Posted by: Marie | August 9, 2009

(121) Being realistic or cynical?

Post #121
[Journal entry written to my therapist on Saturday, April 4, 2009]

Hi, Dr. Barb –

Several days ago, my new Facebook beau called me for our first-ever phone call. Fourteen minutes into the conversation, he said he had to hang up to go to dinner with his friends (they had just gotten off work). He asked if he could call me back that night or the next evening. I said, “No problem!” However, he didn’t call back either evening.

A couple of days later, I sent a brief email to him and asked, “Hey, what happened?” He has not responded.

So, today, my anger (more precisely – my cynicism, according to you) is kicking in big time. The “what else could I expect from a man?” tape is running full speed in my head.

Sun Moon Lake

Sun Moon Lake

Yes, I am angry. But, I have to ask the obvious rhetorical question . . . if the outcome of a situation can be predicted with 99% accuracy, how can the prediction be labeled as cynicism? Why would it not be labeled as “being realistic”?

I know, too well, how the men to whom I am drawn will behave. I have 40+ years of evidence collected that proves this is the reality of my life. I’m quite sure it’s not cynicism. I’m quite sure I’m just being realistic.

I guess some people might see it as a self-fulfilling prophecy. However, I see it as an honest assessment of the quality of men I attract into my life. Until I shift what I believe about myself, the pattern will surely continue.

I don’t know how to make that shift in my self-image – and that is one of the bigger reasons I feel anger and frustration.

I’m thinking about the fact that you have been telling me to stop feeling angry/cynical – and I feel frustrated at my inability to quiet the tape running in my head – and I feel frustrated at not getting the type of help from you I believe I need – and my feelings of anger are growing even hotter – and I’m now in yet another nosedive.

– Marie

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  1. Hi Marie,

    I don’t think that people stop being angry and cynical just because they are told to and just because their therapist thinks it is the right thing to do. I think that they allow themselves to feel the anger and that makes it process through their body and they are later able to let go of it. One therapist told me behind ever angry feeling is a person who has been wounded.

    Perhaps that wounding needs to be acknowledged, felt, and healed. Otherwise the anger stays inside and it becomes toxic.

    Personally, I think you were hurt. That is awful. I’m sorry for that happening to you. It is appropriate to acknowledge that and I’m sorry that you were hurt. I understand feeling like you need to do something/heal more in order to avoid this kind of man in the future. I have seen that in my own life. I know other survivors who feel and believe the same thing.

    Good and healing thoughts to you.


    • Hi, Kate –

      Wow! Your words are very wise — and right on the mark, I believe.

      I appreciate how you have validated my thinking here . . .

      Thanks for your input!

      – Marie

  2. Hi Marie,

    I think one difference between anger and cynicism is not in the accuracy but how we feel about our correctness. With honesty even if disappointed we can take a next step, cynicism I think is a justification for our stuckness. It sounds to me like you do have a desire for doing something constructive – working on who you attract. I don’t know whether this is right – I haven’t met you except on our blogs – it may just be that you have been unlucky. But feeling good about ourselves seems like a constructive step for most of us at least.

    • Hi, Evan –

      I have not heard anyone identify the difference between anger and cynicism before . . . and what you said makes perfect sense to me. That is very helpful, even now (August).

      I wonder if Dr. Barb saw it as stuckness because I wasn’t willing/able to move forward on the path she had set out for me to follow — and I was giving her lots of justification for not moving forward in that direction. (stuckness + justification = cynicism)

      I wanted to move forward, just in a different direction.

      Thanks for commenting . . . I always learn from your comments!

      – Marie

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