1. As we know, in Reeducation I was considered unfeeling. To prove I was not, I was directed to renounce the intellectual life.
2. I have already realized before that “unfeeling” only meant “not histrionic” and “frighteningly bright to a man like me.” Now I realize that what it meant more fundamentally was that I was not engaging enough with random silliness. “Let negativity get to you more,” said Reeducation. “That way, you will prove that you are a moral person.”
This was one of its most important weapons.
3. If one grows obsessed with the question of how to mend a relationship or a situation – “what can I do, how can I change myself, to get this person to stop being so destructive” – it is a sure sign the relationship or the situation is abusive.
4. I discuss abuse a great deal on this blog but I have not emphasized much how embarrassing it is. I write on this blog but on bad days I do not wish to be seen. The way it pushes its victims into the shadows is a very important aspect of abuse.
5. While I always had some kind of abusive relationship at the fringes of my life – which is what I went to Reeducation to deal with – what Reeducation wanted me to do was to let abusive people further in, put them in the center of things.
I think about all of these things obsessively in Louisiana to keep myself from getting engulfed by the atmosphere but in the West it seems unnecessary. Psychically I have already moved west.