I’m gonna try to be funny, but I honestly almost burst some blood vessels when I first read this.
Just so we’re clear, my right eyeball nearly exploded because I am bad at having responses to things that exist.
Not because of the way that this image macro is.
The fact that it’s possible for humans to persevere in the face of unfavorable circumstances is inspiring.
And it’s fair to remember that our knee-jerk responses to upsetting situations do not always dictate the most reasonable course of action.
But it is a slippery, slippery slope that slides us from “be mindful of your reactions” to “if the way life exists around you creates negative feelings inside of you, then your feelings are the real problem.”
The latter interpretation is especially popular among folx who want to rationalize the inevitability of structural and systemic issues like poverty.
“Those people who are struggling are just having bad responses to normal circumstances, and people who are successful have better responses!”
Across all situations, any dissatisfaction you ever feel is just a problem with your feelings-haver.
Sexism isn’t limiting your career. It’s your rage about patriarchy that’s holding you back! So relax.
Climate change isn’t stressful. Your house just happens to sometimes get in the way of naturally-occurring disasters, so you should really be grateful that you have a house! Just breathe deep.
Homophobia isn’t preventing you from adopting children. It’s your choice to prioritize your own life goals over the unfounded anxiety of random straight people! Go ahead and chill.
Your poverty isn’t preventing upward social mobility. You’re just poor because of your choice to not cope more effectively with your chronic depression, which is unrelated to your poverty! Smile for once.
Racism isn’t making people call the police on you for existing in a public space. It’s your conscious decision to not have a better attitude about the possibility that those people might have to want to call the police on you for co-existing in their space that’s really the problem! Ease up.
The picture here feels like a Photoshop tutorial.
Like, “Find a background and two images, and combine them!”
So, as an outcome of an exercise like that: “okay job, Photoshopper!
Some of those edges are crisp, and I am comfortable pretending that the butterfly isn’t sitting on a flower!
Good thing you didn’t stress about it too much.”