mithical's forum posts

#1 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

@Bwast said:

I have dysthymia and major depression. I was in therapy and taking Pristiq for over a month but I dropped everything at the start of this month because I'm an idiot. Now I just lay in my room all day and do nothing. All of my friends have stopped calling me because I told them about my depression and now they tiptoe around me as if one wrong word will slit my wrists, and my parents are anything but understanding. It's a scene, man.

Have you tried talking to them about it? A lot of people want to be helpful and accommodating but honestly just don't know how. Let them know you're still you and they shouldn't act like such goddamn strangers. Let them know the things they can do to help. I think you should give it a shot.

@CaptainCody said:

What happens if you can no longer receive your medication? Is your happiness even real or just a figment created by a drug?

Your brain has neural transmitters called serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine (referred to together as monoamines), that regulate things like reactions to stress, your appetite, sleepiness, your sex drive, and most importantly your emotions. For some people, there is an inherent imbalance of monoamines that interferes with one's emotions. Antidepressants work to correct this imbalance and effectively stabilize everything the monoamines govern. Basically what the medication does is let you feel happiness, not make you feel it. Asking someone on antidepressants if their happiness is real is like asking someone with a hip replacement if their ability to move is real. ''Well that's silly, I can see them moving!' you might say. Aha! Therein lies the reason why there is still stigma surrounding mental health even today; You can't see it the way you can with physical health and naturally the things people can't see are both harder to believe and inherently off-putting. I believe that eventually people will find the courage and understanding to accept and embrace mental health, and anyone reading this could be the next to join the club.

#2 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

@Clairabel said:

@mithical: This is a wonderful piece of writing - thanks for sharing your experiences, it means a lot to us here.

@mrburger said:

Seriously, mithical. You laid it down.

said:

Word, that was on the level.

Thanks so much you guys!

#3 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

Aw I wish I found this thread sooner. I apologize for the length, I did my best to cut it down. I'm 25 and was diagnosed with major depressive disorder in 2006, though through therapy and self reflection I've come to realize my depression was already forming by grade 3 (1995 I think?). My inability to get up to go to class caused me to drop out of university in my second semester. It was around that time I saw a poster in a subway station about depression that listed 4 symptoms you should look for; Loss/gain of appetite, under/oversleeping, loss of interest/motivation, and fatigue. Those first two seemed kind of vague but I was 4/4, so finally one day I hesitantly said 'I think I'm depressed' out loud to my family and started down the road to recovery. To be clear, when I say 'recovery' I don't mean a state wherein the mental disorder has gone away. I mean it as the ongoing, literally life-long process one takes to learn to live and cope with it.

Anyway since then I've been in casual therapy with my family GP, eventually moving on to a psychiatrist I still see to this day. I spent about half a year in a day program for youth with depression but it wasn't really for me. I spent about 2 nights in the mental health in-patient ward at my local hospital before I realized that definitely wasn't for me. This brings me to my first response, to :

My perception of mental illness I have from my 2 weeks involuntary stay in a loonie bin? What I mostly saw in the other occupants? Simpleminded stupidity.

The people you encounter there are low functioning and very, very sick. They also make up a very small minority of people with mental disorders and usually have other health issues thrown on top. The large portion of people with mental illness lead fulfilling lives, the sorts of people posting in this thread. One such person is :

Nevertheless, my illness has essentially kept me isolated from the outside world for six years, during which time I've achieved a few things - got involved in charitable organisations, passed my driving test etc. - but my life is absolutely nowhere near where it should be right now.

Once I got started on my recovery, my case manager introduced me to an idea that is something I think each and every person who is recovering from mental illness should latch on to: the lessons you learn and skills you develop while trying to understand and cope with your depression are useful things! They're tools that many people don't have when they have to deal with tough situations. Ultimately, battling depression allows you to grow in ways that other people typically don't. I bet almost everyone who is recovering from a mental disorder has had someone tell them that they are very thoughtful or a good listener. This is because you have to spend so much time thinking and listening about and to yourself, which is what CBT is all about. Yes, your friends are probably further along in their relationships and careers and boy do I know how that can sting sometimes. Just try to keep in mind that you haven't been spinning your wheels or been broken down on the side of the road of life, you hit a pothole that temporarily disabled your steering, forcing you into a detour that has to led to a very different and most importantly equally fulfilling life. I think said it best:

It's a long winded, hard path, but at the end of it tends to lie a pronounced sense of peace and a much deeper understanding of yourself and others.

