Needing major life changes this fine election day [pseudo-rant]

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Needing major life changes this fine election day [pseudo-rant]

Post by Glides on Tue Nov 06, 2018 3:37 pm

Hey demons, it's me, ya boi.

Anyway here in the fine state of Georgia, we're about to elect a man who has suppressed hundreds of thousands of votes, openly promotes racial violence against POC on social media, and has direct associations with the Russian government. His name is Brian Kemp, I didn't vote for him, but there's enough Elderly in Georgia to ensure that this fuckstain of a man is going to be our next governor. Maybe by some miracle this will not be the case, but it's left me in a bad mood, and I needed to process some stuff, so if you're willing, please offer advice and/or help as I figure out where the fuck my life is going because his election will destroy my life, literally.

As a Film Boi, scrounging for gigs and desperately networking to make any kind of coin, and currently living on the savings I made from my most recent gig, the word on the grapevine is that this election is going to determine whether or not the industry remains in Georgia at all. Kemp has promised to roll back as many rights for the LGBT community if possible if he wins, and the last time this was tried (on behalf of our previous governor, Nathan Deal), the industry collectively threatened to leave if the bill was passed. Deal vetoed the bill at the absolute last moment and the Christian community of Georgia turned on him, but this state is literally being kept afloat by all the film jobs. If you're wondering why Georgia hasn't gone the way of the Carolinas (most Southern states that aren't us and Florida are in economic free-fall), it's because of the ridiculous tax rebates Hollywood gets for filming here. Georgia is not California, we don't have Silicon Valley as a backup plan. The lives of hundreds of thousands of people revolves around whether or not California decides to keep taking advantage of the tax rebates. We are collectively their bitch, and the second Kemp tries to go for the LGBT community is the second the entire economy of the state collapses all at once.

You may say, what about Coca-Cola or Delta? Sure, we've got those too, but they aren't nearly on the same level and don't employ nearly as many people. Besides, I interviewed at Coke already a year ago and got rejected, so fuck 'em.

How does this relate to mental health? It relates because I've really been struggling over the past several months because of all the changes in my life. To those who didn't bother reading those (and I don't blame you), short story is: broke up with emotionally abusive then-girlfriend, lost several jobs and got a longer lasting one that ended almost two months ago but paid better than anything else, grandfather i was very close to suddenly and violently died while I was trying to ask someone out on a date, hooked up with a longtime friend which in turn ruined the friendship, attempted suicide again without warning, and generally fell back into a lot of really bad habits I'd mostly abandoned for a little while before pulling myself out of it.

I had actually liked the most recent gig because of how far removed from the industry it was. I've been understanding more how being part of the industry for as long as I have (since I was fifteen, so coming on nine years) has really affected me mentally. People are cutthroat, it values extroverts and people who are willing to screw others over, all the Hollywood stereotypes. It requires you to spend most of your time networking, you end up having to work for people who got handed everything they ever had, it's full of sycophants and kiss-asses, and I've been seriously considering leaving. It feels so much like trying to leave the mob in a lot of ways because once you're out, what the hell else do you do? It's been your whole life, most of your childhood, but it's hurting you so badly that you have to leave or risk going insane. The money is good but so infrequent, you spend a lot of time alone firing off applications into the wind, and it deliberately encourages a culture of heavy drinking and drug consumption. Not to mention the rate at which women, POC and people in the LGBT fold are systematically abused within, to the point where it makes cops look tame.

It's such an insanely toxic thing, and unless you're an extrovert or you're somehow able to find a bubble of people who aren't toxic, you're screwed to begin with. Nine years of work has showed no longterm benefits. I think after nine years, if you haven't made it to where you wanted to go (my dreams mostly involved being a safe space in the industry but now I question if that's even possible), then it's time to find somewhere else where you're more accepted. The joke of it all is that the jobs I'm aiming for don't even require any talent beyond being able to lift shit for a while or being at a computer doing basic tasks for hours at a time. There's no specific skill set or certification, just the ability to make a lot of toxic assholes like you.

So now I'm trapped, because I'm qualified for literally nothing else, and nine years of film work translates to nowhere, and then the depressive and suicidal thoughts come back full force because the feeling of being thoroughly unwanted by everyone just kicks in all at once. The sense of betrayal I feel, the sense of inadequacy at every person who ever told me I was a failure being right, all of that is too much. And I don't know what to do with those feelings aside from slowly watching the savings deplete. I keep wondering when all the privileged assholes bleating "it gets better" will end up being right, when every application I've sent out over the past couple months have been ignored and all the people I've met promising to put in a good word never do, and it's all relying on other people's generosity and I can't take it anymore. I don't want to work in an environment where I view the majority of people with disgust at how much they debase themselves, where friendships are strained because they've turned themselves into something unrecognizable just to "chase the dream." My closest friend and I rarely talk anymore simply because he's advanced so much in his career that he regularly associates with celebrities now. I am beneath him, and it's clear he's grown to feel that way about me, and it genuinely hurts, and a lot of people in his life feel the same way and have complained to me about it, asking what they had done to offend him, when in reality his ambition has grown beyond his empathy.

