Are you unequally faceboked?

It is with great heaviness of heart I report a recent phenomenon scouring the Christian community: couples who are unequally faceboked.  You know who I’m referring to – she publicly proclaims her love for her boo every Birthday, anniversary, and father’s day, but he hasn’t logged onto facebook for 17 months. Or his profile picture features their wedding photo, but hers still features her face and the shoulder of a high school boyfriend.

Many couples struggle with mismatched facebook activity. It can create a discordance that ripples into their actual lives. Many men report feeling “extreme sorrow” that their girlfriends or wives cannot appreciate a witty meme they have shared because they’re so disconnected from the online community. One man complained, “I put my heart and soul into a meme, and she just asked ‘who’s that blonde woman yelling at that cat? Is she an ex-girlfriend you’re still pining for?!'”

Women have also expressed frustration when they continually post pictures of their boo with hearts and kiss-face emojis, and their husbands or boyfriends do not even bother to like their post. “I just feel so humiliated. My friends have noticed he never likes our couple pictures. Many have asked if he’s a hired model, or if our relationship is on the rocks,” confided one woman.

If you’re already married and unequally faceboked, the Galloblog staff recommend seeking emergency counseling. If you are in a dating relationship,  we strongly encourage you to sit down with your significant other and cast a vision for facebook compatibility. “Communicating concrete expectations is key,” says Dr. C Gallo. It’s not insurmountable if you’re unequally faceboked, but it is a sign of a major problem in your relationship. Dr. Gallo added, “There’s no shame in getting help- sync your activity now for a brighter future.”

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^an evenly faceboked couple beams as they peruse their home page. ❤

9 signs (+ 1 bonus!) you may be a stalker

Have you ever been accused of stalking , but thought “That’s ridiculous! I’m totes norms! I have friends! Plus, deep down the object of my stalking really enjoys my attention!”

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But then… At 11:27 a.m. on a Thursday… when the sloppy ignorant bliss of weed and alcohol has faded into sober introspection, a teeny part of you wonders, “Gee willickers, am I a stalker??”

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As a doctor of philosophy in psychology, I know that these conflicting thoughts can cause great monostress* and distress. Never one to leave persons from marginalized groups without resources for empowerment, I have chosen to share my profound wisdom and support for anyone with niggling doubts about their stalker status.

You are likely a stalker if 2 or more of these apply to you…

  1. The person has blocked you from any / all routes of contact (Facebook, instagram, texting, etc.)
  2. Your friends have expressed – verbally, through uncomfortable body language, or marked silence – their discomfort with your behavior regarding the potentially stalked person
  3. You have asked yourself, “Could this be seen as stalking?”
  4. You wouldn’t want to share with anyone your “process” in contacting / pursuing this person
  5. You “coincidentally” become involved in every open social group they are a part of
  6. The person you are contacting never reaches out to you
  7. You own a pair of binoculars
  8. You have to pick leaves out of your hair after you see them
  9. When you see them they don’t always see you

You are definitely a stalker if any one of these apply to you…

  1. The person has directly or indirectly given all indications they do not want to speak to, hear from, or see you again, and you continue contacting them.

Still confused not sure where you stand? It may be worth a trip across the pond to find out…

Absolutely certain you are not a stalker, but a stalking victim? You don’t have to face it alone!

Stalking Resource Center

Victim Service Provider Resources

Victim Connect

Now let’s get out there and kick stalking in the nards!

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— EDITORIAL NOTES —

*this should be a word, so I’m going to claim it ! 💃

General: Because I have been the receiver of unwanted attention on multiple occasions from multiple peoples, I’m just here to give a claireion call to both parties. #selfless #amazing #magnanimatic**

Alsoooo.. this is my 150th Galloblog post!

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How to read Galloblog by Enneagram type

The enneagram – a personality classification scheme that divides people by their basic fears and motivations – has taken the world by storm. People are obsessed. There are posts about which songs you should listen to , which bible character you are (lolz!), how your house looks, which type of person you should choose to be your partner, which type of job suits you best … all according to your enneagram type!

