April 26, 2023 · 8:49 am
I turn 28 next month, which activated an early-onset midlife crisis. Not to be a Capitalist Connor or a Girlboss Greg, but in the career domain, I’ve crushed it. I progressed directly from high school to the honors program at a mildly reputable undergrad, from undergrad to a fully-funded Psych PhD program, from my PhD to my residency in the Boston area, from residency to my tenure-track job. I faced bumps along the way though thanks to both my privilege and my perseverance, nothing stopped me. Reflecting on this relative smooth sailing made me feel angsty when I thought: then why haven’t I found a queer man of color to
[REDACTED] with me form a long-lasting romantic relationship with?
I first felt some self-judgment and shame. Continue reading →
Filed under Personal
Tagged as coping, gay, gina chung, grief, life, loss, mental health, relationships, romance, sea change, vulnerability
March 27, 2023 · 8:05 pm
The other day I drove home from a tennis match, reflecting on the racist comment one of my Asian American acquaintances made. I texted him how I felt about it and he apologized, though I still felt annoyed and hurt. This incident made me reflect on all the Asian American men I have met with internalized racism and how much it deflated their self-esteem. I’m not generalizing Asian American men – I know some who are self-aware, healthy, and confident – though in that moment in the car my acquaintance’s statement pulled my focus away from those folks and more toward those who struggle with their racial identity. The psychic pain escalated to the point where I thought: wow, it would feel easier if I were just not alive right now.
I didn’t have any active intent or plan to kill myself. Continue reading →
Filed under Personal, Society
Tagged as anorexia, coping, healing, hope, internalized racism, mental health, ptsd, racism, recovery, trauma
February 10, 2023 · 9:39 pm
A couple of weeks ago a white supremacist, amatonormative Incident™ happened and it stressed me the heck out. I don’t want to go into the specifics of the Incident™, though I will share that it made me feel dejected, weary of my relational boundaries, and somewhat hopeless. Ugh, I can’t believe I worked so hard to get a tenure-track job, got the tenure-track job, got a part-time job on top of the tenure-track job, and then life still smacked in the face with this bs, I thought to myself. Who knew you can’t girlboss/nonbinaryboss your way out of systems of oppression??
To eschew self-destructive and unhealthful coping, I practiced these three strategies: Continue reading →
Filed under Personal
Tagged as act, amatonormativity, coping, dbt, emotions, mental health, patriarchy, racism, radical acceptance, stress, white supremacy
January 11, 2023 · 7:00 pm
I wrote the first draft of this post back in early to mid-December, right before deciding which academic job to accept. When I started out on the job market, I had no idea what would happen, like if I would even get any initial interviews. I felt some sense of relief when I started to hear back from schools, and soon enough one college in particular rose to the top of my list.
This college felt perfect to me. I loved its location, its atmosphere and the collegiality of my specific department, and its purported values system. Even though the three-day-long in-person interview tired me the heck out, I still walked away thinking, okay, yes, this is my top choice.
When the department chair called me and extended me an offer to join the college, I felt so relieved. Though I saw positives in my other options, this place rose to the top. However, a few days later, as the high of getting the offer faded, I noticed some imperfections about the position. Continue reading →
December 21, 2022 · 9:58 am
The article about Mindy Kaling’s obsession with white men triggered my depressive feelings. Not at first – the day before I read it, thought to myself, yeah, great points, and retweeted it and went about my night. The next day, though, I noticed more emotions of dread and frustration creeping up. Against my will I started thinking about messages I’ve received about my desirability as an Asian American nonbinary/male-adjacent person and other experiences of racism in my life.
It’s easy for me to acknowledge the anti-Asian racism I’ve faced in my life. Continue reading →
October 30, 2022 · 2:51 pm
Earlier this year I started thinking about home ownership. The timing made sense – as the majority of my friends enter their late 20s, they raise the topic more so I start thinking about it too. I myself may enter a new state of permanence where homeownership makes more sense. Next May/June I graduate with my PhD, and if I land a tenure-track job, I could end up staying wherever I go for the long-term.
Holy sh*t, I thought to myself when I looked up one-bedroom homes right outside the city I live in now. Continue reading →
May 12, 2022 · 5:51 pm
Can you believe that gay people have to move too? Honestly me neither. Not only do I have to deal with the idealization of mediocre gay white men within the gay community, emotional unavailability/unresolved emotional baggage from the few men I have been interested in, and heteronormativity – I have to sell and pack my furniture and set up utilities and wifi too? Please knock me out and wake me up when Le Sserafim, Blackpink, or Twice releases their next comeback so I can jog to it while screaming along the Charles River.
Obviously I’m joking in that I have a ton of privileges and having to move is a piece of cake compared to hardships other people face in life. At the same time I have felt a wee bit stressed. So, I wanted to write this more casual post as a sort of interlude, in the form of specific strategies I’m using to cope with the moving stress, drawing from various therapy orientations. I love writing therapy-related blog posts instead of wasting time contending with mediocre men!
1. Breaking things down into smaller steps from cognitive behavioral therapy. Continue reading →
September 25, 2021 · 11:48 am
A few days ago, I started to cry on my daily jog while listening to “Feel Special” by Twice. I had been thinking about someone I know facing a ton of racism in their life, obstacles that no one should have to go through. The lack of control this person experienced in relation to racism made me think about unfair situations in my own life, in particular growing up with my abusive mom as well as my attraction to men. I didn’t choose either of these things, I thought to myself while jogging in circles around the big lake near my apartment, tears falling as dance pop flowed from my earpods. Running around in nature while processing my feelings felt healthy and cathartic.
Sometimes I think other people feel more uncomfortable talking about my abusive mom than I do. Continue reading →