Illustration / My entry to BeachLifeStudio’s DrawThisInYourStyle challenge + LeonieUpdate!

In this little LeonieUpdate:

  • process for this art challenge!
  • LeonieUpdate and ramble about:
    • autism & compatibility in relationships,
    • Japan’s age of social withdrawal
    • and other interesting finds!

My entry to BeachLifeStudio’s Draw This in Your Style Challenge! [this is the original piece]

Bubblegum hair! 🌸🌺🌷✨ I don’t know this artist but all the same, congrats on their 20k and thanks for the fun challenge!

I think I’ve simplified her hat lots without the leafy branches :0

LeonieUpdate time!

Super busy juggling things during this week and the next two weeks; apologies in advance. I don’t have the luxury to ramble too long here during the coming weeks. Trying to not burn and stress out on my end :’)

A lot of reflection going on here though haha

Are we a good fit? How to tell if you’re right for each other? | Autism and Relationships

  • that you can make things work with somebody given mutual effort and compromise so it’s more about whether your partner(s) want the same life and relationship
  • it’s more about if it’s worth pursuing the relationship at all and what everyone’s non-negotiables are (living situation, lifestyle, language, commitment, religion, culture, values, children, routine, hobbies, finances and other important things you care about most)
  • caring, having affection and good memories with someone doesn’t mean you should actually be and live together
  • what are “not so important” things that you can accept and compromise on
    • ie. not have to live together, not need marriage, not have kids, shared hobbies, travel plans, family commitments and so on
  • setting boundaries and what you honestly want for each other and see if you’re on board with each other’s life and relationship visions
    • will it thrive? (work, life, together time, diet, extended family, etc)
    • do you need to give up a non-negotiable?
    • do you both want to build a shared life and vision?
    • how would you meet each other’s needs?
    • this is not about pressuring and changing each other’s important ways of life out of obligation; it needs to be a true negotiable thing
    • someone you’d want to make good memories, adventures and life with
  • nice food for thought! I don’t have any experience so it shows how difficult it is to keep a true, honest, committed, ongoing relationship
  • relationships seem daunting, scary, risky, life changing, drastic, intense and probably not for me (or even possible since I’ve given up) so I’d rather focus on online casual friendships, especially when I’m a simple, low energy homebody anyway

As a hermit, I ramble about Japan: The Age Of Social Withdrawal (even before the pandemic)

  • wow I am being recommended this by youtube – yes I’m a shut in freelancer. I’ve said this before in a post: I would be invisible if I didn’t post on the internet :’)
  • lots of despair, loneliness and hopelessness that I relate to since “networks, connections, money and experience” are a huge deal in Japan (and everywhere else)
    • many outcasts cannot obtain such things through the expected route without heavy masks/personas and draining our soul away
  • I think this happens globally and everywhere but they’re just invisible, ignored, not shown kindness, have no mental health resources or privileges available to help them and not given a chance by most people
  • this is due to failure to “launch”, living with disabilities, trauma, bullying, depression, ADHD, OCD, autism, stress, not fitting in, mental health struggles, anxiety, parental pressure, abuse, lack of self expression/communication/human connection/belonging/acceptance, struggle with identity, financial issues, not wanting to live up to societal standards of success and/or more that I can’t think of from the top of my head
  • I hope things get better for them and that they can eventually stand on their own when they’re able to 🙁
  • it makes me think of how I really don’t relate to Australia’s mostly outgoing culture; I really don’t care about parties, drinking, sports, group social things and most outdoor activities
  • I’m just feeling somewhat sad and accepting that it’s my life now, to be lonely and free to not worry about relationships.
    • at least I have a few good friends though even then I’m just one out of many they spend time with (let alone people who are important, special, close and valuable to them :’) )
    • hey most people want to make good memories and engage with other people, not with me! Sometimes it hurts when my hopes get too high.
    • all the same I accept that I’m just low priority and not in people’s lives and have few friends haha
    • my occasional fleeting moments of loneliness is not a huge thing since I don’t want it enough to change my way of life over it
    • I need to keep people in my life who accept me as I am too
  • as you know I’m a socially withdrawn hermit even before the pandemic
    • I enjoy staying at home because I feel the most free and I don’t have to mask myself as much
    • I feel more authentic to myself and grateful that I can freelance and catch up with my few friends on my own terms :’)
    • I don’t often feel lonely until I compare and think about how I feel like an alien relative to other people (and the entertainment I see) ;P
    • so perhaps for me it’s more out of choice than out of depression, anxiety or other complex struggles. Or maybe I’m just rationalising and embracing my way of life to myself
    • people in the video want people to love them and to belong with (I have accepted this won’t happen for me in a relationship but with friendships, maybe)
    • I don’t think I even have 5 important, close people to count on as I think about it. At least one great one is enough though. Just got to cherish the few good people in my life.
    • there’s a lot of tension, stress, frustration, verbal abuse and arguments sometimes in my life situation but I won’t go into detail; I’ll just make the most of my situation;
  • the video made me look at my hermit, outcast life and since I’m fortunate that I can work on my unstable freelance career, I feel at peace and lucky that I don’t have to conform to the norm
    • it’s okay to live as a content, working from home hermit!
    • I don’t feel ashamed somehow
    • always striving and learning to stay true to myself and feelings
    • at the same time I don’t want my feelings to cloud what’s really happening and if people are taking anybody for granted
    • ahhh existentialism too and how nothing lasts
  • life is too short to care what people think and to conform what’s expected of you; keep finding ways to keep doing the things that’s true and exciting to you, even if it is just a hobby that you do in little increments. Please protect your light!
  • Also check out the positive video A Day in the Life of a Japanese Hikikomori (Shut In)!

