SIGNS AN INFP IS INTERESTED IN YOU

Fun fact: the reason why I became interested in MBTI in the first place was because I had a schoolgirl crush on an ISTJ. He posted his type on Facebook, so I just *had* to figure out what the meaning behind this mysterious acronym was. That opened the doors to so much information on what he could be like, along with a number of Google searches equivalent to “Can Aries woman be compatible with Cancer man?” but in MBTI terms. Nothing ever happened with the ISTJ, as he was handsome, well-dressed, and smart — thus terrifyingly intimidating. My curiosity in him led me to MBTI and eventually psychology, so I guess in a round about way, my calling was found through a silly, infantile crush. This has made me a believer in destiny, even though it has not worked it’s magic on my love-life yet.

Since this was the pathway that lead me to MBTI, I thought I’d contribute to someone else’s by making my own list of how to tell when an INFP is interested in you! This is just for fun. Take with a spoonful of sugar and a grain of salt, please.

Before I get into the signs, I feel it is my duty to provide some disclaimers first.

*Be careful: using MBTI to understand someone you do not know is a one-way ticket to idealizing or making incorrect assumptions. Try to see them by what they actually communicate to you the best you can, not as a “type”.
*Are you sure you have their type right?: typing yourself should be a labor intensive process of introspection and self-discovery. It takes time and interest. Type others with caution.
*This list has bias: this doesn’t mean it’s incorrect per se, it just means that what I’ve described is possibly not true for all INFPs. INFPs are individualists. There is much room for variability within our type. These are collected from my own life-experience and observations.

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+ LOVE-SHY INFPS +

Love-shyness tends to be a trait of INFPs, particularly in their younger years. If your INFP seems so quiet they verge on being mute, is typically found alone while lost in their own world reading a book or listening to music, and refuses to indulge you in prolonged conversation, you may have found a love-shy INFP. Are you confused by their contradictory behavior towards you? That’s a sign in itself.

  • AVOIDANCE: You’ll probably catch them glancing at you, then quickly looking away. Faced with an opportunity to talk to you, but somehow practically evaporate. Maybe they literally run at the sight of you. Yes, they like you. Or hate you. One or the other.
  • STRANGE COINCIDENCES: Does the INFP seem to randomly appear in places you are known to hangout? While also avoiding you? And acting like you don’t exist? This switch in proximity might seem pointless, but they’re collecting data on you (in an endearing, non-creepy way, if possible). They are probably hoping you’ll notice them, while simultaneously being terrified that you’ll actually talk to them.
  • BREADCRUMB HINTS: Like Hansel and Gretel, we will leave a trail of breadcrumb hints here and there for you to find. Pay close attention, especially to social media. A song, quote, like, link, post, share, follow, etc. could possibly be their way of feeling like they’re communicating their interest in you (even if it’s not addressed to you). Reading between the lines, while risky, is a must for reading love-shy INFPs.
  • NERVOUSNESS: Tell-tale sign. Speaking for myself here, I am usually overthinking how I am coming off, or overthinking every detail of our interactions. Sometimes my body doesn’t quite know how to respond to everything going on in my head. This might be hard to spot since we can be prone to awkwardness already, but look for blunders followed by obvious embarrassment. Oh, the shame *sigh*. This tends to lessen as I get to know you better.
  • SAYING THE WRONG THING: If we do manage to talk to you, our brains might overheat from the pressure. So, we might space out at random increments of the conversation. There’s a chance there will be mumbling, and non-sensical words riddled with “um’s”. Oddly timed laughter. And we might just blurt out something we don’t mean at all, even something  that’s accidentally insulting (whoops). Say yes when we mean no, things like that.

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+ LOVE-READY INFPS +

These are INFPs that have grown out of love-shyness and are proactively hunting for a mate. By this I mean waiting around to be receptive to someone they like. Even if they’re not as shy, INFPs are rarely direct. They’ll likely try to communicate interest in you through indirect means before taking that leap of faith by telling you how they feel. INFPs are pros at pretending like they don’t like you, but if you’re perceptive, it can be glaringly obvious. 

  • INITIATING CONTACT: As introverts, initiating contact is practically unnatural. INFPs only do this if they want to get to know you, which isn’t the norm for us. Now don’t take this and run with it yet, because we might be solely interested in friendship. But initiating is a good initial sign. If we tend to text or message often, that’s a very good sign. Initiating hanging out is an excellent sign. Initiating dates…how much more obvious must we make it for you? If they’re on a date with you, they’re interested and suspect it could possibly go somewhere (unless they are just trying to be nice, this also happens too sometimes).
  • 21, ooo Q’s: If an INFP likes you, they will be curious about you. When an INFP is curious about you, they will pester you with questions. Questions are a general sign of interest for anyone, but an INFP will ask insignificant questions along with the important ones. Favorite color? Favorite vegetable? Favorite time of day? Favorite toothpaste brand? Life goals? Fears? Allergies? How do you feel about mortality? Feminism? Existentialism? Art?! WE’VE GOT TO KNOW.
  • UNEXPLAINABLE GENEROSITY:  Every INFPs base level of generosity will differ, but if we like you, this will go up a notch. Our “gifts” can come in different forms, from literal gifts bought because it reminded us of you, to sharing our cherished popcorn that we love so much, we don’t share it with anyone (except you). They might create something for you, or go to great lengths to help you in some way. It might take shared social circles to notice this, but if they give you a little extra somethin’, they appreciate you very much.
  • MILES OF SMILES: INFPs value authenticity, and we have a strong dislike for doing things that don’t coincide with how we truly feel. Study their facial expressions. Ample toothy smiles with lit-up eyes, snort-laughing, ugly crying (okay, hopefully no ugly crying). If it seems genuine, it probably is, and that means we not only like you, but are comfortable enough to fling away the superficial mask and reveal the real stuff our faces are capable of doing. When I really like someone, I can seem to hide it everywhere except my face. The damn thing is always betraying me. Also, I’m not a “smiley person” so if I seem like one around you, you’re special because you actually make me happy.
  • TAKING INTEREST IN YOUR INTERESTS: If you’ve shared your interests with us, and now find us bringing up your interests on our own, that’s a sign that we’re trying to engage and connect with you. Of course, we might find your interest interesting, but there’s a good chance we’re doing it to show you that we find YOU interesting.
  • FRIENDSHIP FIRST: This may not be the case for every INFP, but for those that are looking for something long-term, it is likely we will want to know you very well before we act, if we act. Because we’re prone to idealizing, getting to know who you are is helpful in establishing whether our connection is real and worth pursuing. Friendship is a more genuine way to get to know someone compared to dating as well, and it’s the safe route if you don’t care about the friend-zone (personally speaking, I do not).
  • SHARING IS CARING:  We aspire to deeply connect with others, and that takes being vulnerable. INFPs are notoriously private and difficult to know, so opening up takes forever and is a privilege of sorts. Paired with friendship first, we will slowly reveal our most sacred self if we trust you. There might be some hesitation with this if we do like you, because we tend to instinctually hide our romantic feelings. An INFP opening up is the ultimate sign that we adore you in some way.

