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As a child I thought we would unify against existential threats. Now I know lots of you would run towards the Alien Death rays screaming " fake news plot against the president." How very depressing.

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Bronydom and the Infinite Sadness · 12:30am Aug 26th, 2015

At this moment as I begin to write this is the story that sits atop the feature box. It brought back a conversation That I had with a friend I have made on here some months back. We had discussed our own life situations in the past, and that day, for whatever reason I told him of an observation I have made.

By and Large people on this site are sad. I do not mean this as some kind of a rule mind you. I am certain that there are persons who are indeed happy and content with their lives. But it is indisputable that a disproportionate share of the people I encounter on this site are in some way melancholic or disappointed about their lives.

I include myself in this category of course. In many ways I am extremely privileged. I live in a safe place, I am highly educated. I have a loving family.

But It is a lie to say that I am where I envisioned myself being at this stage in my life. And this is something that i have noticed is distressinlgy common on this website, especially among those of us who are older than the dominant college age ( 17-23) demographic.

The reasons are obvious. On the one hand I would assume that fanfiction communities in general are more likely to be filled with people who dislike their current life circumstances, thus the appeal of immersive escape of the type that reading fanfiction and especially writing it, provides.

But on the other hand, there are also aspects of the show that draws a certain kind of person to it.

Back in the infancy of this fandom ( fall 2011) bronies were not something that were known in the wild. There were comparatively speaking only a few of us and the first time I saw the show be mentioned in the press was in this New york times article about autistic couples. One of the key symptoms of autism is an inability to recognize emotions and social cues. As the article points out some autistic people fell in love with the show because the hyper expressive faces of its coloful equines finally allowed them to recgonize emotions and social cues.

Similarly there are a lot of lonely people on here. Again a show about the power of friendship attracts those without friends.

And as for sadness... well a show as aggressively as happy as this

is bound to draw people searching for joy.

All of which is to say... well it is well known that this Fandom does not excel in the mental health department.

But it is not because there is something wrong with being a brony.

But more because many people, unconsciously, became bronies as a form of Therapy. This show and the ethos it proposes is a like a balm for the brain, for anxiety , for stress.

And so in a way, all I want to say is, be excellent to each other okay, we are all damaged goods. But that is okay. Cause it means we have lived, and are still living. Do not say hurtful things to each other, but instead, look for ways to lighten each other's burden.

artwork above is by the weaver. here is the source.

Oh and again, in case anyone needs to.

Please reach Out and talk to someone.


I know off the top of my head at least six people who were members of this site who committed suicide.

Remember suicide is a PERMANENT solution to a TEMPORARY problem!!

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Comments ( 3 )

Very, very good blog post, my friend. It is so true that we need to be good to each other. I think it's tragic that the typical fights and debates that dominate sites like Youtube, Reddit, and 4chan are so prevalent here. There are a lot of hurting souls on this site, and people need to be aware that saying something harsh or belittling toward someone else could push them further into an existing depression.

I completely agree with your observation that there is nothing wrong with being a fan of MLP, nor does this necessarily mean someone is depressed. You're right in noting that this show/fandom attracts people who are already suffering. It depicts things like unconditional friendship but not in a delusional way like most kids shows. What I mean by this is that MLP has very realistic character dramas and deals with relatable problems while giving good solutions for those problems. All of the characters are flawed in some way, and that is a really important aspect of the show. It demonstrates not just that we should be friends, but how to be friends. It shows how to overcome.

At the same time, it's also escapism, as you also mentioned. This isn't necessarily a bad thing because someone suffering from depression needs a certain amount of escapism. Others may disagree with me, but I think of escapism as a sort of sanctuary from trouble, to let you rest someplace safe. If you are injured in battle, you go to an infirmary where you can rest. Continuing to fight while injured might be valiant or courageous, especially if someone else is depending on you, but it is also unwise because you cannot heal while fighting. Life is a battle. We need to rest sometimes when we are hurt.

I know that when I was first exposed to MLP, I was in one of the lowest points in my life. Even though I didn't recognize it at the time, I did gravitate toward the show and its characters more than I might otherwise have, because of all the struggles I was going through. And now, with life getting better, I'm still happy to be here and writing for the fandom.

It is true that the ponies have hyper-expressive faces, but please do not forget the ears. That is even more expressive than ears is the bow of Apple Bloom. That bow mirrors her ears. 1 form of expression real ponies have lacks in the show:

Real mares can wink their vulvæ.

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