I Get Mail – Why I haven’t been blogging

Well a few people asked me why I haven’t been keeping up with my prolific blogging as normal.

The sad fact of the matter is that I have PTSD and that it sometimes becomes very hard to feel like doing anything.

I was extremely depressed because of the way my parents behaved. I was shocked and appalled and it made me depressed. I had a “bad time” ™. It’s a beast I struggle with daily. I normally have it under control, this is the first time I have felt it’s lash in nearly 4 years.

So I didn’t write. Because all I wanted to do is wallow in misery and self pity. I actually took a few days off from work too. It’s not good for me to do that too much and people are less understanding about mental illness here than other places. So I called in sick with a RTI (Respiratory Tract infection) which is serious business. It helps that i had a sore throat.

But it meant that I didn’t feel like writing. It meant that I wanted to just hide away from the world. I did “want” to write, but I felt that my writing would just be me ranting about culture and say things that are biased by anger.

I should write. Writing has helped me keep control of my issues. I joke that I write out of rage but that’s how I “cope”. When I am mad I write. It’s my punching bag. It’s just weird that people wanted to punch the bag.

So I have to thank you for all the messages of support I have received from people about my family. It’s helped a lot. I am feeling a lot lot better and I should be back in the saddle soon.

Want to know something funny? In the middle of all the messages of support there have been some stellar individuals who had criticism for me. Everything about supporting parents (i assume these are Indian ones) to one that carried this stellar piece of work.

I have had people tell me that people have said things like this about me…

I imagine he thinks he’s complimenting “[his] pretty lady”, being sweet, or possibly it’s an in joke? Otherwise, that looks like insight failon the feminism thing to me. (Sort of like “Trophy Wife”: possessed and for show.)

Oh yes. I got it as an e-mail.

I assume someone is a wanker. I think Tiga is very pretty so call me shallow, but physical attraction “is a thing”. I find her pretty. There is no part of “feminism” that says “you cannot find people attractive”. Why do people assume feminists must be hateful harpies who only mate in order to create a generation of whipped men and manhaters? You can look good as a “feminist”. The reasons why you do so are different.

Tiga isn’t just pretty. She is smart, hard working, funny and keeps me sane. She is one of the few nice things in my life and I am fucking damned if some wanker tries to hold the few things that I have nice in my life over my head.

Oh and I also got this…

Oh Look! You Sent Something Stupid To Me.

I think they mistook me for someone else, but it does call Tiga by name and reference a post where I referred to her as “my pretty lady”.

So I have to mention this. The accusation of slacktivism is a stupid one to make at the best of times because it starts the game of “Charity Olympics”. Or “Who Supports the Most Worthy Charity”. Oh! You help inner city kids? Well I help abused donkeys! Abused Donkeys? Don’t Make me Laugh! I support fresh water in India. INDIA! Don’t make me laugh! I support medical aid in the DRC!”

No one wins this game, but there are plenty of losers. For instance, the people who lose out are charities because it prevents “unworthy” charities from getting funds. And this is without going into how utterly moronic sending “me” of all the people on FTB something like this is.

I will be back tomorrow.

The blog will continue.

I shall be listening to a variety of montage music and Pat Benetar while I do so.

I have to thank the idiots who sent me the hate mail. You rekindled the reason why I blogged and got me moving again.

Normal Service Shall Resume.


  1. brucegee1962 says

    Funny — I was just thikinking “Now who on FtB haven’t I heard from for a while? Oh yeah — what’s Avicenna been up to?” when this popped up.

    There are a handful of people on this blog site that I wouldn’t miss if they disappeared. You, however, aren’t one of them. (Too many double negatives? I mean you’re one of the ones I would miss.) You’re one of the better writers here. Keep it up.

  2. says

    Ahh yes the bumblefucks from the Slymepit… Always there when you feel bad to lift you up with some schadenfreude from their epic ineptitude.

    (I’ll wager that image originates from there, no one else on the internet is more buthurt than that bunch when it comes to porcupines)

  3. leftwingfox says

    I shall be listening to a variety of montage music and Pat Benetar while I do so.

    Hell is for children, indeed.

    Best wishes, Avicenna. Look forward to reading more at your pleasure.

  4. Jackie, Ms. Paper if ya nasty says

    Sheesh..that’s awful. I’m sorry. I hope you feel better soon.

