View Full Version : Needing enemies?
01-12-2008, 01:31 PM
Just a thought: I read in a mag today, somebody said, 'Humanity seems to need enemies, and, now that we don't really have an 'external' enemy, we're turning on each other': re all the critical news stories on celebrities, etc.
I've put that really badly, but it hit a nerve with me, because just lately one of my flatmates friends has been getting on my nerves bigstyle. He's in the flat all the time, and it's making me feel pushed out of my own sitting-room!!!
I'm ready to really snap at him!! And he woke me up today (Saturday) at 10.30 am yelling on his mobile phone outside my bedroom, on a morning when I'm shattered after a week of work and no sleep, and really needed the battery-recharge of a long lie-in!!!
(If anyone has any suggestions of how to cope with him, I'd be really interested in hearing 'em!)
But he's a nice guy (although I'm not a hundred per cent sure of him) and I was wondering why I couldn't just let it go (apart from the fact that it's v v stressful not to feel at home in your own home!) and then I read the 'need enemies' thing, and it seemed to make sense.
As if, like cats sharpening their claws, humans need to keep their 'defence' options ready?
Part of going raw vegan, for me (and probably everyone else) is the trying to get out of the cycle of needing energy from conflict/others' pain.
Any ideas on how to let this go (apart from valium?)
01-12-2008, 02:44 PM
I read in a mag today, somebody said, 'Humanity seems to need enemies, and, now that we don't really have an 'external' enemy, we're turning on each otherIf you have a link to the article I would be interested in reading it. I have thought the same thing since the advent of World terrorism.
01-12-2008, 02:49 PM
No, no link, sorry, it was just a throwaway comment by someone.
Oh yeah - Govts have always needed an external enemy: how else are you going to get the proles (aka the creditors) to obey and fight and die for you?
It used to be 'Satan', Witches, Communists and Homosexuals (oh my!) Now it's Terrorists. In many ways, it's becoming more like '1984' every day; and David Icke & co are being proved right in so many ways.
But of course that's not the whole story. Ah, post-modernism rocks ...
01-12-2008, 03:48 PM
Could it just be a boundaries thing? Are you saying you feel that the "needing enemies" may apply to your particular situation? I do understand that mentality, I see it all around, but not sure that's where you are. I understand about not being able to let it go, I wouldn't either. That would be a perfectly normal response from a person who needs a sanctuary. Boundaries are important, most people neither have, nor respect them, let alone know what one looks like. For me, I think I let things go for so long before realizing it's not right, then the frustration turns to anger misdirected. When I begin to honor myself and I seem like a different person because I am not so accomodating anymore. I have to really work at focusing my energy on what is best for my health, as an extrovert, I have always put my needs last. Am I really far off, or does any of that resonate with you?
01-13-2008, 11:00 AM
Thanks, Lavendula. A lot of that resonated with me - especially the use of the word 'sanctuary'. That's exactly what I need! It just p*sses me off, when he uses the flat as if it's his! and makes me feel that I'm in HIS way!! and so far, I haven't said anything to him, because, y'know, once said, impossible to take back.
It's just getting a bit much lately. I went away for Christmas, and they seemed to think the flat was just theirs!
The 'we need enemies' thing seemed to apply to me because I was getting so angry over it - probably because I'm feeling a bit threatened by the whole thing. How to get past the old need to defend oneself?
It's interesting, trying to get the balance right, between concentrating on other people and getting your own needs met. Just where does the extra energy come from?? (From a place of one's own that is a sanctuary - there's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza ...). Not that flatmates don't give energy - they do - but it's a drag, sometimes, always having to be nice, not knowing when you'll have the place to yourself, not living in really personal environment.)
I don't know if I'm brave enough/have enough energy, to do the whole grown-up thing of sometimes NOT being nice and accommodating. You'd think it would be easy, but it means taking responsibility, and not needing the energy of being liked all the time ... but the alternative's probably a lot worse! Ggggrrr ... sick of flatmates; sick of 'tests' (if that's what this is) wish for place of my own, or sharing with partner (ah, dream), or with one good friend. Can't do this!!!
Anyway. Thanks v much for your reply, and for listening to this whinge!
01-13-2008, 03:38 PM
It just p*sses me off, when he uses the flat as if it's his! and makes me feel that I'm in HIS way!! and so far, I haven't said anything to him, because, y'know, once said, impossible to take back.
take it from someone who has been a "people pleaser" and a "conflict avoider" their whole life. you will have to learn to speak your truth, and set appropriate boundaries -- until you do that, the universe will keep throwing people like this friend of your flatmate your way, that is, people who don't respect "unspoken" boundaries. right now, you're really mad, but the obtuse guy won't get that until it comes out of your mouth. he'll never read the subtle hints. and the only person you are hurting by keeping it all to yourself is YOURSELF, and when you do finally blow up at him or your flatmate in anger... well you know how that will go, too.
how about firmly and nicely expressing yourself before it reaches that point? you have rights, assert them appropriately! when you sulk around and hide yourself in your bedroom and then explode later, you're feeding the very conflict you are seeking to avoid. its DIFFICULT for some people (like me, so I know) to tell people straight out when they are angry or need something, but it is something that is NECESSARY to learn to break the cycle of conflict in our lives.
01-14-2008, 04:08 PM
Does this guy pay any rent, utilities, or buy anything that you consume? Vice-versa? Do you and your flatmates have any contractual agreements? Are they generally considerate people? Is this guy in need of shelter that he can only find there? It is hard to back track, but never to late to assert yourself in a sound and diplamatic manner, when you are not sleep deprived or stressed. think about it.
01-14-2008, 06:11 PM
People choose to be mean and get angry its all about choices. There are many ways to deal with anger and ways to be direct with people without being harsh.. even those who get under our skin. I've had to learn the hard way after being the one always stepped on.. I became assertive but not mean. It's all about choices. :) And no enemies are not necessary. There are just lots of bad apples out there.
01-15-2008, 10:42 AM
Thanks, y'all!! Much appreciated. And you're absolutely right - I do have to confront him/her, assertively, not aggressively. There doesn't seem to be any other way. Just the thought of having a mightily pissed off flatmate for the forseeable future ...(!)
Flatmate's friend does have a place to go - that's one of the most maddening things about it. They could stay at his place - but they don't!! Utilities - they don't use much. Always use their own food, only wash up their own dishes, etc etc. It's as if they want their own little island in the middle of a flatshare, and anything they do to be friendly is just to keep us sweet (that may be too cynical.)
It's so annoying, when people have been wearing the mantle of 'friend' (OK, maybe it's a mantle you've put on them) and then you have to mention something, and you realise that no, they're not your friends at all, and had no real intention of being so, and now they're going to prove it. And then I lose my temper, and the whole thing disintegrates into a row.
I need assertiveness training. Or a damn large gin and tonic!
Grrrrr. Maybe I need to say to myself, 'I deserve a place of my own', while clicking my trainers together, with a small dog in a basket beside me ...
Something has to change. It may as well be the way I handle things. That can be my new mantra ...
God bless, and thanks again. I'll be re-reading your posts(!)
01-15-2008, 11:56 AM
...and when the terrorists will be conquered than will be computer geeks or aliens. It is for political reasons i believe - to keep us focused on wrong things or to justify strange political decisions that limit our freedom, makes us poorer, or less safe.
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