Unless they deal with a life-threatening trauma, triggers are dumb. People should deal with their fears, not hide from them.
A little over 4 years ago my best friend Tru died at the age of 26. He had a bad heart and it was very sudden. I was very depressed for many months. I closed in on myself and shut out the world. My medication couldn’t handle my emotional state and for a while I was hopelessly lost.
Eventually I started to accept his death. Time passed and each day got a little easier to bear. I opened back up and started communicating with the outside again. And just when I thought I had a handle on things, I would see or hear something that reminded me of my friend. In an instant I would be brought to tears and feel as if I hadn’t made any progress at all.
More time passed and my coping skills became more robust. Previously I could find a way for just about anything to trigger my sadness but eventually that improved too. My mind stopped making the more illogical and random connections to him. The things that reminded me of him made more sense and were a little more expected.
However, to this day, whenever I see the word true or tru, it is a little punch of sadness right in my gut. Nothing I can’t handle, but still not pleasant. Whenever I see a space invader it can be more intense, because that was the avatar he used for everything.
And then the other day Tumblr sent me this email…
This was a blog that he and I ran together.
I broke down sobbing. It took me a good 20 minutes to compose myself. It reminded me of how many years it’s been since he was no longer in my life. It’s been a few days and it is still bothering me.
I did not experience life threatening trauma. I think I did a pretty damn good job of dealing with my pain and facing it head on. But the sturdiest of minds can crumble with the right trigger. Fears, phobias, anxieties, sadness… they change your brain forever. They leave cracks behind in your mental defenses. Little areas that are vulnerable no matter what you do. Triggers are not dumb. Sometimes they cannot be fixed. And if people want to take a few precautions so they don’t have a breakdown when searching a website, I think that is quite prudent.
So, I dealt with my fear… but damn… I really wish I hadn’t gotten that email.
What are your sexual and romantic orientations? Are they affected by your gender?
I’m pansexual and panromantic, which I’m pretty sure is a direct result of my inability to sort out “male” and “female” as separate entities in my head. I mean, I know that most…
"It doesn’t matter to me if you’re cis, trans, or weirdly queer; if I think you’re attractive I’ll bang you, and if I think you’re awesome I’ll fall in love with you. I take great pride in being an equal-opportunity lover"