I’m confused about stuff. Why? I have so many questions I don’t know the answer to. Answers on a post-card please.
Why don’t we all acknowledge how tough Christmas can be? We know it’s when divorce rates and rates of domestic abuse peak so how come we are still buying the perfect family fiction? What do we do at this time of ‘peace to all’ to reach out to the lonely, the hungry and the disposed? Do we really eat all that we buy? How do we morally feel about that? Do we even consider the morals of it? Should we or would that just mean being a ‘spoilsport’? Is it wrong to be a ‘spoilsport’?
Do Christmas presents matter? No because they are just unnecessary commercial, consumerist rubbish which we are being marketed to buy when there is no need. Yes because when we spend money on people it can be a way of making them feel valued, of showing them we think they are worth investing in? Or is that all part of the marketing myth too?
Is it OK to go along with things to keep the peace? Or is it being in-authentic, incongruent? Is a bit like lying or is it necessary to relational functioning? How much of that is ok in a long term relationship? At what point is ‘keeping the peace’ like being controlled? At what point does ‘keeping the peace’ become an abnegation of ones self?
How honest should you be in a relationship? Is Radical Honesty; honesty with no holding back, honesty or insensitivity, licence to speak without consideration. Or is it 100% necessary for an authentic, meaningful growth orientated relationship? Or is compassion more important? Are lies ever OK? Is it OK for parents to lie to kids and expect kids not to lie to them?
Is it OK for adults to be on their phones all the time and then tell kids not to be? Or for adults to tell kids off for swearing but then swear themselves? For parents to push kids to do well at school when they aren’t doing well themselves?
Which matters most, authenticity or manners? Are they both mutually exclusive? Can you be yourself whilst still conforming to dress codes? Behavioural codes? Do manners make social relationships easier or are they just a mask to hide behind creating distance and misunderstanding?
Why are people much more likely to go to funerals than they are to visit the dying? Is because of fear and the funeral makes our fear of death safer? Is it because we tell our self that we don’t want to intrude? Why do we kid ourselves that talking to someone about their loss will ‘upset them’ when really we know they are upset anyway.
Should you talk about hard stuff, dark stuff, abuse and suffering stuff? People don’t like to talk about that stuff. Does that mean you shouldn’t talk about it? That it’s better to use the elephant as a domesticated coffee table so that everyone can stay in their safe zones? What is the cost of this? What is the risk? What is the potential reward of talking about the elephant?
Why is anxiety on the rise? Is it on the rise or is it just that more people are talking about it? Or is all the talking about it making more people anxious? Or is it technology? Or is it the pace of life? Or the pressure? Or the stressed parents? Is it all that comparison with social media which makes us think we should be living a different life, a better life and then makes us worry when we don’t?
Why are we all so obsessed with Brexit? Or are we? Is it that we have no choice because there is nothing else on the news? Why all this blither when there is nothing we can do to control it? It is all in the hands of politicians who are doing whatever they want in spite of all their protestations about what their ‘constituents’ want.
Why aren’t we talking about wars and global warming? Is it because we don’t care? Is it because it’s not in the news enough? Is it because we feel powerless about it? Is it because we think it’s nothing to do with us (even though it’s all going to affect our children?). Is it because these animals, those people are ‘not us’ so are different and lesser? Where does that belief come from?
How we live
Does school matter? Really? Honestly? I know it keeps kids safe and that kids not in school are at increased risk of harm? But do kids really learn best in school or does school stop them learning? Stop their curiosity? Their passions? What do exams really measure?
Do we really need to all work so hard and so long? Do we all need the money we think we do or could we manage on less? How much does it cost us to work? In take away coffees and lunch? In travel costs? In clothes? In recovering-from-work-wine? In childcare? What would we save if we didn’t work so much and how would that measure against lost wages? Is work just a way of keeping the masses anaesthetised so we don’t look for more in life, so that we’re not too happy? Because if we were content with what we have then we’d be much harder to sell to and then the big companies would be smaller.
Why don’t we pay people who care in the home? Parents? Carers? Because we pay childminders and we pay staff who work in care homes for the elderly, so why instead don’t we pay family members to do those things so that they could work less and care more? Surely that would save money as we wouldn’t need as many nurseries or old people’s homes or care homes or day care centres? Is that because it’s seen as women’s work as for too long we’ve not valued it? Or is it that we don’t value the very old, the very ill or the very young? Is it that we don’t value the quality of care?
Why do we think survival of the fittest works best for humans? Why do we base businesses on the big game animals rather than the ants and bees who co-operate, very successfully?
Why don’t we share? Car share? Job share? Dog share? Lawn mower share? We share houses when we are younger so why stop that? We share bedrooms and toys as kids so why do we move away from that? We share our sweets with out mates, why don’t we share our food with our adult friends? What changes? Should it? How would life be if we shared more?
There’s so much that just confounds me right now.
Is it OK for me to write a blog when I have no answers, only questions?
Are there any answers?
Ps…the Kindle edition of Into the Woods is on sale now at £2.49 so please buy it, read it and talk about it so that you can help anyone living with domestic abuse