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1
Pseudolonewolf
5 years ago

Assertiveness

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: PersonalPersonality
This is going to be a personal post, unrelated to my game making, and I'm aware that some people don't like it when I step outside my role of a game-producing machine to express Human Emotions and so on, AND I tend to usually regret doing so here anyway because of the inevitable textual kicks to the crotch that some people feel the need to post, but I feel that I want to at least say something...

I've been reading the blurbs that I've received, and observing my own recent behaviour in the chatroom, which is largely what's led to me writing this.

I am not an 'assertive' person. I am naturally very gentle and very sensitive, empathetic, caring, easily hurt, easily broken by being handled roughly. A glass ornament rather than a football. Yes.
However, many people are indeed 'assertive', and I come across many of them on this site, which in recent months has led to me avoiding the site completely. For a time I felt much better than I had for years by being away from this toxic atmosphere, but I've been trying to return here recently, mainly because of the beta testing, and the old headaches have returned, my worst traits being brought out once more...

Basically, this site brings out the worst in me, and I hate that it does, but I want to try and explain some things. They probably won't be anything new to people who know me, and I'll probably just get unwanted advice from those who seek to force change rather than understand, but I feel it'll be at least slightly cathartic to write about it here.
I crave to explain things so then people can know why I say the things that I do.

I've been running this site now since 2004, and during that time, I've encountered thousands of people, many of whom have 'targeted' me directly, either with praise or with aggression.
Over this time, many of my current views have gradually built up...

For example, I can't stand advice that I never asked for, these days... though years ago, I never really noticed it, or even appreciated suggestions when they came up. My distaste for it has come from being subjected to it repeatedly, often in the form of bad advice from 'assertive' personalities.

I'm also not fond of males or teenagers these days, because my life is full of them both without anything to balance them out. Young people bother me not just by some prejudiced whim, but because I've had to interact with thousands of them on this site over the years, and repeated exposure to their recurring traits has made me easily frustrated.

This site is really all that I have in terms of social interaction these days. It's been more than four years since I last had friends in the real world, who I could physically spend time with, who could boost my spirits when I am down and give me a reason to stay happy.

I wonder how other people would feel if they had no friends and had to constantly deal with young boys talking down to and attacking them every day? I'm not proud of the way that I handle it, but I do wish people would imagine how they'd be in a similar situation before judging my behaviour...

Anyway, to get to the point... I don't like 'assertive' people. That is, people who firmly make their voice known, who are almost always choleric, and who speak as if trying to gain dominance over others (even if that is not their /conscious intention/). They use imperative language, 'tough love', harsh criticism, and condescending phrases.
This rubs me in entirely the wrong way, but then when I react poorly to this forceful approach, it's met with more force, usually... People get offended that I've not taken their bitter medicine that I never asked for in the first place, then get MORE angry with me for it, rather than thinking that there was anything wrong with their approach in the first place. Or maybe responding with aggression is what they do when they feel regretful? Or something. I don't know.

"Look, buddy, you've really got to stop whining about your problems. Get a life, get over it, do us all a favour. Grow a backbone. Just a tip."
"I feel that your approach is overly aggressive and it makes me feel worse."
[Then I notice that I have a new negative blurb saying that I either don't listen to criticism or take it to heart too much.]

Most of the people on this site are decent and I have nothing against them... but the site as a whole is spoilt for me by these relatively few assertive people - who unfortunately are often the loudest - trying to use their forceful approach on me, which causes me distress, which makes them angry, which causes me more distress, which makes me bitter and miserable and less likely to be nice to people, which makes more assertive people tell me what's wrong with me, which makes me feel worse, which makes them angry, which makes me get headaches and feel sick and wish so very hard that I could find a gentle, supportive community rather than one full of 'alpha males' trying to force me to essentially be more like them and less like me.

Many people tell me to shrug off these comments, but I can't. I have paper-thin skin, and I care deeply about everything. I do not want to become someone with a thick skin, or someone who doesn't care about peoples' views. I'd rather endure emotional pain than become apathetic, because I feel that caring deeply is a double-sided coin and I don't want to lose the benefits of it. I like being someone who puts emotional investment into things (and wish that more people would); I just wish that people were less assertive about making their voices known when they have no right to be telling strangers how to behave.
(Oh, but Pusodonewolf, you're telling people how to behave here! That's exactly the same thing! You're CHOLERIC, Pusod! Have you looked in the mirror lately, BRO? What do you mean I'm doing exactly what you were complaining about? Why, that makes me angry! You shouldn't have written this in the first place if you didn't want to be kicked in the groin! BUDDY!!)

