Lets Talk About Humility

It’s Best to Humble Yourself Before Life Humbles You

I always say this because I have been humbled a number of times in my life. I can admit it very freely. I admit it so that I can remember the lessons I learned and do my best NOT to repeat them.

There are two reasons I am finally writing about this subject today.

  1. I am in a Facebook group and the question that was asked was something like “What have you judged people on but learned once you experienced it yourself?’
  2. A great KDrama called Love (ft Marriage and Divorce) on Netflix

My Experiences of Being Humbled

Some are pretty embarrassing but this blog has put all my business out there so I might as well talk about it here. It is what it is.

I thought that, when I got engaged, I was better than other women. That was me. I was that one that felt that someone had picked me so I was better. Granted, I was 25 but that still was a stupid assumption. And I paid for it. Just as you can get engaged, it can be called off.

Another one was about bad kids. Now, I never was out here yelling “Beat her/him!” but I was that one that gave a look like “Do something with your kid.” Enter my now 15 year old daughter with special needs, you guys are all familiar with her because I have blogged about my many colorful experiences with her. And there have been many. I am sure there will be more. You want to know what embarrassment looks like? Try having a child with a moderate intellectual disability and autism. Oh, the fun you will have.

I have had my eyes and arms clawed in public, she has fallen out in the floor in KMart, she has pulled my boob out at the pool because she wasn’t good at transitioning (I had to have her see a child therapist and I learned ways to help with those things). So, while we don’t have those issues anymore, she’s growing up and now she likes to talk back.

There was a time when I would be like “Ain’t no child going to disrespect me.” Yeah….no….And the problem is that my mental illness makes it so that I have to walk away because, if I don’t, I could possibly end up in jail. Let me tag some of my other blogs about my daughter here: Having a Child with an Intellectual Disability WHILE Dealing with Your Own Mental Illness, Being the Parent to a Teenager with Special Needs is HARD!, Hard Days Living with Bipolar Disorder. These are experiences that I have to contend with and, sometimes, it makes me really just think about how I thought in the past.

There are plenty of other ways that I have been humbled or ended up in the shoes of those whom I looked down my nose at.

My Parents

One thing that I am still working on is resentment towards my mother because there are some things that I felt she did without warrant to me personally. I can’t see a reason or a defense for some of it. I mean, yes, I was the third daughter, not the youngest child. And I had sisters before me that made a few mistakes but that didn’t mean I was going to be them. I was judged wrongfully. Never missed school, had good grades, did what I was supposed to do. But I was always doubted. It did something to me.

Part of the issue is that I really don’t know much about her history and upbringing. But I know that she ended up being a bit judgmental which isn’t good for anyone. And that judgment was passed onto others, including her kids. I don’t know if it has more to do with religion (she became a Jehovah’s Witness when she was pregnant with me) or what. I just know that being constantly judged took a toll on me mentally.

But I will say that I hold no resentment toward my father. Because everything he did, or said, I understand the source. One thing that children usually don’t understand is that parents were kids. Parents are people. Parents have feelings. Parents have a past.

So when I talk about my father, I always point out the fact that he is a Vietnam Vet. That is not an excuse for anything he has done in the past but it is a reason for PTSD and alcoholism (self medication). And when you are old school and aren’t encouraged to talk about your feelings as a man and all the things you’ve experienced, it takes a toll on you. Not an excuse but a fact. If you choose not to take the help that could rectify a lot of things and help you learn what you need to do to cope with the past, it will continue to wreck you. And that’s what it is doing to my father. But, at this point, I can’t help him. I also don’t want to be like him but I understand his issue and I know the source of it.

Being a Dummy Over a Man or Taking Back a Cheater

Many people have done it in the past and I can raise my hand on that as an adult. But there was a time when I didn’t think I would ever do that. I didn’t think I would ever cry over a man. I didn’t think any man would have a power over me to make me continuously allow him to make a fool of me more than once. One man did. And, to top it off, he told me we were never in a relationship. LOL

I reflect on that experience often. Why? Because it taught me things about myself such as:

1) I have a heart that can break (didn’t think I did)

2) I have the ability to love and give my all to a person

3) I can be made a fool of by the very person that I gave my heart to

I mean, I could go on with this but those are the three things I really learned. There was a time that I could have a whole roster of dudes and just do whatever with no feelings involved. But, after that “relationship”, I learned that I couldn’t anymore. Once you have felt what you thought was “love”, you want that feeling back BUT you don’t want to be a fool again. So I am happy that I had the chance to feel what I thought was true love even if it broke a piece of me in the end. But yeah, that’s it for my Ted Talk on that.

Cheating

I actually had to come back to add this. I cheated before. On a VERY good man. The very man that I was engaged to and he took me back because he loved me. But I truly didn’t know what love was and I was afraid to love because I thought something or someone was going to take him away from me. I think I touched on it in one of my previous blogs about how all my friends moved away and that gave me a bit of a fear of abandonment. I loved him but I wouldn’t allow myself to TRULY love him the way he needed to be loved. So I did some self sabotaging. I can honestly say that it as a huge mistake but I got my Karma if you look at the previous portion. I got my Karma. Life teaches you in different ways but that was a way that life taught me. That pain that I felt when I found out that someone bold faced lied to me and then called me by the name of the girl he went to be with instead of me (I didn’t do that part, that’s horrible), that’s a horrible pain. And I took him back months later when she gave him a dose of Karma. And it goes around and around, doesn’t it?

But yeah, I was a damaged individual, didn’t know what real love was, I don’t even know if I felt that I deserved love at that point. But yeah, I messed up a relationship that could have been beautiful had I been more emotionally and mentally mature. But I am glad that he is happy in his life with someone that is MUCH more suitable for him than I was. I was a selfish, young girl that literally had just started my “hoe” phase. He was a divorced dad of two who had already lived his life and was 8 years older than me. I didn’t deserve him and I can say that because it’s so true.

Examples Given in the Group

Many people talked about how they judged people with multiple children by different men, single moms, people that lived with their parents, people that wore certain things, having certain jobs, staying with an abuser, etc.

My point is that you can never really judge especially if you have never walked in their shoes. Sometimes life humbling us makes us understand. I literally try to warn people so that they don’t suffer the same fate that many other people that have lived a longer life have lived. I was one of those people. Most people are those people. Life is a journey and you learn about life until the very day you die. I choose to learn from observation rather than experience if I can. Because no one really wants to go through that heartache.

Sometimes, however, we don’t learn until it happens to us, especially if we’re teenagers. Teenagers don’t have fully developed brains so there are some things that adults might say to them out of concern but teens sometimes find other reasons (“they’re jealous”, “they don’t know what it’s like to be a teen”, “I’m smarter than them). No one wants to watch someone fail but sometimes we have to go ahead and let them go ahead because there isn’t that much talking in the world that can convince some people.

Now Lets Talk About Love (ft. Marriage and Divorce)

If I could get everyone to watch probably the FIRST episode and then one episode in the second season, I would. The FIRST episode has three women that work together. While getting ready for the radio show, an audience member decides that she’s going to confront a mistress (who works for the radio show). After this happens, the mistress is fired and the three women talk about this situation. In talking about this situation, they place the blame of the husband cheating on the WOMAN, not the mistress, the actual WIFE.

They then go around talking about how this won’t happen to them and why.

One is married to a psychiatrist (who turns out to literally likes to play with people’s heads and I don’t know HOW he had the energy to do the things he ended up doing) and she feels that her husband is absolutely perfect. He would never stray or anything. From the outside he had a whole BUNCH of us fooled. This man treated his wife like a queen, was a good father, etc but he was probably the biggest surprise of them all.

One is married to a professor and she gave up her family to be with this man. They have two kids together and this wife gives her all to her children. But she thinks that, because they have been together for so long, he’s not going anywhere.

Then there is a newlywed and she is pretty but extremely bossy and pretty selfish. I can say this because it’s true. The way she acts, the way she treats her husband’s parents, the way she straight up just disrespects him, is sad. The thing is that she thinks it’s a game. She was even proud of herself in the second season for making him “suffer” because he had pointed out that maybe she should wear a little less makeup. He apologized, bowed in front of her, brought her flowers but she was like “I’ll let him suffer a little while longer”.

Now, we’re going to go ahead and fast forward to season 2 where there is an hour long episode with one of the couples talking after something is brought to light. I will not spoil this for you if you would like to watch it. It is worth the watch and it is on Netflix if you don’t mind subtitles.

The person says what I had to learn myself and it might not seem like much but it is truly everything because he pointed out how his wife and her friends all thought they had everything under control and that nothing they did was wrong. They thought that these things would make a man stay. But the series shows how all three were humbled in different ways. Today, someone kind of got annoyed with me because they said “Not MY husband” when we were saying that sometimes single women are the ones that respect other people’s marriages enough to turn married men down. When she said that, I said that she should be verrryyyy careful with those words because life will come and mess with you.

I stand by this. I have seen it and experienced it. Now lets talk about what this man said that I have been yelling for a very long time. It is NOT all that profound but it is the truth and people really need think about it when speaking on the relationships of others or even their lives in general.

When it’s not happening to you, you can guarantee anything and make textbook choices. But it’s easier said than done when you’re caught in the mess.

Love (ft. Marriage and Divorce) Season 2, Episode 12

Sometimes we need to mind our own business or give advice when it is solicited. Otherwise, just don’t even. These women were giving advice to one another. One said that the professor’s wife (the oldest of the three) should dress better and take more pride in her appearance. Her husband had even picked out an outfit and tried to take her to a hotel but she wanted to go home and be with the kids (again, not blaming her for the downfall but I can see both sides of this). But this woman worked hard, supported her husband in pursuing his career, cooked food for him every day after working her butt off, and she thought that this was how to “keep” a man.

I am speaking of cheater men only because that is what the show is about so don’t come for my head. I already talked about how I cheated and learned my lesson. The point is that, no matter what you do, a person can cheat on you and they can give you reasons all day and most of the time, they really have nothing to do with you. In my case, my reason had NOTHING to do with my ex fiancé but everything to do with me.

In the End….

It’s okay to have confidence in where your life is now. No one is saying that but don’t go running that mouth on someone else and their life, especially when you don’t know their journey. When I was obtaining my psych degree, I learned to look outside of myself. A lot of people don’t do that. They look at their life and apply their rules to other people forgetting that everyone isn’t YOU. YOU are you. YOU live your life. YOU see things differently than those around you because no one has the same exact life. Even my siblings and I came from the same parents and all ended up in different positions in our lives.