Wowsers! Is it legit? Is it a bunch of psychological mumbo jumbo? Does it have ties to satanic cults? Who cares! Never one to have a strong voice on controversial topics*, C Gallo is here to exploit the obsession with the enneagram for her own needs.** So for all of your extreme pleasure and to fuel the craze, please see my below recommendations of Galloblog posts according to each enneagram type! Note: I based all of this according the brief summaries of each type provided by the enneagram institute.

Type 1: The Reformer

  • Basic Fear: Of being corrupt/evil, defective
  • Basic Desire: To be good, to have integrity, to be balanced
  • Galloblog post must-read: The good of guilt
If you’re super afraid of being evil, you probs strug with guilt I’d wager!

Type 2: The Helper

Free yourself from too much people pleasing!

Type 3: The Achiever

Don’t let yourself get so focused on accomplishing that you forget to stop and smell the blog posts!

Type 4: The Individualist

  • Basic Fear: That they have no identity or personal significance
  • Basic Desire: To find themselves and their significance (to create an
       identity)
  • Galloblog post must-read: How to be a snowflake, for realz
Follow my simple tips and you really will be an extremely unique individual!

Type 5: The Investigator

You can stop over-analyzing and treat yoself to some daisy-laying!

Type 6: The Loyalist

Be currful the people who are giving you support aren’t just riding high off of your lows!

Type 7: The Enthusiast

  • Basic Fear: Of being deprived and in pain
  • Basic Desire: To be satisfied and content—to have their needs fulfilled
  • Galloblog post must-read: In search of chill
You may need to take it down a notch

Type 8: The Challenger

  • Basic Fear: Of being harmed or controlled by others
  • Basic Desire: To protect themselves (to be in control of their own life
    and destiny)
  • Galloblog post must-read: Pity the fool
Making yourself vulnerable can be a position of strength!

Type 9: The Peacemaker

Hint: this is a sarcastic post. Read if your fear of loss and separation has been turning you into a Dwelling Dwayne!

What’s that you ask, what if you are a Type 7 with a 1 wing? Hmmmm better read all of my posts just to be safe! 😉

—- EDITORIAL NOTES —-

* [snorts]

** Might she be an 8?!

What to (and not!) learn from your past relationships

The last time I had a really bad breakup, people kept telling me “It wasn’t a waste as long you learned something from it.” I say this with full love in my heart for these people, but a week after a breakup is not a good time to hear this. I would think with great bitterness and characteristic drama, “Oh, so to learn that I’m unlovable, all I have to do is put myself through a heart-pulverizing breakup – fantastic.”

As time dribbles on, however, one does gain some perspective. Our minds sort of force us to learn something. Sometimes the learnt info is useful and helps us become a better person / partner… *BUT* I have learned that you can learn the wrong things and draw the wrong conclusions from your own experiences. 

What not to Learn

I think one of the most natural things to learn from a past relationship is signs and cues that whoever you’re dating is going to hurt you. You learned that his long delays between texts meant he was losing interest, or her need for “alone time” was really her need for cheaty-cheat times. It is all too easy to transfer that knowledge – of what that speific action for that specific person meant for your past relationship in that specific moment in time – to a new relationship. So if he takes a while to respond to a text or she turns down a Friday dinner to reportedly read Brandon Sanderson in her apartment, it’s easy to think “Welp, let me cut my losses early and move on before this all-too-familiar and way-too-painful scenario plays out again. I ain’t no fool!”

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While there are probably some general signs and cues someone is being a shady dickwad, I think this sort of learntedness is more likely to sabotage potentially healthy relationships than protect your lil ticker.

Jo-Jo’s delays between texts may have meant he was not that into you, but Captain Wonderful’s delays between texts may mean he is working at his job with integrity and turned off his phone so he wouldn’t be tempted to text you every five minutes. Amber’s alone time might have been a cover-up for her skanky side hustles, but Classy Clairice’s alone time might be a sign that she knows and takes care of herself.

Let me also interject, if I may,* that it can be a very dangerous game to discuss your significant other’s behavior with other people. Because just as people are prone to inappropriately generalize their past experiences to ruin their own relationships, they are equally prone to inappaoprirately generalize their past experiences and unintentionally ruin your relationships. So don’t let your best friend’s experience with a McDouche give you a frantic paranoia about your current partner. This can happen in like manner —

You (unconcernedly): “Yeah, Captain Wonderful and I haven’t been texting as much lately.”

