How do you cope?

Submitted by retiredshared2 in AskRaddle (edited )

I'm sick of hearing people say absolutely vile shit about marginalized people. I'm sick of the systemic oppression. I'm sick of environmental rape. I'm stuck in this environment and I can't deal with it. How the fuck do we learn to cope?


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Potemkin wrote

I think these are all helpful suggestions. Having a political or ethical analysis is often fraught with feelings of isolation, frustration, a sense of urgency, and perhaps feelings of helplessness or lack of agency. I think many of us often feel alone or isolated, as well. Day to day, it can be difficult, but a few things that help me are:

  • History: I love learning about history. This helps me keep a sense of perspective, allowing me to see that things were different once and can be different in the future, that revolutions can and do happen, and gives me a sense of connection and continuity to humanity generally and those workers and revolutionaries that came before. Also, it helps to immerse myself in the political ideas I enjoy when unable to find a community to discuss with.

  • Community: Obviously, it really helps to have even a small community of like-minded people. Virtual or real-world, it's really nice to be able to talk with others of like-mind for sanity and motivation.

  • Friendship: Whether political or non-political, just having a friend or two that accepts you and your positions, and that you have more in common with than just politics, helps immensely.

  • Projects/agency: It's also helpful to be able to work on projects that are a manifestation of your political analysis. This helps us be and stay active in bringing about the world we wish to see, and helps build a sense of agency and working toward the goals that we value.

I think radical communities haven't done well to support one another and address things like depression that naturally arise out of compassion and the want to change things for the better. We should be kinder to one another, especially online (since we haven't gotten to the point of being completely rude to people in person all the time, as we do online--the general "we" as in humans, no one in particular). We should also try to join together to help each other through the unprecedented craziness that is the global socio-political situation at present.

I think the most important thing in coping is to understand that you're not alone, and that others see and feel the same things you see and feel, and are struggling with them as well. Life generally can be rough and difficult, but love and solidarity and friendship and comradery help.


Tequila_Wolf wrote

Mostly I don't. I just try to do what I can when I can. Don't have the energy to respond to this in full, due to the first two sentences.


retiredshared2 OP wrote

I'm in the same boat. Lots of drinking and violent thoughts. It's a fucked up tight-rope walk.


JoeMemo wrote (edited )

As long as you direct those violent thoughts towards the right individuals, it's not unhealthy.


supernice wrote

I barely cope. I know that's not very uplifting, but I just avoid people for the most part these days. I keep my circle small enough to make sure I don't have to deal with the idiots face to face much anymore.


OldHippieChick wrote

It's working anyway. You are a very positive force in this community and I am fortunate to be part of that very small circle in even a very small way.

Keep up the good difficult work.


Fossidarity wrote

For me finding people who feel the same way helps a lot. Music also helps.


OldHippieChick wrote

My music mentor mentioned that I "always sound angry" when I sing as if that was something I wanted to change instead of the whole point.

Eclectic helps a lot. Sometimes an unfamiliar style of music that I wouldn't even have wanted to listen to under normal circumstances is just the ticket.

My caboose baby (re)discovered Frank SINN-uh-truh for me to remind me that my boring old grandparents were once radical young punks too. Crooning Anti-Flag to an imaginary sleepless great-grandbaby as if it were a lullabye that had been handed down for generations in some post-civ utopia can shift perspective enough to allow sleep too.

Most of what looks like "noordinaryspider is drunk posting" is really insomnia posting.

< cringe >


Cheeks wrote (edited )

Just speak up and act when you can. There is often more of us around than those who are loudest. It often only takes one of us to speak up or act out to remind the bystanders that they aren't alone in their thoughts too.


GaldraChevaliere wrote

I focus on the struggle rather than the end. I believe we're fated to die at a fixed point we can't predict and shouldn't want to, so I focus on the struggle itself so when it comes I can look the end in the face and maintain my honor. Even if we lose and the world goes even worse to shit, at least we went out swinging. Every rich cishet shithead I make life a little harder for until then is plenty of motivation.


ziq wrote



OldHippieChick wrote

Looking at pretty pretty pictures of lovely fires suddenly works for me.

