"Are you doing okay?"Okay? Seriously? No, I'm not okay. Less than two weeks ago I went through the single worst day of my life. Last week was basically the worst week of my life. Am I okay? I'm a hell of a long way from being okay. My brother died. That's a rather permanent condition. It's not something I'm going to get over or feel better about quickly.
The fact that you're actually asking me if I'm okay suggests to me that you have no idea what I'm going through, and you're probably an idiot, too. I'm hoping that someday I'll feel okay again, but don't expect it this month. Or next. In fact, the next six months aren't looking real good from my perspective. Maybe sometime next year. I hope. I'm not real optimistic about it, though. Perhaps 2010 will be the year that I start to feel okay.
"I know how you feel, my cat died a few years ago. . ."
 (Insert other random dead pet, ended relationship, or bad event you went through)Everyone who's said this to me is so lucky I didn't tear their arms off and beat them to death with their own arms. I've held my tongue so far, but I don't think I can manage it anymore. I've had pets that I loved, and I've had them die. I loved my cat Snickerdoodle, and I loved my dog Lady. It hit me really hard for each of them when they died, and it still saddens me to think about them.
But you know what? It isn't the same thing. It's not even close. Take what you felt for your dead cat, and multiply it by a thousand, then you'll start approaching the loss of a brother. So don't be offended when you mention your damn cat, and I hit you upside the head and walk away saying "Piss off. . . fuck your damn cat." Unless you've lost a sibling or a child, don't make a comparison with your situation to mine. It's just going to piss me off.
"I don't really know you, we're not really friends, and we don't really talk, but what happened to him? How did he die? You know, they say if you talk about it you'll feel better."Who's "they"? And what hell do they know about my mental health? The story of what happened to my brother is not something you can tell in a few sentences. You need at least 10-15 minutes to go through it. And you know what? It kicks my ass each and every time I have to do it. Seriously, it sucks. I don't feel better after talking about it, I feel exhausted, sad, angry, and a hundred other things that are a long way from feeling "better". Unless you knew him personally, do not ask me this right now. Ask me sometime next year. Maybe.
And if you're someone that I don't have a friendship or other personal relationship with, why are you talking to me? If the sum of all of our conversations over the past month consisted of "Hey." and "What's up?" while walking past each other in the hall way, then you're not my friend, and I don't want to discuss my brother with you. Hell, under normal circumstances I don't really want to talk to you, so right now I'd rather throw you out of a window than have you stand there awkwardly trying to talk to me about someone you never met, and now never will. If you really feel you have to say something, then just say, "I'm sorry for your loss." And then walk away. Seriously, just walk away. If I want to talk to someone, I know how to find them.
[Note: This isn't directed towards my real friends, or anyone on LiveJournal. It's the result of some casual acquaintances and coworkers over the past two weeks that I'm tired of dealing with.]