Dear Jody: Stop bringing me down

By |2018-01-16T07:36:03-05:00June 30th, 2011|Entertainment|


Q:
I’ve lived in this city for four years. I came here from a small town Up North. I really like it here and have lots of friends, but for some reason I just keep feeling depressed and unhappy.
I’ve worked for a car dealership since I moved here. I’m a sales person; the only female sales person. This place is a real macho place; you know, guys strutting around trying to outdo one another in their crudeness, and trying to prove who can be the biggest stud. They aren’t so much this way around customers but when the sales floor room is empty, it’s disgusting. Some of the guys treat me OK; most of them just ignore me. I made it really clear early to them that I wouldn’t put up with sexual harassment, so most just don’t talk to me. I know they make fun of me behind my back, but I pretty much ignore them. Obviously I haven’t come out in this atmosphere, nor would I. It wouldn’t feel safe. I couldn’t say anything to my boss about this as he is the worst offender. Despite the difficulties working there, I’m a good car salesperson and like doing this job.
I live in a two bedroom apartment that I share with a roommate. We moved in together last year. I was having trouble making ends meet living by myself, and this has been a perfect solution, financially. “Sara,” my roommate, has different values, interests and sees things so differently than I do. But the big problem that I have with her is that she’s so negative about everything and everyone; it drives me nuts. (She does have some good qualities, like she’s clean and neat and likes to cook.)
Don’t tell me that I should move; our lease isn’t up for a year, so we are stuck together and, as I said, she isn’t all bad.
I have a good support group of friends. I belong to the Catholic Church and attend pretty much every week. I get a lot of strength from my church. I am, of course, not out at church – gay is not cool. And, I don’t want to be out there, as I don’t want to have to deal with anything negative in my quest for spirituality.
So as you can see, I pretty much have a good life, not perfect, but neither is anyone else’s. I just don’t know why I have a hard time staying upbeat and excited in life.
Feeling Down When Things Are Good

A: You are surrounded by people who give off toxic energy. Other than your friends, the contacts in your life are either negative, unacccepting of you or your sexuality, and not supportive of you.
These kinds of people can wear your psychic down without you realizing what’s going on. Since you can’t or don’t want to change your job, your church or your roommate, you will need to come up with some strategies to deflect all the negative energy that’s around you. And, there are some other things you can do:
For instance, talk to your roommate. Let her know about the things you like about her, but also let her know that her negativity is wearing, and you’d appreciate her not being so negative around you. If she starts being negative and won’t stop, you could go into your room and listen to some soothing music. Show her that you won’t be around her when she’s being negative.
At work or other places of negativity, try imagining yourself wrapped in a bubble of positive energy; this bubble doesn’t allow in any amount of crudeness or inappropriate or negative behavior or words. When things start getting too bad, make a phone call to a friend whom you can talk to – someone who builds you up, not wears you down. Go for a walk, listen to inspirational music, or do whatever it is that rejuvenates and calms you.
Finally, let your friends know what you are trying to do, and ask for their support.

For more information on dealing with negativity, go to Dear Jody Valley on Facebook and click on the article “How to Heal Toxic Energy.”

About the Author:

BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.