And it’s okay to catch yourself while judging. Because no one is perfect, we might slip up sometimes but, if you actually care to do so, take a step back and consider alternatives that might have put someone in a position to do something YOU wouldn’t do. Some people say they would never be homeless or they would never steal. But sometimes things happen that we can’t really control. So… that’s the end of my rant. I hope everyone understood what I was trying to convey.

AND FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS RIGHT IN THE WORLD, WATCH LOVE (FT. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE)! IT’S ON NETFLIX!!!!!

People thought I was being a jerk when I pointed out that all the women were going to be humbled for their judgmental response in that first episode but I knew because I had been there in my own way.

Coming Soon

There’s a LOT Going On in this World

I have a lot of thoughts on a daily basis and there is always something that happens that, in some way, impacts me. Not too long ago, I wrote about minding out own business especially if it doesn’t impact you ( see Why You Have to Learn to Live and Let Live for Your OWN Sanity) and not diagnosing people off an incident without some sort of background in psychology, sociology, forensic psychology, psychiatry, or some sort of work up (see: Diagnosing People Based Off ONE Incident with NO Mental Health Background).

One thing that has gained a lot of attention is the fact that there are people in this world that claim mental illness as a way to get out of certain situations. I am going to write about this soon but I need to really get my thoughts together and make sure that my tone is correct because, in all honesty, it infuriates me as a person with an actual mental illness. It makes us all look a mess when many of us can function in society and know our triggers enough not to put ourselves in certain situations. I can tell you for a fact, VS would have gotten a nice order online. I am not for people, I am not for malls. If I am, I go when no one is there or I go with a trusted friend that will reel me in. I also take my meds. Had I been the woman that was actually attacked, I would be in the back of a cruiser because….. triggers (see Knowing Your Triggers).

Photo by luizclas on Pexels.com

As I have said before, I have bipolar disorder, and I live with it. Some days are harder than others but I try my best day by day to do so but I do my BEST not to use my mental illness as a crutch to go off on people. If I see that something is about to go down, I exit. If you follow me, only God can save you but it won’t be for my lack of trying to diffuse the situation. Any incidents I had in the past were due to provocation and sometimes missing my meds because I was having insurance problems at the time but I can guarantee you, I’m not trying to go to the psych ward again nor jail (see Don’t Use Your Mental Illness as a Crutch).

EDIT: Well, look who ended up back in the psych ward though SMH (Tales from the Psych Ward (Part One), Tales from the Psych Ward (Part 2): Getting to Know Other Patients , Tales from the Psych Ward (Part 3): “Therapy” )

In Addition to Discussing Mental Illness, I Will Be Using Writing Prompts to Improve My Writing Skills

I have a set of self reflection cards that I would like to utilize as well as a writing prompt book. There are a lot of things in this world to reflect on and talk about. The self evaluation questions can be used by anyone and I would hope that maybe some of the readers would take on the challenge themselves and really be honest with what makes you you.

When I was obtaining my degree in Psychology, that was the ONE thing I loved. When we had to literally think about our lives. I came to grips with a LOT of things just by reflecting after taking myself out of the situation and really looking at all sides.

You learn how other people think and how their experiences have shaped them as a person. This is why I can’t be mad at my father. One thing that a lot of people don’t do is look outside of their current situation, not knowing that they could possibly be humbled and put in the very situation they resented someone else for.

Actually, that is going to be one of my future posts. Someone in a Facebook group asked a VERY good question. It was about things that we judged people for but now understand, usually based off personal experience. This is something I reflect on often because it helps to remind me not to be judgmental. It helps me to mind my own business if something is not impacting me, hurting someone, etc.

The only person we can answer for, no matter what your belief is in a higher power, is ourselves.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Anyhow, as the Kpop groups say “Please look forward to it.” I’m going to take a break from talking about Kpop for a while because, with the things that I have been experiencing in addition to some of the YouTubers that have a differing opinion but are very respectful and objective in their conveyance of their thoughts, there are some totally unhappy people that just want to make everyone else unhappy too.

In honesty, it kind of took the joy out of the very thing that brought me so much happiness.

Anyway, thank you for reading and I hope to see you soon.

Diagnosing People Based Off ONE Incident with NO Mental Health Background

Why Am I Writing This?

Today, a video came out of a woman at an airport going off  because some sources say she missed her flight and others say she is on the No Fly List.  I don’t know and I really don’t care at this point, however, there is a viral video of this woman, going off and trying to attack the people behind the desk, and threatening to beat people up in front of THEIR kids IN FRONT OF HER KIDS.  The daughter is seen PLEADING with her mother to stop because she doesn’t “want her to go to jail”.  The other child, he’s just standing there.  You can see the video and an article here: 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9769391/Woman-assaults-Frontier-Airlines-staff-Orlando-International-Airport.html

Now, while we all saw the same video, there were many opinions that were given BUT the subject that people KEPT bringing up was that “maybe she is having a psychotic break” or “maybe she has a mental illness”.  Some started NAMING them.  You know the usual ones that I spoke of in my other posts about people claiming people have the three main ones: bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and OCD.  It’s like those are the only ones that they know of so they throw that out there.  I stated that we have to stop assuming that someone’s bad behavior is a result of a mental illness as that gives people WITH a mental illness a bad name.  It further adds to the stigma that this is typical behavior. 

One lady decided she wanted to come for me because I stated that I have bipolar disorder and I have gone off on people before.  It is no secret to my friends nor the (few) readers of my blog.  With that said, I was STILL responsible for my actions.  In ANOTHER blog I made, I stated that we cannot USE OUR MENTAL ILLNESS AS A CRUTCH! Yes, I have bipolar disorder (diagnosed) but does that give me the right to go out here and attack people because….bipolar?  No!  I have choices:

  1. Ignore the diagnosis and keep being “me”
  2. Self medicate
  3. Take my meds and seek more help in finding ways to cope with said mental illness.

In my DMX post on here, I talked about how some people don’t want to get help because it makes them look “weak”. Mental illness, especially in the Black community, holds a stigma that many try to stay away from.  In staying away from said stigmas, you are doing more harm than good to yourself and those around you.

Again, we are going under the ASSumption that this woman actually has a mental illness and isn’t just having a tantrum or doing something that she thinks is cool because it scares people (and, yes, people do that).

Back to the lady that came for me (somehow many of my responses were deleted. I don’t know if the person that I commented under did it or what.  I don’t care at this point but I did get at least one screenshot).  She stated that, since I have bipolar disorder, I should be more sympathetic. I told her that I am a realist and think that people should be held accountable for their actions as we all have choices.  If she was diagnosed with a mental illness, then she needs to take accountability for the diagnosis.  And IFF she wasn’t diagnosed, it is not up to random people to diagnose her based off one vid.  I also told her that I do have bipolar disorder and a degree in Psychology. and that she didn’t need to talk to me as if I were a child because she kind of scolded me for not taking the side of my sister in mental illness or something.  She then said “How do you have a degree in psychology and don’t know shit?” and proceeded to tell me to go and take my meds. 

Let’s Unpack This

How can you call yourself advocating for a person that might or might NOT have a mental illness and then perpetuate the stigma that drives people AWAY from seeking help?  She meant to insult me.  At this point, I had to call her out on this.  It is not an insult to me as I know that I take my meds every single day and, if she were in my presence (and I told her this), knowing my diagnosis, she wouldn’t say it.  She thought she knew what she was doing and who she was messing with. 

In a roundabout way, she apologized to me.  She said she went below the belt because she was basically offended that I said that she was talking to me like a child.  She actually said “in your bipolar brain”. 

So you say that this lady has a mental illness and I should be sympathetic but you just made fun of MY mental illness that I am NOT ashamed of.  Where is the logic here?  You wanted to rely on a negative stereotype about people with mental illnesses by insulting a person who is trying to enlighten others about the many faces of mental illness.  Got it!

This world is just a mess and I don’t really understand anything anymore. I did her a solid by not including her name.  Another woman decided to come for me by using the example of a drug or alcohol addict pretty much thinking they are better than those that are going through a struggle they had to go through.  She told me that I should have more empathy as a person that has been in this woman’s shoes.  I had to tell her how inaccurate her assumptions were regarding me and told her she should probably learn more about me and certain situations before speaking on them such as in THIS situation.

A Recovering Addict vs A Person on Meds with a Diagnosed Mental Illness

So let’s talk about this. FIRST of all, you cannot be CURED from bipolar disorder or recover from it. Second of all, I stated that there were a lot of assumptions being thrown out there when NO ONE knows this woman’s mental diagnosis. There are people IN THIS WORLD that think it’s cool to act like this.  Everyone that acts up, goes against the grain, is inappropriate, or violent doesn’t have to have a mental illness. They literally don’t have to have one. 

And when we insinuate that they DO, what are we saying about those of us that continue to flourish WITH a diagnosis?  We are NOT our diagnosis.  I used to know how to link my past posts into my current blog but this new format is annoying. 

I am in bipolar groups and, one day, we all told what we did for a living.  If you saw some of the jobs these people had, you would be surprised. We all don’t run around hitting people, throwing things, looking for a fight.  We find ways to project our feelings in a way that is more conducive to just making it through. 

I speak often on the methods I employ so as NOT to act like this woman did (who may or MAY NOT have a mental illness).  I know my triggers, I stay away from things that trigger me, I take my meds, I see a therapist. 

With that said, I also know that some people don’t have those options. I have been unemployed and had nice psychiatrists that would give me samples that I had to spread out and that didn’t end so well.  I got lucky in some aspects so I get that.  But we can’t use our diagnosis or non diagnosis to continue to act out because we just can.  And, if you are arrested or disciplined for your actions, you have to take accountability.

I have told about being put away before for my actions.  I knew what happened, I was triggered, I had missed ONE day of my meds, and I SNAPPED.  I’m not ashamed of sharing that story.  We all make mistakes. But, what we learn from it is what matters. I took accountability for my actions and still wear the scars on my fingers as a reminder. 

If being realistic and not making excuses for someone’s actions in front of their children makes me judgmental,  I will have to wear that badge. What irks me is that she even walked away for a while and came back to do more damage in addition to ignoring the cries of her child.

I am no better than this woman in any way because I have done some things.  I also have flown under the radar (you can read about that in The Story of My Mental Illness) and people assumed that there was nothing wrong with me for YEARS. But I personally knew as a teenager that there was something wrong and I needed help.

