be a mouth breathing idiot but he’s not that idiotic when it comes to his money.

    • CynicalGrey says:

      This. I’m totally ok with my desire to find a financially stable poly partner that wants to help me live my life to the fullest (with me returning the same). That person won’t fix my problems, but I do enjoy companionship and stable oral sex. Coming to terms with wanting a primary partner has helped me deal with the programmed “need to find a husband” that always confused me. And hey, if I never get that amazing relationship, wutevz, I still got my dog.

  6. The Derpy Bear says:

    But what about Vancouver Island?!

    Just kidding. Not even sure if you have ever been to this part of Canada or not.

    • Mango says:

      Vancouver Island is a weird mix of rich hippies and real hippies, all within the crunchy crowd (if we look outside of the cities) trying to convince themselves that the other group doesn’t belong.

      Also, so beautiful, and the first to go when The Big One hits.

  7. mothbat says:

    i can’t resist jumping on this train. what about washington, d.c.? open question to all, since coquette’s probably sick of answering these

  8. Key says:

    I think we can all kinda get the arrogance, but self-sabotage? I was thoroughly convinced people with confidence and their shit together were incapable of this (as opposed to, say, whiny, self-victimizing fuck-ups like me).

    I would never in a million years have guessed.

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