Chris & Barb - a shared pathology?

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CatParty

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Marvin said:
Hell, he wishes he could go back to high school now, almost.



tomgirl high school.....
 

Alec Benson Leary

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Marvin said:
I really have no problem with the spending patterns Chris has. Once you pay your required bills and maybe contribute to some savings (if that's your thing), anything you have left over is your money. Do with it what you want. Hell, my interests, spending-wise, are probably narrower than Chris'. I mostly drink myself stupid, go to a few cons every year, uhh... that's mostly it.
The only real problem one could have with his spending habits is that he is constantly whining about how unhappy he is, and also wants pity that he and his mother are "poor" and he's not sure how to take care of himself financially. He does not ever think about spending money on things that might improve his life, or maybe even - more importantly - saving some money. I mean, his bank account has like $5 in it on a regular basis. That's ridiculous. If that's how he wants to live, I agree that it's his business, but he has no right to ask for pity from others for it.

Marvin said:
If he could go back, he'd be fucking his circle of galpals and be the coolest kid in the high school. Hell, he wishes he could go back to high school now, almost.
Why hasn't he thought about just re-enrolling in high school? They let people do that, don't they?

Of course, if he went back to Manchester High now, he'd probably be surprised (in that shocked-and-offended kind of surprise, too) that Kelly Andes and Tiffany Gowen hadn't independently thought of the same idea at the same time and rejoined him. He wouldn't like having to adjust to new classmates.

Marvin said:
Mostly if he has something to distract him from his miserable life, like how he's so cool with his ipod and iphone and how those dumb kids are so stupid for their cracked screen shit.
See, iPods and iPhones and PSN downloads... meanwhile, please bitch some more about how you are not financially "well off", Fatty.
 

Optimistic

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As far as sharing pathology, Chris certainly has a lot of potential to become a hoarder, much as the child of an alcoholic has a lot of potential to become an alcoholic. But, to follow the point Marvin was trying to make, you’re not an alcoholic until you start drinking all the time and you’re not a hoarder until your living space is filled wall-to-wall with junk. I think it will all depend on the coping mechanisms he starts to rely on when his mother passes. Hoarding behavior is often triggered by the death of a parent, and Barb really is all Chris has in the world for companionship. On the other hand, I don’t know if he has the capacity for sentimentality toward Barb’s stuff to classify him as a true hoarder – someone who cannot get rid of their shit because it causes them genuine emotional distress to do so. Would autism prevent that kind of emotional attachment to things? Are there many autistic hoarders?

As far as Barb goes, I’m actually interested in her hoarding as well. We just don’t know enough about Barb to guess why she’s like that, or even when the hoarding started – there could be any number of factors contributing. We do know that Bob was a shitty, neglectful parent and I’m willing to bet he was a shitty, neglectful husband as well. Not to mention her previous “scurrilous mates” probably made her feel that she wasn’t loved. Her stunning looks and winning personality probably didn’t garner her much love or positive attention throughout her lifetime, to the point where she uses physical stuff to fill the void and create a cocoon for herself.

Anyway, I digress…*Sigh*
 

IgnorantBystander

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No, I don't think Chris is a hoarder, either. I think the hoarding is an outward symptom of X illness, and while Barb alone has the hoarding symptom, they both have X illness, which I think is mainly a disconnect from the rest of the world and/or reality. Probably also WHOPPING case of depression, for both of them. Even if Chris does acknowledge (and complain about) how dysfunctional his current life is, he doesn't accept it to the degree that he is willing to try to change it, beyond looking for pretty much any kind of distraction and trying to hide from the trolls. He has still, in his head, mostly lived in the future where the perfect wealthy cute boyfriend-free girl would fix all his problems, without his having to do anything to be a viable partner.

I know I'm doing a terrible job of explaining myself, but to me, reading this book about hoarders, it really seems like a lot of the same off-kilter thought processes that go on with hoarders also go on with Chris. Clearly, Barb is a hoarder, and Chris is not, but it looks like there's lot of overlap in how Barb & Chris deal with life.
 

Marvin

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IgnorantBystander said:
No, I don't think Chris is a hoarder, either. I think the hoarding is an outward symptom of X illness, and while Barb alone has the hoarding symptom, they both have X illness, which I think is mainly a disconnect from the rest of the world and/or reality. Probably also WHOPPING case of depression, for both of them.
Barb is crazy and has paranoid views of the world, but not to the degree that Chris does. Chris has bizarre beliefs that really clash with reality. Barb's more paranoid, but still can recognize when things just aren't realistic. I mean, maybe it's just his childishness and his stupidity that causes this distinction. I don't know, I see Chris and Barb as having similarities, but still, I don't see them as being as exactly the same as you do. They have similarities just like any other child would have things in common with their parents.

I don't know too much about Barb right now, but I think she's not as depressed as Chris is, mostly because she's the one in control of their lives and makes the decisions. Chris is a lot more miserable because he has very little control over his life.
IgnorantBystander said:
Even if Chris does acknowledge (and complain about) how dysfunctional his current life is, he doesn't accept it to the degree that he is willing to try to change it, beyond looking for pretty much any kind of distraction and trying to hide from the trolls. He has still, in his head, mostly lived in the future where the perfect wealthy cute boyfriend-free girl would fix all his problems, without his having to do anything to be a viable partner.
I mean, Chris is a jackass and all, but really, what can he do to change his life? Even if he was willing to, what could he do? Are you saying he currently is living in the future in his head? Because I really wouldn't describe his current mental state that way.
 

