Wednesday, April 04, 2007

More reasons why I am a hermit.

Really, I should know better than to bother with any silly yahoo groups, but I was reminded again why I never stick around these kind of things, or in any organized group, for very long.

I had briefly joined a collective that someone had invited me to through Etsy - it was involving recycled materials and nature-y spiritual stuff. I joined because I figured it might be a way to chat with other etsy people who were likeminded. (HA). Well, since my health and sleep had been comprmosied over the last month or so, the last thing I was putting high on my priority list was posting and changing my items tags on etsy to display that I'm a member of this group. I had posted once to introduce myself and gotten one response. I glanced over the messages at one point and kinda felt like I just wasn't into what all they were discussing, and not sure how to even start another thread. I hadn't even been a member for more than a month, maybe a couple weeks- I don't remember.

Apparently, this kind of behaviour isn't what they desire from members, because the person who invited me was wondering if I was planning on staying because she hadn't seen me post and the tags for the group weren't on any of my items. I sent her a nice note (no really, i was nice) and removed myself.

While I can understand that there are many people who join groups and then forget about them - I've done it, who hasn't- and perhaps this is their way of keeping a handle on that, I sense more.

It was never implied that I MUST post and MUST change my tags. And if the group had stated such, I would never have joined. I'm sorry, but I have quite had it with organizations that demand large chunks of my life and time to the exclusion of other things. I don't live on Etsy or that group they way they do, and i'm quite fine with that.

I've left groups before. There was one group I had joined and learned a bit from, but then it got kinda dull because it was all the same kinds of people. Lots of newbies, and the same coffee clatch of people talking about the same crap - some of it annoying and some quite wacky. I posted a link at one point that I had found and thought at the very least was interesting - (this was back when i was actually trying to post and get into conversations). Apparently, it was not their speed, because I got a comment that it was too intellectual - never mind that the topic was not something they usually took into account. I must have done something taboo. My post ended up skiving off after a time.

I removed myself and never gave a reason.

I am MORE than fed up with groups and their cliquey self importance.
This is how I feel about organized religions, clubs, even groups of people in the workplace. It's not worth my time to join a bunch of people that I'm going to outgrow, who all are just going to talk amongst themselves and rehash the same old thing day after day, or require you to advertise them and think of their agenda before your own.

This is why I left theatre - because if you're in it, there's no world outside of it. You have theatre friends, and you talk about theatre even when you're not in the theatre (which is of course, never).

I know that humans form groups for a sense of belonging. I have yet to see an example of this belonging for myself. I've only found it among small groups of close friends. Anything bigger goes to the shitter quite fast. Goths- for a good example. Yeah, so it's a group of people who all feel outcast and different, and listen to different music and dress different than everyone else and feel persecuted for doing so. Never mind that they all do this activity TOGETHER and then they proceed to persecute each other from the inside of the group because not everyone dances/dresses/listens to the right music.

As soon as you breach the unspoken laws of a group like this, you're an outcast. And no matter what you try to do, you will remain so unless you can get in the pocket of someone who has power in the group.

This, I believe the dictionary would define as utter bullshit.

This is also why I have dropped any sort of label to describe myself. As soon as you call yourself a pickle jar, you have to pretend you are a pickle jar, even if you have a few carrots and a tomato floating around in there.

I dislike groups because the power structure is almost always faulty or messed up in some way, there's always too much politics (which is why I don't like politics), and the members who initially have made it up are only going to talk about what they want anyhow, regardless of who brings up a new topic. A senior member can get away with talking about things a newer member would get reamed or ignored for. And groups always seem to want new members -I often believe just so they can say they have a lot of members (quality before quantity folks!).

I hated cliques in high school, and most groups I've tried to be a part of are little more than that. I'm just tired of the ones that pretend otherwise.

It seems that all too often the same kind of people form these groups. And I really have better things to do than cowtow to the whims of these narrow sighted people.

Sometimes, I almost feel that the desire of this sense of "belonging" - the one that gets people to join clubs, or inner city kids to join gangs, or misguided, pliable individuals to join cults or worst terrorist organizations is a lack of security with oneself.

I have a lot of experience with lack of self esteem and lack of personal security. i've overcome a great deal, and still have a ways to go. You think that by joining a group of likeminded people, you'll make friends, be accepted. Get help with your own problems by talking to others. Feel like part of a family. You never once think that others may brainwash or ignore you, or use your lack of self worth to their own end.

Groups are like a crutch for some, if not many of those who join and have self worth issues. They're a refuge from other problems (ones that may need to be faced), a comfortable label, a sense of security (however false). The problem with joining a group when in this state is that the one who joins often SO wants to be a part of something, that they will find themselves doing things they wouldn't normally do just to be accepted by other people.

This is inherently dangerous. No one should ever compromise themselves just to be accepted by others. For one, this is not the way to build trust and esteem in oneself. This is the way one becomes a tool and a pawn. This is not the way that one can truly learn about oneself either. Molding yourself into the ideals of another is an uncomfortable fit, and very unhealthy.
Groups that give people unsure about themselves a false sense of security, and sense of family - and therefore a sense of duty because they belong - are likely the ones to be really dangerous because they are preying on the weaker members to forward their agendas.

I'm not saying that every group is like this, obviously they aren't. Otherwise we really would have to worry about the illuminati I suppose.

I just question the reasoning of joining a group so one can feel one belongs.

Who ever said you had to belong? Anywhere? and to anyone?
(granted, I think I was born and outcast, and while at times I've tried to escape it,I've come to terms with this nature and realize it's done me more good than harm)

People are terrified of being alone with themselves. They are afraid of...being alone. There's nothing wrong with being alone. If you are someone that is ok with being alone and not feeling anxious because there's no one around to talk to for periods of time, then likely you are pretty at home with yourself. (ie, me.)

being alone means sometimes you have to pick off personal demons, sure. But doing so only gives you more security and trust and understanding of who YOU are. Being able to be at home with yourself gives you a self sufficiency that others who flee from group to group will always lack.

you can't look for home outside yourself. Even Dorothy from Wizard of Oz figured that out by the end. if your true home isn't in you, then you really are in trouble.

So, no more groups. I don't care who invites me. I don't need them, I don't have time. I've got friends already. And i don't need a membership card or a secret handshake for them.