To this day I've managed to hold a job for a year and a half while supporting myself, even if it's just $400 a month to my mom every month while I continue living at home. I've still got a lot to learn but I believe I will continue to grow and improve, which is a hell of a lot better than when I started. CBT is a big part of my recovery and I cherish what I've learned about myself and others through it. I really encourage anyone struggling with depression to look into it, especially mentioning it to any mental health professionals you are seeing. Below are some comments that jumped out at me that I want to address.

said:

And even you find it in you to go out you can be a real drag; I find that I'm pretty dull & quiet to be a round in a large group scenario unless I've had some booze to oil up my talky gears. But then sometimes on alcohol, maybe 5% of the time, it can make my depression worse, make me just intolerable & selfish & whiny to be around. But fuck it, worth that risk to actually get out & see friends, right?

I know exactly what all that is like. Isn't in infuriating when they notice you're not really talking and they ask you what's wrong? You were perfectly happy just listening and being with friends, but now not only have you got the spotlight when you wanted to be in the audience, you've either got to lie or get into what's been bothering you, which can often turn into an entire goddamn life story. Now you've either dampened the mood and have to deal with a bit of guilt there on top, or you've tried to brush it off and all-to-likely have failed to convince, unless you're with very close and understanding friends. Ugh, frustrating. You're right though, falling into a snare like this is absolutely worth the benefits of going out and being with people.

said:

Yeah, I've been feeling down lately because I can't find a good way to make money, but even if it is depression I won't take any pills for it for the sole reason that I don't want to depend on pills for my happiness and positivity.

The pills don't make you happy, they help you find your own happiness by treating symptoms that can hold you back. I recall the classic parallel that has already been mentioned in this thread, the broken-leg situation; I wouldn't refuse a cast because I didn't want to depend on it for my leg to heal properly.

said:

I don't know. I've always thought most mental health issues were people just not wanting to deal with actual problems and just making themselves depressed. I've been depressed at times but I realize I am and I focus on what has gotten me down and I fix/stop/address it. Self help is the best help. Obviously this won't work with all mental health but with depression at least I feel you can get yourself back up if you have the will power.

People will often use 'depressed' to describe a state of mind or feeling of deep sadness, which can last for as short as a day to a period of years, but the mental illness referred to as 'Depression' (officially 'Major Depressive Disorder' among other variants) is different. It has to do with chemical imbalances in the brain; Issues with serotonin and dopemine and some stuff I'm honestly not sure about. Along with making it more likely for a person to feel sad, there are physical symptoms like fatigue to contend with. Depression is also usually compounded with a distorted way of thinking that can be a nasty combination and was a huge hurdle for me in my recovery. You also mention another tricky word when dealing with depression - willpower. If Depression could be fought with willpower alone, it would be, because it is awful enough to make death seem preferable. How little willpower could someone possibly have that they wouldn't bother to stop such suffering? What makes Depression so powerful is it saps you of your willpower. Some days I can feel it, a tiny part of me, trying to burst through, like a voice trying desperately to get a muffled shout through a thick layer of glass. 'You can!' it says. 'You can get up and go to work today!', 'You can go for a walk!', 'You can reach for a healthy snack instead of junk food!'. But the depression crushes it and the voice fades, leaving you with what your distorted thoughts tell you is the only logical choice, 'You cannot.' There are ways to get some of your willpower back, and I think this is the core of what therapy does. Eventually, you can reclaim enough of it to really start to fight back, taking your small victories and building up to bigger ones. But you need help and guidance, because without either you simply won't find the willpower.

#4 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

Great stuff! I really liked how you mixed up the character poses. I would love to watch another one.

#5 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

Nice work!

#6 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

The video comments make a small part of my soul die. If you're the sort of person who likes to laugh at people on the internet instead of weep for them, dive into the comments. Most people are too blinded by either their love of the game, their eagerness to put people down, or maybe just haven't developed the skills to take a step back and think about things a bit.

I agree with the majority when it comes to the run itself, it isn't as good as either VJ run but it's still fine. There isn't as much wackiness to drive the commentary, though being a JRPG it still has its fair share. It also has great music, which is a nice bonus.

