Author Topic: Count your Blessings  (Read 10195 times)

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gen xer

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #75 on: February 14, 2013, 11:23:52 AM »
Raintree, I completely agree with you.  There are some people, however, who use FB to constantly vent, whine and complain (I am not saying the OP is one of them - I have no way of knowing!).  I still believe that posting an FB status is inviting commentary.  I don't personally comment on whiny or negative status updates (I tend to delete or hide them as friends) but I don't really grasp the idea that only "yes, you have a horrible situation!  wallow in it" comments are appropriate.  Like I said, I would not post the status or the comment, but I think once you post the status you can't really complain about the comment. If you want support from someone who will listen to your situation, get that in person, IMHO.  Posting a general vent as a status is not likely to result in 100% support of your perspective.

The comment is rude-ish - maybe posted with good intentions - but still patronizing and belittling.  No argument here....but I do agree with TurtleDove that if you want support and empathy maybe it is best to get it in person.  I avoid the negative, venty comments on FB too - not because I think the poster isn't entitled to their feelings but because it can be awkward to have all that raw emotion out in public.  People make comments on FB knowing that others are going to see them so there is that showmanship element to it - that person telling you to count your blessings on FB wants everyone else to see how righteous and full of good advice they are.

bansidhe

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #76 on: February 14, 2013, 02:17:59 PM »
I posted some random pet peeves on FB. It was supposed to be funny and most people took it that way. Someone posted something along the lines of, "You should cheer up and focus on the positive things in life instead of letting these things get to you." Made me wonder if I was exuding negativity, but since most commenters seemed to take it in the spirit it was intended, I think not.

It IS possible to share pet peeves in a humorous way and still be in a cheery, good mood!!

Oh boy...the Positivity Police paid you a visit.  ::)  I don't know whether this applies to the person in the OP or not, but some folks seem to think that it's wrong to ever express any feeling that isn't 100% sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows and make it their life mission to correct others who express such feelings. Wry or sarcastic humor is either totally missed by these people or regarded as "negative."

Case in point: The person who runs Grumpy Cat's official Facebook page posted a status update asking people to quit posting messages asking kitty to be less negative. There are not enough eyeroll emoticons to deal with my feelings about this.
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Tabby Uprising

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #77 on: February 14, 2013, 02:37:05 PM »
I posted some random pet peeves on FB. It was supposed to be funny and most people took it that way. Someone posted something along the lines of, "You should cheer up and focus on the positive things in life instead of letting these things get to you." Made me wonder if I was exuding negativity, but since most commenters seemed to take it in the spirit it was intended, I think not.

It IS possible to share pet peeves in a humorous way and still be in a cheery, good mood!!

Oh boy...the Positivity Police paid you a visit.  ::) I don't know whether this applies to the person in the OP or not, but some folks seem to think that it's wrong to ever express any feeling that isn't 100% sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows and make it their life mission to correct others who express such feelings. Wry or sarcastic humor is either totally missed by these people or regarded as "negative."

Case in point: The person who runs Grumpy Cat's official Facebook page posted a status update asking people to quit posting messages asking kitty to be less negative. There are not enough eyeroll emoticons to deal with my feelings about this.

It reminds me of a song I learned when I was a child.  "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands.  If you're mad and you know it stomp your feet.  If you're sad and you know it, say 'boo hoo'."  Something like that.  I took my 16 month old to a gathering where they sang this song, but replaced every "sad" and "mad" with "happy"!  Happy happy happy!  I thought it was so silly.  What, are kids going to be traumatized singing about being mad or sad?   :P

It's okay not to be happy all the time.  It's okay to be sad or mad or frustrated.  I don't like the idea that people have to incessantly give themselves pep talks, listen to pep talks or suppress their true emotions.  It makes me want to primal scream on their behalf  ;D    Of course, I know no one hear has suggested it isn't okay to be sad or frustrated, but it bears saying that sometimes a vent is just a vent.  Don't correct the vent, just let it be.  :)

TurtleDove

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #78 on: February 14, 2013, 02:46:06 PM »
Of course, I know no one hear has suggested it isn't okay to be sad or frustrated, but it bears saying that sometimes a vent is just a vent.  Don't correct the vent, just let it be.  :)

This makes sense.  I would just add that I don't think it's particularly productive or attractive to vent on a public forum.  I agree we shouldn't supress our emotions, but I think it makes sense to use judgment in how and to whom we express them. 

Yvaine

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #79 on: February 14, 2013, 03:11:33 PM »
Of course, I know no one hear has suggested it isn't okay to be sad or frustrated, but it bears saying that sometimes a vent is just a vent.  Don't correct the vent, just let it be.  :)

This makes sense.  I would just add that I don't think it's particularly productive or attractive to vent on a public forum.  I agree we shouldn't supress our emotions, but I think it makes sense to use judgment in how and to whom we express them.

