Why Disagreeing with me Would be Unkind

And I do seem temperamentally suited to mild obsession.

For example, my relationship with Lulu was all my fault. I was the instigator; she was merely reacting. I was the one who was persistently faithful to the idea of being in love. With Lulu. She was the one who tolerated me with saintly patience, most of the time, until she’d lapse into occasional, understandable outbursts of screaming, furious frustration. 

I can’t blame her. I must have been impossibly exasperating[1], which, I think, supports the idea of having a brain that’s too busy in all the wrong ways. A completely inefficient brain that squanders its resources in pointless repetitions, counting, verbal tics, mental fidgeting, agitating ant-mantras, listing(!): an ADHD brain.

My behaviour still displays signs of rigidity, if not fixation, in other ways. There’s an obsessionality in discussions and arguments[2]. I just won’t let things drop, apparently. In arguments, I get accused of always wanting the last word, presumably because that final riposte isn’t dismissed, and so appears to have clinched and won the argument. 

But I don’t feel the need to win. It’s more that I don’t like to leave things unresolved and incomplete. I need it to be properly concluded, for all to be said that needs to be said. Otherwise I’m left with an anxiety, a sense that something’s wrong, something bad will happen unless I tie up the loose ends. 

(You can see the same obsessiveness, in this blog, when I say the same thing over and over again with slightly different words, to ensure I’ve said it correctly. Look at the previous paragraph, for example.)

I think this, also, is a continuation of that childish belief that all minds are identical to mine, although independent of it. if I could just explain myself, you would share my conception and agree with me. We would be “of one mind.” It’s not that I want to win, or dominate. It’s not that I enjoy argument or conflict. I want us to commune in happy agreement. I want us to connect and I’m frustrated by the obstacle that your disagreement represents. 

I’m also threatened by your refusal not just to agree, but to understand. If we are all of one mind, that suggests there is one objective reality. But if you don’t see things as I do, if you don’t share my conception or my moral system, then perhaps I’m the one who doesn’t have access to this objective reality. Isn’t that a definition of insanity? Perhaps I’m insane. Perhaps I can’t trust anything, anything I know, to be real: the whole world upended, fluid, changing, all senses unreliable. That’s worth resisting. 

Normally, you’d suppress these ideas before they reached such extremity. In the grip of anorexia’s starvation-fever, where everything is alarming, however, the stakes really do appear that high. I know, rationally, that reality itself doesn’t rely on you agreeing with me over how much time you’ve spent on the Nintendo Switch, but it feels that important, at the time.

Is this Hyper-focus? Hyper-fixation? 

Footnotes

Or so I’m told…

[1] And also kind of creepy, a thought that makes me sad…

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