No idea where my subconscious dug THAT one up from since I've always been pyrophobic before last yearish, but at this point I neither know nor care whether it's bridges or fences that I'm burning; either one can keep you warm.


Pop wrote

there are beautiful people out there in the world to make revolution with, I'm sure of it


rot wrote


It's not hatred or rage just a dull feeling of anger blended with disgust. Then I move on with my day unfortunately.


bloodrose wrote

Honestly, lately, not super well. At my office, we went out for lunch for all the July birthdays. And it was just a crowd of us, and people were wearing their fancy smart watches and talking casually about consumption, and the scene from Terminator 2 with Sarah Conner in the mental facility came to mind, where she says:

"You think you're safe and alive? You're already dead! Everybody! Him, you, you're dead already! This whole place! Everything you see is gone!"

I forced myself to think of my upcoming camping trip and about what I needed for the rocket stove. I'm sure I just looked socially awkward.


Naokotani wrote

I used to be a total nihilist in my 20s. Basically drank myself silly, traveled around Latin America doing drugs and treating women as objects for personal gratification. I really didn't like the world, so I convinced myself that my actions were meaningless. In other words, I coped by being a jerk.

Eventually I realized my behavior wasn't sustainable, so I decided I needed to find some purpose and I gained an interest in Buddhism. This lead me to give up meat because I wanted to follow the non violence aspect, later I gave up drinking, which led to quitting smoking and drugs (mostly cocaine, I will still have mushrooms or weed, but I rarely feel motivated to do so.)

At the same time I started to develope a keen interest in yoga and meditation, which led me to eventually go to India and Nepal where I found a yoga teacher that I eventually went to for yoga teacher training.

Meanwhile, my relationship with women improved and I met someone and now we are starting a family together, which brings a lot of meaning to my life as well.

The last 10 years has been a long process of constant self-analysation, and giving up one addiction after another. Everytime I give one up, I realize that more lay below the surface.

Basically, I'm not suggesting you do yoga or become Buddhist, in fact, organized religion often prays on those who are looking for a way to cope, and is rife with charlatans, but I would suggest you find something more than our broken world to latch onto.

Of course, I highly recommend getting involved with community as well. The more I get my own head on straight, the more I feel I have to give back to the community in the form if volunteerism and just being a good friend. I find the more you give to your community the more it gives back and then you focus on where you have helped and been helped, and despite a troubled world you start to gain more faith in humanity and hope as a result.


snuggus wrote

I sing along to Woody Guthrie and Against Me with my toddler. Or watch Mister Rogers. And garden. Playing magic with my lefty friends every week helps a lot, and we've even built some leftist decks (a de-colonized deck, ancom deck, green deck, etc). I feel like a person with a terminal illness that's been told that I have 20 years left to live, so I've started to treat every day like it's as precious as it really is (because if my old bosses at the DNR were right, shit is really gonna start to unravel in ~20 years, at least climate-wise). I used to be a ball of apathy about it, but exercise and meditation helps keep me sharp so I can actually DO something (most days).


asg101 wrote

I cope by realizing that the assholes who are responsible for all this hatred, death and destruction are all going to be as extinct as the rest of us before too long. I just hope they don't die peacefully.

I have known for about 30 years that unless something that fundamentally goes against human nature happens, the feedback mechanisms that will lead to the same level of extinction as the end of the Permian period will play out. The endpoint of releasing all carbon under the permafrost and continental shelves will not be conductive to the continuation of civilization or of most species. Nothing of any significance has been done to reverse this process, or even stop it from accelerating, because that would entail thinking ahead and eliminating greed. The plutocracy will not even admit the process is happening because they profit from business as usual..

I know this probably doesn't help, but it is how I deal with it. I was a LOT more politically active in the 70's, 80's and 90's, including direct action, organizing, etc... but my head finally started hurting too much from bashing it against brick walls and batons.

I have already mourned the innocents, and I take comfort in the coming extinction of the guilty. But I know the cycle of evolution will continue as it has in the past. Maybe the next dominant species on this planet will take better care of her. I am now trying to just appreciate the very rare and almost unique experience of being witness to the process unfolding.