So I wonder now where a Glides fits into the equation, what a Glides can do for work that won't be morally debasing, that can provide for the bills but won't drive me nuts, and that's a tall order considering our world today and how every one of these smug fuckers are about to lose everything they worked for because they elected the wrong asshole as governor. The Atlanta industry will either collapse or explode over the next couple years, and even if it does, I'm not even sure I want to take aim at it anymore. Everything I was passionate about as a kid seems so goddamn pointless now. I barely even watch movies or work on anything. I'm thoroughly burnt out, and the only people in my life who still seem to give a damn are people who have nothing to do with the industry, or people who want to but haven't yet.

It's not like i'm unique in being someone who's so thoroughly lost and alone and afraid right now. Maybe it's better to not succeed in this industry because watching the people in my life slowly transform into something I don't recognize is scaring the shit out of me, and how frequently they have to make excuses working for people who have done really heinous disgusting things to people. Is that what it takes to become a filmmaker? Do I have to compromise myself to be perceived as an "artist"? Is it better to just not be an artist at all and do something ordinary until either climate change ends the world or I finally can't take it anymore and off myself? That's not even a threat, I just see two roads ahead, one is suicide and one is climate change ending the world in ten years anyway. How can I not be a nihilist right now considering the way things are going, even if all human rights are taken away in this country like it seems its about to, what does it fucking matter? it'll only be a few short years before annihilation. I was always told that the sadness I felt would dissipate as I got older and how much I would enjoy being an adult, and it's certainly better than being a kid, but it's still there, and it's changed and matured as I have. All I can do now is reflect on my own bad choices and try to stay above water a little longer as the world burns around us all. I don't even want to be depressed anymore, when I was younger I was almost proud of "being more honest" then everyone else. Now I want to be happy, I want to be an optimist, I want everything to work out and I want to see the good in people, but I'm not sure how to fucking do it.

I didn't even recognize how much I had hurt myself until I was more or less out of it, how much my years of chronic pain had influenced my behavior and how not properly treating it or having the resources to treat it burned me out. I never understood why my grades in college suffered so much or how come I was losing so many jobs and pushing away so many people and it was because I spent eight years in constant burning pain and no one ever treated it properly until this year, just happening to meet a doctor who was actually willing to help me sign up to a program that would drop the cost of treatment from tens of thousands a year to maybe a couple hundred. I have to keep reminding myself that the only thing that saves burnt out fuckers like me is people choosing to be empathetic without expecting anything in return. I would be long dead if not for the empathy of people I didn't know well at the time, or my grandparents insisting on funding my thesis themselves (and me not even knowing they were treating my grandfather for the cancer that would become fatal, as it had relapsed by this point), or any number of things that if they hadn't happened, I would've completely shattered as opposed to being almost shattered but still there right now.

And I know that maturity involves realizing that very little of anyone's success is of their own making, and I'm trying to be mature by understanding the contribution of other people to my own barely-holding-myself-together. I even have to reluctantly give this very forum and its previous iteration credit because I went back and read some of the archived shit I had saved and yeah, I was a whole-ass incel back then. I didn't even recognize it in myself. I didn't even recognize it. And I saw the source of it in my chronic pain and my self-hatred and my all-consuming fear of people disliking me. I don't even think I was necessarily entitled, I think I just wanted to spite people so they'd feel as horrible as I did and maybe then they'd "understand." I would've voted for Trump back then, I'm almost certain I would have. I'm almost certain I'd be lured into some white supremacist group, and not even recognize the irony of that. I'd do it because when a person is that vulnerable and that isolated and that lonely and they don't recognize it's of their own making, they'll do or say anything to have someone else validate them. We go to some ridiculous lengths when we abandon dignity, and I was so close to that point. I'm not sure how the forum was as patient with me as they were, and the amount of times I'd try to get Enail to ban me because I wanted to prove I was as worthy of hatred as I believed.