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+ GENERAL TIPS +

  • BE YOURSELF: Since we value authenticity, we despise inauthenticity, and we will usually be able to tell if you are putting on a front. Whatever you do, don’t be someone you’re not. Who you are should be more than enough for someone, and if it isn’t, then it clearly isn’t the right match.
  • DIVULGE YOUR TRUE SELF: When we badger you with questions, answer them honestly. Ask us some back and have it lead to a heart-warming, soul-connecting conversation. People seem to often inquire as to how to get an INFP to open up. Try to share the many parts of yourself with us, including the more exclusive, ooey gooey center. If we generally like you, we’ll be prompted to do the same, bit by bit. When we do share, please do not criticize us. That will make us feel misunderstood and will likely result in us clamming up again.
  • TELL US YOU’RE INTERESTED: If you’re wondering whether you should directly ask or strongly suggest your intentions, be direct — for your own sake and sanity, as well as our own. We can relate to not having the cajones to tell someone we care about them in a romantic way. And we tend to fall into the unrequited trap by either not saying it when we have the chance, or not saying it at all. Bravery fortunes the bold. Even if we turn out not to be interested, we will admire your courage because we know it’s a difficult thing to acquire. It’s best not to call INFPs out on how they feel, it’s better to share how YOU feel. Don’t manipulate them into telling you they’re interested, as that is a huge turn-off. And if you ask them on a date, try to make it clear it is a date. The more direct you can be, the less excruciating the outcome will be.

There you have it! Likely some INFPs will exhibit a mix of both love-shy and love-ready traits, shifting as they live and learn. If you are dating, are in a relationship with an INFP, or are anticipating this in the near future, check out my article on INFPs in relationships on Introvert, Dear.

AND, if you’re an INFP, are these signs true for you? Are there any that I missed? I’d love to know!

*ALL IMAGES ARE FROM FOX’S TELEVISION SHOW BOB’S BURGERS

HORROR-MONES, AN UPDATE

This is a follow-up to my post entitled “HORROR-MONES”.
This week, I visited my general practitioner and a gynecologist to get some insight into whether or not hormone imbalances or deficiencies are the causes for my General Anxiety Disorder symptoms (self-diagnosed).

Before I get into the details of these visits, and their results, I thought I should mention in detail what my symptoms and “treatments” are, since I’ve only written about it in spurts as a way to vent.

+ S Y M P T O M S +

MILD

  • Increased heart rate
  • Difficulty breathing, shallow breathing
  • Trouble focusing on tasks
  • “Blood swirling” sensations in calves (maybe this is equal to tingling?)
  • Stomach ache or discomfort
  • mild headache (lasts less than an hour)
  • Easily surprised/ startled (nervous system on alert)
  • Difficulty relaxing

MODERATE

  • Dizziness and room spinning
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye flashes in settings with high contrast in lighting
  • Intolerance to florescent lights
  • Eye pain
  • Seeing things that are not there (shadows, figures, etc.)
  • Muscle spasms in legs, arms, neck, and back of the head
  • Trouble sitting still, strong desire to move
  • Heart palpitations
  • Mild chest pain
  • Severe headaches lasting two or more hours (typically four hours)
  • Mood swings (especially PMS)
  • Complete inability to focus
  • Insomnia
  • Trouble falling asleep
  • Trouble staying asleep

SEVERE

  • Vertigo
  • Feeling like I am moving when I am not
  • Surges of stress that travel through body
  • Numbness in arms
  • Depersonalization
  • Brain skips: vibration in brain without losing thought (pretty sure this is NOT a petit mal seizure, but I could be wrong)
  • Dark thoughts and intense emotion, usually morbid in nature (but not suicidal)
  • Panic episodes, usually mild hyperventilation and tears that won’t quit
  • Panic attacks — have only had one to date

MANIFESTATIONS OF ANXIETY

  • Fear of having a seizure (I have had 5 within my lifetime)
  • Fear of fainting (I have fainted more times than I can count)
  • Reluctance to leave the house (mild agoraphobia)
  • Reluctance to visit places that are or are near places of panic episodes or seizures.
  • Temporarily fearful of driving
  • Temporarily fearful of going through security and being stuck on airplane
  • Stress during events I am nervous for, i.e., drawing blood
  • Stress during events I am excited for, i.e., visiting with friends
  • Stress increase during suspected ovulation

+ T R E A T M E N T S +

THINGS I’VE TRIED THAT DID NOT WORK

THINGS I’VE TRIED THAT HELPED

  • Gaia Ashwagandha: stopped due to intense headaches
  • Life Seasons Anxie-T: very mild effect, but still helped sometimes
  • Nature Made B-12 Cyancobalamin 1000mg: strongest effect, but now experience heart palpitations and chest pain so can no longer take this 😦
  • Stopped drinking coffee completely
  • Limited sugar in diet
  • Drink filtered water from tap in glass bottles (vs. filtered water in plastic bottles)
  • Challenging myself to do the scary things anyway: probably the best thing one can do
  • Meditation (loving-kindness!), journaling, distraction, writing

THINGS I WILL TRY IN THE FUTURE

These were within a 9 month period, starting April 2016 to present (January 2017). Now, I would say I experience mild symptoms on occasion, always unwarranted. I am much better at coping and focusing on other things, so it’s not as excruciating, it’s just annoying. My symptoms started to improve the most at the end of November 2016 when I began taking the Nature Made B-12 supplement and drinking filtered water from home vs. in plastic bottles.

*****
Okay, now that’s all out of the way. What were my results?

From the GP, I learned that it is highly unlikely that I have a B-12 deficiency given the numbers from my blood test in May. B-12 was in a normal range, magnesium was normal, and so was my thyroid. I am getting another blood test (ugh) soon just to be sure, and I love that my GP believes me enough to check again. The only thing my blood test told me was that I need more aerobic exercise and more vitamin D (which I have been taking since May).

The gynecologist was more tricky. For one, he answered my question about my periods. They are NOT irregular. He proceeded to explain how menstrual cycles worked, which for the most part I learned in Biology. He didn’t explain why the cycle lengths vary so much, implying that that’s just “how it is”…which is not a good enough answer for me. I almost sensed he thought I wouldn’t have the capacity to understand how all of this works, as there was some condescension when I was explaining my questions and symptoms. I don’t blame him though, as it’s not like he has the time to teach all these details to me. I just bought Taking Charge of Your Fertility: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive Health by Toni Weschler, MPH. It’s this giant book that describes in detail myths and answers on female health. It seems very comprehensive so far, although it’s non-fiction which is always more of a chore to read.

