I don't know how , or if , to respond to some people

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oopswronglife

Master
Jun 27, 2019
448
1,066
There are a couple people that once every couple of years email or text asking how things are. I tell them. They don't reply...rinse, repeat. I am upset at them for even writing because if I answer I am upset they don't reply. If I don't answer I feel like a jerk and hypocrite because I hate when people do that. So it feels they have put me in a lose/lose situation.

The reasons one might not reply are obvious, and none of them help ME at all. Maybe they don't care at all and are writing to feel good about themselves, maybe they "don't want to hear" anything but good news, you all know the common excuses. But ultimately it feels like they are taking from me when they do this and I would rather they just never write at all than this. Years ago asked one person why they did this and they got super offended and then never wrote again. So while that might be called a "win" in one way, it still sucks. Why can't people just be decent?
 
Lookingforabus

Lookingforabus

Wise
Aug 6, 2019
267
357
Psychologically speaking, there's a strong tendency to interact with others in a way one desires to be interacted with. For example, if someone has a habit of giving booze as a gift, there's a strong chance they're actually signalling that they would like booze as a gift. If they ask how your day was, there's a strong chance they want you to ask how their day was, and so on.

It mostly an subconcious behavior, at least in people who aren't manipulative or narcissistic or sociopathic.

So they're probably asking you how things are going so you'll ask *them*, at which point they can talk about their good news, or commiserate about their bad news or something of that nature.
 
SinisterKid

SinisterKid

Illuminated
Jun 1, 2019
1,185
2,460
Most people [read the vast majority on earth] dont know how to respond when you tell them you are not ok or you are depressed or suicidal. What can they actually say to make the situation any better? They dont know and we dont know, so everyone says nothing. How would you feel if they respond with meaningless platitudes? Worse would be my guess.

My one remaining friend who I see on a regular basis and I, have a unspoken understanding. He doesn't ask me how I am and I dont tell him about my suicidal ideation/intent. We talk about all manner of shit, but we both know that neither of us will know what the hell to say if the topic turns towards the mundane. We laugh a lot, talk about the old days when we worked together and drank together and put the world to rights.

But in your instance, I would just tell em both to fuck off like I did with a so called friend who never bothered to ask how I was when I became ill.
 
D

Dead beat dad

Arcanist
Mar 5, 2019
562
1,805
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There are a couple people that once every couple of years email or text asking how things are. I tell them. They don't reply...rinse, repeat. I am upset at them for even writing because if I answer I am upset they don't reply. If I don't answer I feel like a jerk and hypocrite because I hate when people do that. So it feels they have put me in a lose/lose situation.

The reasons one might not reply are obvious, and none of them help ME at all. Maybe they don't care at all and are writing to feel good about themselves, maybe they "don't want to hear" anything but good news, you all know the common excuses. But ultimately it feels like they are taking from me when they do this and I would rather they just never write at all than this. Years ago asked one person why they did this and they got super offended and then never wrote again. So while that might be called a "win" in one way, it still sucks. Why can't people just be decent?
Why don't you throw the first punch and next year message them before they Chet the chance? Out of the blue, tell them where you're at emotionally, ask for help if that's what you want, if they don't reply you have your answer.
 
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Sha70

Sha70

Member
Jul 22, 2018
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There are a couple people that once every couple of years email or text asking how things are. I tell them. They don't reply...rinse, repeat. I am upset at them for even writing because if I answer I am upset they don't reply. If I don't answer I feel like a jerk and hypocrite because I hate when people do that. So it feels they have put me in a lose/lose situation.

The reasons one might not reply are obvious, and none of them help ME at all. Maybe they don't care at all and are writing to feel good about themselves, maybe they "don't want to hear" anything but good news, you all know the common excuses. But ultimately it feels like they are taking from me when they do this and I would rather they just never write at all than this. Years ago asked one person why they did this and they got super offended and then never wrote again. So while that might be called a "win" in one way, it still sucks. Why can't people just be decent?
Are they aware you are or were suicidal? It would make sense if they are not or were never aware of your suicidal tendencies. If they did, then they are all an A-hole.
 