And I look at the fuckwits who are about to destroy my state's entire industry and killing a whole shit ton of people, and I just see myself if it hadn't been for the compassion and empathy of strangers. I'm not even saying that people should try to turn them back towards the "light," that they should use up all this emotional labor on those fuckwits. I'm sure as shit not intending to. A lot of strangers, a few of whom would become friends, decided to expend that emotional labor and took a lot of abuse and somehow something clicked and even though I'm not "cured" I'm at least more aware of myself and what I'm like and why I acted the way I acted. I lost so many friends because of that. I was so goddamn proud of myself for having that many friends, and having no boundaries, and spending time with such disgusting and foul people because I was so lonely and wanted so much validation. They all dropped me like a goddamn stone the second I began to try and reform myself. I couldn't take being in that environment anymore, just like I now can't take being in the industry anymore. It's all so cyclical and it all connects and everything had to happen the way it happened for me to even be this degree of not-broken. And I just see the psychic wound repeating itself over and over again in such magnitude, all these goddamn broken and shattered people and I'm the one who people took a chance on and not them and that's still absolutely baffling because if not for those people, I'd be just as bad if not worse.

Bad people think they're good people, and then there's the people who want to be good, because there's no such thing as good people, only people who want to be good and try to do good.

And I'm looking back and so few people I knew made it through. Quite a few are addicts. A few are dead. I always was one of the more financially stable ones, I can't pretend like I was destitute, and I'm sure that had something to do with it. Quite a few ended up getting everything they wanted and cut everyone else out, letting the ego get to their heads. I'm not even upset at them not helping me out, that's their choice. But they could've at least not acted as if they were holier-than-thou because they met the right person at the right time, and shaming people for not meeting D-List Celebrity Number Fifty Four, and trying to elevate themselves to compensate for their insecurities. Still others abused people and did really unspeakable things and got their little sycophants to defend them, and would get tons of people to cut you out not even for talking back (because I never did) but for not vocally supporting them. I was never the brave one who would call out someone for being a R-word, but people would actually get upset at me for not publicly supporting their R-word friend. In the film industry, it happens SO OFTEN. It happened to ME in that context. I went to a party in Bumblefuck, Georgia a couple days ago, in this really huge mansion, and a conversation between a group of mostly women came up about the amount of abuse they'd all gone through, and every single person in the room had something to share.

I know there's no ethical consumption under capitalism, but maybe there's a less unethical way? Do people have to be part of that consumption as well? I was concerned with such petty goddamn things, I was so obsessed with losing my virginity back then. But I can't even make a comment like "well why didn't I network more?" because then I could've potentially succeeded and be just as much an asshole as the people I'm complaining about! Is it a good thing that every attempt to advance ended badly? Did it save what little bit of my soul still remains?

I just keep debating what I should try instead. Should I try to be a film critic? I write a lot of reviews for fun, maybe I send them to some website and see if they take me? Do I go into social media management? Motion media graphics? You don't need degrees for either one and you can train yourself in that for free. Do I try to make a fucking podcast? What the hell do I do? Where's my niche? Where will I be wanted, in an ethical way of speaking. Not even as like a famous person, just like a fucking job that doesn't exploit anyone else. There's no manual to rebuild your life when circumstances have fucked you over. Not one. I don't know how people who were in worse situations than mine suddenly become millionaires or whatever. I don't even want to be a millionaire. I just want a place, and a car, and enough food to eat, and maybe every so often I go see a movie or go to a bar. I don't need anything fancy. I have no aspirations of mansions. To live somewhere that big you've got to exploit someone, and I know that existence is exploitation, that every piece of food you eat felt pain as it died, but you can still minimize that to some capacity.

I just keep wondering what to do next, and taking hesitant steps in any direction that vaguely looks like the light at the end of the tunnel. Being a a few really awful relationships has taught me I need to value myself even if I don't think I deserve it, and losing all those jobs taught me I shouldn't compromise myself for my work, and never having anything creative I do kick off taught me that I have to be emotionally vulnerable in order to connect with people. Every failure has to teach you something, right? Even if it's not some "live laugh love" inspirational bullshit I hate so goddamn much. Should I write articles for fellow reformed incels? Should I write about my experiences with gender identity and sexuality? Should I write about how I constantly made jokes about "identifying as an attack helicopter" only to realize that I very much am an attack helicopter? That I was the very thing I'd spent years mocking to make myself feel better, and that I was largely in denial about? I don't even know. Can my failures prevent other people from making the same failures? Because honestly all I want now is for people to not be like me and not make all my mistakes and I feel as though that is valuable in some way. I can be like the asshole who has a box in his throat to speak, except instead of smoking too much I made fun of gay people too much.

I don't know where I'm going with any of this, a lot has been on my mind and maybe that's my brain, finally starting to get a grip on jerkbrain and trying to figure out an actual path to this thing called existence, desperately trying to connect all the dots so that maybe some good can come of all this failure and misery and regret. I'm just sick and tired of being jealous and envious of other people. I don't know what I want to do right now, and I can't tell if that's just depression or if I'm having my mid-life crisis early because I'm going to die before I even reach middle age thanks to climate change. Is it my brain realizing I won't get to live out my natural life span no matter what I do? I don't even know.