In the End

No one knows if this woman has a diagnosis and it isn’t our place to diagnose her. We don’t know this woman but we know THIS instance.

When I tell people I have bipolar disorder, many are surprised because “You don’t act like it.” Bipolar disorder has many faces. No one is the same. Mental illness comes in more forms than the three that everyone likes to claim.

When you see someone acting out, don’t just assume that there is a mental illness present. Just as we can’t assume that just because a person seems to have it all together, that they have no mental illness. We learn and we handle our situations in our own way.

Also, if you are not a professional, have studied psychology or psychiatry,  or have a mental illness, don’t assume that you know about those of us that DO suffer from mental illness.  There is a lot you don’t know and I would suggest maybe talking to those that admit they have a mental illness or join a Reddit group and just look at the conversations so that you can learn. You would be surprised at how different the world is for many of us and how we fight daily to do better even when we don’t feel like it.

Why You Have to Learn to Live and Let Live for Your OWN Sanity

So, for some reason, Mo’Nique has decided to bring up the age old dispute of pajamas and bonnets in public. It’s an argument as old as time. It’s great to care about YOUR appearance and how other people perceive you but it’s NOT your responsibility to force your beliefs on others.

My mother has raised us to always look good when leaving the house as she felt that it was a reflection on her. I have not one beef with that. However, there are always exceptions. In addition to exceptions, you don’t know people’s lives to judge them based on their appearance. To this day, in her 70s, my mother makes sure that she looks presentable when presenting herself to this world.

So there are a lot of people that agree with her and I mean, I agree with her to an extent myself. But I also know that my sanity and my teeth are my priority. I’m not fighting nobody over the fact that I might be rushing out of the house for something and have on pajama pants (I don’t wear pajamas to bed so they are really just pants). I used to wear scrubs out and people assumed that I was a nurse. I was in the medical field but there were days where I felt comfy wearing my scrubs to work. I don’t like things hugging my legs. So, when it’s cold outside, sometimes you do what you have to do. I’m going to discuss some of the comments that I saw on Instagram and the like regarding all the great reasons why we always need to walk around looking like supermodels and why I myself, gives not ONE f*ck.

Someone Said “You Might Meet your Soul Mate, and Investor, Etc”

My response “Some of us are just out here trying to go to the store and live our lives.” Why is it assumed that we are trying to gain attention by how we dress while running simple errands? As long as you are not in an important meeting with a bonnet on, why does it matter?

In regards to myself, I try to stay away from people. I usually wear sweat pants or work out clothes. If someone doesn’t want to talk to me because of my clothes, then my plan worked. HOWEVER, I have been approached wearing oversized sweats and just looking a hot mess. So, even if you don’t want the attention, you get it. And it sucks. I just want to get my groceries and mind my own business.

“It Makes Us All Look Bad”

Man listen, there are so many other things that make us as Black women look bad and I can say that a bonnet or some pajama pants aren’t that high on the stupid totem pole. In honesty, the only person I can make look bad is myself at my age. I’m 42 and, in my 30s, I learned the art of not giving ONE f*ck about what people thought about me. I had to learn this as I spent MOST of my life worrying about what people thought about me. Do you know how freeing it is to just be you and not care what anyone else thinks? As long as you’re not hurting anyone, stealing, cheating, abusing, etc, it shouldn’t matter if I have on a bonnet or pajamas.

Exceptions Exist and a First Impression Isn’t Always an Accurate Impression

I had to put a scarf on to buy more hair when I was getting my hair braided before. My mom went to the ER again about a month or two ago and I had to throw clothes on and run out the house to meet the ambulance. I have seen people in a wedding party with bonnets on to go get their makeup done.

I had cramps REALLY bad years ago and I ran to the Giant real quick to get some Aleve because we were out. It was almost closing time for that place and I needed something for the horrible cramps I had. Does that make me a bad person? It’s clothes. Who makes the rules about what clothes are appropriate for when you are running errands and minding your own business?

Are you buying their clothes? Do bonnets stab or kill you? Do they blind you if you see them? If the choices of other people’s clothing bothers you, you might want to seek help or learn to pick your battles. A long time ago, there was a book called Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff. Maybe it’s big to some people, and I can understand that, but we can’t apply what’s big to us to everyone else.

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
If We’re Adding Psychology Into It, Let’s Talk About Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Can someone tell me where bonnets and pajamas comes into play here? Is it in belongingness? I mean, I don’t care to belong anywhere because this world is full of trash but that’s just me. Maybe in the physiological needs? I mean, you want to be warm…. Um……Safety? Maybe for your hair or your own comfort…. Prestige and feeling of accomplishment maybe because you got out of the bed and got some things done without having to dress up like you’re going to work. I don’t really see where bonnets and pajama pants really rank high on this pyramid.

In the realm of importance, bonnets and pajamas are VERY low. They don’t even make it on the pyramid of things we need to survive. So why give it so much power to the point that we have been talking about this mess for three days.

Not only that, the assumptions made by people is where things go left. The examples that I gave of when I wore pajamas or a bonnet are the only times I did it. Because of my experience, I tend to think of things in the manner that I don’t know anyone’s story. And, because I don’t know their story, it’s not my place to assume anything about the person. People make comments like “These women don’t have home training to do this.” Why do we have to stoop to that level? If you don’t know their story, don’t assume. Mind your own business. If you want to hit the gym with full faced makeup and half dressed, I don’t care. Get your work out on. If you go to church in jeans and a T Shirt on, get your Lord on. I’m glad you’re there.

If a woman walks out of her house with a bonnet on and pajama pants on, let her be? We have enough folks against us to be worried about something so petty. You don’t know what’s going on. You don’t know if she suffers from depression and got out of bed because she had to feed her kid. You don’t know if there is an emergency and she has to get meds for her kid or herself. You don’t know if she got locked out of her house or anything. So, with that said, you gotta live and let live. Who dies because of pajamas or a bonnet?

One thing that I do is wear wraps. I wear wraps because I think they look nice and protect my hair. So I wear a bonnet but underneath my wraps. Humidity kills my hair. And, if I have it styled (or attempted to be styled) underneath, putting a nice, light wrap over it further projects my hair. My hair is very thick and a tiny bit of humidity will just kill everything. But everyone doesn’t know how to do wraps. I have taken my wraps down in grocery stores to show people how to do it when they admire my wraps. YouTube has great vids on how to do them as well. I learned from some of those vids.

In the End….

You can’t please everyone. You could be wearing clothes and have your hair looking beautiful and someone will find something else wrong with you. This is life. You could come to a meeting looking beautiful but someone might think that you are showing too much cleavage or your shoes don’t go with your outfit the way they deem it should.

Maintain your peace. If the only way you can come out of the house and maintain your sanity just to get a little bit of sun and pick up your Starbucks, do it however you want. Just don’t be naked because the police will get you. It’s one thing not to care about what other people think but it’s another thing not to break the law.

As for the people that judge, just look in the mirror and judge yourself. I’m sure that judgement comes from somewhere and sometimes hurt people hurt people. If it is not taking food out of your mouth, taking money out of your pocket, hurting a child, animal, or adult, just let it go. Yes, we can focus on multiple things at a time but at least let them be important. If a bonnet or pajamas can’t stab you, it really shouldn’t be anything to shake your head at or turn up your nose at. Just live and let live. You’ll find some serious happiness by not worrying about or trying to change others.

Why I’ll Likely Continue to Wear My Mask

So, the world is opening up again and it is no longer mandatory in Maryland if you were vaccinated to wear a mask. But, yall know me, I’m probably going to keep wearing mine because….. people.

I Am Vaccinated

I got my Johnson and Johnson *gasp* vaccination early in May because I like one and done. I don’t have time to be making appointments to get two shots. However, although I am vaccinated, there are reasons that I choose to stay masked up. This has everything to do with my mental illness and utter dislike for people. I’m sorry, but I don’t “people” well.

Can You Tell Me to Smile While Wearing a Mask?

NOPE! Can’t tell me to smile. Now, I am good at smizing (as Tyra Banks has said) but I don’t really want to smile at you or any of that. I don’t smile when asked. I frown actually because I am a witch. Yes, I am a witch to not walk around all day smiling. SOOOO what I decided to do was to get a mask that would just get rid of that stupid request.

People Still Won’t Leave You Alone

Listen, no matter what you do, these dudes are going to try to find a reason to say something to you. I don’t know what it is because I literally dress like a trash person to avoid people. I go out early in the morning to avoid people. But, there’s always that one that has to say something to you anyway.

I was actually told (with my mask on) that I have a nice aura. Sorry sir, my aura is to get people away from me. I don’t want you talking to me. I don’t want to interact with you. I want to get my groceries and go home. You don’t know what I look like under this mask. So that’s great. I could look like trash and that’s okay. Pass me by please.

Don’t Question Whether I Got the Shot or Not

I think this is my main reason for continuing to wear my mask. I went to my bestie’s daughter’s graduation party a few days ago. I don’t have a problem not wearing my mask there because they know that I have been vaccinated (although some gasped when I said I got the J&J vaccination. Listen, if you don’t have a clotting problem, there is no issue. If you do, take some dang on aspirin which is a blood thinner and move on with your life).

My dad and mom even got the same vaccination (which it took an act of God to get them to do). I would like for my daughter to get the shot but she is 15 and, at the age of 2, it took a number of people to hold her down for her vaccinations. I am waiting for J&J to approve it for kids her age because I really don’t want her to fight the people when they give her the vaccination because there literally is ONE person that gives it.

With her having an intellectual disability, she’s not gonna want to do it. I know this because I have lived with her her whole life. She hates shots, and I don’t want her to move and mess anything up. So, if I can hold her down for the ONE shot, I would rather do that than for two. I have literally fought the girl before so I can attest to how strong she is. She gets it from her mom and the shot isn’t painless. It took a lot for me to even get her to let them take blood.

Back to Me Though

Listen, I don’t want to be questioned. Some people feel that they are in a position to question people and whether they got the shot or not. Because I KNOW my triggers, I try to avoid things that will set me off. One thing that will set me off is some random person questioning whether I have been vaccinated or not. It won’t turn out good and I don’t like jail nor the psych ward. So I will leave my mask on for the time being for my own sanity. I don’t go out much and, if I do, it’s usually to walk the dog and no one comes near us so that’s not an issue.

