Smart Arses and the People Who Love Us

I had a conversation yesterday with the male version of myself. It was like talking to my dad or my brother, and quite a painful(ly funny) reflection. I don't know what the psychology of our personality is - if it is genetic, or the result of difficult circumstances coming out sideways. And if you have an opinion, I really don't want to hear it. I am pretty sure you have your own stuff to deal with anyhow and don't have time or energy to sort mine out too.

A friend refers to it as Chronic Humor Syndrome (CHS) but I think I am going to rename it SAD (Smart Arse Disease). I can't stop. The sarcasm presses against the inside of my chest like a nasty air bubble until I open my mouth and let it out. Afterwards, I mentally perform corporal mortification of my tongue until about 2 seconds later when next the bubble rises in my throat. I am, therefore, an unwilling victim of SAD.

I don't get it, but am thankful that my husband loves me, despite my flaws, and actually enjoys my sense of humor. I know my brother's wife adores him (or at least claims to), and his sense of humor. And I feel fairly certain that the man I was trading barbs with yesterday, in some sort of sick tennis match of wit, has a wife that is head over heels with him too.

In a very rare moment of personal introspection, I can see that I'm slowly tumbling toward becoming exactly like the father I didn't appreciate or understand.


Grégoire said...

I'm writing tomorrow's blog article today, and it's on this very topic.

Jung called the male-inside-you the animus. He's the fellow you repress in your teens and early twenties to get along in society. As we approach middle age we commune with him (as a dude, mine is a chick named anima). Up until now, we've shown the world what it wants to see. Our personae are more of a stamp which society places upon us than an authentic expression of who we really are.

These aspects of our selves we keep in the closet start coming out as we approach middle age. We have money now, we care a lot less about what the world thinks, and we have free time. We have paid the price to individuate.

Uncle Carl predicts that eventually you'll quit fighting with your animus. You'll integrate with him (visualize it in either an earthy way, like sex, or a spiritual one, like holy communion). At that point you'll become whole.

And if we're lucky we'll have a few years of psychic completion before we die. That's the hope, anyway.

Stephanie M said...

Wow! I think that's the deepest thought on my blog ever, and I had to read it several times to understand - but YEAH! I agree - and can I just add to Uncle C's thoughts: that it seems to me as I move towards psychic completion, I've also lost a couple friends.

Marsha said...

Ohhh, do I have this! Finally a name for it. My 2 sisters and brother also have it. Dinner time around the table when we were younger had us practically spitting food at each other. Not to mention the occasional milk out the nose deal. Lately, I'll be walking down the hall at work and finally get the sarcasm just the way I want it, then try it out on my co-workers. Luckily and suprisingly they usually think I'm rather funny!