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oopswronglife

Master
Jun 27, 2019
448
1,066
Why don't you throw the first punch and next year message them before they Chet the chance? Out of the blue, tell them where you're at emotionally, ask for help if that's what you want, if they don't reply you have your answer.
They know where I am emotionally and have for years. They never communicate, just send messages asking the question once every two years or so with no reply to anything I say. I don't want anything from them other than to either communicate like a kind human being or not bother. It's obvious its all about them but it still upsets me. Don't engage people and leave them hanging.

Are they aware you are or were suicidal? It would make sense if they are not or were never aware of your suicidal tendencies. If they did, then they are all an A-hole.
They know the reality. Last time I replied with "Not well...you?" to the message and as usual no response. Recently got a "Was thinking about you...how are you?" message and have no desire to reply, but am upset they made me think about it with their unsolicited pointless question.
 
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Lookingforabus

Lookingforabus

Wise
Aug 6, 2019
267
357
Most people [read the vast majority on earth] dont know how to respond when you tell them you are not ok or you are depressed or suicidal. What can they actually say to make the situation any better? They dont know and we dont know, so everyone says nothing. How would you feel if they respond with meaningless platitudes? Worse would be my guess.
In my experience, the platitudes don't help, and don't hurt, but yeah, the primary problem is that there's just nothing anyone could say to make it better. And then anyone worth a damn in my life who I've talked to and wants to help (which is basically all of them, even ones I didn't expect to give a damn, honestly) gets all worried and panicky and upset and knowing I caused that makes me feel worse once my brain has a moment to think about something other than my depression or suicide.

On the other hand, talking about it did get me into antidepressants and in to see a psychiatrist once upon a time, so it might be worthwhile for some people, even if it didn't help me. And I even hear tales of people who are depressed and suicidal mostly because they have no one in their lives who cares about them (or at least they think that), so maybe just talking would help some people. May as well try it at least once, or a few times, if you ask me... but if it doesn't help and doesn't help and doesn't help, no sense in seeing if it will help the 20th time or whatever.
 
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oopswronglife

Master
Jun 27, 2019
448
1,066
In my experience, the platitudes don't help, and don't hurt, but yeah, the primary problem is that there's just nothing anyone could say to make it better.
I have never understood how anyone can think ignoring you is better than just talking about anything else. The "I don't know what to say" excuse is ridiculous. Do you know what to say to anyone else you talk to? Weather? TV show? I mean if you cannot even talk about normal things don't bother writing. Certainly don't ask someone how they are if A. you don't want to hear the truth, my life isn't their grocery store checkout script and I am not here to make them feel interacted with and nothing more, and B. you are gonna just ghost after asking...its weird, selfish, and shitty.
 
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Lookingforabus

Lookingforabus

Wise
Aug 6, 2019
267
357
I have never understood how anyone can think ignoring you is better than just talking about anything else. The "I don't know what to say" excuse is ridiculous. Do you know what to say to anyone else you talk to? Weather? TV show? I mean if you cannot even talk about normal things don't bother writing. Certainly don't ask someone how they are if A. you don't want to know and B. you are gonna just ghost...its weird.
I get the "I don't know what to say" thing, especially as I don't know what to say to make it better, but yeah, if they ignore you when you tell them how you're doing, they're probably just looking for you to ask them the same question so they can brag or bitch or talk about how they're doing.
 
Beautifulletdown

Beautifulletdown

Too Stupid to leave, Too Stuck to Move
Jul 6, 2019
88
212
My family does this to me and then get upset if I don't respond back when they call or text. It's pretty disappointing and very sad. It just makes me feel even worst and alone. Also, I hate that I feel this way of wanting connection and human contact. I hate it so much. I wish I could feeling nothing at all.
 

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