#7 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

@The_Nubster Persona was extremely text driven, Jeff and Vinny never ran into an issue where they couldn't help but button through dialogue. It's not like it's going regardless, they're intentionally ignoring and skipping important stuff, and then they get mad at the game.

This... is exactly why I created this thread. I can only sort of blame you for not reading my post, so here's the TLDR;

They read 90% of the dialogue out loud because they care about the story and believe it or not, they don't want to get lost for hours. The "important stuff" they've skipped that has lead them astray from the critical path has been exactly 2 dialogue windows of text. You miss that one thing and you find yourself fighting for your life against cave apes throwing living rocks around when you should be laying waste to henches with magic. That's kind of the thing about these sorts of games and it is a fair criticism. In the case of missing Lucca's "Maybe she's still there!", Lucca doesn't react and drop that hint when you talk to the queen a second time. And "mad" at the game? Really? They've made one or two off-the-cuff comments about a lack of focus and have acknowledged it might be their own fault. In Episode 9 they talk to the Old Man and just sort of go "heh" when they realize he told them where to go.

#8 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

Yeah... I did write a lot, didn't I? I like to write, though. I don't do it often enough and that's probably why I end up writing small essays over weird stuff like this. My thanks go out to anyone who took the time to read it all.

I watched Episode 8 once, and then let it play again while I started writing a comment (this thread originally started as a comment). Whenever something came up that I thought was a good example, I paused it and noted the time. Then I realized I was getting kind of scientific so I ran with it and started using third-person observatory language for a laugh. I thought "and Patrick yells "Mode 7 like a bitch!". His love of mode 7 remains unexplained, but is observed nonetheless." was pretty good, myself.

I think I may have given the wrong impression; I'm not sitting here in a huff, writing a wall of text to make a bunch of idiots see the light and stop slandering my beloved internet icons. That's exactly the sort of behavior I was trying to help other people get out of. Yeah, yeah, stupid to even try, I know. It certainly doesn't help that the sort of person who might benefit from reading it is exactly the sort of person who would never bother to read such a long post. Hell, you guys who replied seem to have your head on straight and a lot of you didn't read it either. I guess I'm just an idealist. And someone who enjoys writing.

#9 Posted by mithical (277 posts) -

I've been reading the comments on the ER videos so far and I've been noticing some common criticisms, concerns, and complaints. Rather than post my own comment on every video, I thought I'd share my thoughts here. As a bit of background info, I've played Chrono Trigger to completion from a new game, not new game+, somewhere in the neighborhood of 8 times. Once in my formative years at a friend's house a few hours at a time, twice on the DS re-release, and countless times through the magic of emulation in between. I've watched whole speed runs at least twice. Basically what I'm getting at is I'm right there with you guys who know all about this game and who can already point out 50 improvements to Patrick and Ryan's execution so far. Anyway here's what I've noticed.

One idea is they are not having fun and don't want to make these videos. This one is pretty simple - They wouldn't be doing it if they didn't want to. No, they don't feel they have some weird dedication to the viewers or anything. Remember the Happy Hour? Nintendo downloads section on the podcast? There were probably a number of factors but ultimately the crew cut 'em because they didn't wanna do 'em anymore. Most of the crew, anyway. That aside... what endurance run are you even watching!? Here's some snippets from Episode 8, the most recent episode as of this post.

  • 00:22 - Ryan tells Patrick to shut up for even mentioning the save file might be gone, yells "Yahtzee!" when save files are still there
  • 00:47 - Ryan calls Robo a "Piiiiiimp!", indicating he has formed an attachment to the character
  • 01:08 - They spend 50 seconds talking and joking about the quirky character of Spekkio
  • 02:16 - They react, yet again, to the great music in the game
  • 05:18 - They shout "Alright!" when they learn to use magic and "Aw.." when Bobo cannot.
  • 07:40 - They learn that everyone in the past could use magic and Patrick takes a moment to extrapolate that magicmust no longer exist in the present. He also refers to the present as "our timeline", grouping himself and Ryan with the characters in the story. It is a fair assumption to say he does this because he has formed an attachment to the characters and the setting.
  • 15:38 - Patrick remarks that he "really likes" how Marle has come along, even if his impression of her regular attack is misinformed because he keeps mistaking her crit animation for a regular attack
  • 19:57 - Patrick recognizes the control room where the party first learns about Lavos, something even I haven't noticed before. They react to the destruction of the world they are coming to learn more about and Patrick yells "Mode 7 like a bitch!". His love of mode 7 remains unexplained, but is observed nonetheless.
  • 22:05 - Ryan and Patrick get excited about seeing dinosaurs. Patrick remarks "Fuck yeah."