  5. Stacy says

    Good to have you back, Avicenna. Feel better.

    no one else on the internet is more buthurt than that bunch when it comes to porcupines

    oolon, yes, and even though the meme was retired months ago they’ll complain about it til the end of days. Anything to try and justify their cruelties.

  6. TaylorMaid says

    I fear you may be sending a mixed message here, especially with that last paragraph. Surely you don’t want those of us who miss you to send insults as inspiration?
    Seriously though, very glad you are back.

  7. says

    Living down to their usual standards, I see. You spend your time studying and curing sick people, they spend their time making unfunny Photoshops. Yeah, I think we can see who the good guys are.

  8. A Hermit says

    We love who will love. And if we are lucky they love us back.

    It makes me unspeakably happy to see you writing about Tiga and your love for one another; I am reminded of my own love and how lucky I am to have had her in my life for all these years. I wish the same for you.

  9. SecMilChap says

    Have some U P R (Unconditional Positive Regard)! More available from this source.

  10. Mattir, Another One With Boltcutters says

    I am so sorry – those people are horrible. And I’ve missed your writing.

  11. says

    I am fucking damned if some wanker tries to hold the few things that I have nice in my life over my head.

    Now, just tell your parents that.

  12. says

    UPR thirded. Life is meaningless; any meaning there is to it is what you make of it. If some outside force tells you that the woman you love is inappropriate for you, you have to decide if their opinion about you superceeds your own. It’s that simple.

    We, who don’t even really know you, love you. If I may be so bold as to speak for the collective.

  13. thetarr says

    sheila said:

    Living down to their usual standards, I see. You spend your time studying and curing sick people, they spend their time making unfunny Photoshops. Yeah, I think we can see who the good guys are.

    Abbie Smith is working on a cure for HIV. Because she also posts at the pit does that somehow make her a bad person? It’s not a good idea to generalise to that extent.

  14. says

    thetarr –

    Want to know something funny? Whenever someone misbehaves and places the slymepit in a bad light, the go to person to make you guys look good is Abbie Smith.

    Do you think she appreciates having her name tarnished by the actions of the less savoury members of your group?

    Abbie Smith may be fighting HIV, but it doesn’t make her right. I mean are we to suggest that Francis Crick’s work on genetics is a free ride for his racist views on IQ?

    My work doesn’t get me a free ride. Neither does Abbie’s. My work doesn’t excuse the behaviour of the people who post here, neither does hers at the slymepit.

  15. Mattir, Another One With Boltcutters says

    That’s some pretty slick comfort there, thetarr. I do admire the tremendous effort y’all put into fawning over Abbie Smith’s dissertation, but perhaps the group could fawn without the photoshopping wankery. Hell, if it’ll get the gang to stop it with the twittering and the photoshopping, I would even promise to fawn over Abbie myself for at least a day or two. More if her work turns out to be The Critical Discovery instead of a brick in a very large wall of scientific effort.

    In the meantime, why precisely does Avicenna deserve that bullshit?

  16. A Demonic Duck Of Some Sort says

    I love how people think that just because they went into a quick huddle and agreed that the porcupine thing was bad press and they should stop using it, they magically are no longer the jerks they’ve always been.

  17. Mattir, Another One With Boltcutters says

    Actually, some of us CHANGED OUR MINDS about the porcupine thing, others got bored with it, and still others decided not to continue the use of the meme because of the boredom and discomfort of others, Changing one’s mind is actually sort of refreshing – if no one ever did it, we’d all be Bronze Age shepherds worshiping a magic sky god.

    Regardless, Avicenna doesn’t deserve the abuse.

  18. PatrickG says

    I’d say ignore the assholes, Avicenna, but it seems that’s motivating for you. They even go to the trouble of showing up here to get you going!

    Take care of yourself, and don’t stress about not posting enough. We’re not going anywhere!

  19. thetarr says

    Do you think she appreciates having her name tarnished by the actions of the less savoury members of your group?

    Obviously I can’t speak for Abbie Smith, but I would think that she recognises that people who post there speak for no one but themselves and therefore doesn’t consider herself tarnished at all. Contrast this to the efforts of people like Greg Laden and PZ Myers to actually try and tarnish her reputation.

    Btw, I don’t post at the pit, but as seems normal at FTB, anyone who doesn’t toe the line is labelled a pitter anyway.

  20. says

    I mean are we to suggest that Francis Crick’s work on genetics is a free ride for his racist views on IQ?