I’ve always been a fan of minding my own business. If a person doesn’t want to wear their mask and they aren’t vaccinated, it’s their life. I don’t have anything to do with it. COVID is out here killing people though. So, if they don’t care, I don’t care. I am responsible for TWO people in this world and that’s my daughter and myself. So, while I will make sure she wears her mask, I don’t care about anyone else. She and I had COVID before they knew what it was back in 2019. I am sure we likely have antibodies. And, even when she had “strep and the flu”, she was still walking around here like it was nothing. The child has had walking pneumonia before and you wouldn’t know it. The only way I knew she was sick when they diagnosed her with strep and the flu was when I hugged her and it was like hugging fire. That’s when I took her to urgent care and the docs were like “We’ve had a lot of kids with this.” My COVID came in the form of a sinus infection that took like a month to go away. My PCP said “Yeah, we’ve had a lot of people with this.” It was likely COVID. But, even still, I got the shot because that mess mutates.

If my daughter is able to get the J&J one, I will gladly hold her down (and ask for help) for her to get it. But the shot isn’t a joke. Getting poked isn’t the hard part. It’s the insertion of the actual vaccine. That mess hurt. I was like “Goodness, lady!” LOL

My issue didn’t come until like a week after I got the shot though although I can’t be sure that it wasn’t just my horrible PMS headaches but I wasn’t able to get out of the bed for about 2 days. Whether it was the vaccine or PMS, I don’t know (because I get really bad headaches) but I also had body aches that were pretty bad so who knows if it was COVID or whatever.

Bottom Line:

I’ll continue to wear my mask because….. people. I don’t like people. I don’t like to talk to people. I don’t like to smile at people. I don’t like to have to explain myself to people. I have a temper. I know my triggers. So it’s best that I wear my mask until the masses stop wearing theirs and it’s no longer a question as to whether I have gotten vaccinated or not. Yeah, I have my paperwork in my wallet but not one of these folks out here besides my doc needs an explanation.

Again, as a person with bipolar disorder, I have to understand my triggers and why doing things a certain way helps to relieve the violent tendencies I have. You have to know yourself out in these streets because NOT knowing yourself can be very detrimental.

The Story of My Mental Illness

Because this is Mental Health Awareness Month, I decided that today is the day that I tell the story of my diagnosis, symptoms, frustrations, treatments, and all that good stuff. If there are any questions that you would like to ask, please feel free to do so.

When Did I Notice a Problem?

When I was younger, I had this really bad temper. However, because I was a good student and shy, I flew under the radar. It didn’t take much for me to get very angry and sometimes violent. I noticed it more in my teenage years but I definitely noticed it.

I tried to talk to my mother about my anger a few times and was told to pray about it. I prayed, it really didn’t work. So, I determined that, when I got my own insurance, I would go and see a psychiatrist to find out what was wrong with me because there definitely was something wrong with me.

I used to get mad and straight up lash out at people. It got to the point that I had to give myself the “3 strikes rule”. I kept mental tabs of how many times a person messed with me before going after them. I did this because I started having heart palpitations from immediately getting mad at everything. There was so much anger. And I don’t know whether it was a hormonal thing or if there was a rage that needed to be out of me one way or another.

My Twenties

Once I hit my 20s and finished high school and vocational school, I obtained a job that afforded me the opportunity to obtain health insurance. At that time I was extremely depressed due to religious things and losing friends, I was also suicidal. So the first thing I did was get a psychiatrist. It’s funny, however, that my first psychiatrist is an INFAMOUS psychiatrist. His name was Dr. Alan Salerian (look him up, you won’t be disappointed. I will say that he was a very good psychiatrist to me). He was high up there in the psychiatric world and actually worked with the FBI or something.

He was a great doctor to me but he had to stop taking insurance due to some craziness that started taking place but that’s a whole different blog. My current psychiatrist is very familiar with him. We talked about him the other day. In the end, he wasn’t fit to stand trial after all the stuff that he was accused of.

Either way, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder at the age of 20.

Medications: Trial and Error

The one thing that a lot of people complain about when it comes to seeing someone is the fact that they immediately assume that they will need to be on medication. Some mental illnesses don’t require long term use of medication. Some just involve talk therapy which is very helpful or even short term medication. I double team my mental illness with meds and CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy). Everything isn’t about drugs. Some people have acute mental illnesses that can be due to grief, stress, even the weather.

However, when I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder, it was fun times trying to find the perfect medication for me. Without medication, I am very violent and everything gets to me. This is a brain issue. My brain doesn’t emit enough Serotonin so I need help to pump it. So, what meds have I been on beFORE my new diagnosis that was obtained in about 2009 which came with it’s own share of drama?

Prozac

The first one was good ole Prozac. Let me take the time right now to say that, what works for others, might not work for you. So be very careful in suggesting meds or asking people what worked for them. We’re all made differently and have different needs. The purpose of my meds was to calm me down to the point that I didn’t want to murder someone for what I thought was an insult. When I say I had a bad temper, it was a pretty bad temper. If I felt that I was being picked on, that was it. If I felt as if I were being ganged up on, that was it as well. It is also a reason that Knowing Your Triggers is very important but this knowledge came with a LOT of counseling.

Soooo, what happened with Prozac? I became a zombie. I wasn’t myself. I gave it a chance too. I didn’t just give up on it. Wait, I did take myself off it when my sister cussed me out and I literally just sat there on the phone getting cussed out and I was in such a haze that it didn’t even matter. Even my boss didn’t like how out of it I seemed.

Again, I had Dr. Alan Salerian and he always talked about the Three Tenors when it came to medications. Sometimes you need multiple meds to even things out. So I stayed on Prozac but then he added maybe Paxil and Wellbutrin. He began to wean me off the Prozac to let the Paxil and Wellbutrin do their jobs. Well…… Wellbutrin is not my friend.

Wellbutrin

Wellbutrin had to be the med with the WORST side effect for me, well, there’s another one coming up that is more recent but this one was probably worse because I could have died had I not come to work late that day.

Wellbutrin gave me tremors. I could not write my name. I had a job interview and I went to fill out the forms and it looked like I literally had Parkinson’s Disease. I literally just couldn’t write.

So I went to my regular job after the interview. I think I had just gotten off the phone when I woke up on the floor. Thankfully, I worked with a bunch of doctors at Shady Grove Fertility Center (I loved that job but I was trying to find a job closer to home). Come to find out, I had had a seizure at work.

Had it not been for that interview earlier in the day, I would have been on the road when I had that seizure. They HAD to take me to the hospital (it’s the rule) and they had to check me to figure out what in the world happened. Needless to say, that medication got taken away.

Zoloft

Zoloft (Sertaline) is my ride or die med. Twenty one years later, I am still on that med. I cannot miss a day of it (I will tell stories of that later) or my manic episodes turn into me trying to literally kill someone.

Let’s Take a Pause on the Meds Since Zoloft Became the Winner

So, I was on Zoloft minding my own business. I had to get a procedure done and I missed a dose of my Zoloft. Well, this wasn’t a good thing. A day after my surgery, I ended up in the psych ward.

As my therapist had explained to me, Serotonin is to put up a thick skin so that little things don’t set you off. Well, that day, I got set off. If people know the history between myself and my family, one would already know what I was going through. I was a single mom but I lived with my parents and that was HARD. Especially at my age. My daughter was about 3 when this incident happened. I can tell you exactly what happened too.

Adventures in the Psych Ward
See that white thing on my arm. That was from tendon surgery. I also gained weight but I will talk about that too.

I was watching a movie and I had put a pizza in the oven for the four of us to eat. I was waiting for a commercial to come on so I could go back to the kitchen to get the food. Mind you, my dad was literally sitting outside of the kitchen and the pizza was for EVERYONE. When the alarm went off for the pizza, my dad yells upstairs for me to get the pizza. I was like “Hold on, I’m waiting for a commercial”. Well, he kept yelling about it and then my mom chimed in.

I went downstairs to get the pizza. I already had the one trigger that I saw in my diseased mind and that was being ganged up on. I hate it. However, the second trigger came when I was getting the pizza, cutting it up, and just taking care of it so people would stop talking.

Instead my dad chose to berate me and talk about how I am selfish and all this other stuff. I don’t know, if I were so selfish, why would I be making pizza for everyone? So he kept talking and I got mad, flipped over the dish rack looking for a knife.

I was just PISSED that, even though I had tried to diffuse the situation, there were still people talking. I started stabbing the counter and my hand went down the blade. I blacked out. When I came out of the black out, I saw blood all over the place.

The scars have faded but those two fingers are a reminder that I felt it better to keep and never forget.

My mom took me to the ER and they stitched my hand up after asking me numerous times what happened. I told them I was cutting a pizza (which I was) BUT, after they finished stitching me up, I closed my eyes, opened them, and there were two police standing at the edge of my bed. Yup, not fun. SO they gave me a choice; go to jail or go to the psych ward.

I wasn’t going to jail so they handcuffed me which sucked because I had ruptured the tendons in my right hand. Anyway, I rode in the front of the police car for some reason. I think there was rookie police officer and the other officer.

Listen, I liked the show Cops so I was in the car asking questions and stuff. I had no beef with the police and they had no beef with me.

Anyhow, I get to the dang on pysch ward part and have to sit there forever with the handcuffs on until they can take me back. So I get back there and my mom and sister come. The doc asks what happened and I told them. I don’t pick fights. But when I feel that I am attacked, I go into a whole different mode when I don’t have my meds (and sometimes with meds if someone keeps chipping away at my patience).

Sooooo, they got me a bed in the psych ward. It was extra late so everyone was already sleep and it was very quiet when I got there. The nurse told me that I didn’t belong in the psych ward. I mean…. like I said, I had gone under the radar for a very long time. Outbursts weren’t nothing. I would fight people for no reason. I have pulled knives on folks, put people in choke holds for namecalling, etc. So, yeah, I was surprised I hadn’t already done a stint in the psych ward in all honesty. It was truly only a matter of time in the end.

Life in the Ward

I was okay for a while. But they didn’t take good care of my hand. Had I been taken care of, I would have better use of my ring finger and pinky on my right hand. But I can’t blame anyone but myself. If I wanted full function of those two fingers, they would have to take a tendon out of my wrist and put it in my fingers and that’s too much work for some mess I did. I would rather live with the scars to remind me not to let anyone get the best of me like that.

