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"Notes" 31

Feelings Are Really Okay!
When I was young and got hurt I was told "Stop crying, be a man" or "you're too old to cry." I am not sure what was said to young women. However, for most of us males, from the time we are young to talk to the time we learn otherwise-if we learn otherwise-were taught to keep our feelings to ourselves, bottled up. As a result of this conditioning we conclude it is not okay to show emotion. The consequences of this closing off may be inappropriate expression of feelings in our adult years.
There are people who seem to have many friends but still feel lonely and empty inside. They want what we all want, a real friend, someone who will listen, understand and care. They don't need your help, they really don't want your advice, but they do want your friendship.
In many cases people just don't understand why someone would feel lonely when they appear to have everything- good job, big house, a marriage, a family that appears to be happy, but without that bond, that acceptance that only friendship can provide, life just feels empty.

I think I can speak for males when I say it feels wrong when we feel down or needy and so we try to rationalize our way out of these emotions. We tell ourselves that, "What so-and-so said doesn't bother me; it doesn't hurt to be ignored; if I feel bad I'm just a being a weenie." However, the hurt or disappointment is still there and in reality, it's really okay to feel what we feel. The part that isn't okay is if we squelch our feelings and pretend we don't have emotions. I teach my clients, and hopefully myself, that we need to share our feelings both the positive and negative ones but it is how we share those feelings--it is the language we use to express ourselves that is the secret to being heard and understood. We will not be heard if our message is delivered with anger or with a defensive tone.
Males, in particular, see themselves as being weak if they feel hurt or disappointed and brush those feelings aside using anger and defensiveness. What we don't realize is that feeling are not a weakness but rather humanness. We are not computers or made of stone but rather humans that were ultimately made to feel, and that can be a very endearing quality. But first we may need to de-program many of the messages received in youth from our family of origin and society, and give ourselves permission to be who we are and what we feel in the now, as adults. For many of us we need to find appropriate ways of expressing our feelings, finding the words, so we will be heard.

 I received a very interesting and informative email from "Notes" reader in response to "Notes #30 about switching energy resources from oil to wind and solar power. Check out on youtube: "What's Wrong With Wind and Solar".
Happy Birthday Tom!
Son's letter to his dad... Father passing by his son's bedroom was astonished to see the bed was nicely made and everything was picked up. Then he saw an envelope propped up prominently on the centre of the bed. It was addressed to "Dad". With the worst premonition, he opened the envelope and read the letter with trembling hands:

Dear dad: it is with great regret and sorrow that I'm writing you. I had to elope with my new girlfriend because I wanted to avoid a scene with mom and you. I've been finding real passion with Joan and she is so nice, even with all her piercing, tattoos, and her tight motorcycle clothes. But it's not only the passion dad, she's pregnant and Joan said that we would be very happy even though you don't care for her and she is so much older than I. She already owns a trailer in the woods and has a stack of firewood for the whole winter. She wants to have many more children with me and now that is one of my dreams too. Joan taught me that marijuana doesn't really hurt anyone and we'll be rolling it for us and training it with her friends for all the cocaine and ecstasy we want. In the meantime, will pray that science will find a cure for AIDS so Joan can get better, she deserves it! Don't worry dad, I'm 15 years old now and I know how to take care of myself. Someday I'm sure we'll be back to visit so you can get to know your grandchildren.
Your son, John

PS: Dad, none of the above is true. I'm over at the neighbour's house. I just wanted to remind you that there are worse things in life that my report card that's in my desk centre drawer. I love you! Call me when it's safe to come home.
A "Notes" reader's response to "the Donald" 
"Some people make stupid look smart"
Here is another interesting item I located in the archives that provides some background on why Trump supporters hail him as they do. They see only his positive qualities and regard him as a solution to all the things that they found (but still find) wrong with America.

Now, after four years of having him apply his solutions to all that ails his people, what do they have to show for it: The country is more divided than it has been since their civil war, they are standing more alone than they ever have after alienating their closest and dearest friends and allies, they have become the poster child of how not to deal with a pandemic despite all their economic and military power, and they have surrendered their world leadership position to an arch rival.

Not only has he not gotten rid of the "raccoons", but also he has opened the door to a myriad of other vermin to infest his castle. Sadly, his loyal followers either have not noticed how much worse off they have become, or choose to ignore the added problems because of a blind allegiance, and continue to worship him for his unconventionalism. His planning horizon barely extends to his next golf game.(He apparently has to win no matter what and unabashedly cheats at golf) Yet despite all his boorish behaviour, he garnered almost half the popular votes in the last presidential election; what is wrong within a country when its people support someone like this.
How sad for them!

Stop blaming everyone for your unhappiness, for your anger, for your loss of social status. You are the sum total of the choices you've made in your life.