As for the hormone imbalance, he looked at my saliva test results that I brought, initiated, and paid in full for, scanning them for one minute and said, no, I don’t have a hormone imbalance. The saliva test said that it’s likely I have a progesterone deficiency: 60 pg/mL (.06 ng/mL) about 3 days before my period (Luteal phase), when the normal amount would be around 120 pg/mL (1.20 ng/mL) for my age of 25. The general normal range for premenopausal women is 75-270 pg/mL. Progesterone drops to initiate menstruation, hence my progesterone should be low-ish, but there should be a fair amount given that your body does not produce progesterone at all during the Follicular phase (start of period to ovulation). I got the impression though that the test accounts for this, as they ask for information on your menstrual cycle, and you can only take the test 7 days after ovulation or before your menstrual cycle begins. Estradiol, testosterone, and DHEAs were in the normal range.

Here’s a chart displaying normal ranges of progesterone:

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He offered to put me on low dose birth control to help with cramps and PMS, but I felt that would be pointless. I personally don’t believe that hormonal birth control is the right option for me and my body. Thanks to my neuroscience class, I learned how precious hormones are and I do not wish to mess with them when it’s not necessary. While I appreciate BC’s existence for the millions of women who rely on it, I do not wish to use it, especially with it’s role in inhibiting fertility (which is controversial and obviously not the case for everyone). My mom struggled with fertility, and it’d be nice to have kids one day without the added struggle.

It’s most likely that the gynecologist was correct about the hormone test, as he is an expert after all. But…I am still skeptical, or at least confused. I still feel like something is off. I accept that I could be completely wrong about this, as I do have a history of trauma and for all I know, that is enough to randomly send someone into a strong spell of anxiety symptoms. But my hunch tells me this is not the whole story, especially since something as minor as a vitamin and crappy tasting water have helped me the most significantly.

Within the next month or so, I’ll do another blood test, this time testing all the hormones, so it will be interesting to see if it’s consistent with the gynecologist’s verdict or the saliva test’s verdict. Another update ensues! Though I hate needles so don’t expect that one for a while, lol. I am planning to use this guide to make sure I get an accurate progesterone reading.

THE DISNEY TAG

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“Love in Bloom” by Jerrod Maruyama

One of my biggest, nerdy interests is…Disney! To me, there is no age limit for Disney, and I approach my love for it with no shame. I’ve been in a bit of a post-Christmas slump, so I thought this would add a little magic in after watching simply_mckenna‘s video. She had some really unique answers and it made me want to do it too. So here’s mine!

1. Favorite Disney movie?

Basically all of them. But stand outs would be Fantasia, Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid, Tangled, Wreck-It-Ralph, and Moana.

2. Walt Disney World or Disneyland?

Disneyland! It’s the original.

3. Favorite Disney character?

Olaf

4. The first Disney movie you remember seeing in the theatres?

The Lion King

5. What type of Disney item do you collect the most? (Pins, Vinylmation, dolls, etc.)

Pushed pennies and Disneyland ticket stubs

6. Your favorite Disney song?

“A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes” from Cinderella. The lyrics always make me tear up as dream worlds are always better than the real world. I think it best evokes the intentions of Walt Disney and his company.

7. Favorite attraction/ride at the parks?

Basically all of them. But if I had to choose one: Pirates of the Caribbean. Haunted Mansion with the Nightmare Before Christmas overlay is a close second.

8. What is your dream job at Disney?

Disneyland Tour Guide, or Imagineering

9. Who’s the park character you never want to miss meeting at the parks?

Not really into characters, but looking at the way little girls react to princesses waving back at them is the cutest thing ever.

10. What’s your most treasured Disney item?

My souvenir photograph on Splash Mountain from the first time I ever went to Disneyland.

11. Which Disney voice actor would you most like to meet?

Walt Disney (he was the original voice for Mickey Mouse). Also, Thurl Ravenscroft or Paul Frees who did voices all over Disneyland park (notably from Haunted Mansion).

12. Favorite Disney movie that’s not a classic/famous?

The Emperor’s New Groove

13. If you could say anything to Walt Disney right now, what would it be?

I’d probably be too nervous to say anything besides blurting out, “thank you.” But I’d want to say he’s an inspiration for his ability to pursue his dreams, despite people constantly telling him his dreams couldn’t be done. I’d tell him I wish Epcot could have become what he intended it to be.

14. Your favorite snack to get at the parks?

Churro and cotton candy to take home with me.

15. Your favorite parade/show at the parks?

Parade: like McKenna, The Main Street Electrical Parade. I remember being amazed by the snails and thought they were lady bugs! That music is unforgettable.

Show: I love Fantasmic, but it’d have to be the Magical fireworks show. It makes me the most nostalgic for childhood, and I always cry, guaranteed. These fireworks made me fall in love with Disneyland.

16. Flounder, Sebastian, or Scuttle?

Sebastian

17. Your favorite Disney memory?

My first time going to Disneyland, of course

18. Do you have a favorite pair of Mickey ears?

Yes, both of which I do not have. The first being the train conductor ones from California Adventure. The second being the limited edition poison apples from Halloween a few years ago.

19. If you could, what “forgotten princess” would you add to the official lineup?

Giselle from Enchanted

20. Your favorite princess dress/outfit?

Princess Tiana

21. Your favorite Disney soundtrack?

Cinderella, Peter Pan, or Mary Poppins

22. Genie, Abu, Carpet, Iago, or Rajah?

Rajah

23. Favorite restaurant at the parks?

Have yet to find one I really like, but I have a soft spot for the French Market purely for the live jazz band.

24. How did you first discover the “magic” of Disney?

I grew up on Disney movies and went to the park twice as a kid, but it wasn’t until after high school when I realized how superior Disney is.

25. What attraction are you most likely to go to first when you’re at the parks?

Indiana Jones for fast passes

26. Your favorite “iconic” moment? (ex. Ariel on the rock, Aladdin finding the lamp, Rafiki lifting Simba, etc.)

Hmmm..my new one would be from Moana, when she gives the heart back to Te Fiti and Te Fiti transforms into Te Ka.

27. What’s the saddest moment for you in any Disney film?

When Dumbo is separated from his mom after “Baby Mine” plays.

28. Best Disney kiss?

Sleeping Beauty’s!

29. If you could live in any world from a Disney movie, which would you choose?

The world in Monster’s Inc.

