The Fear: How we accepted a self induced depressive mood swing into everyday life.
Having ‘The Fear’ is something that I think has been rolled into the Irish weekend experience. It’s an accepted and joked about phenomenon.
I didn’t really know what this was referring to when it crept into the parlance. I dialed up the arbiter of actual everyday speech, Urban Dictionary, and found what it apparently meant. The Fear, and stop me if I’m wrong, seems to be a foreboding feeling of regret with regards to one’s drunken behaviour the night before. From my own experience and from talking to my acquaintances, cases of the fear can go one for hours or days.
It has been embraced into the weekend warriors programme of events. ‘The Fear’ enables the fear-ee (the sufferer of The Fear) to comfort ones self. A Saturday afternoon spent keeping an eye on your facebook feed should throw up statuses and pictures of people indulging themselves with pajamas, any manner of comfort food, Disney movies, and so on and so forth.
By publically glamorising ‘The Fear’ it becomes accepted into socitey and then leads the ‘fear-ees’ to feel like this is just a part of the weekend. In my experience, The Fear is a depressive mood swing brought on by aggressive consumption of alcohol.
I fear that accepting ‘The Fear’ as a cultural phenomenon is legitimising people bringing themselves into serious depressive states.
There is a real acceptance and openness to discussion of mental health in Ireland at the moment. Yet, at the same time we seem to embracing how drink effects our mood.
(Image: Eoin Whelehan)