IgnorantBystander

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Marvin said:
IgnorantBystander said:
No, I don't think Chris is a hoarder, either. I think the hoarding is an outward symptom of X illness, and while Barb alone has the hoarding symptom, they both have X illness, which I think is mainly a disconnect from the rest of the world and/or reality. Probably also WHOPPING case of depression, for both of them.
Barb is crazy and has paranoid views of the world, but not to the degree that Chris does. Chris has bizarre beliefs that really clash with reality. Barb's more paranoid, but still can recognize when things just aren't realistic. I mean, maybe it's just his childishness and his stupidity that causes this distinction. I don't know, I see Chris and Barb as having similarities, but still, I don't see them as being as exactly the same as you do. They have similarities just like any other child would have things in common with their parents.

I don't know too much about Barb right now, but I think she's not as depressed as Chris is, mostly because she's the one in control of their lives and makes the decisions. Chris is a lot more miserable because he has very little control over his life.
IgnorantBystander said:
Even if Chris does acknowledge (and complain about) how dysfunctional his current life is, he doesn't accept it to the degree that he is willing to try to change it, beyond looking for pretty much any kind of distraction and trying to hide from the trolls. He has still, in his head, mostly lived in the future where the perfect wealthy cute boyfriend-free girl would fix all his problems, without his having to do anything to be a viable partner.
I mean, Chris is a jackass and all, but really, what can he do to change his life? Even if he was willing to, what could he do? Are you saying he currently is living in the future in his head? Because I really wouldn't describe his current mental state that way.

I think that to him, the future where all the good things happen is just as much a reality as the present. We can all see that there's little to no chance of the 2 realities ever meshing, but he can't. For example, does he still believe that he will have an office job, a sweetheart, and a daughter? That's where the similarity to the hoarding mindset kicks in - that one magical day, everything will be perfect if I just keep doing what I'm doing. Or that the day will come when they will start cleaning up the messes (literal and metaphorical), but they can't do it today because of [insert random external factor here].

As far as Chris fixing his life.... theoretically, he could. He can read and write and drive a car and use a computer. If he wanted to, badly enough, he could probably find employment somewhere, and probably get into some kind of assisted-living facility that would be cleaner & safer than 14 BC. I don't have any kind of contact with the Chandlers other than reading the wiki, so I have to ask - you've said he talks about things in the past that he would've liked to do differently, does he ever look for ways of improving the present?

I don't know that I would say that Barb & Chris are exactly the same, mentally, but it looks (to an outsider) that there's a common thread of living in a mess and just accepting it, whether the mess is external (the hoard) or internal (Chris's current lifestyle). Again, just spitballing here, killing time while waiting on the next email dump. :lol:
 

Marvin

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IgnorantBystander said:
I think that to him, the future where all the good things happen is just as much a reality as the present. We can all see that there's little to no chance of the 2 realities ever meshing, but he can't. For example, does he still believe that he will have an office job, a sweetheart, and a daughter? That's where the similarity to the hoarding mindset kicks in - that one magical day, everything will be perfect if I just keep doing what I'm doing. Or that the day will come when they will start cleaning up the messes (literal and metaphorical), but they can't do it today because of [insert random external factor here].

As far as Chris fixing his life.... theoretically, he could. He can read and write and drive a car and use a computer. If he wanted to, badly enough, he could probably find employment somewhere, and probably get into some kind of assisted-living facility that would be cleaner & safer than 14 BC. I don't have any kind of contact with the Chandlers other than reading the wiki, so I have to ask - you've said he talks about things in the past that he would've liked to do differently, does he ever look for ways of improving the present?
I think you're overestimating Chris' independence. Barb won't let Chris touch the hoard. He can't clean anything up. He also can't leave the house without getting permission from Barb and if he's gone too long or away from her too long, she'll get worried and pester him. Most of his opportunities to leave the house are for him to fetch Barb food. She also lets him have almost no privacy.

Chris ideally would want the hoard gone. He knows if a heartsweet saw it, it'd be embarrassing, but there's nothing he can do about it. Although, he's super lazy, so dealing with it even if he had the opportunity would take a long time, but that's a different issue.

It's not just about Chris wanting to do something. Physical or literal aspects of Chris aren't the only things that affect his life. Chris leaving his mother and finding an apartment and a job and all sorts of things are all possible for Chris to do in the literal sense. But judging Chris for not doing these things is unreasonable and completely ignores his seriously fucked up mental state. It's thinking Chris is bad in some way for not taking this huge gamble with his life.

Sure, sometimes people do take these gambles and succeed and it's really cool when that happens. Those people have amazing perseverance and usually aren't autistic and crazy and weren't raised by people like Bob and Barb.
 

BALLZ-BROKEN

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I don't think Chris owns a car in the legal sense, which would make leaving Barb difficult. All of the cars are likely registered under Barb's name. So, even if he grew a proverbial pair and said, "Mother, the way you keep this house is unacceptable and I am leaving", all Barb had to do is call da cops and report a stolen car.

However, I doubt the police are going to call the fuckin' SWAT team and the helicopters over a "stolen" $500 car owned by a crazy, hostile woman who has assaulted said police in the past.
 

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BALLZ-BROKEN said:
I don't think Chris owns a car in the legal sense, which would make leaving Barb difficult. All of the cars are likely registered under Barb's name. So, even if he grew a proverbial pair and said, "Mother, the way you keep this house is unacceptable and I am leaving", all Barb had to do is call da cops and report a stolen car.

However, I doubt the police are going to call the fuckin' SWAT team and the helicopters over a "stolen" $500 car owned by a crazy, hostile woman who has assaulted said police in the past.
They might if she overdramatized the situation, saying something like "Crisson tried ta kill me... He tried to murder his momma" to stir shit and feed her persecution complex.

I see some shared traits, as to be expected of biological idiot mother and idiot son, but they seem like worlds apart in flavors of crazy. She's a bag of angry redneck monkeys, and Chris is a bag of :briefs: .
 
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