Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Confessions of Chronic Complainer

I am guilty of being a complete and total whiner. I complain about everything. And I do mean everything. I'm not saying it's a good thing. In fact, I think it's probably a very bad thing which I will demonstrate further on. But it's the truth, so I choose to state it in a very matter-of-fact manner.

What's more, you know how when you complain and some smartpants says to you "Come on, complaining isn't going to make you feel any better!"? Well, the truth is, complaining does make me feel better. It's like eating an entire jar of pickles in one sitting; which, I might add, I did yesterday. I WOULDN'T DO IT IF IT DIDN'T MAKE ME FEEL BETTER. There's just something about expressing dissatisfaction with a given circumstance that enables me to deal with it cheerfully thereafter.

Wanna know something else? Just because I complain about something does not necessarily mean that I want it to change immediately. Silas is not that way. If Silas complains about something it generally means he so upset about a situation that he plans to do something drastic in the next 15 minutes to rectify it. But with me, unless I'm curled up on the floor bawling my eyes out, the reality probably is that I don't really have that big of a problem with whatever I'm complaining about. The rule here is: It's not important till I've cried about it.

This rule, however, does not apply after midnight because after midnight I cry about everything. Example: The other night we were out rather late at a friend's house watching Arrested Development (a tv show for a whole 'nother post...) and when we got home I collapsed across the bed. Silas told me to roll over so he could get in bed and when I went to move I found that I couldn't roll over without great difficulty due to the Italian baby taking up residence in my abdomen. I began to cry. Poor Silas, totally taken aback by this sudden burst of emotion, asked what was wrong and I managed to tell him between sobs that "I'M A FREAKING WHALE!" Poor Silas. Luckily for him, he was able to contain the gales of laughter which were, I'm sure, welling up inside of him. End embarrassing story.

I don't really have a problem with the fact that I complain. Unfortunately, the Bible doesn't share my opinion. We are/I am told in Philippians 2 to "Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world."

Ooooooo BURN! It's like the Bible just said "I'm going go kick Elisabeth's butt today, what little piece of scripture should I shove in her face? Oh! I know!"

I have no inspirational story about how I've overcome complaining because, frankly, I haven't managed it yet. It's a life long habit and I don't foresee it simply ending in one day. BUT. Next time I want to complain about something I'm just not going to. Baby steps. Tiny, tiny baby steps.


  1. man... i needed this. *sigh* I got the same problem.

    totally bursted out laughing at the "i feel like a whale" story. bwhaha! =)

  2. I like your clear, frank writing style.

    :) I have the same problem, and my husband called me on it the other day when I had had a bad day and was taking my sweet time "getting it out of my system" ie. crying and whining. He dared to point out that all this worry was a sin, and I needed to give it to God. What gall. (He's SOOO good for me!)

  3. You have my prayers-I, too, am a recovering complainer.

  4. Your pathetic!
    But I guess I should probably wish you luck.
    P.S That baby is not going to be there forever :D
    Hang in there.

  5. Someone I was dating once called me out on my complaining and I changed right away. He really did make a good point, and I knew that my complaining affected his mood. So now instead of saying it out loud, I just keep it to myself. So it's sort of like I'm complaining, but nobody has to hear it. :)

    Love what I've read so far! I found you from the comments @ Kyla's.

  6. Ohhh Elisabeth, just know that you're like half way through! Then you'll have a baby to complain about because it's going to be needy and whiney- but still so lovable and cuddly :). I have the same problem, and yes, complaining makes me feel better too.

  7. Complaining does make people feel better. It's okay to complain. I rant all the time. Either in blog and sometimes to close friends / families. I just make sure I complain to different people because when I complain it's usually pretty intense so one person may not be able to handle it all :p

    ps. i find your complaining cute by the way. I think pregnant women can complain whenever they want.:)

  8. Complaining does make me feel better along with a good crying session. It's not healthy to just keep things bottled up. But I am choosy as tho who I share my complaints with. =)

  9. It doesn't make me feel better at all (and I confess that I might have an idea where you learned it - although I made no contribution to your other bad habits like grabbing food from the plates of others). After an outburst of complaining I just feel guilty for knowing that I have just made everyone around extremely uncomfortable as well as joined forces with the murmuring, wandering Israel in the wilderness. I can't laugh about it and I commend you for your baby steps.


Muse with me. Please?