Anyway, I assume that the abrasive types I had in mind would reply to something like this by telling me, with their characteristic delivered-as-fact statements and imperative language, that "this is how the internet is, deal with it", or some such thing.
Usually they respond to a poor reception of their forceful approach with a more forceful approach. I suppose that's just how some minds are wired, and they can't act any differently in the same way that I can't naturally shrug things off.

It's not that I need to grow a thicker skin, and I don't want to. I need a real life that makes me happy, and I am currently searching for that. If I had a source of happiness, or a close confidant to talk with about what bothered me, who'd take my side, then everything would be much easier.
While I'm still searching, though, my attitude towards people here will surely be coloured by the beaten-down bitterness that I've developed from repeated exposure to these forceful people. I suppose this post is meant to serve as an explanation for that.

Oh, and please, for the sake of all that's good in the world, don't give me 'tips' on how I can find friends, like 'join a club'. They always imply that I'm incapable of thinking of the obvious without the advisor's golden nuggets of wisdom, for one thing, but my social anxiety holds me back in a lot of ways that I have to explain again and again, and I need to overcome that first, which I'm currently trying to do through therapy and general exposure to what I fear. It's a slow road.

Hmm, one other thing... Over the years, there've been various specific individuals who've made this place highly unpleasant for me, who always these 'assertive' types, but who stand out from the general noise by their prolonged presence.
I cringe when I see them in the chatroom, and leave if things get too much. I avoid reading their comments to save myself from frustration.
They're constantly kicking me in the shins, but I don't ban them from the site because I feel it'd be unjust to kick people out just because I can't stand them.
I wonder whether I should change this, however, and start banning people whose presence I find highly toxic. I'd feel bad about it, definitely, but perhaps not as bad as I'd feel if I had to put up with them all the time...
But then I'd fear people criticising me for getting rid of them, so the whole thing just makes me sigh and want to crawl into a hole or something.
121 Comments
1
Pseudolonewolf
5 years ago

I'm so mature!!

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: PersonalQuestions
Miasmon beta testing is coming along fine, though there's a whole lot left to do. It'll probably take weeks to get through all the work that needs doing, since there's more to it than just bug fixing.

I want to talk about something completely unrelated in this post, though.

I have been running this site since 2004, and in that time, I've come across many, many teenagers, particularly male ones, and have noticed trends in their behaviour.
One very common thing that I see is the need for teenagers to prove how 'mature' they are.
Is that word even really used by anyone other than children and teenagers? Perhaps only rarely, while it seems to be an everyday thought for younglings, who seem determined to prove that they're wise beyond their years, that they're on the same level as people many years older than them. It is an arrogant thought.

In my own experience, it takes years of growing to realise how naive this belief is... and how petty. I'm 24 now, which is by no means old, but I've certainly stopped enjoying getting older (though I don't remember ever enjoying it; I was never one of the ones who craved to be an adult, and even now I can't or don't do a lot of the typical Adult Stuff like driving or drinking).
I've no desire to be seen as 'mature'... but during my teenage years, I, like many, probably did think I was wiser than my peers. Perhaps it's just a natural phase.

If you're a teenager and you're reading this, chances are high that you think you are indeed very mature, and wise, and clever beyond your years. It'd be more surprising if you didn't think that.

If you've grown beyond your teenage years, however, I want to ask you... Do you recall going through that stage yourself? Do you feel you've grown out of the need to prove how 'mature' you are now? How does it make you feel to look back on that, and how do you feel about teenagers who openly go on about how 'mature' they are, especially when they claim they're as wise as people a decade their senior, or when they go on about how many older friends they have or how they prefer talking to the older teenagers and adults because everyone their own age is beneath them?
93 Comments
1
Pseudolonewolf
5 years ago

SWOON 2: Electric Boogaloo

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: Personal
I wrote earlier today that I was going to see Derren Brown perform live, which I just did! Hooray!

It was deeply fascinating and very entertaining and thought-provoking, but I won't spoil it for anyone by talking about the details! I think that's best.

...I had written some other details here about how the experience was for me considering my anxieties, but I don't know, maybe it's unnecessary and weird to mention, and maybe it'll just make people give me advice or something.

So I'll just leave this as it is; basically just a short post to say that the last one is no longer speaking about the future, but the past! Yes!
18 Comments