    Aren’t you thinking of James Watson?

  21. says

    And they bring up the porcupine trope that we disavowed more than a year ago? Seriously?

    Get with the times, anti-FTB peoples, yeesh. You’re so 2011.

    That doesn’t matter, because to them, discussions and debates are all the same: a game, possibly somewhat like a hockey game, where reality is determined by whomever ‘wins’ by ‘scoring’ the most ‘points’.

    And in this game, they get the convenient position of being both participant and referee.

  22. thetarr says

    Speaking of games Setár, maybe you could enlighten us to the games you’d like to play with small innocent animals.

    Posted at the A+ forum: And why I’ve had to constantly, constantly, constantly put up with hyperactive dogs chasing after me because they “just want to play” even though dogs, regardless of size, scare me shitless unless they’re epic calm — except the tiny hyperactive ones, which I just want to kick the fuck across the room when they won’t give me space.

    Score! How many points for that?

  23. northstar says

    Avincenna, I started reading your blog in part because my daughter wants to be a doctor, and I wanted to get an inside view of what that life was like. I continued reading because you are warm, funny and passionate, and one of the things that really touched my heart was hearing you talk of how you looked forward to seeing your girlfriend. It reminded me of what it was like when I was young and in love. There is nothing like a happy marriage to make life seem worthwhile, I tell you. My husband and I were perceived as mismatch; there was a betting pool at his work on how long we would last, and even I never changed my name thinking it would be a pain to change it back. Yet here we are 23 years later, and we just now made each other laugh.

    Now, you didn’t ask for advice, but I’m going to give it anyways and being free, you can weigh its intangible value your own self. It’s this: Dude, you cannot let your parents win this one. If it works on you in a matter of this importance, they will use it over and over again. Standing up to my parents in a similar issue — act as we say, or we cut off your inheritance — was hands down the smartest thing I ever did. It took a few years of estrangement, but of all my siblings I now have the best, and most mutually respectful relationship with them. They were stunned to come to understand if they attempted to coerce the terms of our relationship, I could do without them.

    So then, my advice. Get thee hence to a loaning institution and line up funding for your education. Graduating with loans is not the end of the world; our physician assured us it was “15 years and done” for her debts, when I thought medical school was going to be prohibitively expensive.

    Then, get on the phone with your parents and give them both barrels. What they have done (the threats) and said (the insults) are reprehensible. Tell them they have done what you thought was impossible: made you ashamed to have them as parents. Tell them that having to tell your sweet lady of their insults was deeply humiliating with their reflected shame. Tell them how much it hurt to have to do that and admit they were your parents. Let them know that they have poisoned the relationship they might have had with their possible daughter-in-law – and possible grandchildren. And that they have poisoned the relationship they have with you, for trying to force a choice between them, and who you would choose to love. Let them know you have taken from them the reins of your education — and your life. There are some things well worth paying for; your freedom is one of them. Whatever your future with your girlfriend, you won’t regret making this stand.

    Good luck to you both. Your girlfriend is lovely and smart and you should be proud and happy.

    I’m sorry you’ve been having a hard time with posters/comments. These can really get a person down; sometimes it’s good just to walk away. Make them unimportant.

  24. says

    “…people are less understanding about mental illness here than other places.”

    I know it probably seems like that, but the stigma of mental illness is everywhere. I too have PTSD, actually complex PTSD (see Judith Herman’s “Trauma and Recovery”. I live in Canada, that supposedly has one of the best health care systems in the world. Yet, until very recently, I was completely abandoned by the medical system for 5 years and was forced to self-treat. I also lost all my ‘friends’ and no one in my family really understands what PTSD is and what I’m going through.

    When I was first diagnosed I lived in a large city so had access to psychiatric care, drug therapy and group therapy. But I was plunged into poverty because unable to work, so was forced to leave the city and return to my small home town. I could not get a family doctor and the only psychiatrist in town refused to help me, forcing me to withdraw on my own without medical oversight from an antidepressant I had taken for 3 years while in the city. I was completely abandoned, and only had access to the emergency ward of our small hospital for acute problems. So, without any other option, I self treated with Cannabis, probably the most effective and safest drug for PTSD. The Israeli army began experimenting with soldiers with PTSD in 2004 and since then the science on Cannabis and PTSD has progressed significantly.

    By the way, I think your girl friend is beautiful, it is in the eye of the beholder, as they say.

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