1516 Only A Sith.

She’s right, this will all come back to haunt her, although it probably won’t be as bad as she’s imagining.
It’s hard to decide how much of yourself to surrender to someone you love. Sometimes we keep too much of ourselves to ourselves for too long and it becomes malignant. I make it a point, especially now, to be as much as I am all at once so there aren’t too many surprises later on that could throw a wrench in things. Accepting your partner for who they are is important, but you need to let them know who that is, or how they react when you finally decide to show them may not be favorable.
Of course if your damage takes the form of abusiveness maybe you should keep that hidden forever and learn to be a better person. If someone drops that one into the mix the best thing to do is make for the hills, but the addictive nature of love sometimes blinds, or maybe binds, a person.
A lot of women who are attracted to me assume that my gentle nature means I lack the capacity to be abusive, but that’s simply not the case. When I abuse someone I do it with words, which is only marginally less damaging than with blows. I have a terrible temper, am moody, and am capable of deep cruelty. I know this about myself, so I try to keep it in check, but if I’m in pain I lash out at everyone and everything. That is a truthful assessment of my character. It’s not uncommon, but few people are self aware enough to grasp the reality of their darker natures. One of the many reasons I don’t drink, and never have, is because I think that I wouldn’t be a “fun drunk”, like people expect. It is my considered opinion that drinking would unchain the real monster that I am deep down. A hate fueled maniac that destroys everything in sight. It’s something about myself I don’t want to know for sure. The chance that alcohol might release an easygoing charmer isn’t worth the risk, in my opinion. Sometimes when you free a monster it’s nigh impossible to cage it again. A wiser man might not speak so frankly about such things, for fear of whittling down the list of potential mates even further, but what wisdom I have only springs from the knowledge that I have very little wisdom to draw from in the first place.


Typo in panel 1: transposed A and T in “conversation:


Keeping track of the monsters in your head makes you a more worthy man than most dudes. I know how it is to live with a hate-filled ragemonster behind your eyes (mine comes out when under extreme stress (generally at work, for the moment, which makes me work harder and faster but with zero regard for my own health and safety (not good when your job involves manual handling of heavy, bulky objects))). But if you are conscious of its presence, you can pull it back before it causes real trouble for those around you.

First, I love Thomas and Carol. Love them. They could be the only two people in this comic and I would keep reading.

I used to be a rage monster, years ago. The slightest things would make me hugely, ragingly angry. Then I met my wife, and when I wanted to propose, my mother pulled me aside and told me that I had better get my temper under control. I swore then that my wife would never see me get angry. And it was hard. The first year of marriage, once the honeymoon is figuratively and literally over, is a tough transition for most couples. But whenever I would start to get angry, I would take a deep breath and count to ten. If I was still angry, I’d do it again and again until it went away, and I was ready to deal with whatever was in front of me in a calm, rational manner.

I’ve been married for nine years, and I’ve never even raised my voice to my wife in anger. Most of the people who know me don’t believe me when I say that I used to have a terrible temper.

There’s an old story about how each person has two wolves inside of them. One represents fear and anger, and all those negative emotions, and the other represents kindness and mercy and all those positive emotions. The only one that can take control is the one that you feed.

If you ever want to talk, shoot me an email.

“Keeping track of the monsters in your head makes you a more worthy man than most dudes.”

This is also true. A lot of men don’t bother to cage their beasts.

I had to learn to control my anger as well. It’s very hard some days. It’s STILL very hard.

Keep it up, man – if you were not doing well,you would not have made 9 years. Congrats.

I’ll just second (third?) what David and Retro have said so far – it takes a lot to be able to own up to your own dark sides, and I’ve learned that the hard way. That being said, I don’t tend to agree with the ‘two wolves’ story. Both of those are going to get ‘fed’ no matter what, because both positive and negative emotions are going to influence us during our lives no matter what. What I learned of this during my last relationship is that you can choose to either work on that, which I guess might be construed as feeding one or the other, or let one of them loose in a healthy and controlled way. If a relationship doesn’t work, it doesn’t, and you need to let out the bad in a controlled manner, if only for your own sake.

That being said, this page is adorable. <3

This will all come back to haunt Carol, but it will be a friendly ghost.

Like Casper.

I always think it’s a wise man who knows his own demons. I had a drinking problem in the distant past (getting close to 30 years ago) and beat up three guys while I was less than sober. Granted, all of them had it coming (I stood up to them when they were pushing women — or me — around). I’ve been off the sauce completely for years, and I no longer worry about the loss of control.

