Raised by the internet

You know the subreddits. Raised By Narcissists, Lost Generation, Childfree, and other subreddits in that theme. Forums where people go to share notes and commiserate.

They’re great for a little while. You learn the boundaries of your traumas, find strategies to get past them, and then…

That’s where the problem starts. By the time you’ve gotten something out of them, you’re used to visiting and joining in on the misery. But you can’t just stay there and keep getting something out of it.

It’s true of anything. Eventually, you have to move on from the beginner level. You can’t live in your misery. At some point, you have to live. Take it from someone who spent hours a day getting mad in /r/lostgeneration while ignoring all the things I could be doing to thrive despite all the barriers put in my generation’s way. Once you grow past it, you realize a lot of the people hated by that forum are in the same boat, and getting your daily Five Hours Hate just keeps you from realizing who your allies are.

Let me leave you with one lesson: If a relationship makes you feel worse every day, the relationship is toxic. That could be family, friends, a partner, a place online. Or offline. Time and energy you spend in those relationships is time and energy you can’t spend learning from it and moving on to better things.