The friend I've had the longest is a year older than me but we were in kindergarten together. We were not properly friends until high school because the rest of that initial class fell by the wayside. We had been in different cliques (her: art kids, me: nobody), but because we were the only people we recognized, we became friends initially out of necessity. It was exactly like The Breakfast Club but if John Hughes wasn't a misogynist.

<b>Exactly as I typed that last sentence, I suddenly get a text from a friend of mine stating that the person who had fired me from a previous job for a bullshit reason is himself getting fired and I could potentially be his replacement. Send happy thoughts. It makes me a hypocrite for typing all of this out, for sure.</b>

Where was I going with this? Oh yeah. So we become friends out of necessity. We grow to actually like each other, because guess what, we've actually got a ton in common now that we've taken the time to get to know each other! I develop a crush on her for a little while because I used to develop a crush on basically anyone who was nice to me, that eventually fades after we know each other long enough to realize that we make really great friends but would make for a really awful relationship. She deals with a lot of my bullshit, complaining about girls not liking me and yadda yadda (and they didn't like me because I was an incel, this seems so obvious in retrospect. Girls barely like me now but honestly I need to be single for a long-ass time). We end up going to the exact same college, for different degrees, we both experience at around the same time just how deeply fucked up the American entertainment industry is, we both get sexually assaulted at different times by different people, we're basically chewed up and spit out.

Now, our friendship isn't influencing this, but she's a genuinely fantastic artist. She does all sorts of shit. She paints, she does digital thingies that I don't remember the words to, she's like a goddamn Renaissance woman. And she's also unemployed, also living on savings from a previous gig. Also scrounging for jobs like me. And she doesn't even have my excuse, that I suck at everything and so on. She's a fantastic artist, on par with the shit you see on store selves, and yet she's unemployed too. She's introverted, like me, but a lot prettier and a lot more charismatic, but maybe has a much lower tolerance for bullshit.

I dunno, that's kind of our friendship now, just having these long existential talks about what the fuck we want to do with our lives, the immensely talented one and the talentless hack (I'm a decent screenwriter, I'll give myself that, but that's only because Atlanta doesn't give a solid fuck about writing). But I'm only decent, and decent does not stand out. I have worked for years to become decent, and if climate change doesn't end the world in ten years maybe I'll even be great. Maybe you'll see something I did, exploiting as few people as possible, and you'll like it and you won't even know it's me cuz I'm sure as hell not gonna call myself Glides professionally.

I dunno where I'm going with any of this. I'm sleep-deprived, I don't know what I'm doing, I don't know where to go. Help.


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Re: Needing major life changes this fine election day [pseudo-rant]

Post by Hielario on Tue Nov 06, 2018 7:15 pm

Hi again, Glides. Sounds like you're in a real pickle. I'm sorry I can't give you much help since I'm on a similar situation (and my dream internship seems like it's not going to happen), but I want to tell you something:
All your misery, all your pain and anger, don't try to run away from them; take them and focus them on keeping you alive, because if you feel like the entire world wants you down and die, you can spite them by NOT doing it. So please don't kill yourself...not when we can hurt a world that seems to not want us in it by maintaining our existence!

Just don't throw your anger on people who haven't done anything to hurt you. That's very important.

In related news, good luck with that job! Don't feel sad, that dude was an asshole!

Also, IDK jack about the american audiovisual industry, but frankly, decent and actually conscious of the implications of what they do/write is certainly better than average, judging from the crap we get in TV (seriously, how the hell does anybody like "Law and Order"?).Brilliance is wonderful, but no industry can survive merely on brilliance, there's not enough of it.

(Also, um, please don't belittle yourself by calling your most basic impulses "petty". Wanting to lose your virginity above anything else was perfectly justified, it's a basic impulse that most living beings have. I suggest you focus on the fact that you're not blaming the wrong people anymore).

EDIT: Ooops, I forgot! I fully agree that you should explore other stuff, you never know where could an opportunity be! Some people change careers a lot, look at Christi Marx! And if you publish something on the net, tip us! The people here will be curious!

Last edited by Hielario on Tue Nov 06, 2018 7:50 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Re: Needing major life changes this fine election day [pseudo-rant]

Post by Enail on Tue Nov 06, 2018 7:22 pm

<mod>Hey, Glides, watch it on the 'talking about suicide like a reasonable option,' that's in the same category as suicide threats for forum rules</mod>

I might have some thoughts later, but rn I'm saving all my energy for staring at you guys' election results on a tv screen in the hopes I can make it go the right way through the sheer power of my rage-filled gaze. Good luck, USA, good luck, Georgia, good luck to us all. And fingers crossed for that magical schadenfreude job offer to come through!

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Re: Needing major life changes this fine election day [pseudo-rant]

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