I COULD KEEP GOING. How can anyone watch these videos and think they're not enjoying themselves? Even when their own ignorance leads to them grinding in the forest, they still have a good time laughing about how they might have to go back one more time.

Secondly, there are complaints when they don't pick up on gameplay mechanics, misc. details, and miss key things that NPCs say. Try to remember that you're watching this video in an optimal viewing environment, probably doing nothing but absorbing the information that is displayed. Ryan and Patrick are on a couch somewhere, probably playing on the office's infamously dim TV, with distracting recording devices strapped on as they try to play something as complex as an RPG, a genre that requires constant attention to detail and critical thought. At the same time, they try and provide meaningful commentary for thousands of hungry viewers, which requires listening and responding to each other on top of their interaction with the game. Eventually their attention will slip for a few seconds, and that is all it takes to miss the ONE dialogue window where an NPC relays the critical information on how to progress. It happened when Lucca said "Maybe she's still there!", it happened when the Old Man said "You should return to your own era", and it's gonna happen again.

Much of the above applies to picking up on the nuances of stats and gameplay mechanics, but there is a little something more to this specifically. Knowing where to go next is something that Ryan and Patrick care about because they need that knowledge to play the game. You do not "need" to know that you can use healing techs out of battle to play the game. It is incredibly useful and maybe even pretty obvious what with the bright yellow text, but it is not completely necessary to play the game. Their progress up to this point is proof enough of that. What I'm getting at is that Ryan and Patrick simply do not care about leveraging the game mechanics to their fullest. This is certainly not how I play games, and probably not how most of us do, and that can be hard to swallow, I know.

Lastly, there is the idea that Ryan and Patrick blame the game for their own shortcomings. It's easy to feel like they are attacking the game, a game you probably care a lot about, and it is easy to feel the need to defend it. The game does provide clear direction in the form of automatic NPC dialogue. Nonetheless, you have to admit that Chrono Trigger and other RPGs from that era, for better (imo) or for worse, provide less direction than modern games. There's no quest log, there's no objective markers and there's no minimap (at least on the SNES version). There are also some pretty rough translations (for example the Defender description says it raises Vigor, not Stamina). I acknowledge this next one is open to interpretation but I believe it is this disparity between the old and new that Ryan and Patrick are referring to, more so than a flaw in the game itself, when they talk about a lack of direction.

At the end of Episode 8 Ryan remarks that there is a lack of focus, and while he missed the dialogue window telling him where to go, he has a point. He is not supposed to be in 65000000BC yet, but CT totally lets him go there anyway. It lets him visit almost every location, fight enemies and pick up items. Why does the game give you this freedom when it clearly wants you to go in a linear path? That's a fair question to ask and it's really what Ryan is getting at, even if he doesn't quite know it. Also notice that his tone isn't accusatory. He doesn't honestly think the game has done him wrong. If he were to take a second to stop and reflect on things, he'd probably tell you that it's likely he just missed something.

And that's sort of the trump card here, isn't it? Ryan and Patrick are very much aware that they aren't picking up on everything the Trig' is throwing down. In the last 20 seconds of Episode 8, Patrick says "Did we miss something...? I dunno, we'll find out tomorrow!". It's not that they are so arrogant they don't realize they're at fault; It's just that they are comfortable with occasionally being at fault. They aren't compelled to play perfectly or to apologize for not doing so. Their focus is not on the execution, but on the experience as a whole. On some level they probably even realize that is part of the charm of the ER.

This is why, despite all I know about Chrono Trigger that Ryan and Patrick don't (and despite that I find Vinny and Jeff to be a better duo), I am still immensely enjoying the Endurance Run. My hope is that maybe this will help you enjoy it, too.

#10 Edited by mithical (277 posts) -

@morningthief: Me too, and I just finished the main quest where there is a moment of upwards of 6 dragons flying around - all forwards.