I stayed in the ward for a good 5 days. Thought I was going to be out in 3 days BUT they said that I was still too mad. I was extra pissed and stopped going to the 3 times a day counseling because I was PISSED! Just mad at everything. So I had to play by their rules so I could get outta there.

Do what they say so you can get outta there!

And, I had to go BACK to the house where it took place as I had nowhere else to go and my child was with my parents. She had no clue what happened and really wasn’t there. I think I had taken her to see Ice Age that day. I stopped going to movies for a while after that because of the bad memories.

While I was there, other patients came to my room for counseling from me. I think I had pointed out that this was what made me want to finish my Psych degree. I am a person that you can talk to without judgement because I’ve been there. And, if I haven’t been there, I know how to be objective. I also shared a room with a woman that had dementia. It was an experience.

There was a dude named Willie that used to try to escape every time someone left or came in. That was funny. We would say “Free Willy!” But yeah, the psych ward was a special time. What annoyed me most, however, is that they didn’t let the people go out to get some sun. Serotonin is needed but I’m no doctor.

Anyhow, the psychiatrist came around and basically said I had bipolar disorder. They kept me on my Zoloft but added the “go to” for bipolar disorder which is Lithium. I hated Lithium. I gave it a chance I really did. But it was trash (for me). They also put me on Seroquel which helped to ease my mind so I could go to sleep and not go into a manic state (you have to have sleep, it is VERY important. And you have to clear the thoughts and voices in order to GET that sleep).

So, on the fifth day, I went home. Although the dispute between my father and I caused me to go to the psych ward, when I came home, he gave me a big hug. He just told me “Welcome home” and that was the end of it. But resentment lasts when the true issue isn’t acknowledged. One of the biggest things I don’t like about my family is that we don’t discuss things or apologize. It’s a trait that I choose not to pass on to my daughter.

As I have said in previous posts about mental illness, my dad is a Vietnam Vet that suffers from PTSD (who wouldn’t after that) and alcoholism. Because of this, sometimes he does and says things that aren’t cool. I will never forget the day he told my brother and I that we weren’t wanted and that he would have divorced my mom but it was cheaper to keep her. Now, people say “Well, he was drunk”. That’s fine and dandy but we were kids and that really had an impact on me. I don’t know if it had that same impact on my brother.

What I Learned

The first thing I learned was never to miss your meds. Don’t do it. You miss one, and that’s your butt. I was just having an issue with my meds last week. I am very proactive but CVS didn’t tell me they were no longer participating with my insurance so it was a mess but I tried to tell them that there would be a chance that I might be put away again if I didn’t have at least my Zoloft. Zoloft is VERY important for me as I need that so as not to snap at everything.

Unfortunately, sometimes you don’t always have insurance. When you don’t have insurance, sometimes you have to stretch the drugs you have so that you won’t run out. Well, one day I stretched my drugs out and it almost resulted in the death of a very rude woman that thought that she was funny. I almost pulled her out of the car to stomp her. I got out of my car because traffic wasn’t moving after she called me a “Bitch” and blocked my turn into a gas station and standing traffic. NO ONE was moving. She thought she was funny so…. yeah….

So I always tell people that they have to find the meds that work for them and take them. Although the process can be frustrating and I know you don’t want to “depend” on anything, mental illness is just an illness. It is an illness like hypertension, diabetes, asthma. It’s just a mental illness and not a heart, endocrine, or lung illness. Suck it up and take your meds because jail isn’t fun and really doesn’t look fun.

Sometimes I get overwhelmed and really think I would like to take a vacation back to the psych ward. I could get some reading and writing done but I need to get able to go outside too.

Communicate With Your Doctor

I hate when people complain about their meds to everyone BUT the person that has the ability to prescribe you something else. First, you have to give the drug time to work. If it doesn’t work, don’t just stop taking the meds, CALL YOUR DOC! That’s what they are there for. They cannot read minds. You have to tell them how you’re feeling. Like I said about the Lithium in another post, my psychiatrist told me straight out that he didn’t treat the illness, but the person. There are great docs out there.

Meds Are NOT Always Necessary for Certain Diagnoses

Although I have bipolar disorder and will likely be on my drugs for the rest of my life, drugs are not the only way I treat my bipolar disorder. There are so many other ways to treat mental illnesses that aren’t chronic. Simple things like standing in the sun, opening your blinds, working out, listening to music, finding time for yourself, etc. Even small things like taking a bubble bath or making up your bed helps.

In addition to my meds, I see my therapist every 2 weeks. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is VERY important because you get to talk out situations, discuss coping mechanisms, learn about yourself, get to the root of the issues that you might have, and learn how to let things go. Medication is not mandatory in maintaining your mental health in acute cases.

Oh, I didn’t tell you guys about what Seroquel did to me. Seroquel worked for me a good 8 years maybe. If you look a the pic of me in the red, at that time I had gained weight. Before Seroquel, I was 148 lbs, after Seroquel, 237 lbs. It was because of the Seroquel. My clothes didn’t fit and my boobs looked like I had gotten implants. My daughter has an intellectual disability and autism which meant meltdowns so I stayed in the house because I was depressed. Anyhow, I started working out more and lost a lot of weight. However, Seroquel decided it was time to stop working with me and, well, I gained weight even though I was working out and eating right. Even my doc didn’t believe I was doing what I was supposed to do until my CBC came back and it said I had Diabetes. Yup, good ole Seroquel decided that it didn’t want to be my friend anymore. Here’s the link to that experience: So I Have Diabetes. In addition to THAT, I was then called fat a lot but people tend not to think about the impact it has on people nor even care to know the reason behind weight gain. You can read about that experience here: What Joy Do You Get From Making Fun of Overweight People?

In Conclusion

If you made it this far, thank you. To those of you that think that they might need some extra help, please say something. Please do something. Don’t sit in denial. Don’t self medicate. Sometimes you’re doing more harm than good.

I have been speaking on mental health for a long time now. I even went to school and completed my BS in Psychology so that I could learn about myself and continue to be an objective individual when it comes to the feelings and needs of others. I also learned the art of self evaluation. I might not always be right so I take a step back and review situations to find my role in miscommunications and the like. This is how we learn. This is how we learn that this world isn’t geared toward us and that we have to live with many others who are struggling just as we are. In the end, if you need help, get it. You’re not weak. There’s no big deal. Oh, and one more of my blogs is Bipolar and Black. I know that many cultures do not embrace seeking mental health help and it does a disservice to so many directly and indirectly. As a mother, I owe it to my child to make sure that I am mentally stable enough to take care of her. I don’t want to continue the cycle although I don’t hold resentment to my father because he didn’t have a great life and he grew up a different way than we did. He did his best and there are no handbooks for life nor raising kids.

I think I have written enough now. If you got this far, thank you for reading. I should be asleep now but I can’t ever start a blog and not finish it because I will lose my train of thought and forget it. Except for that last blog I did about Kpop. I had to add pictures. Well, good night, everyone.

I hope that everyone takes what I said into consideration. If you think no one cares, we do. If you need someone to talk to, I’m here. My little degree is good for something as I am too poor to get my Master’s (even though I want to go into Forensic Psychology because I am a true crime lover and often identify with serial killers because I very well could have been one had I not had the wherewithal to know there was an issue).

Why I Am NOT Mad at NCT: Hollywood

Everyone has been talking about NCT Hollywood and why it is such a bad idea. Again, I am in the minority for many reasons. I think the main reason is because I am in the U.S. and I understand the impact it will have on Kpop as a whole but I will go through the reasons that so many people are against it and my response to their ire at something that, again, should be something beautiful.

I Guess I Should Tell You WHAT NCT Hollywood Is

Basically, SM has partnered with MGM to do a reality show (kind of like Korean survivor shows for trainees to fight to become an “idol”) that would have people from the U.S. from the age of about 14 to come to Korea and train as other SM artists had to train before they debuted.

People are extremely mad about this even though this is the only description we really have. We don’t know what role the existing SM artists will have on the show (more exposure), if U.S. artists will be there to mentor the trainees, IF the trainees will only be Asian Americans, etc. We know NOTHING! YET, people are already mad about it. Many of the reasons are based on ignorance and others are just based on delusion. I will go down a few. Oh, I got called a “bigot”. I know the meaning of the word but I literally had to go ahead and look it up in the dictionary because I was (and still am) sure that they used it incorrectly. That child was promptly blocked. I know not to argue with little kids. They know everything and I’ve just been on this earth for 41 years.

“They Don’t Promote the Artists They Have”

I have a question: Where do you think they get all their money from? Merchandising. You don’t have to OVERTLY promote a group to promote a group.

Promoting comes in many forms. Have you looked at YouTube lately? Since COVID, NCT especially, has been ALL over YouTube acting complete fools. They have done vlogs, relay cams, their own little series for each member, etc. But people don’t think this is promotion, why?

They complain that SM doesn’t promote their artists but who is constantly doing photo shoots, walking in fashion shows in Fashion Week, sitting front row at Fashion Week, doing interviews with international magazines, collaborating with fashion/beauty designers, acting in movies, doing variety shows, singing in commercials? These things that you don’t think are promotion ARE forms of promotion.

Chanyeol in The Box
Kai GUCCI
Lucas, Fashion Week

And the sales soar internationally because people see these men and are like “Wait, who is that?” This is just ONE way that sends many newcomers down a rabbit hole that benefits Kpop PERIODT!

“They’re WESTERNIZING Kpop”
R&B groups of the 90s Djrobblog.com

I’m sorry, do you know what Kpop came from? Last I checked, Rap and R&B are from the U.S. What are you doing? Do I really have to explain this? I mean, I can but I really shouldn’t have to explain this.

Collage from Twitter @knowyoursoulmusic
15 Best R&B/Soul Groups and Bands
The Supremes

If you don’t know some of the U.S. groups (I am using U.S. as some people are offended if you say American because we are North American) that Kpop artists emulate, go ahead and look up groups such as Guy, New Edition, Intro, Silk, BoyzIIMen, N*Sync, Backstreet Boys, New Kids on the Block, Destiny’s Child, EnVogue, SWV, XScape, TLC, Jodeci, Bel Biv DeVoe, Mint Condition, Troop, LeVert, Dru Hill, etc. I mean, we can go even further back to the very people that paved the way for them, shall we?

Well, let’s go back to my era: Hmmmm, Earth, Wind, and Fire, The Whispers, Prince and the Revolution, The Temptations, The Jackson 5, The Isley Brothers, Frankie Beverly and Maze, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, The O’Jays, Slave, The Commodores, Cameo, The Supremes, Gladys Knight and the Pips, I can go on and on.