30. Favorite Disney villain?

Hades from Hercules

31. Which Disney princess has the best sidekicks?

Rapunzel, with Pascal and Maximus

32. If you could have a party themed around any Disney movie, which one would you pick?

Probably a Toy Story themed one.

33. Are you the only one obsessed with Disney in your family?

Pretty much.

34. Lumiere, Mrs. Potts, Cogsworth, or Chip?

Lumiere

35. Favorite Disney princess/ prince?

Rapunzel, because we’re very very similar.

36. If you could choose the plot/adaptation for the next Disney movie, what would it be?

A princess whose curse is unrequited love.

37. Favorite hotel at the parks?

The Disneyland Hotel, all for that singing headboard and the history.

38. Which Disney movie do you turn to when you’re sad/upset?

Tangled

39. The Aladdin show or Frozen show?

Haven’t seen either 😦

40. Do you plan to have/have you had your honeymoon at a Disney park?

Nope! But plenty of vacations.

41. Favorite piece of Disney clothing/accessory to wear?

Disney keychains

42. One thing you wish you could add to the Disney parks?

Interactive scavenger hunt type games similar to the ones from the D23 expo a few years ago, and the one that came with the Haunted Mansion Ghost Post subscription box.

Also, to bring back the Tahitian Terrace and incorporate Moana into it.

43. Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck?

Mickey!

44. What Disney movies/worlds would you like to see in the next Kingdom Hearts game?

I want to play but I don’t have the right consoles

45. Which Disney movie, even if it’s not your favorite, will always have a special place in your heart and for what reason?

Moana because I’m part Polynesian. My whole family went to see it multiple times, and it was so nice to have our cultural heritage represented. Even though there weren’t many Tahitian attributes in the film, it’s still incredibly relatable and a beautiful story.

AN INFP’S SAD FORAY INTO ONLINE DATING

In addition to this dating ideas article that I wrote, I have some thoughts on a dating related topic.

A few years ago, I moved back home after college and decided that I should full on commit to giving online dating a try since I had no other way to meet anyone new (especially as a more shy individual), and I had an abundance of free time wasting away that could be used for something new and interesting. Online dating seemed easy enough. Deep down I knew it wasn’t going to result in anything, and I think that attitude served as a self-fulfilling prophecy of sorts, as my experience was mildly average and not worth talking about. My expectations—exceptionally high, as always— ranged from meeting some quietly humbled vinyard-owning intellectual that I would magically fall deep in love with, to being catfished (I have a deep fascination for catfishes). Neither happened, but I did learn a lot about my preferences, my fears, the dating game, and why I will likely only return to online dating when I am ancient and desperately lonely.

TINDER

Initially, I had zero interest in trying Tinder as I, like many, completely disliked the whole idea of swiping right and left off of two to three photos and a few sentences. What if you’re swiping no to someone life-changing, and swiping yes to a psychopath? While studies say that it really doesn’t take you that long to decide whether or not you’re attracted to someone, it’s not like I really care to be aware of that fact, and this is one of the earliest cons I had with the app. It makes you feel like a horribly superficial human being (which is the modern truth but I truly wonder what this awareness does to the psyche).

The other con I realized early on was that your success is highly reliant on your area, as it goes with dating in general. I downloaded the app when I still lived in LA, and there were a ton of really unique men just within a two mile radius of me. In my home town, I found that approximately 88% of the profiles I was skimming were eerily similar, as if someone created a template for the male Tinder profile for these men to lazily fill in without any thought.

This imaginary template consisted of these things:

  • a “love for being outdoors”, with at least three outdoor activities listed, usually: hiking, surfing, kayaking, or the beach
  • a passion for beer
  • a desire for someone that is “chill”, “laidback”, “good vibes”, “drama free”, and wanting “a girl with a nice smile”
  • this selection of photos:
    a.) car or mirror selfie
    b.) a photo of him completing one of the listed outdoor activities
    c.) a photo of him with a mother or grandmother figure, often in dressy attire
    d.) a photo of him with friends, usually at a bar, club, or party, often including girls (of which, did indeed, have nice smiles)

Now, while this is perfectly fine, this is not necessarily enough for me to swipe yes, especially when I’ve seen it hundreds of time (I wish I saved my screenshots for proof). However, because so many of these profiles were similar, and could belong to someone who’s values and desires on Tinder are in high contrast to mine, I easily bypassed any opportunity for “heyy ;)” messages from these fellas and moved on to men that value deep conversation. Sadly, there weren’t too many of these. It took a long time for me to realize that I could actually meet up with this person. It would take even longer to decide whether I really wanted to do that. The prospect of meeting a complete stranger in person is scary for anyone, but because I avoid situations where small talk is guaranteed, it was usually not a risk worth taking. Then you or the other person would just stop replying if you lost interest, which isn’t that bad since you are strangers anyway, but it’s such an immature way of communicating that you lost interest. This tendency is one of the many ways in which general online communication methods can hurt IRL relationships.

I only ended up meeting with one person before giving up on Tinder, and I must admit, it was a pretty great date. We went for high quality ice cream, which to me, is much better than drinks or coffee for the first meeting (simply because it’s more delicious). With our cones and sticky fingers, we walked around, had a nice chat about our backgrounds, and a satisfactory amount of unexpected topics came up too (like favorite stand-up comedians and making art with math). But reflecting on the evening, I realized that I didn’t feel how I expected to feel.

While there was a semblance of connection, it wasn’t the connection, the sort of connection that drives you mad because you’re just so curious about them. I think this is why people that are more idealistic will struggle with online dating if you are looking for a serious relationship. There’s obviously a lot of expectation involved with anything when being an idealist. But within the context of online dating, you feel as if you have to decide rather quickly whether or not you are interested enough to try with this person. And when you don’t feel that connection right away, you feel as if continuing to try and date this person can seem like a lie, or like you’re leading them on (which is definitely not what you want to do). I know that realistically, one date is way too early to know whether or not you’re compatible. But is it early enough to know whether or not you want to be?

OKCUPID

OkCupid’s format is much better than Tinder’s for obvious reasons. There’s more information required, so more chance to make an accurate impression of yourself, and the questions are a nice plus since they determine your percentage of compatibility with someone. BUT there’s a downside to this: you have more freedom to lie, fib, or embellish. Which brings me to the reason why I pretty much despise dating in the first place: you will only get to know the polished construct of who that person wants you to think they are—at least in the beginning. This is especially applies to online dating. I read something in the NYT about a man who lied about his height online and how he claimed it was the only way he ended up married. There was also a video filmed as a social experiment where an attractive girl was made up to look heavier than she actually was, then met with men she had been talking to online. All but one guy left, most mentioning that they felt played. People can be deceitful—whether it’s intentional or not.

