Fun-Sized Advice

On more fun-sized advice

I was raped when I was 15. I’m now 18 and still not over it.
Of course you’re not over it. That’s perfectly normal. Also, you don’t ever have to be over it. Don’t ever feel obligated to heal at someone else’s pace.

I need to stop falling in love with the guys I sleep with. Is the solution to stop cuddling with them?
It’s not the cuddling. You’re just a crush junkie. The solution is to recognize that about yourself and stop getting high off the butterflies.

I can’t stop submitting questions to you, even though I realize my problems don’t matter.
That’s okay. My answers don’t matter either.

Please tell me who I am before I die from not knowing.
You’re a person who’s desperate for an identity.

Any advice on entering the art world with a fresh MFA?
Don’t tell people about your MFA.

every time i hear someone say sex is no big deal i cringe. yeah, it can be no big deal on some level with some random, but at the end of the day it really is a big deal, it should be.
It’s not that it should be. It’s that it only matters when it is. (This applies to anything that makes life worth living.)

I was sexually abused as a child. I thought I would learn to cope with it as I got older. I’m 23 now and still not okay. Give me the push I need to go talk to a counselor.
You’ve been coping all along. Now it’s time to heal. You’re ready. Go talk to a counselor.

how do you choose new books to read? word of mouth? bestseller lists? i want to be more well-read. also, will you always finish a book/movie once you’ve started, or do you walk away if it’s not holding your interest?
I don’t choose books to read. They choose me. They’re like people that way. They come into my life somehow and either flash by or stick around, and of course, I will always walk away if they don’t hold my interest.

Do you delete all the messages you never get to?
Fuck no. I have a massive archive of every single submission you all have ever sent me. It’s kind of awesome.


22 thoughts on “On more fun-sized advice

  1. Bob Qwerty says:

    Hey, since you don’t delete … be advised that i’ve sent you about a dozen questions – none of which were answered – and when “they” come for me Snowden style, they’ll want to see your server(s)

  2. VeryOff says:

    “I have a massive archive of every single submission you all have ever sent me. It’s kind of awesome.”

    …and some day google is going to build a very needy and abused AI from it

  3. Strangely Rational says:

    Sometimes I think people forget that sex doesn’t mean the same thing for everyone, nor should it.

    I’m the type of person for whom it is very much a big deal, and it is so tied to my emotions and love feelings that I can’t do random encounters. If I did, it would feel very empty. It has to be someone I’m in a serious relationship with, someone I love and who loves me.

    But I recognize that this is just one approach to sex. People who enjoy casual sex, even without exchanging names . . . I say, more power to you. Sometimes I’m envious of that, as it seems like it could be a lot more fun, but I can’t force myself into that attitude any more than they could force themselves into mine.

    Same with so many different things. Religion, for example. Some people consider it The Biggest Deal Ever, whereas to me it’s a meaningless, utter waste of time. Doesn’t mean either one of us is wrong – we’re both right about what works for us. Or having kids – there’s another one that gets everyone fired up just because the rest of the world doesn’t see things exactly their way.

  4. RocketGrunt says:

    I know no one asked me, but I just wanted to say to the rape/sexual abuse survivors not to treat this as if it’s your shameful secret. It’s not your fault and not anything to be ashamed of. It’s also painfully normal. I started telling my close girl friends about my experiences, and 75% of the time they responded by telling me about something similar that happened to them. Even one guy friend had something like it to share. I know this is a depressing as it is comforting, but you’re not alone.

    • hm says:

      Yes. The first thing I did was tell people. Not because I’m some kind of emotional savant, but in the back of my head I had it engrained from people saying things like this on the Internet and in real life about surviving. It helps.

    • Barefootsie says:

      I’m both. I feel like they hit the same feedback loops of brain chemicals, so I have to be aware of those patterns for myself. I’ve definitely gotten to being a recovering nostalgia addict; the latter is tougher, but a process.

    • Em says:

      I never thought one could be a nostalgia junkie, but you’ve just helped me become aware that I am. Gotta work on that.

  5. A says:

    How does one stop being a crush junkie and stop getting high off the butterflies? Do I need to stop even if I enjoy doing that? I’m not the OP but I’m curious.

    • sketchybones says:

      I was a huge crush junkie. And I…still am. And I am totally OK with it now. That’s how I “dealt” with it. I figured it was one of those things that would be more of a mental battle then was necessary if I tried to kill it off, since it would always just make me crave my next fix harder the more I fought it (and make the come-down even worse).

      So one day I told myself, “Fine, whatever, have it your way. Get through that crush that comes up. Don’t beat yourself up over it!” and it was an awesome decision. I relax way more around people now, knowing that any crush I harbor is just that, that it’s OK to fantasize about a person and think about possibilities as long as I don’t fuck it up with very bad or creepy advances and remind myself the difference between the butterflies feelings and reality. And now they pass much quicker and I’m less hung up about it, sometimes even forgetting I had one at all.

  6. rollertrain says:

    MFA’er: Get ready to either teach all the time or work a bunch of low-paying jobs. Everyone else who thinks getting a BFA or MFA is a good idea: The world – especially the art world – doesn’t work like that anymore. Uni’s and colleges should NOT OFFER FINE ART DEGREES. There are no jobs, and the jobs to be had pay wages you won’t be able to live on. – Been There Done That, Wish I Hadn’t MFA’er

    • CynicalGrey says:

      I wouldn’t give up my BFA because I hear things I could never imagine had I not spent 5 years singing aria after aria. And here I am making bank in corporate america because I learned my soft skills worked in most environments before the financial collapse. I get your sentiment, but maybe those BFA’s should include “how to make money while using your art skills to enrich your and family’s lives.” Say what you will, you can only go so far with music intelligence and learning from books; you need a master to tell you that your shit is way out of tune.

      Real talk in those degrees is what we need, not pushing the idea that being lead baritone in Chicago grand opera is going to pay the bills. Unfortunately, the latter is what I got, so my pragmatic nature saved my ass after graduating with a music education degree.

      • Damien Otis says:

        The issue is less to do with artists and more to do with how North Americans don’t value art nor education. That’s why an art degree is seen as worthless. It’s the will of the private world that we all consume rather than create, obey rather than critique.

    • Maria says:

      Likewise. It’s like she said directly to each of us, “You are heard. You are here. You are loved.”

      That archive contains some of the stickiest, ugliest, brightest, bravest parts of myself. I assume the same is true for others, and I just like knowing it exists.

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