#136 Depressionless – ‘Re-connecting With Friends’

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When I was at secondary school the internet was just starting to make its mark, it hadn’t quite invaded our mobile phones yet but the connection at home was going strong. It is during this time that I made my biggest contribution to the development of international music anti-piracy laws through the copious use of Napster and Limewire. Also during this time the biggest form of communication was MSN Messenger, one of the first ‘live chat’ messengers.

I have great memories of MSN, I’d spend all day with my school mates and as soon as the bell went, I’d run home and log on to MSN to ask all my mates from school what they had been up to that day at school with me. All your friends seemed to have found the ‘Special Symbol’ button and proceeded to make their entire name out of them. Then there were the endless Minesweeper flag games, not to mention when you had to end deep and meaningful conversations with your 12-year-old friends because your mum wanted to call Aunt Barbara and you had to disconnect the whole internet for that to happen*.

The point is, I was in there. I was involved; connecting. It was the first internet social experience – for me at least. I was good at it as well, I sustained my friendships that way, that was until 2005 when Microsoft rebranded it, and so came its demise, along with many of my friendships.

I’m not great at keeping in contact with people, I suppose the depression plays its part. I often don’t feel up to it or it just requires more energy than I have available. When I am going through a good period, like now, I do try to re-engage; re-reconnect with the nearest and dearest though. For someone reason however, I have just been swamped with responsibilities and neglected this re-connection process. I realise calling talking to friends a process rather de-romanticises it a little, but I am an actual robot so it makes sense.

This was neither here nor there in Vienna today as I got on a tram in the city to see two friends, who were definitely part of the over subscribed ‘neglected group’. This is interesting for two reasons, firstly the timing; they had been on my mind for days. Secondly Vienna has a population heading towards 2,000,000, and they have endless tram lines, 5 metro lines, 90+ bus lines and humans still have the ability to walk, so it is rather a rare occasion to meet someone you know on the public transport network.

Meet them I did though and like an old dial-up connection I Pshhhkkkkkkrrrr​kakingkakingkakingtsh​chchchchchchchcch​*ding*ding*dinged* back into action. The social game returned and I already began arranging the next meet up. It is a liberating feeling to do something that has been hanging over you for a couple of weeks, lets just hope my mum doesn’t need to call my Aunt Barbara anytime soon.

Mindfump.

*Legitimate struggle.

 

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30 Comments

  1. Becca

    Many thanks for re-branding “stealing music from the internet” as “making a contribution to the development of international music anti-piracy laws.” 1) I feel better about teenage self and 2) I hope so desperately to see someone put that on their resume one day. As long as you are sited appropriately.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. amybelle1

    Great post! I also remember waiting for the internet to dial out and living on MSN and MySpace. The world online is very confusing and more intimate now than ever. As a blogger it’s scary to think how much of a chunk my life is taking up of the internet. Many thanks to you x Amy x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ibizagoldgirl

    Brilliant news to hear and so glad you have reinstated the dial up system. I often think about those days and the commitment given. You had to enquire as to how people were, arrange times to chat and be more descriptive as in most cases you couldn’t see the other person. Now language has changed, we can see everything from where one is, what one wore and most annoyingly what one ate … sometimes the basic how are you’s and would you like to meet up’s get lost in the all visual, all knowing, all fill in your own gap storytelling of social media life.
    Sounds like just what you needed

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thelastoftheidealists

    Here’s hoping your mom doesn’t need to call your aunt Barbara! I often go through bouts of just needing to be by myself, so I kind of stay away from people in general (friends especially, because they can immediately sense I’m going through something, but I don’t necessarily want to go there or have the energy to). Point is, human connection is good, but if you feel it drains you more than it energises you, use moderation. If they’re true friends, they’ll understand and give you space when you need it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Rebecca

    Oh yes…. the MSN chatrooms…. then the beginning of a romance which should have lasted a lifetime only to many ears later understand it was actually my downfall. I have cursed MSN to hell and back but minesweeper -ohmyf*ckinggod- I need that back in my life.

    I am absolutely horrible and maintaining friendships…. I feel like, what’s the point, I’m just gonna leave again anyway. Every time I have left a job or a country I vowed to stay in touch only to disappear into the wilderness never to be seen or heard of again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paul Green

      The last paragraph sums me up too well. I’m always moving and always meeting new people and I am terrible at keeping in touch with all of them either way. I’ll take you on at minesweeper no problem.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Rebecca

        I love minesweeper, I feel like it could solve all of my problems 😀. You either complete it to perfection or get blown to smithereens. … Life should be like that!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. The Girl From Jupiter

    Now I almost miss Minesweeper. Does it still come free with Windows OS? I also miss my old friends. However, unlike you, my recent attempts to reconnect failed big time. One old friend was either legitimately too busy or reluctant to accept an open invitation, and the other, well, we just didn’t seem to have anything in common to talk about anymore. Oh well. Can’t say I didn’t make an effort, right?

    Like

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