OkCupid was more overwhelming in terms of the number of messages, but not to the degree that I’ve heard people complain about. It was fairly easy to vet through who took the time to read my profile, and who had not. Funny enough, I only met with men who mentioned their MBTI type in their first message, so that says a lot about me and my preferences. I attempted to message a few guys that seemed to be the more artsy, shy-er, serious sort, but they never responded. So, I sympathize with the expectations men have to get things going which still apply online, and I know how it feels to put in effort and be ignored. Doesn’t feel so great, but everything happens for a reason.

One odd experience I had on an OkCupid date was with a guy who revealed to me he had social anxiety. I have no problem with that, and have my own struggles with social interaction. But because I kept asking him questions that led to the, “well, I have social anxiety so no” type of answer, I attempted to ease this by empathizing and telling him that I’m prone to awkwardness, but I’ve tried to accept this.

He responded: “Yes, I agree. You’re awkward.”

This was about 15 minutes into the date -__-  I remember having a Mean Girl moment thinking: “While it’s true, it’s only okay if I say it.” Definitely lost interest after that, but to be polite I sat there and listened to him talk about his job for about an hour and a half (!) until I found an excuse to leave. He had the gall to call me awkward, and he had the gall to ask me on a second date, which I clearly did not go on.

Sadly, the other dates were lackluster, as these men were in a similar life position as me: lost, confused, and fairly unmotivated to change. This doesn’t mean they weren’t interesting, because they were, but two people in the same position in life does not a stimulating relationship make. So I realized that this wasn’t the right time for me to be doing this whole dating thing. If I wasn’t feeling so great about myself, how can I expect someone else to do the same?

CONCLUSION:

I see the potential for INFPs specifically to feel depressed and pessimistic after attempting online dating, because if you have a hard time finding people you are compatible with IRL, that feeling can be amplified in this process, since it’s still dependent on your area. I wonder if it’s truly possible for me to fall for someone within this context anyway. The context from the start is romantic, so you are always going to be seeing the person through those lenses, which just feels biased. You are going to be hyperaware of any flaws or value differences, which is a good thing to do in theory, but it can also halt progress if you’re notoriously picky. And like all things that take a long time, finding someone you connect with generally, let alone romantically, requires the time and effort to try and try and try. Ain’t nobody got time for that. It’s too draining. All these things don’t differ from regular dating, and dating can be a challenge for introverts, including INFPs.

Conversely, I can also see the potential for INFPs to find what they feel is “the one” online. Because we are so reclusive, it’s a chance to play, but on our terms. Generally, it is near impossible for a person to decipher whether an INFP is interested since they can be a little hot and a little cold. We communicate caring, but we care about everyone. And usually when we do like you, we tend to ignore the fact that you exist completely. When one leaves it up to us to communicate interest, it can either be so subtle that’s it’s invisible, or so over the top that it flops miserably, resulting in feeling completely emotionally naked. So to have all of that lessened (to a degree) by the fact that you’re starting off on a romantic note can help, especially if you’re paired with an extrovert that’s not afraid to boldly tell you how they feel about you. But where are these extroverts and how do I find one? Apparently not online and online dating 😛 At least dating online gives INFPs a chance to hone in on exactly the kind of person they want as luckily communicating important values is likely to happen right away.

The fantasy I have in my head is of just meeting someone naturally, where I get to know them without any sort of agenda. But I do not care to leave the house long enough for this to happen (at the moment).

Hopefully this fantasy comes to fruition, as I do not plan on returning to the online dating scene anytime soon (despite the unexplainable temptation to try Bumble).

HORROR-MONES

ANXIETY UPDATE + TMI WARNING (THERE IS TMI IN THIS POST)
Somewhere on this blog, I joked about having a hormone imbalance as the root cause for my anxiety. It’s something I’ve always kind of suspected but after my GP said that most people who come to him with anxiousness just need a therapist, I decided not to explore it any further (that was a dumb idea).

See, my symptoms started at the beginning of this painful-for-everyone  year, a little while after I started drinking a tea I was recommended for “irregular periods” and severe cramps, which I’ve always had. It’s called Raspberry Leaf tea, you can find this at Whole Foods. It’s supposed to balance out female hormones, which is helpful for cramps, and is often recommended for pre-menopausal or pregnant women, but any female can drink it. I had about a cup a day. Now that I have properly done my research (which I should have done before), I know that Raspberry Nettle Leaf tea typically increases your bodies production of estrogen. I assumed this was good. Now I know more estrogen is not so good.
Should I have been drinking this in the first place? Probably not.

I am one of those women who is really confused as to what “regular” means regarding the menstrual cycle. As most things applied to anything, but particularly women, we are taught/shown the ideal or average scenario, and really nothing more, which is why things like WebMD exist. In this case, the ideal and average scenario is the circular diagram lasting 28 days (often associated with birth control), displaying what is implied to be the average length of a complete menstrual cycle. I’ve always had a period that’s like “SURPRISE, HERE I AM!” at the worst possible moment of the month. Literally—graduations, dance recitals, long airplane rides…if I ever get married, I know my period will make every possible effort to join me in the happy moment. So I’m guessing there’s a relationship there with stress and my period.

I have been tracking my period for two years and it varies between 24-36 days. It’s been 28 days maybe four times. Literally every cycle is often a vastly different length. Is that normal? I have no idea, and research has not helped my attempts to solve this. I would assume that a few days difference is NBD, but the way my period shifts so much has left me so perplexed (and quite frankly, annoyed).

Along with this possible irregularity, I have horrifying cramps every month. I would routinely miss school because of them back in the day. The feeling would be very similar to what I imagine having a rolling pin pressed into your lower abdomen for hours at a time must feel like. Again, I assumed this is normal, because all those “Learn About Your Changing Body” videos make it seem like they are to be expected. But then I was told it is not, and sought the help of raspberry tea.

Once my anxiety symptoms kicked in, I stopped drinking the tea. Eventually, I’d give up all caffeine (except chocolate), including decaf coffee (oh how I miss you dearly).

The last few months, I’ve noticed that my PMS has gotten worse, particularly with my moods. The first few days before the menstruation begins, I am overly emotional. My baseline is already overly emotional, but this is like a whole new level. Lots of tears and lots of frustration. And it’s all unwarranted and hard to explain. That saying, “Crying over spilt milk” makes a lot of sense to me during that time. Dealing with my anxiety symptoms is a lot harder too, but they don’t increase in severity. Then my period comes, and I’m happy and normal (with no anxiety symptoms). But after my period ends, my fertile window opens and that’s when my anxiety symptoms all of sudden seem way worse, again unwarranted. It’s mostly with my breathing that I’ll notice a difference, where I’ll be relaxed at home but still be hyperventilating.