I’m a survivor of childhood physical, sexual, and mental abuse (over a period of 10, 2, and 2 years respectively) so I feel pretty qualified to tell you that words can actually do more damage than blows. The beatings and the sexual assaults never made me lose the sense of who I was the way the words did. In fact, of the three, the physical abuse was actually the easiest to learn how to cope with.

In telling you this, I don’t mean to put you down or make you feel like you’re a worse person than you thought you were. Rather I applaud your willingness to acknowledge the darkness inside of you and take steps to control it. I consider the knowledge of the darkness inside myself and all of us to be one of the most valuable lessons to have come out of my experience.

One of my teachers in high school had us to list our strengths and weaknesses. I put ,” My strength is my ability to recognize my weaknesses, my weakness is the inability to recognize any strengths.” I didn’t get credit for it . I still give him a hard time over it to this day-I’ve kept in touch. And don’t even get me started on the dim dim bird.
As to drinking, everyone tells me,”Try it. You might like it.” That’s exactly what I’m afraid of. And if I did, I’d probably like it a LOT.

This is kind of related-

I read a story about John Lennon’s High School days. [Well, H school days, or the UK’s name for HS, whichever].

I’m paraphrasing:
Lennon was given an essay question/paper- The paper asked him, “What are your goals for your life?”

To answer this, Lennon wrote down- “To be happy”.

The teacher gave him a failing grade on his assignment.
John Lennon, + lots of others who heard about the assignment, think that he NAILED that assignment. Hm.

I agree, with both your list and your comment about alcohol. Also, the quote kinda goes with “the more you know, the less you know” (the less you know in the grand scheme of things, because as you gain more knowledge you realize there is so much more out there to learn).

Hey! Thanks for reminding me that relationships can not only happen, they can be functional and fun!

Also, screw you for reminding me that I am currently single and desperately wish for a sweet relationship like this one.

In short, great comic dude.

As someone who also struggles with a dark side, someone who is also prone to lashing out, sometimes cruelly, when in pain, I admire your candor here. IMO the best way to deal with that is doing ones best to keep it in check while at the same time being open about it and your fears about it with your partner/potential partner. Easier said than done, for sure, but hardly impossible.

I would definitely suggest staying away from mind-altering substances if you have a dark side like that. Everyone reacts differently to every one of them, but a key component in most is lowering of inhibitions, and unless you’re very comfortable with someone or very in command of yourself that can be a bad idea. I’ve said some terrible things while drunk that I very much regretted. The same is actually also the case for me for large doses of caffeine.

For obvious reasons I’ll be leaving myself anonymous on this one, but I have posted before and am a long time reader, and will likely continue to be. :P

Wise words, Crave…

It is hard to decide how much to surrender, when there are things You’ve done that You are not allowed to talk about…
Then it becomes a burden:
What if You let something slip and they leave if they ever learn just what You were capable of?

Foolishness is the price of wisdom. Whether it is the foolishness of yourself or others that you have witnessed, it matters not. Only that you learn from it, and draw from it the knowledge and humility you have gained.

I don’t know if this has ever been answered before, but how tall is Carol? She looks like shes in the low 5′ range but idk for sure…

I’m not sure. Thomas is 6’1″ so that should give you a general idea. She’s about as tall as Reggie, a little taller than Jo and Ed. That’s my internal scale.

I’ve known many drunks over the years, some of that’s from being of mostly German descent, some of that’s from having gone to a school which unbeknownst to me when I selected it had a higher than normal drinking problem (I figured it wasn’t a party school so it should be fine. How foolish of me), and some comes from living in a state with a significant portion of the population with Irish ancestors.

I don’t think I have yet met a drunk who didn’t have a monster inside somewhere. Some of them were a bit more reclusive than others. But the easygoing charmers tended to not have more reclusive monsters. In my experience, the more reclusive monsters are inside quiet, mellow drunks who’d be inclined to just go to sleep. Incidentally, the one time I got drunk, that was how I turned out to be. People didn’t bother me too much, but I had enough self awareness to realize that one of those reclusive monsters resides in me.

That’s not why I don’t drink, however. For me, being drunk is horrible, and I can’t understand how anyone would like it. For me, I didn’t really lose awareness or memory of anything, I just lost what little faculty I had for being able to deal with it.

I’d like to think knowing there’s a rage monster there, if someone were to sufficiently prod it, would be enough to have me not drink. But the calculation never got that far because I decided never again before I was drunk long enough to spot the lurker.

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