One person’s asylum seeker is another person’s burglar

OK, so I’ve stolen this phrase from one of the hosts of ABC’s “Insiders” a couple of weeks ago – a throwaway line about intruders into one of Australia’s consulate offices or embassies overseas. The line itself isn’t important, but the point it makes is: human communication is all about perspective, perspective, perspective.

I posted earlier today about being in a very low place, in fact, how at that time I felt I was a complete failure as a human being. Clearly I was deeply enmeshed in distorted thinking, which I acknowledged in a post a few hours later. I’m a long way from perfect, but I’m not a complete failure as a human being … in fact, it’s difficult to think what such a failure would look like. (Any thoughts?)

Unfortunately, in listing my  many failings which ‘proved’ my point, I referenced my relationships with others, including my siblings. This is not a great idea. In theory, it’s fine to mention others on  your anonymous blog, but if you’ve tipped others off as to its existence, then … not such a great idea. People get hurt. You need to apologize, and explain.

This demonstrates two things to me.

First of all, there is an ethic involved in writing this not-quite-anonymous blog which I hadn’t previously taken into account. I must consider whether I need to censor myself here. The idea of this blog was that I would not censor what I wrote – but perhaps that has changed now. (Does anyone else struggle with self-censorship, even on a blog they thought they’d keep anonymous?)

Secondly, I need to make it even clearer when I am writing from a very depressed state (as was the case this morning). I thought I had made it clear, but I was wrong. It would be unethical of me to assume that people will read, mark and inwardly digest what I am writing. Again, this leads to self-censorship – but I feel this is the ethical way to proceed.

Well, it’s been a long and tiring day. For some strange reason, I feel optimistic about the week ahead; goodness only knows why – there is no empirical evidence to indicate that this week will be any less awful than the previous ones. However, I do remember that the week before last was better than the week before that.

I was scrolling through pics to find a suitable one to illustrate this post. I started scanning for blue sky pictures, given  my optimism for the week ahead; but instead, I chose this one:

Wisteria among pebbles

Wisteria among pebbles

At first glance, all you can see are the hard, grey stones of this path. Look closely, however, and you’ll see where soft, fragrant wisteria petals have fallen.

Living with depression is a hard journey. This week I’ll be looking hard for the soft, sweet surprises which fall my way. And, you know what? I think there will be some.


Filed under Out, Up

2 responses to “One person’s asylum seeker is another person’s burglar

  1. I can understand your dilemma about censorship. I decided to go with complete anonymity because I hoped to be as open in my blog as if it really were a journal for my eyes only. I censor myself enough in “real life” that I wanted to avoid that here. I really admire those who attach their names to blogs about their mental illness, but, in my case I haven’t because (1) my purpose is complete openness to myself, not breaking down stigma, and (2) I feel that it would really hurt my future job prospects to attach my name to my blog.
    I’m sorry that your siblings were hurt. Hopefully your blog will help them see that your thoughts and feelings vary with the depth of your depression, and that what you say at your lowest moments are not a complete reflection of your views.
    I hope you find a lot of wisteria among the rocks this week! 🙂


    • Thank you 🙂
      Sod’s Law – it was, of course, the sibling to whom my remark least applied who saw it. She has some understanding of depression so when I explained I was writing from a place of very distorted cognitive function I believe she understood.
      Ah well, we all live to … breathe another day! I won’t write “fight”; siblings are capable of fighting enough, with or without complications. (I’m sure my therapist would raise his eyebrows at my unconscious choice of phrase here!)


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