So I ordered a saliva hormone test, and I got an answer (kind of). I have low progesterone. Now whether or not it’s a result of my anxiety, or the cause of my anxiety, is the real mystery. Chicken or the egg type deal. It’s curious that’d I’ve more symptoms during ovulation as more progesterone is required for it, so maybe I do not ovulate each month?

I have an appointment to sort all this out in late January.

But in the meantime, avoiding eating out of plastics has really helped. Plastics (like water bottles) have synthetic estrogen in them, along with a lot of materials we are surrounded by or consume daily. So even with dishware, I try to use ceramic and glass. I have also started to take a B-12 vitamin, along with a D3 and a Super-Complex B vitamin. Lastly, I have been trying to eat as much fish as possible (even though I’m not the biggest fan of fish). It’s easier to take fish oil but because I have syncope, fish oil can affect circulation and blood pressure, so I’d rather just get it in as au naturale as possible. I’m not sure if these things have been the reason, but for the moment (so I’m not jinxing myself again)— I feel great! I have had almost no anxiety symptoms for a whole month! I pray to the gods that this lasts. My guess is that this change is mostly attributed to vitamin B-12, as I lot of my anxiety symptoms could actually be attributed to a B-12 deficiency.

Also, from my research, there are lots of other natural supplements that can help balance female hormones. The safest seems to be Ashwagandha, but it gave me horrible headaches so I had to stop using it. Hormone imbalance is worth looking into in depth if you suspect you’ve got a problem. Low progesterone can result in estrogen dominance, but it is also linked to other things, particularly with thyroid disorders.

I’ll try to remember to update after I see a gynecologist to see if I was right.

RANT: BEING THE MOST HATED MBTI TYPE ON THE INTERNET

Admittedly, the title is melodramatic. In reality, I guess I’d say INFPs have the most negative stereotypes associated with them amongst all MBTI types. Many of their (our) defining traits are not societally appreciated, nor desired. As an INFP that has soaked up a ton of information online about my personality type and MBTI in general, it is hard to ignore the amount of criticism and judgment INFPs receive…this is despite the fact that I am going to be more alert to that anyway because I am an INFP and we are always alert to criticism and judgement. People complain about us a lot, to the point where it’s kind of “a thing that is known” online.

BUT.  it. is. so. tiresome. I scan various type talk forums daily, and I’m so over reading misleading comments about the way INFPs are and why they are so annoying. There are even arguments about why INFPs are so terrible. It’s funny—and fitting—that the type that is repeatedly deemed the most sensitive and the most misunderstood would be subject to the most hate.

I’m not making this post to whine about typism as if it’s some horrible tragedy that “demands action” or something ridiculous like that. Every type is subject to it’s own typist associations and stereotypes. This is just a simple rant, a venting session, a much needed way of unloading all the things I’m tired of seeing about INFPs on the internet.

So here is my list of things I’m tired of seeing about INFPs on the internet:

1. ANYONE WHO IS DEPRESSED, MELANCHOLIC, SENSITIVE, OVER-EMOTIONAL, WHINY, SELFISH, WEAK, PRIVATE, INSECURE, SUICIDAL, HARD TO PLEASE, etc. ARE TYPED AS INFP.

Yes, INFPs can have some of these traits at times, especially if they’re “unhealthy” (which I’ll go into later). But INFPs aren’t exclusively like this. Anyone going through some tough shit can be like this. They’re called emotions. And when you experience them in higher amounts, you can be prone to some erratic behavior. Anyone who’s had a rough past can be like this too. Many of these traits can manifest as negative patterns. Hormone imbalances, mental disorders, addiction can all lead to some of these traits.

So when others see these traits and have some knowledge about MBTI, they think, “Okay, this person must be INFP, that’s why they are acting like *insert trait here*.” But INFPs are rare-ish (around 2-3% of the population). Many people mistype themselves, so assuming someone else is a type just because you can and want to doesn’t mean you’ve got it right. Tests are prone to being highly inaccurate too.

2. OTHERS PROJECT THE TRAITS LISTED IN 1. ON TO YOU AND YOUR TYPE.

While being sensitive, private, melancholic, not assertive enough, and prone to depression are traits of INFPs, I would say that introspective INFPs are aware of this and work hard to keep it in check, or naturally share these aspects of themselves with only a few. Then there are a smattering of traits that are applied to INFPs just because they are hard to understand, difficult to deal with, or seen as unhealthy and unwanted, like being suicidal, having any mental disorder, being over-dramatic, argumentative, whiny, insecure, self-centered, immature….and so on and so forth.

It gets to a point where if you have INFP somewhere on your profile, it’s assumed you are capable or have experience with these traits, since they’ve become associated with the type. This comes into play in reasons 3 and 4.

3. OTHERS PROJECT THEIR HANG-UPS WITH INFPS AND “INFPS” ON TO YOU.

Because people are walking around the world, thinking these people with these negative traits are INFPs, they are bound to have problems with these “INFPs” because those negative traits can be very problematic. Then you, a self-proclaimed INFP, go online, and you read all these accounts of why “INFPs” are so hard to deal with. When you interject, saying that maybe they are mistyped, the person will cling onto their notion that the person must be an INFP because they are unhealthy.

Furthermore, any discussion with someone who has had a bad experience with an “INFP” or even a real INFP will then proceed to project their negative experiences/ ideas with “INFP” onto you,  which is soooooo fun -___-  and because it’s online, there’s nothing you can do about that. To me it’s like the idea of being upset at someone for what they did in your dream: it’s not applicable to reality. You have to try and be objective and leave your bias at the door. You have to try to understand that people of one type can be DiFfErEnT.

4. YOUR OPINION IS OFTEN NOT VALUED OR TAKEN AS SERIOUSLY.

This one doesn’t apply to the safe-haven that exists in INFP forums. INFPs, when together, are very accepting and won’t even kick out the “INFPs” for hanging around. It’s when you leave the haven..that’s when there’s the danger of not being taken seriously.

Now this could really be true for any type who has their type on display, and then wanders to a different type’s forum. I’ve seen that happen all the time too. You become a tourist more or less in a strange and unfamiliar place. But there are some types that get away with it, like ENTPs and ENFPs. They seem to be welcome everywhere (and for good reason, they’re fun 🙂 )

I find that when you do wander, your opinion can be lost in translation…usually ignored, glazed over, or disagreed without reason. And as an INFP, I wonder if all these negative associations affect how my opinion is perceived. If I had no type displayed, or a different type displayed, would the result be any different? Or are my opinions just really crappy and that’s why it’s not well received? That is possible, of course. This would make a good experiment.