However, Kpop is being Westernized? Are you serious? We MADE those dances your folks are doing. We GAVE you those beats you are dancing to. The AUDACITY! Many of the Kpop artists refer to our artists when they talk about who influenced them. So why exactly are you being selfish and acting like this was ALL Kpop? The only difference is that you’re rapping and singing in a different language. But we been doing this. Don’t disrespect the culture that you took from. RUDE! Do a little bit of research before you literally try to sh*t on a whole country that you gladly used to make your music popular.

Someone who HAD to be a child said that we need to get more groups and emulate Beyonce. I guess they don’t know WHERE Beyonce came from and where her genre came from. Do you know what GROUP she even came from? Oh yeah, Destiny’s Child. What is wrong with you folks?

Destiny’s Child

I’m sorry for my tone here but this is the one that really irks me as an African American woman that GREW UP on R&B, Rap, and Soul. It’s an insult to us to act like this. And the last I checked, our money is money. We spend GOOD money on merchandise for people that rarely even come to our country but we love them anyway. And we will love whoever they choose for their next subunit because….. loyalty and the fact that good music is good music. And I am a whole EXO-L but a MULTI because of SuperM (another SM group that would have been VERY successful had it not been for COVID. I literally saw them in concert 11/2019 and this is HOW I learned about all members and subsequently their groups. This is HOW you get exposure and HOW you promote ALL groups and members).

So many people became fans of each group in SuperM because of SuperM. Many people that were fans of solo artists that were a PART of SuperM became fans of NCT, WayV, EXO, and SHINee. This move benefitted EVERYONE.

“There Are Already 23 Members, Shotaro Doesn’t Get Lines”

SM is very smart. Smarter than people give them credit for. I get that many are mad about there being 23 members already and that their people don’t get “lines”. But guess what: You don’t NEED lines to be popular in a group. I hate the popularity aspect of Kpop but I digress. I also (again) have to remember that these are teenagers and this is their world. They’re likely not even paying to see concerts, buy CDs, etc but they sure do have a lot to say.

Now, again, if you look at the content for NCT, you will easily see that they don’t need lines in a song to become “popular”. They have a “center”. That center is there for a reason. Lucas doesn’t have a ton of lines but I’ll tell you what, that man is beautiful and your eye will be drawn to him. He was also the one I mentioned that walked in Fashion Week.

Johnny is from Chicago. We know who he is. Look at the man. And he has a series on YouTube through NCT’s channel where they pretty much do America’s Next Top Model. Their variety shows also show us who they are as people.

The best thing I think that NCT did (and that no other groups can really do) is the Relay Cam. Relay Cam was when they gave each member the camera to vlog for one hour in one day.

This was how you got to know these men one on one (well, Ten got two hours this year and it was him and the cats and we ate it up). I learned about Xiaojun who actually got his own little NCT show on the channel called The Lonely Master Chef based off his Relay Cam when he made a dang on Oreo cake that tasted nasty according to Ten (they add a new video every Thursday). This is actually how I learned 19 of the 23 members (because some of them still look alike to me, sorry. I am trying).

Xiaojun’s Relay Cam

Before the groups come out with their comebacks, SM is known for doing a variety show for them. NCT Dream did one before their new HIT album just came out called Hot Sauce. This was a chance for the fans to get to know the members more. I am NOT a DreamZen HOWEVER, Jisung and Jaemin are my favorites and that’s just literally from seeing Jisung (he hurt his knee and was doing his little PT) and Jaemin randomly in a video. You don’t need lines when people have eyes.

I will use EXO as an example here. Kai didn’t have a bunch of lines. I mean, he rapped a little in the beginning, but he wasn’t singing. He became known for his DANCING and the mere fact that he is beautiful. I mean, do I have to post Call Me Baby again? Because I will and I have NO problem doing it. He went on to do modeling, acting, and many collabs in the fashion world (and um… I can’t purchase the Gucci line that was launched in frickin Korea but it’s cool. I can’t afford Gucci anyway), and came out with an album that I purchased even though the ONLY CD player I have is in my car.

A child (had to be) was like “Why did they become an ‘idol’ if they can’t get lines?” Had to be a child. Lines don’t get you the money, hun. Ask Teddy Riley from Guy. Shoot, ask R Kelly (he is cancelled but still). You get your MONEY from writing. The guys in the group sometimes have a hand in WRITING the very song that they will then get royalties from. But people don’t see that for some reason. You get paid more for behind the scenes things than actually being the one carrying things out.

Kun is out here writing songs and making whole beats (saw it in Relay Cam). Jisung, Mark, and someone else wrote a few songs on Hot Sauce. But you want to put them in the box of “singer”. Don’t put them in a box. This is just a stepping stone to SO much more for these young men and everyone deserves a chance to show what they have. That isn’t all they are but that’s what you want them to be which isn’t fair. So when you focus on “lines”, you miss who these men are as PEOPLE. And that’s where you mess up.

In the End…..

Before jumping to conclusions, try to look at this objectively. You don’t have to like the U.S. (and I really think that this is where a lot of the ire is coming from but they’re just not SAYING it) but at least give the venture a try. People hated SuperM. HATED it! But they missed what it did for all of the members involved in that group and it did a TON. If you are a fan of one, you’re going to patronize the whole group. So, although I am an EXO-L, guess who got shirts, a lightstick, the whole album, etc.

If you think that SM is greedy, sorry. This is how business works. And if you think that SM doesn’t know how to promote, come to the U.S. Some of this is a bit of a cultural issue as well and I see that. I see that in how so many international fans were SURPRISED that BTS didn’t get a Grammy. Welcome to the U.S. where the only way your music is going to get an award is if a bunch of out of touch people vote that way. We have been complaining about this for many years. LOL I have to laugh. I like BTS but that’s not how it works here.

The only awards you can really win in the U.S. are actually fan picked ones like MTV and Billboard which is based on sales. But that’s a whole different post.

I had to bump my post about enlistment and how rumors can ruin a group because of all the mess about NCT Hollywood.

In the end, just kind of look outside of yourself and give it a chance. If you are a real fan of NCT (NCTzen), then you would support the group as a whole and all their endeavors. That exposure that they will get from airing NCT Hollywood in Korea AND the U.S. is HUGE. HUGE! Just give it a chance.

Again, I am sorry for the tone of this post but people really chewed me out and acted like I was some kind of dummy when I tried to explain how this wasn’t all bad. I get it that SM has a kind of bad reputation when it comes to their groups (yes, I have read about f(x) and I know how people are still mad about Tao, Luhan, and Kris (they lost their lawsuits and are still under SM, let it go)) but sometimes things are learning experiences for all. And the U.S. has a lot of horror stories when it comes to people taking money from artists. Look at TLC and New Edition, so we get it. But these groups still go on to flourish.

This sounds kind of off but just give dang on SM a chance. If they mess this up, then I’ll be wrong. But I would rather be proven wrong than be ignorant in my stance about something that didn’t even happen yet.

Also, watch this video with some other concerns that a YouTuber discussed. I think she understands also as a person of color. Here’s her vid. I love her vids, very well edited, and she’s objective. I like that. And follow her.

Briczennie via YouTube

Don’t Use Your Mental Illness as a Crutch

Sometimes it’s best that I don’t look at the traits or qualities of people that have bipolar disorder. I sometimes use it as a crutch or an explanation for some of my irrational actions or lack of motivation. But how do you tell when your actions ARE a direct result of your mental illness?

Bipolar Disorder is a Diagnosis, Not Your Identity

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in about 2009. I was formally diagnosed with it when I had to be put into a mental hospital for blacking out and going crazy with a knife. My hand went down the knife and severed the tendons in my right hand. When I came to, there was blood all over the kitchen and I was just all messed up.

The problem was that I was already on medication for Major Depressive Disorder. Had been on it since 2000. However, that day, I missed ONE dose of my Zoloft. One issue that I have that my Zoloft dulled was my anger when I feel as though I am being attacked or picked on. If I do something to diffuse a situation, just let it go. I can’t do the person constantly talking when I am doing what was asked. So this just happened to be the wrong day for someone to try that and it didn’t help that I then felt ganged up on when another voice added their opinion.

Anyhow, once I got out of the psych ward (I was there for 5 days. On day 3, I was pissed because I thought I was going to get out but they said I was still too mad), I then went to see a psychiatrist and social worker. Unfortunately, I still had to live in the home with the people that had driven me to that point. Why am I telling you this story?

Well, when I went to my psychiatrist, Dr. Errol Segall (love him!), they had already put me on Lithium and let me keep the Zoloft. I wasn’t feeling the Lithium. It made me fuzzy and it felt like there was something in the corner of my eye and I was going to run into walls. So he took me off the Lithium and gave me Seroquel instead (Seroquel was great…… for about 8 years and then it gave me dang on Diabetes(I blogged about that as well)). When he did this, knowing what I know about bipolar disorder, I know that Lithium is usually the first thing they put you on so I questioned the change. His response:

“I treat the person, not the diagnosis.”

– Dr. Errol Segall

And this is when I knew I was going to be with him until he retired or I died. LOL Listen, this is one of the biggest issues when it comes to mental health. There was a time where you just got put on certain medications due to your diagnosis. Oh, you have bipolar disorder, well Lithium it is. They treated the diagnosis, not the person. Granted, there are a lot more options out here for us to choose from when it comes to medications.

The issue now is getting people to go through the process of finding the med(s) that work for you. Many people get frustrated and give up. I know of many people that do that. It’s a frustrating process but it can be worked out as long as you communicate with your doctor.

I Said All This to Say What?

Everyone isn’t the same when it comes to treatment for their mental illness. Just as the same trauma doesn’t impact everyone in the same way, a diagnosis doesn’t manifest itself in people in the same way. This is also why I tell people not to suggest meds for other people because they worked for you. I can go down the list of all the meds that I was on that didn’t work for me but work just fine for other people. We have to really pay attention to things like that.

Anyhow, the main feature of bipolar disorder is usually going from one extreme to the other when it comes to moods. And then you have Bipolar II. Yes, and then you have depressive type, manic, with psychotic features, without psychotic features, current episode manic, depressed, mild, moderate, server (I’m thinking about the codes that we use for this because I’m a coder).