Outgrowing friendships (which happens often as a hermit)

  • seems like I was ignoring some red flags, lack of care, felt low priority and that I should value, respect myself, my intuition and mixed gut feelings more
    • I don’t have the emotional energy, time and words to deal with it at the moment so I’ll let time take its course and let things fade with present and future distant, inconsistent, uneven friendships.
    • I need some time and space too for my feelings to be accepted and subside.
  • Outgrowing Your Toxic Friends and Moving On… | Advice with Ash
    • it happens when life goals are not the same and you aren’t around each other anymore
    • it’s difficult to find common ground and connection
    • it’s okay to let go of people who are not present anymore and don’t make you feel good inside
    • sometimes you need to ghost/cut someone off because they aren’t good, receptive, respectful people. Otherwise bravely talk it out if you feel they’re worth it and good for your mental health (:
  • 8 Signs You’re With The Wrong Friends
    • good general signs
    • it’s a bummer when you’re missing people who don’t really care or care as much as you do
    • I don’t want to pressure or guilt anybody either (it doesn’t feel great nor genuine) so being honest, moving on and not worrying about a friendship that’s not working is indeed sad but fine and better for everyone too
      • better than dragging it on, lying/pretending things are okay, wasting time, making the hurt and betrayal feel worse
    • need for openness and trust; if it’s not there and if they’re not asking about you with follow up questions, validating and hearing your feelings and concerns too then it’s not a mutual emotional connection
    • I don’t want to be used when they need me just because no one else was around 😛
    • disappointment when you find yourself in the wrong company and/or not compatible :’)
    • getting some perspective, moving on and time helps eventually
    • also good perspective on what not to do, to be a better friend too! It’s not easy being a good friend to somebody either!
  • 5 Levels of Friendships
    • levels: strangers, acquaintances, casual friends, close friends, intimate friends
    • I think I have lots of strangers, acquaintances, a tiny handful of casual friends and then one best friend ;P
  • 7 Signs You Shouldn’t End A Friendship
    • good points too! People who carve out time for you, especially during their downtime or weekend for you should be cherished!
    • harder to start up a friendship that ended too, so you need to be super sure you don’t want to engage with them again (it makes things messy though)
    • hmm what if they don’t bring you much joy but it leans more towards exercising emotional labour, awkwardness, lack of things to bond over, having doubts and caring too much on one side?
    • when I sense that they’re keeping a distance from me and keeping me low priority, I may/may not bring it up and talk over options (if the level of trust is there). Then I let them go if it happens again and becomes a pattern.
      • When they fall back into old habits, they don’t genuinely want to put in the effort as a friend. Their actions speak louder than words and I don’t want to give people too many second chances because it’s not worth the misery, hurt, betrayal of trust, effort, time and mental space
    • I think that’s why I have mostly casual friends; we’re not always emotionally there for each other because we don’t regularly update each other over mundane things and do things together as it is
      • the bond, communication and trust isn’t strong and maintained enough
      • I do appreciate that they understand that I’m a hermit and they don’t pressure me otherwise
      • if we do manage to make stars align, we’re still happy to engage and enjoy each other’s company though (:
    • yes just me rambling about friendships again because I want to manage it better for my own well being and mental health ;P

Interesting finds!

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