Your best friend: “Oh no. I remember when I was dating McDouche, he started texting me less when he was pursuing another woman.”

You (concernedly:

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What to Learn

I think what has been helpful to me is to learn what you can “deal with,” and what you can’t. What’s a deal breaker, and what’s not. Think about your own role in things souring, and how you could do things differently.

Par example

You may have always loved country music. Maybe Jo-Jo hates country music, and never wanted to go to concerts with you. When you and Jo-Jo were dating, that drove you crazy. So you can learn that country music concert attending is a really big deal to you.

As for your own role, this is much harder and annoying to do. But you can learn that in the past you were too uncomfortable with relationship ambiguity early in the relationship. You picked apart and over-analyzed the relationship so much that it snuffed out its ability to develop organically. So you can learn to relax and enjoy the flirty texts and awkward silliness of a budding relationship without constantly pulling the relationship emergency break to have a long, drawn out convo about how, where, why your relationship is going.

So sure, learn — but learn the right stuff! RESIST PARANOIA !

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— EDITORIAL NOTES —

*Of course I may, it’s my blog! papow!

Think Like a Scientist: No evidence vs. evidence against in Facebook use and anxiety

This post will address one of the most important science-related concepts I think I’ve ever grasped: No evidence is not the same as evidence against.

“Whatever do you mean, Dr. Galloswag?!” exclaims you.

Okay – let’s think about Facebook use in relation to anxiety. Facebook has been accessible to the unwashed masses since 2006. I didn’t sign up until I began undergrad in Fall 2007.  #ancient Pretend my mum was nervous about the idea of me joining Facebook.

***

Mum of Cgallo: “I don’t know sweetums, it just seems like having that much interaction with random people without actually seeing them face-to-face could be bad for your mental health.”

Young Cgallo: “There is no evidence that Facebook use is linked to anxiety, Mum! Get out of my face!”

***

Guess what? Young Cgallo was technically right – at the time there wasn’t any scientific evidence. When I entered the search terms “Facebook, anxiety” into PubMed ( a database of life-science / biological articles), the earliest search result was from 2009, and the earliest might-be-relevant search result was dated 2013.

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See?! I’m tellin the truf!

Why this delay? Because it took a while for older adults to realize how impactful Facebook was. Because research is slow. And so there was no evidence because, well, no one had looked for  it. But now there are articles galore on the relationship between Facebook use – and other forms of social media – in relation to anxiety.

facebookanxietyarticle
For example…

So Cgallo’s Mum in this imaginary situation was vindicated over time!

Takeaway #1: Sometimes someone can be technically correct that there is “no evidence” — but that’s because no one has published data on the topic at all!

Now, let’s imagine another scenario — what if there had been multiple studies of Facebook and anxiety, but most or all of the studies reported no significant correlation between Facebook use and anxiety. That is much more informative than there simply being no data at all… but it’s only moderately in favor of young Cgallo. When a study doesn’t find a relationship it could be because …

  • There is not a correlation between the variables of interest (in this case, Facebook use and anxiety)

OR…

  • Power issues: The study did not include enough participants to detect meaningful differences if they were there.
  • Operational-definition issues: The study defined anxiety in a funky way. One study might decide to look at Facebook use in relation to being diagnosed with an anxiety disorder by a therapist, another in relation to scoring high on a standardized anxiety scale, yet another in relation to self-reported feelings of stress.
  • Time-scale issues: The study could have looked at the effect of Facebook use over the course of a week and found no correlation to anxiety. That still doesn’t tell us much about the effect of Facebook use over several years.

Takeaway #2: Sometimes someone can be technically correct that there is “no evidence” — but that’s because all the studies conducted on the issue of interest had design issue(s). 

I remember the first time I really thought about this in graduate school, and it’s actually pretty frustrating. But there is almost always going to be another, usually different/better way a researcher could approach a research question. So often times, a lack of evidence means absolutely nothing meaningful IRL.

“What are you getting at here, Cgallo? Are you trying to suggest that we can never really say with confidence that two things are not related to each other??” demands you.

Mais non!” Cgallo sputters.