With ME personally, I’m usually in a depressed state. And this is even when I take my meds. Sometimes, as my psychiatrist explained, the change of the seasons can have an impact on my moods. At the start of spring, for some reason, I get really sad. It’s stupid and it happens every year and, every year, I’m emailing him about how bad I feel.

I have been manic before. Man, manic bipolar for me came in the form of being overtly sexually promiscuous. So, I would say that I had two periods of just being out there. Many times I would get drunk so that I could do whatever and not care about it. Now, alcohol and your prescription drugs are not friends so don’t do that. DON’T DO THAT!

So, with MY bipolar disorder, I know what I can do and can’t do. I also know the overall rules and actions if one has bipolar disorder as there are some that a good chunk of people with the diagnosis share.

When I got on Seroquel, I gained a lot of weight. To combat that, I got a personal trainer (tax money) and started working out. I kept the weight off because I worked out. Working out helped my mental illness because I would run in the sun (the sun is great for your mental health) and my body was looking great. After those years went by and the Seroquel started to work against my body, I got frustrated. I was literally doing what I was supposed to be doing as far as eating, working out, lifting weights, and the weight wasn’t coming off.

Now, I could have just blamed it on the meds and stayed unmotivated. But, since I’m in the medical field, I went to the doctor. I knew something was wrong. People would assume that I was lying about doing everything I was supposed to do to keep the weight off but I wasn’t. A blood test showed that I had flippin diabetes and the Seroquel was no longer my friend. I talked to my psychiatrist and he took me right off it. Seroquel, however, HAD been how I got to sleep until it stopped working and I had to take Melatonin (it’s natural) to go to sleep. So, since it wasn’t working after all those years, it had to go.

They put me on Metformin for 30 days and found out that I didn’t even need it. The weight came off and all was well.

I am now on Zoloft (my ride or die) and Klonopin. Klonopin really hasn’t been doing much for me lately. With MY bipolar disorder, I don’t stop thinking so I need something so that I can quiet the chatter and go to sleep. I have since found other ways outside of that medication to get to sleep. However, according to my Fitbit, my sleep is not a restful sleep. It’s usually very light with very little deep sleep.

So I had to learn to turn everything off and just listen to a book on a timer or listen to one of my podcasts. A really good one is Snoozecast on Spotify. They just read boring books until you fall asleep. I usually don’t make it through an episode. You just turn everything off, turn over, and go to sleep. If I don’t get sleep, I can run into a manic episode. If I don’t at least take my Zoloft, that will allow my anger to come out at the slightest thing so I rarely missed my Zoloft after “the incident” in 2009.

Crutches

I could very easily use my diagnosis as a crutch. If I wanted to, I could probably be on disability because I have lost jobs because of my temper. I don’t want to do that though so I take my meds and try to keep on.

Yes, it’s hard but life isn’t easy most days. And there are many days where I want to give up. I could use my diagnosis as a reason to just never talk to anyone and be a hermit. I could stop taking my meds and just act a fool and blame it on not taking my meds. I could blame not being motivated on having bipolar disorder and let my house look like trash (it looks like trash now but I do my best to set a goal to do something every day to rectify the situation).

Many people make generalizations about people with mental illnesses. We’re “crazy”, we’re “violent”, we’re “great in bed”. Well, some of us are those things if we don’t do what we’re supposed to do. I see a therapist as well as my psychiatrist, I set goals, I try to better myself as a person, and I try to help other people that might need some help coming to terms with whatever affliction they are suffering from. I try to make myself useful to others. I could just lay down and be like “Well, the bipolar got me so I just won’t do anything.” But I can’t do that.

I have a little girl and I’m all she has. And life isn’t easy for her as she has a moderate intellectual disability as well as autism. And, who knows, she might get my genes and have bipolar disorder too. So what example am I setting for her? Yes, it’s hard and sometimes I’m VERY hard on myself but I have to look at the bigger picture. I could be dead. I mean, I want to be dead most days BUT I have to keep on chugging along.

My Suggestion (No, I’m No Doctor)

Evaluate yourself alone or with the help of a therapist. Even if you don’t have a mental illness and just don’t feel right, do this. Find out what makes you happy and, if it’s safe, do it.

I talked in my last post about how Kpop has changed my life. I might not be motivated to do something but let one of my favorite Kpop songs come on and watch my whole attitude change. And I KNOW this but sometimes I just literally want to be unmotivated and that frustrates me because I KNOW what I need to do to change my attitude.

My friends tell me often that I am a bit too hard on myself. Sometimes I am because I know what I am capable of but I just sit there like a dummy and be like “Yeah, the bipolar got me today again.” That’s not an excuse. Bipolar disorder or not, I know what I can do and I know what can motivate me to do it.

In other words, learn yourself, KNOW yourself. You can do whatever you want and no diagnosis will stop you from doing it. I bet you were doing it before so don’t let your diagnosis define you. Sure, it might seem a little hard at times. I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder at 20. I had to talk to a therapist, learn my triggers, learn what made me happy and sad, learn what made me want to murder, and learn how to cope with those things (I have blogged about all these things) but I know myself better and I tailor everything I do to my limitations; because, although my diagnosis doesn’t define me, I still have limitations. I don’t want to put myself into situations where the old me might come out.

In the process, I have had to cut people off that I found out really didn’t care about me at all. I had to be happy with being an introvert because I have always been one although it doesn’t seem as though I am when I am out with people. I had to seek out a job where I don’t have to deal with actual people in person. I have had to give myself a little bit of credit for the things that I have accomplished regardless of all the things that were thrown at me. I have had to learn to give myself a little bit of grace. During the week, I get drained so I give myself ONE day on the weekend to stay in the bed and do absolutely NOTHING (besides feed my little family and make sure they are okay). I deserve that day and I will not feel guilty for doing it.

In the end, I am not bipolar. I HAVE bipolar disorder, but it’s not who I am. So I will not let it define me and I will not use it as a crutch. But I have to remember that there is a happy medium. We won’t always have great days and that’s okay. But don’t just lay down and stop because someone gave you a diagnosis that people feel should limit you.

I was all over the place in this post but these are just the thoughts that tumble off my head sometimes. I really think a lot. You guys would HATE to see me manic. I was manic a couple of times last year. That was fun (NO, it really wasn’t).

How Kpop Changed My Life – Part TWO: Fan Wars

This is Where Kpop Gets STUPID

I really hate this subject. I really hate the people that promote it. This is kind of when I hate Kpop in general. Something SO beautiful that should unite everyone gets turned into this mess. And, maybe it’s because I’m older, but I don’t see the point of it. I just don’t.

What makes it SO stupid is the fact that these “idols” get along with each other and have no beef. HOWEVER, the fans have beef and will hold a grudge. Granted, the demographic for a lot of the 2nd and 3rd generation of Kpop are younger. They’re always talking about going to school and the like so I’m assuming most of them are teenagers and this is their life.

Shoot, when I was a teenager, people tried to fight over Backstreet Boys and N’Sync. I mean, I liked both. I had more Backstreet Boys music but I could belt out some N’Sync songs. It was NEVER that serious, for real. It was music after all.

Courtesy: Entertainment Weekly

So when I see the arguments and the like about some musicians or groups, I literally shake my head. However, I decided to talk to some ARMY (BTS fans) about their beef with EXO-Ls (EXO fans) on Twitter. Maybe I need to give you the rundown of the groups, I guess.

Some Popular Groups and the Names of Their Fans

  • BlackPink – Blinks
  • EXO – EXO-Ls or Eries
  • BTS – ARMY
  • SHINee – Shawol
  • SuperM – Spermies
  • NCT – NCTzens
  • GOT7 – iGOT7
  • SuperJunior – ELF (Everlasting Friends)
  • Big Bang – VIP
  • Girls’ Generation – SONE
  • Red Velvet – Reveluv
  • Twice – Once
  • Stray Kids – Stay

Source: 20 K-pop fandom names and their meanings | SBS PopAsia

Light Sticks
And Then the Fight Started

Okay, so I had to sit here and get a history lesson as to why EXO-Ls and ARMY didn’t get along. It all started in 2015 maybe? Basically, ARMY say that EXO-Ls went on a crusade to say that BTS plagiarized stuff and that they didn’t deserve any of the attention they were getting when they started getting more in 2018 or something.

If you KNOW anything about BTS, they came a LONG way. And, when I say a LONG way, I mean they were going to break up because they just weren’t succeeding and were getting overlooked a lot. Somehow, it is said that EXO-Ls were the cause of their mental breakdown and that they almost broke the group up.

BTS gets my respect for a TON of reasons but the MAIN one is because they didn’t give up. They were suffering from depression, Jimin was dealing with an eating disorder (some idiots tried to go online and make HORRIBLE comments about that to the point that their company had to step in What Happened to Jimin From BTS? His Management Company Is Going After His Trolls (distractify.com)), and their music changed because of it. Their music grew and resonated even more with teenagers. That’s how it got to the U.S. on such a large scale. They talked about topics that many Kpop groups DON’T talk about. Being sad is okay. Being depressed is OKAY. Helping one another through that pain is needed. Their struggle produced empowering songs for our youth. That’s one thing I cannot even begin to thank them for.

In Asian society, that’s not something they usually talk about. There are a lot of suicides in Asian communities because their children are pushed to be the best and get good grades. It takes a toll on younger people. It takes a toll on adults too but their music really resonated with teenagers and I appreciate that. My best friend’s daughter is an ARMY and sometimes she needs to listen to them to get through some of the horrible things that have gone on in the past few years.

Wanna know something flippin HEE LARRY US? EXO and BTS are friends. They get along. They have no beef with one another. They’re GOOD. There are videos of them hanging out having a ball. But these little kids (they have to be teenagers because I don’t know of adults that are like this) told ME today ON Twitter (I need to stay off Twitter. I had to literally mute the conversation) that now that BTS is popular, EXO-Ls wanna be friends. Oh, and they blamed ALL EXO-Ls for it. First of all, um…. I became a fan of Kpop 3 or 4 years ago, I wasn’t on Twitter, and I surely don’t have the time to battle over some dang on musicians that don’t pay my rent.

Because these people are children, they don’t understand and likely won’t. I told them “In 10 years, you’re going to look back on this conversation and wonder why you even wasted your time.”

Many mature fandoms respect one another. But then you have those that are a bit delusional IN ALL FANDOMS. They make comments like “________ is the BIGGEST idol of all time!” And I’m sittin here like “What are you doing?”

