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Back February 22nd, 2010 Forward
Sometimes Shit Happens

Interesting day today. I had my first appointment with the counsellor at the university I'm attending (I went in to see them because the stress of the first week was making me feel as though I was falling to pieces. I probably still am). So of course, with it being the first session and all, there's the discreet questioning to find out whether I've been raped, assaulted, sexually abused, physically abused, whether I've been taking drugs, etc - basically to find out whether there is a REASON for my depression.

In my case, the answer is "actually, no." I've never been raped (I'm in the fortunate five out of six so far); I haven't been physically or sexually assaulted or abused; I've never taken drugs except for the ones prescribed to me (and at least one day out of every seven I don't even manage that). So there isn't a great big shining REASON for my depression I can point to and say "that's why I'm depressed". But try explaining this to the average layperson who doesn't have depression, and they look at me as though I'm even more crazy than I actually am - I can't just be this depressed without a REASON; it goes against all logical thought.

And hey, maybe there was a REASON, sufficiently far back down the family tree. Maybe four or five generations back one of those big ugly traumas did happen, and I'm getting the behavioural echoes passed on down the family tree through generation on generation of emotionally neglectful parenting. But I rather doubt it. My suspicion is that what's actually at the heart of all this is the fundamental neutrality of the universe - or to put it simply, sometimes bad shit happens to good folks.

This whole thing resonated with me a lot more than usual as a result of a post of Lauredhel's I'd read before leaving for the campus this morning, where she was responding to one of those standard "my partner wants to try $SEXUAL_ACT with me and I don't want to do it, what should I say?" responses in an advice column (or at least, that's what the sparking article reads as). In Lauredhel's response she points out that "Not every vanilla sexual preference is due to massive underlying psychological issssssssyews." - and that maybe what's needed isn't so much the compulsory searching for a reason why a person is saying no, and more of a willingness to just accept no as a legitimate answer on its own.

So maybe what's needed is a little less time spent searching for the massive, traumatic REASON for my mental illness, and a bit more time spent on dealing with the reality of its existence.

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