For one, if there are many good quality (e.g. large sample size, good operational definitions, relevant time scales) studies conducted on an issue and none of them find an association, that’s a pretty good clue that there may not actually be a relationship between Facebook use and anxiety, or whatever you’re interested in (autism and vaccine *cough cough*).

But let’s contrast all of this with the gold standard: evidence against!

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What do I mean? Well, many researchers are terrified of publishing mumbo jumbo, so they err on the side of caution and choose statistical tests that are more likely to give false negatives than false positives (I may go more into what this means in a future post, if it pleases the queen). As a result of this statistical conservatism (teehee), it’s quite difficult to get results that say “yes! Thing 1 is related to thing 2 in a meaningful way!” *SO* if you really want to argue that there’s no relationship between Facebook use and anxiety, find evidence against this statement. How? Well, what if there was an entire body of research pointing to Facebook use being linked to feelings of calm, tranquility, peace, stability, happiness, etc.? That is very different – and in my opinion, much more meaningful – than a simple absence of evidence.

Takeaway #3: The absence of evidence for something (e.g. Facebook use being anxiogenic) is not nearly as powerful as evidence for the opposite (e.g. Facebook use being anxiolytic).

Great! I think we all feel better now! Make sure you share this article on Facebook!

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Overcoming invitaphobia

Do you enjoy social events, but rely on the invitations of others?

Do you find yourself longing for weekend pals, but tremble at the idea of inviting people to join your activities?

Has your popularity plunged once you became an adult because a large educational institution was no longer forcing you to interact with your peers?

If you answered yes to at least two of these questions, you may suffer from invitaphobia.

invitaphobia_def

If you do suffer from invitaphobia, do not panic. I am here to help you walk through the process of extending a warm invitation to all those friends you’re not sure are your real friends because you never hang out with them.

  1. Decide you want to do something
    • This doesn’t need to be elaborate – no need to get wild and decide you want a party. That is quite advanced and unsafe for anyone suffering from invitaphobia. Start small. Let’s just say your hungry, so you decide to eat.
  2. Pick up your phone
    • If this seems taxing, Denise Austin will walk you through an invigorating arm work out to make sure your arm movement is loose and graceful as you reach for your phone and bring it to your face.
  3. Scroll through your contacts until you see a name that does not make you want to vomit.
    • If there is literally no one in your contacts that meets this criteria, take a nap, watch a Parks and Rec episode, eat 2.75 spoons of peanut butter straight up, and then try again.
  4. Select the “message” option under their contact information. Please see the picture below for details. galloswag_contact
  5. Construct your invite message
    • You can use this simple formula : Hey ___(contact’s name, or preferred nickname)___ ! I’m planning to ___(desired activity determined on step 1)___ at ___(specific location)___, around ___(provide general time range)___. Want to join?
  6. Press “Send”

 

If this seems overwhelming, I have broken it down into baby steps. Today, all you have to do is read this post and share it with everyone you know. Tomorrow, read it aloud to your houseplants. The day after that, just try step one. Then each day after that, try adding one step at a time, until you make it all the way to step 6. If a given person doesn’t respond in a timely manner or can’t come, repeat steps 1-6 with another non-vomity person.

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Please send me your success stories so I can post them and form a safe circle of encouragement!

You gotta love ’em to hate on ’em

Something that I have been struggling with lately is how to balance between surrounding myself with “yes” people and surrounding myself with negs people.

One line of thought is- “strong people are able to take negative feedback and criticism about themselves and their ideas. Weak people collapse under criticism and never grow.”

Another line of thought is- “don’t waste your time with people who tear you down. You will be stronger if you surround yourself with people who are for you– who support and encourage you.”

There’s a ring of truth to both of those lines of thought, is there not? Which of these contradictory truths should we follow?

Well buckle up and steel yourself for this mind-poofing revelation: these two ideas aren’t contradictory, they are paradoxical.

Yep, they’re both true… At the same time! Oh snapz!

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The key distinction that finally made it all fall into place for me is to recognize the difference between people who are criticizing you because they’re jealous, spiteful, or petty, versus people who are criticizing you BECAUSE they want the best for you.

So how to tell the difference? I’m still trying to hammer this down myself, but one thing that I have found helpful is to determine if your critics also take the time to praise you for what is praiseworthy. I have come to be fairly dismissive of people’s criticism when any and all feedback I get from them is negative. In contrast, I put a lot of stock into the criticism of people who actively go out of their way to be kind and encouraging when it is merited.

