Mean People Suck

Much like the rest of the country, I recently watched the tragic story of Tyler Clementi unfold. His final act made me think of the times that I had been so consumed by depression that I wanted to disappear. I’ve alluded to it before in my blogs, but I’ll say it here because it isn’t something I need to be ashamed of. At two separate times in my life, I wanted to die. In high school, I had it planned. Even after my father, a homicide detective, explained to me what death from carbon monoxide poisoning looked like, I maintained my plan. I didn’t care that I would look ugly when I was found. Nothing could be uglier than that all consuming darkness living inside my body.

So, as I listened to the choice that Tyler Clementi made I was taken back to those hours where I prayed for death. Thankfully, I pulled through unscathed but I will never in my life forget the anguish that forcefully led me to a place that made me contemplate death. I will never stop reaching out to those people who need to hear that someone, anyone is listening. I don’t care what the circumstances are. I don’t feel the need to place labels on groups of humanity or place one in higher regard than an another. I just care for people who, like I once did, are contemplating suicide.

On a mystical level, I chalk it up to my zodiac sign. I’m a Libra. The scales of justice… I stick up for the underdog; I want everyone to face life on a level playing field. I’ll fight for a person who is being attacked or belittled. I naively go about my life expecting that people will wake each day with open minds and empathy in their hearts. Mostly, I go to bed at night with some disappointment in humanity.

I’m not a political person. I don’t affiliate with any party simply because of the ugliness involved. Labels, finger pointing and social intolerance from any angle doesn’t work for me. So when a heartfelt sentiment coming from a place of genuine love and acceptance is twisted into a political thing…an ugly attack, I feel it. This is my flaw.

I’ve thought about this a lot over the past 48 hours. Where does this personality trait come from? Why must I run through a gamut of emotions and view every hurtful exchange from every possible angle? Will I ever stop beating myself up for taking things so personally and feeling such immense disappointment in people? Why do I do this to myself? Why can’t I let it roll off my back like the “normal” people do and continue on? I’ve never been able to walk away from a situation like this without feeling bruised, just as I have never been able to ignore a person in need. Is that a flaw? Is it a flaw to feel things so deeply? Maybe… Maybe not. I’m sensitive. I like to find beauty in whatever I can and when I’ve exhausted the possibility of locating any, I move on.

Ophelia. Odilon Redon


  1. Slidecutter says:

    You absolutely hit the nail on the head here for me and it was with just one word….shame!

    Selective, mis-directed labeling inflicted against those who don't deserve it when the real shame lies within each offender who revels in having that control.

    The same applies for any person lacking the capacity to validate another's concerns when actions involving human decency are compromised.

    Why do we personalize such ignorance? Maybe because we ARE the normal beings in a world of miscreants…..

  2. I'm sorry to hear about that argument (If that is even the right word). You shouldn't feel sorry for being sensitive. You are who you are and to many people it's a beautiful person – especially on the inside. Sensitivity just shows you care more than most and that should never be misconstrued as a bad thing.

    Stick to your convictions and stay true to your passions. Let others wallow in their own divisive politics. Your compassion and empathy is endearing and inspiring to us lesser folk.

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