It's not always even a public forum, though. Many posts on FB are locked to a specifically chosen group of trusted friends and relatives. Sometimes a vent isn't even online at all, but confided in a close friend in person, and then the confid-ee still snipes back with this kind of dismissive comment. If we could only present our most carefully curated faces to our best friends, and could never do anything that might be perceived as "unattractive," our friendships would be a shallow thing indeed. A real friendship encompasses both the good times and the bad. If someone only talks about negative things, that's unbalanced--but so is suppressing every negative feeling and carefully only acting toothpaste-grin-happy all the time. People are complicated and so are close friendships.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #80 on: February 14, 2013, 03:28:30 PM »
Amen to that one.  While most days I do try to handle my little annoyances myself and don't complain too much but if something's really bugging and/or worrying me I will mention it to my best friend, same with her.   And we both have good days and bad days, sometimes unfortunately we have had bad days simultaneously like the other day when she just had a rotten day at work and I came down with the stomach bug that was circulating through our family. :P

Those are no fun but yeah, life isn't always sunshine and butterflies and anyone who thinks it is is wearing rose-colored glasses.  I get rather annoyed with parents who seem to feel the need to protect their child from any negative feelings. No, it's not pleasant to see your child crying or hear it, but how in the world are they going to function in life later when mommy and daddy aren't around to protect them from anything that's not warm and fuzzy? ::)

On the other side of the token I also get annoyed with the Debbie Downers of the world who feel the need to find offense or negativity in every single little thing!
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

TootsNYC

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #81 on: February 14, 2013, 03:34:05 PM »
My youngest (9) and I do work at a food bank. I need for her to see that she does have advantages, and that not owning a DS or losing her iPod (in amongst all of the toys in her room) and being unable to find it will not "ruin her life" as she puts it.

In addition to listening to her and compassionately supporting her hopes, dreams and goals, I believe that part of my job is, in fact, teaching her to count her blessings.

I agree, though, that it isn't my job to help my friends count theirs, so I don't use those words with friends.

Actually, I think it *is* my job to help my friends recognize and draw strength from the good things in their lives. But there are competent ways to do it. And it's a touchy and difficult task.

This woman's Facebook response is NOT a competent way to do it.


Lynn2000

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #82 on: February 14, 2013, 04:29:40 PM »
It reminds me of a song I learned when I was a child.  "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands.  If you're mad and you know it stomp your feet.  If you're sad and you know it, say 'boo hoo'."  Something like that.  I took my 16 month old to a gathering where they sang this song, but replaced every "sad" and "mad" with "happy"!  Happy happy happy!  I thought it was so silly.  What, are kids going to be traumatized singing about being mad or sad?   :P

Side note: I know this song also, but I've never heard it with anything but "happy" in it. Happy = clap your hands, happy = stomp your feet... I forget what the others are, obviously not happy = say boo-hoo, though. :) IME it's supposed to be a joyful song with an easy rhythm and physical actions to engage the audience, which generally consists of young children. Also IME it's a religious song. I'm actually quite impressed there's a version of it that encompasses other emotions, but I would've said that was new version! :)
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thedudeabides

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #83 on: February 14, 2013, 04:39:56 PM »
It reminds me of a song I learned when I was a child.  "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands.  If you're mad and you know it stomp your feet.  If you're sad and you know it, say 'boo hoo'."  Something like that.  I took my 16 month old to a gathering where they sang this song, but replaced every "sad" and "mad" with "happy"!  Happy happy happy!  I thought it was so silly.  What, are kids going to be traumatized singing about being mad or sad?   :P

Side note: I know this song also, but I've never heard it with anything but "happy" in it. Happy = clap your hands, happy = stomp your feet... I forget what the others are, obviously not happy = say boo-hoo, though. :) IME it's supposed to be a joyful song with an easy rhythm and physical actions to engage the audience, which generally consists of young children. Also IME it's a religious song. I'm actually quite impressed there's a version of it that encompasses other emotions, but I would've said that was new version! :)

That's interesting, because we did it the way Tabby Uprising described twenty-odd years ago when I was little.

As for the OP, some people just can't handle the idea that not everything in life is sunshine and kittens (although I've frequently found that when things are going poorly for THEM, it's suddenly okay to be unhappy).  I'd delete the comment this time and move on.

TurtleDove

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #84 on: February 14, 2013, 04:53:35 PM »
As for the OP, some people just can't handle the idea that not everything in life is sunshine and kittens (although I've frequently found that when things are going poorly for THEM, it's suddenly okay to be unhappy).  I'd delete the comment this time and move on.