To the critiqued: I encourage you to think very carefully about your critics. If there’s evidence that they seem to be criticizing you in a way that is going to build you up over the long run, hold them close and never let them go. If they seem to gloat over your failures and there’s an edge of disdain to their criticisms, kick ’em to the curb!

To the critiquer: If you are someone who often sighs and shakes their head when people don’t follow your brilliant advice, you may want to think about how you are delivering that advice. Perhaps people are ignoring you because you have not taken the time to put any relational context to your wisdom. I’m not suggesting you say insincere niceties, but I genuinely encourage you to find and praise any and all positive attributes of your friends and family… especially if you are prone to lectures. Even if you know that you are critiquing out of a loving concern for their betterment, they are not likely to receive your identification of their weaknesses if you never take the time to praise their strengths.

Okay! I want you all to know that I think you’re all really great for reading my blog, and this advice is truly for your flourishing 😉

 

 

 

 

 

Wise is as wise does

I don’t like to brag, but my friends tell me* I’m wise.

Seriously. I remember always being the uber-responsible, already-thinking-seriously-about-the-future kind of person, even in frickin’ middle school. Adults marveled at my maturity.

 

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Actual picture of me in middle school, lolz (pixabay)

 

Now I think my age has caught up with – maybe surpassed, snarky peeps would argue – my maturity level. But if you told me about your probs, I could probably drop a few truth bombs on ya. If you listened to me process my life, I would probably land on the right decision eventually. If you handed me some wisdom nuggets, I would very likely recognize them as wise.

But lately I’ve wondering.. then why all the Gallofoolery?

For realz. Especially when I look back on the last few years, there were some things I said or did … Sometimes not just once, I’m talking chronically! … that are just.. foolish.

What’s most upsetting is that I *knew* better.

I mean seriously.. I’ve been reading over some of my blog posts (e.g. this one, and this one) that I wrote a while ago (I know, I know.. shut up), and there’s some really solid wisdom in some of them, impo. Did I listen to my own advice? Um no… in some instances I did exactly what I advised my readers to not do. *le sigh* Yep, in that sense, I’m an ultra hypocrite.

So why have I, your esteemed Gallosage clothed in linens of wisdom – surrounded by smart, kind, wise people – been acting the fool??

Wellll, it comes down to this: knowing what’s wise doesn’t automatically translate into 1) the ability or 2) the will to do so.

That’s right, y’all. I usually get amazing advice – agree with it wholeheartedly as the best path forward – and then promptly ignore it. Why? Cuz I don’t wanna, that’s why. Or, I try. I try SO hard.. for a day or two. And then usually, my feels start barking so loudly that I’ll do practically anything to appease them and quiet their yapping. And lo, I collapse in a heap of shattered self-idealizations.

What is the path forward? Eh, if I knew 100%, I probably wouldn’t be writing this. But some things I’ve been thinking about —-

  • Awareness that my wisdom lapses are hardly ever informational. I’m gonna name it so I can disclaim it: sometimes it’s totes rebellion, sometimes it’s totes lack of effort, sometimes a little of both. But I don’t want to fool myself into thinking I need to listen to another 5 sermons or read more theology books before I can move forward.
  • Praying that I would have a heart that craves what’s good. Not just for me, but for everyone who I come into contact with. I want my feels to align with my noggin’.
  • Keepin’ it real with select people who I trust and who strike that unicorn blend of never rejecting me for being a fool but also never enabling my foolery.

That’s all I have rn … if you have ever found yourself full of knowledge that doesn’t translate into your actions, let me know what’s helped you actually be your ideals!

Word to yer mamas!

– Gallo

— EDITORIAL NOTES —

* notet this quote is from the movie Emma. Also, who are we kidding.. I love to brag.

