Recently, a friend of a friend committed suicide. She was an activist and well loved by her community.
It got me thinking about the fact that of the revolutionaries I have been able to get emotionally close to, all have periods of despair or depression. (They struggle with questions like: Will the revolution happen in our lilfetime? Will it happen at all? Will we ever create a decent world? Why shed so much sweat and tears struggling for revolution when I could be partying or making better money like my apolitical friends?) Because of this most of them have a drinking problem from moderate to severe to try to forget and cope. I suspect the other revolutionary-leftists I know who I'm not so close to have similar feelings of despair (many clearly have drinking problems).
It's hard to admit these things or talk about them even with our comrades. I think because of the political disdain for hippies common among revolutionaries, we perhaps turn too much away from anything that seems hippie-ish? -- anything emotional or touchy-feely or lovey-dovey. So we don't talk about these feelings and we don't reach out for support or comfort or empathy. Instead we drink, and many of us at a certain age burn out and then drop out of activism.
I want to open this thread as a space where anyone can vent any feelings of despair or frustration or whatever, freely and openly, and where we can respond with empathy and support.
(I know that we have political differences on this board that can often be quite bitter. I ask that this thread not be used to debate those differences. If someone's political views are described and you disagree, start a new thread about it elsewhere. Obviously you would not be in violation of board rules if you did get into such a debate here, but I hope that people will voluntarily agree not to debate politics in this thread. I hope this thread will remain a place for venting, empathy, and support.)
Nothing to vent from me right now (I'm usually pretty optimistic... though I have my moments!). I hope this thread can help us bounce back from despair or depression and in the long-run reduce our chances of burning out!