Why am I washing my dirty linen in public?
I know you don’t care, nor do I.
I decided to write up all my thoughts in a blog, hiding under a nickname. The reason for anonymity and blogging is that I started recently to feel sever stress and loneliness. But the long answer is as follows:
- I grew up in the Middle-East, a society know for its name-and-shame culture. I unwillingly inherited this. Thus, I don’t want to blog using my real identity so as not to be named and shamed. Also in the Middle East, a male person should man up and don’t publicly talk about his hurdles. Added to this, I will be blog about people who I care about. So, I don’t want to hurt their feelings.
- I prefer to stay silent than to talk to somebody who don’t truly share with me happiness and sadness. I prefer not to discuss publicly my weaknesses and thoughts so as not to be taken advantage of.
- I’m a lonely emigrant and I don’t have a life partner. I’m surrounded by people yet feel isolated. I talk with my lab-mates and flatmates daily yet I don’t share any commons with them. I chat with my dearest friends weekly over the internet, yet these internet conversations sadly don’t transfer emotions as they do with video streams and voices.
- Neither can I find myself able to fully embrace the Western culture of the country I’m studying in, nor did I succeeded in finding Middle-Easterners with whom I can relate.
- My relatives, whom I can relate with, are no more on the same par with me, intellectually. They don’t have answers to my questions anymore. My father — a truly intellectual person — as iconic as he is in my life, lately he seems be getting older. Boy oh boy, aging is horrible. I no more want him to bare my heavy burdens. The same is for my mother. By brothers are troubled enough.
- Lately, I started to fall down under mounting stress. Least to say that I’m a PhD in one of the World’s top 50 universities and this is stressful enough. I’m on the verge of total mental breakdown and I see it coming. It happened to me before — at the end of my MSc studies — and I almost lost my MSc degree and my PhD scholarship.
- I tried many things to release my anguish but none of them worked out. For instance: talk to strangers, travel to the beach, lots and lots of prayers for very long nights, volunteering to help elderly ladies, cooking delicious food, dining with my lab-mates, meet up with people in social gatherings, practice sports in groups (gym, running in the park, …) or going to the pub.
- I feel like there is an active volcano inside me with two craters (openings): one in my brain and the other right in my chest. I get burned by them daily. I can’t keep them closed anymore. I feel like I want leak these harmful lava before the volcano burst and things get our of control.
Three points to make — Firstly, I’m not writing this to beg for empathy. Simply, I don’t need it. I blog on the hope of releasing my stress and to get feedback and advises. Secondly, while I’m not begging for empathy, I’m desperately begging for advice. Please advice me or at least share your commends and thoughts. Thirdly, I don’t consider myself suffering in life by any means. I’ve read enough books to know what a real suffer means: “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl and “A Stolen Life: A Memoir” by Jaycee Lee Dugard.
Where is the way out? — I’ve experienced before a proved-to-be-true solution to my stress and loneliness. To release stress, I need to open up with people I can relate with. But I don’t chitchat anymore with neither my family nor my close friends because of the aforementioned reasons. And the solution for loneliness is to hug relatives or close friends. But I’m given this chance only once a year. None of these mentioned solutions is sustainable. From my point of view, the only sustainable one is to find my sole-mate, which appears to me now like a too far-fetched dream to realize.
Finally, I truly hope that one of the following will subside the active volcano inside me before it erupts: either to blog about my thoughts anonymously or to find my sole-mate before the end of the 2nd year of PhD studies. So, let me try out.