 

Don’t confuse educationz with brainz

Getting a PhD has had some interesting social ramifications. Some fab, some.. drab. #myrhymesareacrime

In many ways, getting my PhD has freed me to be much less guarded in what and how I communicate – especially to snobbish strangers. When I was majoring in psychology in undergrad, it was way more likely that I would be dismissed as another vapid college student who thought that her Psyc 101 course qualified her to give sage mental health advice to friends and family. So, I tended to be the quiet one who would wait until I had a read on people before I participated in whatever convo was going on. When I did participate, it was usually some rando sarcastic comment. People usually conveyed a sense of amazement when they found out I had some brainz. Now, I am free to make an idiot of myself by loudly saying whatever makes me lolz. I know that even if I’m being a cotton-headed ninny muggin,  people will think “Well, she has her PhD, so she has to be smart…” and give me the benefit of the doubt. So that in of itself has made the last 6 years worth it 😉

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Don’t be fooled by this guy! He can write a book on 16th century technology but he ain’t no genius! (pixabay image)

BUT in different contexts, or at least with some people, getting my PhD has set up this expectation for me to have deep and well-developed thoughts on every aspect of the brain, anything remotely related to life-sciences, theology, politics, organic farming, and T-Swizzy’s latest attention-whoring bout of drama. People will say, “Hey, you have a PhD. What do you think?” Usually I haven’t thought about it at all, so I try to nod slowly, stare out in the distance, and say something vague, like “Well, I think both sides have merit, but I have heard some convincing criticisms of each position, too. It’s certainly a complex issue.” Then I smile winningly and change the subject.

I s’pose the point of this post is two-fold. One, although I appreciate people giving me the benefit of the doubt now, it annoys me that some of these same people would probably completely dismiss me if I had gone on to be a .. Idk, palm reader. Rando example, but my point is— it’s not really fair for people that don’t have their degree to have this undue burden to prove their intellectual worth. Just because someone is being silly at a party or dropped out of high school doesn’t mean they’re an uninformed buffoon.

Two, just because someone wrote their dissertation on the astrophysical epistemology of the Ornithorhynchus anatinus and never confuses “your” and “you’re” does not mean they have something meaningful to say about the science of climate change, or have great insight into international affairs.

KNOW WHAT I MEAN, GREEN BEAN?!

So.. yah. PhDs aren’t ignoramuses, but they’re not necessarily brilliant. They’re just people who chose to geek out on a subject for a few years. And uneducated folk may not be be brilliant, but they’re not necessarily ignoramuses. They’re just people who may not have had the opportunity or necessary masochism* to go into 20+th grades.

So.. yah yah yah — evaluate ideers for their own merit, and don’t be snobby.

 — EDITORIAL NOTE —

 *I mean this in the general use, DON’T BE A PERVO!

— ALSO — This post has some similar ideas to this other brilliantly written, amazing post.

Give me feels, or give me death

I’m a feeler, y’all.

When I’m mad, I sputter angrily. When I’m sad, I cry piteously. When I’m guilty, my tummy feels nauseatingly twisty. When I lolz, it’s a wild cackle, sometimes accompanied with hearty snorts. When I’m infatuated, I feel like throwing tulip petals over Atlanta as I fly around on a magic carpet with my infatuater.

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Not to get too off-topic, but my Scrabble game is ON POINT (image from pixabay)

As you can imagine, stoicism is not my strong suit.

A few years ago, I got tired of being feelsy. And guess what? I was successful! During these years, I truly had less drama. I didn’t get mad or cry very much. Life was so serene. But, I never want to go back to that place.

Why? Because I also didn’t lolz very much. Most disappointingly, there was not even *one* magic carpet ride. 😥

Why? Well, the secret to stop feeling is to stop loving and caring about people. You cannot love without hurting.* Except myself, of course. I somehow manage to never stop caring about myself. And that’s just an icky way to live.

If you pride yourself on being “drama free,” or brag that you don’t really grieve over your exes or lost friendships – shame on you. What are you gaining, except numbness to the people around you? No thank you, Louie Baloo.

Give me the angry sputters, give me piteous cries, give me the tummy twists. Because they are a symptom of caring and loving. And because magic carpet rides are SO worth it. *snorts*

magic carpet
^Legit (image from pixabay)

— EDITORIAL NOTES —

*At least for a feeler like me. If you are a stoïque d’amour, WRITE YOUR OWN BLOG.

The libra part of me insists that I offer a balanced view of this. Obvs, some people are able to take very loving action without feeling particularly worked up. And it’s probably not healthy to always be at the extreme ends of positive and negative emotions.