Friday, July 28, 2006

"Secondary Blogtrauma"

I was cruising the bloghighway when I noticed a recurrent theme at many of my favorite spots.

It seems that bloggers are suffering burnout from the newest outbreak of war in the Mideast.
People were describing themselves as stressed out, needing a break, saddened by the outbreak of war in Lebanon.

And it's no wonder as the glory of bombs and rockets producing civilian casualties have been paraded into living rooms across the country. Every major television station competes to show the most horrifying, most whatever-will-draw-the-viewers kind of programming on the invasion of Lebanon.

I've tried to avoid watching too much of this new invasion. I can imagine the newscasters lining up on the frontlines where the bombs are bursting, like they do when there's a hurricane blowing in, standing in the blowing surf and rain, their bravado only overshadowed only by their egos.

I see this as a blogtrend. An overload of TV, too many pictures on the net of burned, maimed bodies.

Its 2:30 on a Friday afternoon and I'm calling it.

So listen up! Here's the diagnosis, secondary trauma.

I am now officially coining the term "Secondary Blogtrauma."
What we in the psych-o-biz sector call secondary trauma is what affects the bystanders who witness violence or death. An example of this could be those children who witness domestic violence in the home, or soldiers who see their buddies killed by IEDs.

Even watching death and destruction over and over on TV, such as the fall of the twin towers in 2001, often affects people to the point of feeling somewhat dazed and traumatized.

"Secondary Blogtrauma"
is akin to what Harry Potter experienced with the Dementors of Ashkaban. Too much wartime coverage on TV "just sucks the joy right out of you, and you feel like you'll never be cheerful again."

So here's what you do. Turn off the news. Take a break. Rent "Young Frankenstein" or "What About Bob?" or your favorite mindless Chevy Chase comedy. Eat a balanced meal. Sleep at least 8 hours. Call a friend. Nurture yourself, whatever that means to you.

Remember, those who blog and run away live to blog another day.

And if your symptoms persist, don't call me in the morning. Peaceout.


At 3:06 PM, Blogger dusty said...

I can't get into the site down?

Hezbollah wants a ceasefire and a prisoner exchange..say a prayer!

At 4:07 PM, Blogger DivaJood said...

I have secondary Blogtrauma. It's made worse because my daughter failed to email promised new photos for Friday grandbaby blogging. ARGH.

At 5:34 PM, Blogger JM said...

Hasn't there been enough suffering?? Why compound the damage by suggesting we subject ourselves to Chevy Chase? Other than that, I've got to agree with 'ya.

At 6:14 PM, Blogger Peacechick Mary said...

Oh yeah.

At 6:29 PM, Blogger glenda said...'s back up...perhaps a server glitch?

divajoood, don't you have anything to blackmail her with?

Jm Ilike Chevy Chase...well, some of his movies, well, Caddyshack, that's about all.

hey, peacechick!!

At 7:01 PM, Blogger Lily said...

Yes, I think thats a good term for it. I know its not the same watching from comfort, safety...

I too am heading off after the weekend for some travelling. Pittsburgh, DC, Florida. Business and fun.

Be in touch with you over the weekend then poof! I'm gone! I NEED a change of scenery anyway.

At 8:10 PM, Blogger abi said...

My escape is donuts. Unfortunately, I'm on a diet.

God, now I'm really depressed.

At 8:51 PM, Blogger glenda said...

Lily, when ya comin' back?? too, sad, but no donuts!

At 9:45 PM, Anonymous anita said...

You're funny! Thanks for my diagnosis: BLOGTRAUMA.
Yes, you're right we need some break from the news (but musn't keep silence). This weekend I need to work on my dissertation, but the next one I'll find a place to go, for sure. Thanks again.
You have a wonderful weekend.

At 10:07 PM, Blogger JBlue said...

You should start a support group. We've all got it!

At 10:44 PM, Blogger sumo said...

"Young Frankenstein' another movie I know all the dialogue forward and back. I think a depression is overcoming not just America...but most of the world. A cease-fire would be nice...but it won't make what came before it go away. My disrespect for the cabal in DC is at an all time low...if that were possible. I shall sit back and drink yummy coffees all weekend. May peace be upon the world...

At 2:46 AM, Anonymous Pekka said...

