I think it's clear for anyone reading this blog recently that I have been struggling a little emotionally, again. I can report that I am much better and perhaps learnt a little more about how to cope when things are tough.
With the case of the triggering message I was sent, there was very little I could have done to avoid this. I open and read messages all the time and it's difficult to steer clear of this method of communication. Nope, this is one risk that I have to accept although I can limit the damage by restricting who I have as friends on social media and being careful who I communicate with.
To also keep myself safe, I have found myself being extremely careful what I say on social media. I completely withdrew for a few days and then slowly eased myself back in but observing some safety rules I imposed on myself. I typically kept to advice only discussions. These have a relatively safe aspect in that provided what you say is correct, there is little that anyone can say back to you. Of course, there is always someone who knows better. Even worse are those with the "you should not be asking this on the Internet, see your GP instead" attitude. This is one that really grates with me, if we went to see our GP's with every single query through our transitioning, we would soon be struck of for wasting their time. The Internet is a great resource for information, and often GP's do not know everything. Suffice to say, I've managed to ignore such people recently.
I have been very careful to steer clear of topics that involve displaying personal opinions. There have been many discussions recently about a Miss Trans UK competition. These have been very divided in opinion and I have sat on the sidelines as an observer in these. I have seen many attacked for their well expressed opinions (both sides) and I have despaired at the lack of tolerance within our community about having differences of opinion. Interestingly in all of this, the organiser of said competition has been the most attacking of all when it came to differences of opinion. It of course goes much deeper than this and perhaps this is for another discussion.
I have found this read only approach to be very beneficial recently. There have been a few times where I have been itching to write a response and managed to keep my fingers from the keyboard. There are groups that I have seen as places of safety in the past, and now they feel dangerous.
I have also had the problem of the hyper-empathy but realisation of this has led me to be more cautious in how I take on board others issues. I have been much more successful at limiting my connection to essentially complete strangers and can keep myself more together for my friends.
It is clear I have been very careful in my on-line activities.
This kind of leads me to the future. I'll admit to struggling for inspiration about what to write for this blog and recently it has felt like I am just lurching from one crisis to the next. Off-line it hasn't been quite so extreme as that, but there hasn't been much of anything positive to write about.
In just over a week, we head off up north to the Lake District for a fortnights holiday. In the meantime, I will try to publish a couple of posts on something and then on my return, I intend to use a slightly different approach. Instead of writing about when something happens, I am going to go instead to a weekly update (probably Sunday's) of what has been happening through the week. There is plenty going on, just last week I had an evening of riding around in a police car observing the police doing their jobs. This is more what I think I should bring to my blog, day to day life but in a weekly format to give it some substance.
In between, I will try to write about other issues aside from that. This is where I can perhaps go in depth about something to do with myself, the issues that the trans world faces or something else. Perhaps here I can be a little safer expressing my opinions rather than in the wider world of social media.