5. DISCUSSIONS ALWAYS MENTION HEALTHY INFPS VS. UNHEALTHY INFPS.

Health is a crucial and helpful aspect of MBTI. But it seems that you can’t have a discussion about an INFPs behavior without health being a factor. We are seen as perpetually unhealthy. Whether it’s true or just society shining it’s sense of ideal personage onto us, it’s a question that seems to always apply to anyone of our type. I think it’s become a stereotype, how unhealthy we are.

Yes, we do struggle a lot more than most, but we are capable of being well-rounded folks trying to self-improve too. We aren’t all experiencing chronic mental breakdowns every hour, okay ?!

6. MISTYPED INFPS DON’T WANT TO BE INFPS.

I’ve seen so many cases where people who are clearly Fi-Ne-Si-Te are in denial about their Fi-Ne-Si-Te. And I get it. I was disappointed at first when I realized I was INFP. Yes, I have all these awesome traits but oh no look at all these awful ones we apparently have too! I don’t want to be associated with all of that!

INFPs should be proud, we have some incredible, irreplaceable traits, even if there are some bad ones and negative associations too.

7. INFPS ARE ALWAYS COMPARED TO INFJS.

Type comparisons are an easy way to learn more about MBTI and understand the patterns. It also helps with mistyping. INFPs and INFJs are a common mistype, if not THE most common mistype. But aside from this scenario, I have seen so many threads and posts and YouTube videos comparing the two. I get that our differences are fascinating, but because INFJs have the best stereotype associations—being compared to Jesus, saints, spirit guides, and psychics, INFPs can then be seen as the flailing weepy self-centered empathic creatives that can’t do life.

One comparison that annoys beyond compare that is all over the internet now is the one about the milk. You know, where the INFJ with Fe says, “It looks like we’re out of milk, can you get some more?”, and the INFP with Fi says, “Hey. We’re out of milk. *walks away*” The INFJ obviously accomplishes more in that one. You know what I say when I run out of milk? “There’s no more milk but I can get it.” And people say we’re selfish…that we aren’t capable of being responsible adults…no, we are, we just hate doing it all the time because it’s tedious. There’s a difference!

As a disclaimer, I have nothing against INFJs, despite our tendency to miscommunicate, they’re very cool and I’m sure a lot of them would agree about how strange it is that we are so often pitted against each other.

8. THE FACT THAT ONE HAS TO ACCEPT THAT THERE ARE APPARENTLY MANY UNHEALTHY INFPS IN THE WORLD.

I say this because I think a person who is actually unhealthy and actually mentally unstable will most likely be impossible to type. Cognitive function stackings will be all over the place.

As someone who deals with a lot but considers themselves to be trying hard at being healthy and mentally stable, I wonder whether these negative and unhealthy associations are real and valid at all. I do believe INFPs are prone to depression, but depression does not equate being immature, insecure, overly-emotional, etc. I do believe we have a dark-side where some of these traits do come into play, but the rate of which people seem to be interacting with unhealthy INFPs seems to be unusually high. The INFPs I know IRL struggle too, but they are not the negative stereotypes I have seen either.

Instead of debating this online, when someone mentions their “INFP” or unhealthy INFP, I just accept that it’s a possibility. But it sucks that there isn’t a way to measure this ratio for sure.

* * * * *

Wowow that was long. A lot of these complaints really stem from Introverted Feeling (Fi) and I think types that have Fi can be subject to similar accusations (ISFP, ENFP, INTJ).

Well that’s all I got to say on this for now. Crossing my fingers that INFPs can relate!

playlist // unrequited love

As a follow up to my INFP and unrequited love article, here are some of my most overly played songs pertaining to the topic which have helped me when I just need to float in my feelings of love lost. Not all of them are specifically about unrequited love, many of them are just about heartbreak in general, but all encapsulate the feeling of wanting to be with someone you are not with. It seems that people ordinarily choose Spotify to beautifully display their playlists, but I am too cheap to use Spotify, so all links are through the almost always accessible YouTube :*)

1. “LULLABIES (JIM E STACK REMIX)” by YUNA

2. “SWIMMING” by LITTLE DRAGON

3. “WE WERE IN LOVE” by TA-KU ft. JHENÉ AIKO

4. “GREEN EYES” by ERYKAH BADU

5. “THIS IS WHAT IT FEELS LIKE” by BANKS ft. JAMIE WOON

6. “BAD NEWS” by KANYE WEST

7. “YOU SENT ME FLYING” by AMY WINEHOUSE

8. “JULIA” by SZA

9. “THE LESS I KNOW THE BETTER” by TAME IMPALA

10. “IS IT A CRIME” by SADE

an ode to the cliche: the romantic comedy

as much as writing about anxiety helps me, i have a million other thoughts that breach my synapses daily, and the one i want to explore today is that of a film genre, one that is dying a very slow and painful death in popularity: the romantic comedy.

it seems that during the eighties and nineties, the romantic comedy was unstoppable. it was everywhere. we had Molly Ringwald, we had Julia Roberts, and we had the queen of them all: Meg Ryan. our country was enthralled with following these steadily predictable plot lines: the initial meeting, the spark of interest, the torment…thinking “oh no, they’re not going to end up together!!?!” during that plot twist, and sighing with relief when they did finally indeed end up together (who would of thought, right?). i’d be willing to bet that these films helped mold the romantic ideals of millions of girls (and boys too) who had access to cable television back when everybody had cable television. i know this is certainly true for me.

the reputation of these films have taken quite a nose-dive in popular culture. and that’s understandable, because the vast majority of romantic comedies are highly unrealistic. most of them have incredibly awful acting, and even more awful writing. but they serve a purpose: to keep that tiny little sliver of hope inside the hearts of single,lonely, frustrated men and women of all ages ALIVE. that love actually exists in the mundanity that so many of us experience, and that you just have to wait for your happy accident. cheese-factor aside, perhaps there is this secret desire in most people to have a “how we met and got together story” akin to the tales told in the classic romantic comedy. that has to explain why they can be box-office hits once in a blue moon. despite how nauseating they can be, there is value in this not-frequently appreciated genre.

but, answer me this then: why, knowing that these films have the capacity to be bad, do we keep purposefully making bad romantic comedies? take for example, How to be Singlebesides being a giant hour and a half ad for Stella Artois beer and Bliss spa products (the most random combination of products ever, by the way), the point and lesson of the film suggested within it’s very own title was non-existent until the last 30 seconds before the ending credits.

romantic comedies of today seem to be stuck in emphasizing modernity’s effect on love-with too many mentioning’s of Tinder and the word”bae”, too much emphasis on random hook-ups and their awkwardness, and somehow, seem to skip-over all the depth of feelings that love entails, focusing on the glitz of attraction, sex, unnecessary drama, and the unknown/never shown happily ever after instead. many television shows manage to highlight the ups and downs of modern love perfectly, like Modern love, Girls, Insecure-even Sex and the City to a degree. but the romantic comedy film doesn’t seem to be about romance anymore, and instead it’s just two people’s complicated story of how they formed a relationship: Hollywood-ified with fake ideas of what happiness looks like along with really good looking actors. the fact that they’re in love is simply implied, but it’s never truly and thoroughly demonstrated anymore.
mailhed
the inspiration for this topic came from my personal favorite romantic comedy You’ve Got Mail, which i watch every year, usually during the fall and winter seasons. this is a perfect example of a romantic comedy film i wish was made nowadays. i was sad to see it made fun of in a Bob’s Burgers episode (Gayle Makin’ Bob Sled), but i still love it anyway. it’s hard to say why i love You’ve Got Mail so much, because i love so many things about it: the quirky music, the shots of NYC, the fact that it’s basedon two people who love books, the acting is pretty phenomenal and consistent, plus Dave Chappelle’s in it. but the reason i love it most, i think, is the writing.

“Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.”

how does that not make you, the viewer, want to get to know Joe Fox? Nora Ephron knew what she was doing. as much as the movie was about their romance, you kind of fell in love with Joe Fox and Kathleen Kelly too. you really got to know what they were about, and you saw how they continuously analyzed one another’s character, rather than solely reacting off of one another’s actions the entire time. you clearly saw what they were feeling each step of the way, so when they fell in love, you felt it too. somehow it didn’t feel forced or contrived, you wished for it to work out for them. it took place in a beautiful setting, complete with beautiful words, like any good film. higher quality romantic comedies can really do wonders for the psyche in terms of feeding that overly optimistic child inside of you that doesn’t get tending to enough. and it makes you wonder if love can come in unsuspected ways, even if it involves the internet, like in this film.

my final thought is that, just like how a romantic comedy is comforting, that predictable ending they often have is also comforting, because it makes us feel as if there’s a sense of control in our future and our love lives, even though both will rarely fall under a predictable pattern. while romantic comedies are cliché, and now kind of ignored, some of the better ones are just what you need on a Saturday night when your mind is consumed with how single you are. i think of them as band-aids for a broken heart. they do the job for a few hours and then slip away inconspicuously, leaving your wound pronounced and wrinkly. but sometimes that band-aid is all you need, at least for a little while. as for the future of romantic comedies…thank goodness woody allen is still around.

when you speak too soon *sigh*

i really wanted my next post to not be anxiety related but it’s almost as if i jinxed myself! my symptoms have made a vicious return, although this time around, they have manifested themselves differently, and thankfully not as severely. before i left for my trip, i was learning how to think positive and not let my symptoms stop me from accomplishing daily tasks. during my trip, i realized that my thought process was hurting me (literally with negative self-talk, a nasty habit) and i learned how to not react to the frustration of my symptoms. when i returned, i felt renewed and free. and that’s kind of when i stopped doing all the things that helped me before…like meditating. and exercising.

thankfully, i’ve been through this all before, so i am still able to push down those anxious thoughts that have no purpose. but recently i have been experiencing depersonalization again. it started with vision problems, leading me to feel cross eyed when i would look up suddenly, which later developed into vertigo. photophobia has been consistent while experiencing anxiety (and even beforehand), but these two new symptoms were stressful as i wasn’t really sure whether or not they actually were related to anxiety. thank god for the internet though, specifically the anxietycentre.com site. definitely suggest it as it gives very thorough explanations for all possible anxiety symptoms and how to handle them.

on a day i have been waiting with excitement for, i had horrible symptoms, such as brain spasms and dizziness. bizarre as i wasn’t nervous, just really really excited. then i started to feel as if my arms were detached from my body. it was very hard to deal with my symptoms that day, but i was determined, and i managed to survive without a panic attack (hurray!). but the “detached arm feeling” got worse, now i have numbness which leads to being even more clumsy, which i didn’t think was even possible. and from time to time, i have these random dark thoughts that just suddenly make an appearance and really disturb me. it feels like i’m reaching out to hug something with my arms no matter what position they actually are in…i’m sure Freud would have a lot to say about that. an unconscious need for physical affection? or perhaps my lack of oxytocin has now reached new levels. who knows. but i feel like a tilted frankenstein -_-

anxiety is generally very difficult to deal with, but aside from just trying to exist day to day with these weird afflictions your body is putting you through, figuring out WHY you are experiencing them is even more maddening. i have so many theories. i do have a history of trauma. literally, in i have experienced trauma to my head from falling while fainting or experiencing seizures. if you shaved my head, it would look like a deformed cake pop. and, more than likely, my brain is developed a little differently due to trauma in my late childhood, where i was sadly sexually victimized. neuroscience researched has found some evidence that trauma during childhood can lead to amygdala (aka “the fear center”) responses being heightened, or even causing the amygdala to literally increase in size, and thus causing the tendency to have mood disorders in adulthood much more likely. however, research is always finding new things, especially wth neuroscience, so who knows how long this theory will last.

i have been visiting a multitude of doctors to try to figure out a cause to my seizures, and hopefully, lead to a way of easing my anxiety, as i only react to my symptoms because i’m scared it can lead to having a seizure. i have also been trying to find a therapist, which let me tell you: very difficult! but maybe in the future, i can write a post about it. sometimes i wonder if my anxiety was caused by something silly and small, like my hormones going crazy, or i’m secretly allergic to gluten (please no, i love bread) or am lactose intolerant (i love dairy too, it’s practically my favorite food). or maybe i have an internet addiction which is why my eyes are always going crazy. or maybe i’m just always overstimulated and my body can’t handle it. it’s possible, thanks to this modern world, and it would explain why so many of my symptoms subsided while in Tahiti. for now, i am trying to be consistent in taking care of myself but hopefully i will find something that helps me soon.

let’s hope my next post is actually interesting and not related to psychosis in any way. no promises!

 

une mise à jour

so, i haven’t visited here for a while. and perhaps that’s because my anxiety has gotten tremendously better. i still experience it weekly as life progresses, but it’s not the crippling mess that i was dealing with daily. now i have it for reasonable occasions (for example: doctor’s appointments).

i definitely want to write about how i got to this point, but as i am not an expert, and as i am not 100% back to normal, i will wait until i am closer to that point. for now, i will say that traveling and meditation were the two most powerful tools to my healing. i think looking not only at my life, but who i am and who i want to be, as objectively as possible, far away from my formerly established self, was imperative, as it allowed me to see the flaws in my thoughts that i was blind to.

i plan on writing about non-anxiety related things on here, just because at this point i’ve realized that i really don’t have anyone to share some of my thoughts with anymore. which is sad, but actually [should] serve as motivation to seek people out, something i haven’t done for a while now.

à tout à l’heure