Glenda, you are so right (as usual) but what the heck is one to do when having this pathological need to keep up with news all the time? I am in a kind of fragile state now but still go on torturing myself by watching us humans decending ever lower in this brutal and animalistic (sorry animals!) behaviour. I must take a break, though, otherwise they will come and take me away...ahaa...

At 5:10 AM, Blogger glenda said...

YES, friends, there actually is a real world out there. This is horrifying, sad, distrssing, but take a's important for balance!

At 5:34 AM, Blogger beachblogger said...

Dear Glenda, We've been having the same feeling of distress and unease. We went out posting freewayblogs Wednesday evening and that perked us up some; but if we were at peace we wouldn't have to do that to feel better. working in the yard helps too but there's just this feeling that the warhuggers are dominating the news and the world. i want my PEACE back!

At 9:02 AM, Blogger DivaJood said...

Glenda, what a good idea. Blackmail. I have all her baby pictures, I could scan them and start posting HER.

My own movie suggestions: Waiting for Guffman and Best in Show; The Producers (Zero and Gene Wilder, not the musical) and Blazing Saddles. Oh, Blazing Saddles, Madeleine Kahn singing "I'm tired, tired of playing ze GAME." And the campfire scene.

At 9:09 AM, Blogger pinkfem said...

I want my peace back too, so I can again begin to address the other problems we are not taking care of, both domestic and afield.

Oh, yes, divajood, I have the cutest dimpled butt shots of my baby daughters lying on a cute blankie that simply horrifies them should their friends get wind that they exist...then there are the teenage hair experiment years...We used to call one of them skittles because she had so many colors on her hair at the same time! Ha, glad she outgrew that...although it takes a lot to bother my brood.

At 9:43 AM, Blogger fallenmonk said...

An excellent coinage Glenda. Blogtrauma will be with us for some time. It is going to take a century to heal all the wounds opened up in the last six years.

At 10:45 AM, Blogger Lorraine said...

Glenda, You are a wise woman. You're absolutely right. Sometimes it is important NOT to know every bloody detail of every horrible event that occurs.

At 11:00 AM, Blogger bluegrrrrl said... the new term...I have noticed the same symptoms on most of the blogs I read. At first I thought it was just me...I'd get depressed every time I tried to write or post something. Then I went away for a few days, had no access to computers, & avoided the TV as much as possible. Just what the doctor ordered!

At 11:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sound advice Glenda

At 12:07 PM, Blogger The Lone Beader said...

I have been boycotting TV completely for the past 4-5 months, and it helps this condition a lot. I can get all the nesw online minus the repetitive violent images. I highly reccommend all to do the same...

At 1:32 PM, Blogger Sue Woo said...

Hey Glenda Quick! Prepare the criteria for the next DSM!
Sue Woo, MSW

At 1:58 PM, Blogger pissed off patricia said...

Yeah, been there and not doing that. I'll keep up with what's going on, but only at a minimum. You know, like if they start impeachment procedures, I want to know about that ASAP.

At 2:59 PM, Blogger WeezieLou said...

excellent term! hope there's good drugs attached. i heartedly endorse what abt bob', 'best in show' and 'serial mom'. also, to get vicarious anger out, check out "house" on TV. not sure what channel..........the guy is more sarcastic, sardonic and politically incorrect than anything i've ever heard or read, anywhere.

At 8:24 PM, Blogger betmo said...

shanghai noon- owen wilson and jackie chan. and an afternoon without computer :)

At 2:14 AM, Blogger Grish said...

Well, it's probably not far from the truth in fact I was thinking of just that.

At 5:40 AM, Blogger No said...

What about Bob is one of my favorites!

Think I'll watch that today!

At 5:54 AM, Blogger BZ said...

She is what i use to cheer me up. I have her in person, but maybe some of you can use .

Thanks Glenda with the news of Qana, I am not sure if I can handle the injustice. Someone please stop the madness.

At 5:57 AM, Blogger BZ said...

Sorry about the messy comment...just click on the extended link for what I was talking about.

At 8:08 AM, Blogger Sothis said...

I've just about stopped blogging about the MidEast. I can't take it anymore. I've stopped writing letters as well since the current administration does whatever it pleases and doesn't give a rat's behind about what dissenters have to say (did you check out what Rove had to say about press criticism at GW University? Oy).

Might I suggest Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Blazing Saddles as well? Those cheer me up every time I see them.