I would delete the comment and move on also.  As a sidenote, though, some people have had a whole lot of trauma and awfulness in their lives and yet they are happy because they have decided to be happy.  It's not that they believe life is all sunshine and kittens - they know it isn't.  It's that they have learned that being angry or upset doesn't change anything and only ruins the present moment.  I have been working on adopting this mindset for the past year and a half and while I don't have a 100% track record, I can tell you my daily life is far happier than it was when I was focused on how justified I was in my anger!

gramma dishes

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #85 on: February 14, 2013, 04:57:54 PM »
It reminds me of a song I learned when I was a child.  "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands.  If you're mad and you know it stomp your feet.  If you're sad and you know it, say 'boo hoo'."  Something like that.  I took my 16 month old to a gathering where they sang this song, but replaced every "sad" and "mad" with "happy"!  Happy happy happy!  I thought it was so silly.  What, are kids going to be traumatized singing about being mad or sad?   :P

Side note: I know this song also, but I've never heard it with anything but "happy" in it. Happy = clap your hands, happy = stomp your feet... I forget what the others are, obviously not happy = say boo-hoo, though. :) IME it's supposed to be a joyful song with an easy rhythm and physical actions to engage the audience, which generally consists of young children. Also IME it's a religious song. I'm actually quite impressed there's a version of it that encompasses other emotions, but I would've said that was new version! :)

We sang this song when I was little in our (Methodist) Sunday School.  But as *thedudeabides* and Lynn say, it was all "happy".

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands ... (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands ... (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it then your heart will surely show it
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands.  (clap, clap)

Repeated for stomp your feet, and anything else we could come up with.  But no range of emotions.  Only happy.  I guess Methodist children weren't allowed to be anything but happy.   ;D

thedudeabides

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #86 on: February 14, 2013, 05:00:07 PM »
As for the OP, some people just can't handle the idea that not everything in life is sunshine and kittens (although I've frequently found that when things are going poorly for THEM, it's suddenly okay to be unhappy).  I'd delete the comment this time and move on.

I would delete the comment and move on also.  As a sidenote, though, some people have had a whole lot of trauma and awfulness in their lives and yet they are happy because they have decided to be happy.  It's not that they believe life is all sunshine and kittens - they know it isn't.  It's that they have learned that being angry or upset doesn't change anything and only ruins the present moment.  I have been working on adopting this mindset for the past year and a half and while I don't have a 100% track record, I can tell you my daily life is far happier than it was when I was focused on how justified I was in my anger!

That's good, but it has nothing to do with being so unable to contain yourself that you can't let other people release their frustrations without a condescending guilt trip.  Unless you're saying you have problems not doing what the person in the OP did?    ???

TurtleDove

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #87 on: February 14, 2013, 05:07:23 PM »
That's good, but it has nothing to do with being so unable to contain yourself that you can't let other people release their frustrations without a condescending guilt trip.  Unless you're saying you have problems not doing what the person in the OP did?    ???

No, it is in response to the posters who say that comments of "count your blessings" are dismissing the validity of her pain.  I don't think that is always accurate.  I think sometimes people understand pain and are not invalidating it but hoping to help people by suggesting they focus on the good things.  I get that the OP didn't appreciate it and I have no idea the commenter's motivation.  Like I said, I would never do a facebook comment like the commenter did (or a vent for that matter like the OP), and I don't unsolicitedly offer advice.  But I often encourage people who ask me to do things similar to "count your blessings."  I am not invalidating their pain.  I am trying to provide them with a positive way of coping. 

bansidhe

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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #88 on: February 14, 2013, 06:21:45 PM »
We sang this song when I was little in our (Methodist) Sunday School.  But as *thedudeabides* and Lynn say, it was all "happy".

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands ... (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands ... (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it then your heart will surely show it
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands.  (clap, clap)

Repeated for stomp your feet, and anything else we could come up with.  But no range of emotions.  Only happy.  I guess Methodist children weren't allowed to be anything but happy.   ;D

Same with Unitarian-Universalist children, apparently, as that's the version of the song I'm familiar with also.  :)
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Re: Count your Blessings
« Reply #89 on: February 14, 2013, 06:38:34 PM »
We sang this song when I was little in our (Methodist) Sunday School.  But as *thedudeabides* and Lynn say, it was all "happy".

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands ... (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands ... (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it then your heart will surely show it
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands.  (clap, clap)

Repeated for stomp your feet, and anything else we could come up with.  But no range of emotions.  Only happy.  I guess Methodist children weren't allowed to be anything but happy.   ;D

Same with Unitarian-Universalist children, apparently, as that's the version of the song I'm familiar with also.  :)

Same with atheist rural kids...though I'm sure not all of my town was atheist, but that's how we learned it nonetheless.
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