The members of these groups put everything on the line from a VERY young age to be kpop stars. With that said, they all need to be respected. Some were as young as 16 doing this while they were supposed to be in school. Yes, this is their life and THEY get paid for it but what’s so hard about loving music, supporting them as artists, not comparing them, and just being an all around good person.

As an EXO-L am I supposed to walk around fighting everyone that isn’t in my “club”? That’s what I get for playing with these kids.

Sadly, I feel that fandoms ruin the fun in kpop. They really do. If you want to watch a vid on YouTube, just stay out of the comments. The delusional comments will make your roll your eyes until they get stuck. Now, I have my favorites all day but I’m not going to talk bad about another group because my “Alpha” or gateway group is EXO-L. Guess who was over here playing Dynamite? I believe they just hit 1 Billion views on YouTube. We ALL were watching it because it was a good song. Now, I know that kpop is based on popularity and they are always asking people to vote for stuff. I stay away from that. I just let my streams and views do the talking for me. And I’m not sitting around replaying the dang on video to help it get views. I have a real job. But, man, what happened to just listening to music?

One person (had to be a kid) said that BTS “paved the way” for Kpop. Now, to me, a 41 year old woman, that’s like saying that Beyoncé paved the way for R&B. Now, we all know this isn’t true. We know it’s not true because there would be no Beyoncé without the likes of Tina Turner, Diana Ross, Chaka Khan, etc. So we can’t make comments like that without making ourselves look dumb. And this is why people make fun of Kpop as a whole; dumb comments like that. BTS wanted to get INTO Kpop because of those that paved the way for them.

Then we have to take into consideration the fact that, in 2013, when they came out, it was harder to reach worldwide audiences. We didn’t really use YouTube, Spotify, or iTunes like that. That’s how they judge things NOW as opposed to when they debuted. Super Junior debuted in 2005 (my daughter is their age). SHINee debuted in 2008. So guess who didn’t really know anything about Kpop; most Americans. EXO and BTS debuted in 2012 and 2013 respectively. BTS’s members respect EXO, SHINee, Super Junior (most younger idols do) because they are what made them WANT to be a Kpop star. And, in Asian cultures, they respect their “hyungs”. There are SO many popular groups that haven’t crossed over to the U.S. in the manner that BTS has yet and maybe they will once the world opens up again. SuperM was on the verge of doing that when COVID hit (I went to their concert and it was EPIC!).

Quick Question: Who remembers Gangnam Style? FOUR BILLION YouTube views. My KID was singing that song. IJS…. but yeah….

There is so much proof of the love that ALL these groups have for one another. So, if you love your group, why not follow their example? I would think that this discord was coming more from U.S. fans as we are an individualistic society that is out for self BUT it’s actually coming from the collectivist societies which kind of blows my mind. Everything isn’t to be a competition. As I have said in previous blogs, “you don’t have to down others to uplift yourself”.

Look at these fools getting along while yall out here fighting about nothing.

One More Thing

When Jonghyun, a beloved member of SHINee committed suicide in 2017, EVERYONE came together. They didn’t care if they were from the same company or ANY of that. They came together because they all had/have a respect for one another. When the fandoms learn to do the same, you’ll be better for it.

Just today, I saw on Twitter that a Chilean show made fun of BTS and EVERYONE rallied around them https://www.cbsnews.com/news/bts-racist-joke-mi-barrio/. It doesn’t matter who you “Stan”, an attack on any Kpop group is an attack on all. Most of them are from South Korea and the joke was that their names were all the NORTH Korean dictator’s name. The social climate right now is trash for all people of color. In addition to this, because some “smart” person called COVID the “Chinese flu”, Asian people have been getting attacked for just being themselves in the U.S. (not sure if it’s going on anywhere else but I will research). If you’re going to be a fan of Kpop, be a fan of Kpop. All this extra is draining. That isn’t the purpose of Kpop.

Because I love me some EXO-L and were introduced TO Kpop because of them, I have the best of ALL worlds. Lookie here: With all of the vlogs, new music, new videos, variety shows, dance practice, etc, I haven’t been without great content for the three years I have been a fan of Kpop. They have ALL made my life happier. Hate doesn’t make you happy. It just doesn’t. And music is supposed to make you HAPPY.

So I’m going to enjoy my EXO, SuperM, SHINee, BTS, Super Junior, Ateez, Stray Kids, WayV, NCT (all of them), and more while yall try to figure out who is the most popular.

In the end, if these are your kids doing this dumb mess, pop em. If you’re an adult doing this dumb mess, get a job or find a hobby because this ain’t it.

Thank you for reading Part TWO of my series of a million. I will be talking about a lot more things that have to do with Kpop but this one came up today because Twitter was trippin.

I’M BACK AND I’M PISSED!!!!

As SOON as I finished this, I go on YouTube for laughs and find out that a person that makes funny vids about Kpop (NCT) has been getting STALKED and getting HATE MAIL! I suffer from depression but I’m on meds but this is a young person doing something that makes people laugh and people have the AUDACITY to tell them to commit suicide, call, and send letters of hate? What is WRONG with people? This is why folks think Kpop fans are nuts. This mess right here ain’t cute nor where it’s at. STOP!

Think Before You Speak on DMX, Mental Illness, and Addiction

A lot of people are making a lot of comments about this man, his life, his friends, his death, his trauma, and his addiction. People are literally out here claiming that no one cared about him while he was alive. That has to be a huge lie. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

How DMX Impacted MY Life Personally

I have never really been a huge fan of rap. There are very few rappers that I follow and whose work I am eager to hear as soon as it comes out. My younger brother actually introduced me to DMX and just recently told me that he would steal my CDs and listen to them on the way to school. I actually had DMX tapes.

This man’s music made you listen. I listened to his lyrics and learned so much about him as a person, understood his rage, understood his trauma. This man went through a lot of trauma. You can’t claim you’re a fan of his and not know what this man has gone through.

Some girl on Facebook said that she listened to his music and didn’t know about his trauma. Everyone was like “Well, what songs exactly did you listen to?” His FIRST album told you about him and he continued his story throughout his work. In addition to his music, he spoke on it.

I was an angry teenager. I had not been diagnosed with bipolar disorder nor depression but I identified with the rage in his songs. I yelled his songs. His songs calmed me down when I was pissed. I would drive to jobs that I hated yelling DMX songs and it worked. It probably saved lives and kept me out of prison.

“People Only Care About Him Now That He’s Dead”

This is trash. Everyone knows it’s trash. People were trying to support this man. But you can’t make a person change. He was on Fix My Life and went off on Iyanla. Many high powered people tried to help him but he had demons that many people that make this ignorant comment don’t know about. If you read any book on addiction or psychology, know at least ONE person that is addicted to drugs, or just have a heart, you would know that this man went through a lot from a YOUNG age. And I’m not going to spell it out. I would invite those that don’t know to do some research.

He grew up hard and the mere fact that he made it to 50 years shows that he was a fighter. He very easily could have just killed himself. But he decided to channel his feelings into his music. In the process of doing that, he brought people up WITH him.

Swizz Beatz just talked about him on Instagram and talked about how he took other people’s pain and made it his own. He said he was hurting all the time and that he went to jail to get a break. That’s a problem. It’s sad. We knew about his history of drug use but many people don’t understand what caused that drug use. He was self medicating. For him to make it to 50, again, is HUGE!

He was LOVED. He was so loved that Jay Z paid his debt. Other big names always talked to him. He was a very intelligent man but he saw things on a level that many wouldn’t understand. Swizz talked about how he never purchased expensive things and how he always did for others. He talked about how he prayed for everyone while he was in pain himself.

I can identify with DMX because I tend to take on other people’s pain and make it my own but don’t expect people to do the same for me. Thankfully, my friends have shown me that that’s not how it’s supposed to be. However, it’s hard to tell someone who suffers from mental illness and addiction that. A friend can only do but so much. I just have a mental illness, I don’t know what I would be like suffering from addiction.

DMX was trying yall. He had gone to rehab and was trying to get himself together. But, this again, is the self medication I was talking about. It also is another example of how the Black community shuns mental health because of the fact that it will make you look “weak”, especially men.

You are stronger than you know when you ask for help. He was trying though. The mere fact that he took it upon himself to go to rehab was huge. That would give him the opportunity to actually TALK about his issues while undergoing detox. Rehab usually takes numerous tries, however. You don’t go once or twice and come out okay. I have seen instances where people were in and out of rehab.

“How Come His Friends Didn’t Help Him?”

DMX had very powerful people on his side. But power and money can’t MAKE a person change their thinking nor their dependence on drugs. I am not a psychologist or psychiatrist but anyone can tell you that he didn’t properly deal with the trauma in his life. And that didn’t help when he got into drugs at such a young age.

Drugs made him feel good. It made him forget. He actually said this in interviews. He is no different than most addicts that have suffered trauma in this instance. It’s the instant gratification from drugs. Having to undergo treatment and talking about things that truly make you worse (while not being able to take the very drugs that blocked those instances out) is a hard process. Some people can’t handle that process. I don’t fault them for it either. I don’t. I have friends that have been through HORRIBLE things and WERE addicts. They went through a lot, burned a lot of bridges, were in and out of rehab, tried different drugs to get over one drug, etc. It is a long, hard process.

Here is an interview with Talib Kweli in the L.A. Times where TK talks about an interview he did with DMX.

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/music/story/2021-04-09/dmx-rapper-dies-50-ferocity

Anyone that was in his circle or actually talked to him said the same things about him. This man wasn’t a bad person. He just didn’t deserve the life he got at a young age. His trauma and speaking on it, however, helped MANY that identified with him.

What I DO Know

Reading medical charts has also brought this home. I’m in training on Medicaid charts (we train on these yearly at my job) and many of these people are addicts. And, when I read their charts and see their trauma…. sometimes I get very teary. I can’t imagine living the way many have lived and, therefore, I cannot blame them for their addiction. I can’t.

We really have to look outside ourselves and have a little bit more empathy. I also tell people to watch what they say because life will humble you. Yeah, you aren’t suffering from addiction right now but everyone is one trauma or accident away from mental illness or addiction.

I read the charts to know it. You can hurt your back and get addicted to opioids. So watch what you say and hope that people have enough of a heart not to laugh at you and blame you for your issues. Everyone isn’t you. Everyone didn’t live your life. Everyone doesn’t have your values and/or resources.

Again, be very careful in your speech.

Thanks for reading.