At 10:00 AM, Blogger glenda said...

Ok, everyone, listen up, take your break, take as long as you need, but don't give up....the whole point is to get mentally fortified...if we give up, they win. Can't ever give up or give in to injustice. It's just the bad days that make it seem hopeless.

See, we have community!! We still have a voice. We can do things. That is power that no one can take away.

At 11:32 AM, Blogger enigma4ever said...

yup Glenda you are so right...and we all need rest,respite, breaks to build fortitude- but I am with POP if Fitz started indicting ( oh man that would be heavenly right now) or Impeachment proceedings began or Dick went into a coma Please do Break my News..otherwise the news right now has to be on MY terms and evenly , carefully dosed- I am tired of being broadsmacked with it hourly...I have noticed many bloggers trying to take care of each other- funny stories, jokes, music and even reciepes...ALL of that helps...We as a community do try to spread the Truth- but there is Humanity...thanks heavens..Great post..

At 5:29 PM, Blogger Changeseeker said...

I thought it was just me. I don't even have my television hooked up to the outside world. It's strictly a DVD monitor. But I've developed Secondary Blogtrauma from the internet alone, I guess. Helplessness. Lebanon. Aggressive racism. Too much to read. Too much to think about.

I liked your likening it to something out of Harry Potter. Dark forces. But ever, ever beatable in the end.

At 5:51 PM, Blogger glenda said...

Hi, enigma4ever. Hi, changeseeker.
Well, I took a few days off from TV, gardened a bit, wrote some stuff, went to lunch with my daughter. Heard about her love life and car problems. Had a friend over. Kept his dog this weekend, a delightful full-sized weiner dog that loves my two, watched them gambole around the yard together and nap. All in all, quite a nice weekend. Hope all of you had a good one too.

At 8:39 PM, Blogger PTCruiser said...

Just got back from Denver where I became the Godfather for my new nephew out there. I guess I needed a break from all the horrific info, too. I feel a bit better now. It does get to wear on you after a while, doesn't it?

At 9:00 PM, Anonymous earl bockenfeld said...

Yeah Glenda, this is a need for a timeout. And I hope the combatants realize that too, maybe we can get a ceasefire with any pressure from an American President.

That is a terrific graphic for this post.

At 9:28 PM, Blogger Frederick said...

Panem et Circenses

At 10:12 PM, Blogger sumo said... are welcome to use the cartoons on the Peace Train. I've not been sure if someone can log on and leave a post or if it is submitted to you and then you post it. You'll have to let me know. What I'm saying is...I'm not sure how you use the site as a visitor.

At 11:25 PM, Blogger BZ said...

Hey Glenda,

I have another piece that may be suitable for The Peace Train, but I am still not able to log in. It is on my site called Imagine. Let me know what you think. I hope other readers here will also get some thing out of it. It felt good to write and that is usually a sign that a piece of writing may be helpful to others.

At 12:34 AM, Blogger GraemeAnfinson said...

I can't stop watching. I am hooked, complete junky

At 4:53 AM, Blogger glenda said...

PT, congratulations!
Fred, nona nobis pacem.
sumo, come join!! I'll post them in the humor section...
bz- geez, didin't know that was a problem for you...sorry.
will come read your site today later,gotta get to work.
graeme, ha!!Tthat's why your eyes are clsoed in your picture!! All the TV!!!

At 4:53 AM, Blogger glenda said...

fred, sorry, typo, should be Dona nobis pacem. my bad ...

At 8:48 PM, Blogger Blueberry said...

Can't stand TV news! It's not just that it's all bad, most of it is spin and agenda-driven so who knows what we can believe? Newspapers and online news isn't really much better except there's less exposure to the logos, segues and bumper music (we'll be right back with more on the latest hot story right after these messages... [starchy-haired smiling anchorperson, they are eating it up]...and don't get me started on the corporate commercial messages!...) Seriously though, actually, not so seriously, Friday critter-blogging is a good escape. Even plants can be included (or babies), just as long as it something that brings joy and the post is completely free of politics or current events. Cute Overload, anyone?

At 10:30 AM, Blogger dusty said...

Good post m'dear!!! and yes, you coined the phrase and i will send you royalites each time I use it :p

you do like pennies right?

At 7:04 PM, Blogger John Good said...

Whew! I thought it was just me. . .

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