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Been at my parents’ house for less than three days. Already:
Good. Successful trip home. Four more days until I can get home and try to undo the damage.
Wish I hadn’t agreed to stay two days longer than my original plan :(
Does anyone have a good way to explain the difference? I was diagnosed with bipolar and OCD but my new psychiatrist says that she isn’t convinced I have OCD; she thinks my obsessions and anxieties sound more like psychotic paranoia and thinks schizoaffective might be more accurate.
If anyone sees this and wouldn’t mind talking a bit about their anxiety or paranoia, I’d appreciate it?
The Dragonborn DLC introduces rieklings, small goblin-looking creatures. My very first introduction to them was a loading screen which informed me that they don’t have any culture of their own but just steal artifacts from other cultures and form “strange attachments” to them.
That on its own was enough to have me side-eyeing Bethesda. It reminds me entirely too much of a friend who (insisting that she isn’t racist and the stereotype that Australians are racist pisses her off) told me that Aboriginal societies pretty much deserved to have their land taken away, because they’d never bothered to build any giant architecture. If they wanted to be seen as a real culture, they would build large buildings.
Later, I had the option to interact with some, kind of by accident. Turns out some of them can speak whatever language the Empire speaks. Oh wait sorry. *”They’ve learned to speak intelligently.” Because of course their language, the native language in which they all have no trouble communicating with each other, is unintelligible to my dark elf and is therefore completely invalid.
The clincher, though? The companion system allows you to have two people with you: A follower and a pet. “Pet” means dog - there aren’t any other options that I’ve discovered. After completing a certain questline, I was allowed to recruit rieklings as followers and bring them on my adventures. After a bit, though, I started to worry about my little companion. Not wanting them to get hurt, I sent them home. A message popped up informing me that my pet was heading home. What the fuck. They are clearly sentient, they are humanoid, they have a culture and a society and you think they are pets?!
What the fuck, Bethesda. What even the fuck.
While I agree with your message, an apostrophe, capital i, and the letters “yo” probably would not have been that much more work to add.
A southern elephant seal pup rests on its mother
Photograph: Justin Hofman/Barcroft Media/Southern elephant seals in Antarctica
Two-month-old Oriental Pied Hornbills at the Jurong bird park’s breeding and research centre, Singapore.
Photograph: Wong Maye-E/AP
female purple throated mountain gem
(Photos by herpindiego and chris jimenez)
The geoduck (pronounced “gooey-duck”) is native to the Pacific Northwest United States. It’s the largest burrowing clam in the world and can live for more than 150 years. There is nothing funny about it.
One of my biggest recurring anxieties is that I won’t truly understand every option before me and will thus make the wrong choice, missing out on something I would have liked more but only realizing it once it’s too late.
When I was younger, this would annoy my sister quite a bit; if we were listening to the radio and a song I liked came on, I would first cycle through all the presets in our car to make sure there wasn’t something I liked more before settling in to listen to the song I liked. Of course, this would usually take at least 30 seconds as I paused to listen to the song long enough to process it - longer if there was a commercial which I thought might be followed by my favorite song - and so we would end up missing a big chunk of the original song by the time I went back to it.
Missing some music, though? Not a big deal. Really didn’t cause epic amounts of distress, and I’ve gotten over it now (or, at least, I mostly listen to music on my computer, now, which means I can listen to whatever I want as much as I want as long as it’s on youtube; I don’t exactly have to worry about missing a song).
The problem is that it manifests itself in a lot of ways, most of them way more distressing.
Lately, I’ve been playing Harvest Moon a lot. I really like this series, and the specific game I’m playing now (Tale of Two Towns) is really well made and lovely, in my opinion. Unfortunately, Harvest Moon always has a romance aspect, and in there comes the distress.
Who should I marry? When should I marry them? In this game, you actually get to do a little family planning. Unlike every other HM where the female partner gets pregnant X days after the wedding (usually one to two months) and the baby is born a month or two later, you get to plan your pregnancy in this game. That’s great, but it introduces yet another choice; once I’m married, how soon do I want to have my baby?
It’s just a game, and I keep telling myself I should just make my choice and commit to it. It’s sort of like safe exposure therapy, or something. Feeling the anxiety, refusing to respond to it, and discovering that everything is okay.
And that seemed fine. I really was ready to get married, and I had it planned out when I would do so.
Aaaand then I made the mistake of looking on a forum thread discussing when people got married. People were talking about whether it was better to wait a while (some got married in year five of the game) or do it early (some got married as soon as it is possible, spring of the second year). My current plan puts our wedding at the end of year two or beginning of year three, and that seemed good to me until I read this thread.
The thread set off all the usual anxiety - what if I’m getting married too soon? what if I should wait? but what if I wait and then I regret that? should I even marry Cam? I like him, but someone said that he’s boring and what if they’re right? am I making the right choices? - and then it expanded. What if I am making bad decisions in my real life? What if there is some amazing partner out there that I’ll never find because I’m in this relationship? What if I should know what my options are? What if it’s bad that I live where I do? Maybe I should have moved somewhere else after college to experience there - I’ve never lived on the east coast, for example.
It’s ridiculous, and I know it is, and I really should push it out of my mind. I like my life, my partners, the place I live. And I should marry who I like, in this game, given that others like bachelors who I can’t see the appeal of - clearly there are differences of opinion.
But now that the anxiety is in my head, it’s really hard to get rid of, and I want to double check and triple check and make sure everything is how it should be. But I can’t. Not in real life, anyway. And because the HM anxiety has generalized to every choice I’ve ever made in my life, thinking carefully about marrying virtual men isn’t going to help anything.
If you can watch this without peeing yourself laughing.
I salute you.
Goats and sheep screaming at people.
S C R E A M I N G
I AM FUCKING DYING
Ursula, saying it like it is.
Real talk with Ursula
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