We’re going to answer a bunch of questions! Not advice questions, just some of the other questions we get asked sometimes.
[Image description: A photograph of a manatee in the sea, facing the camera. TEXT: “You can’t change people. Sometimes you will do everything right, and it won’t help. It’s hard to accept, but people have to want to change and you can’t force that. Do what you can, but remember to take care of yourself first.”]
There are going to be people in your life who need help. And while I think you should help them as best you can, that’s the key to it: as best you can. At the end of the day, you’re a person. You can provide support and love, but not change. That’s up to them.
And sometimes it’s going to reach a point where you can’t help anymore without hurting yourself. And when that happens, you have to step back and look after yourself too. You are your own first priority.
I love you manatee and human typist. <3 I am happy right now but there is one thing that comes back to bother me. I am in a romantic relationship with someone that has been my friend for a while. I want to tell them that I love them but I am worried it will make them uncomfortable because there’s so much societal baggage associated with that word. But I do love them, and I it’s important to me to use that word. Do you have advice? (Sorry if this has been asked before.)
Hello Mx/Ms/Mr Greyface! Don’t you look nice today?
I think love means a lot of different things to different people. I love you because I think you’re the best person in the whole world and all I want is to see you happy. You love your partner because you think they’re special and important and they obviously make you very happy.
Whether or not you say it, you will feel the same way. I think you should tell them how you feel, because your feelings are valid. It might not make them uncomfortable at all, and they will get to know about your love and that is a wonderful feeling! But if they do, respect their feelings and don’t say it until they are more comfortable. You can still express your love though, through respect and kindness. It is obvious you respect and love this person very much, and I am so happy to hear that.
All my love to you and yours. I am always so happy to hear from you.
Anonymous asked calmingmanatee:
Manatee, I’ve been having a really hard time with things lately, and I went to see a psychiatrist today and she made me feel like I was wasting her time and wasn’t helpful at all. It’s my first time ever seeing a therapist and now I don’t want to try another one because it’s hard to tell a stranger personal things and then feel like I’m not being taken seriously. But I’m still having a hard time with things. :(
I am so sorry that happened. I know it doesn’t feel like it right now, but that person’s behaviour is about them, not you. It sounds like they are not very good at their jobs, and have some serious problems themselves. Pity them.
Your problems are valid, and it was out of line for them to make you feel different. It was really brave of you to see this therapist, and even though you got knocked down, you are going to get back up again and you are going to try again and find someone who will take you as seriously as you deserve to be taken. I know this because you are brave, and deserving of help, and because I am going to right here to boost you back up anytime you fall. Please always remember that.
[IMAGE DESCRIPTION: A photograph of a manatee underwater. They are facing the camera and reaching out a fin just below it. A diver with another camera is in the background. TEXT: “You are good enough. You are always good enough.”]
[IMAGE DESCRIPTION: A photograph of a manatee, upright facing the left of the frame. TEXT: “I know that sometimes you don’t feel so good about you. So for those days: You are smart, good, and far braver than you think. You are important and my favourite person. You are incredible for all you do. And that if you could see you the way I see you, you would understand why I love you so.”]
[Image description:A photograph of an adult manatee and her calf, from above water. The calf looks like they are kissing the cheek of the mother. TEXT: “You are important and special. You deserve love and respect.”
I made a series of Calming Bunnies (based off of the Calming Manatee meme) for my friend Gab, who isn’t a huge fan of manatees!
We can always use more bunnies, I think.
Hi! I have a really hard time asking for help.I’m scared of being rejected due to past circumstances. It does not matter if it’s a school project or just a simple thing like looking for the remote control. I’m really affraid. Am I just a coward? Why can’t I do things on my own? What can I do?
Hey there, lovely! You look nice today. I’m really proud of you for coming to me with this. It couldn’t have been easy and I’m proud of you.
You are not a coward. Not even a tiny bit. You’ve learned a habit by reinforcement. Everyone does that! To this day I feel like I can’t eat seaweed balls without jam, because I have often had seaweed balls with jam and to have seaweed balls without jam is strange. It’s not quite your situation but it’s almost the same!
You’ve been let down in the past, and that is really awful. You deserve better than that.
I think this is going to be one of those things to unlearn, like a bad habit. Like biting your fingernails.
I have another friend who has the same problem as you, and she suggested that you just work on one thing a day. Just one. Just one little request. She suggested the following:
- Hey, can you give me the time?
- Hey, what do you think of/about this?
- Can you please switch that light on?
It’s a really hard thing, but just try to think of one thing you could ask someone. It’s not even “I need help” but just to ask someone something and have them come through. Your trust has been hurt, and that’s going to take to time to fix. It also sounds like you’re a bit shy, and there’s nothing wrong with that!
I also recommend trying to help others more. We see the world through a lens of ourselves, so if you spend time helping others it’s easier to ask for help yourself.
I think you’re already doing well - you asked me for help after all. And that’s pretty amazing. You are such a strong and brave person, you will figure this out.
Take care of yourself, sweetheart.
Hello, HT here.
So, I haven’t been posting much lately. A huge part of that has been that I am pretty upset about people reposting my images. This has been going on a while now, but I’ve been kind of tipped over the edge today.
I put a lot of work into this blog. Every single Manatee picture on this blog was made by me. I have whole notebooks just full of stuff I want to put on the blog, I spend hours at a time coming up with perfect phrasing and finding the perfect pictures, I devote entire days to answering people’s letters. Heck, I spend freaking ages learning how to make the blog more accessible to everyone. This is between doing multiple sports, working stupid hours and full-time study. So it really hurts when people take the pictures I made and repost them on their blogs without giving me any credit or even mentioning me at all.
I’ve tried to not be petty about this. On the one hand, I really love that Manatee is reaching more people, and more people are enjoying it. But when a post goes viral, even to the point where Wil-Freaking-Wheaton is reblogging it (an actor I really like and respect), I would like to get credit for my hard work, you know? I want to be able to say “Hey, Wil Wheaton, and all of these other equally awesome people, like my blog! How cool is that?!” Instead I say “Hey, all of these awesome people like a thing I did, but they don’t know I did it because someone stole it from me!”
Any of you watching Degrassi Junior High? The eighties one? In the first episode, where Stephanie blows of Voula and Stephanie is all “Boys like that stuff [ meaning being thanked and appreciated]” and Voula is like “So do girls! So do best friends!” I feel like Voula right now except I look less cute in high necked blouses.
To all of you who have sent me supportive, appreciative, and loving messages - you are basically the only reason I am not getting angry and ragequitting right now. Thank you for that.
I know most of you are totally awesome and lovely and appreciate the blog and I hate that I am letting you down because the actions of a few are getting to me. To you, I genuinely apologise.
And even though I have let you down, I am going to have the gall to ask you for a favour. I ask that if you see any Manatee picture you’ve seen here is on your dash, and the source isn’t “calmingmanatee.tumblr.com” or the blog isn’t mentioned at all, I ask that you do one or all of the following:
1) Reblog it, and add in the source.
2) Tell the person who reblogged it that the pictures were taken from here.
3) Message the person who posted it to say that they should be giving credit for the things they post.
Actually it would be pretty awesome if you did these things any time you see something that’s been reposted. But you’re under no obligation here! I still love you no matter what.
Just so we’re clear, I am not asking you to be mean to these people. Most of them are people with good intentions, who just didn’t think about the fact that I’m still a person who has feelings and wants to be appreciated for what I do.
Okay, I’ma go play some games and hug my cat. Take care of yourselves, and I love you lots.