Why do I enjoy doing things that make me feel bad? - Forums at Psych Central


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Old 12-12-2018, 12:56 PM #1
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Default Why do I enjoy doing things that make me feel bad?

First, I'm not talking about self harm or anything dangerous. I hate dangerous things and try my best to be as safe as possible all the time.


I'm talking about why I enjoy thinking or reading about things that cause me emotional stress? Why I chose to listen to music that I know is going to upset me? Why, when I feel bad emotions and I realise I could just distract and I would feel better, I consciously and voluntarily choose to remain in bad mood?
It's almost as there's something satisfying and pleasurable about feeling bad. I think Dostoevskyj once wrote something like that... that people actually enjoy suffering in a weird way.
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Old 12-12-2018, 05:13 PM #2
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Default Re: Why do I enjoy doing things that make me feel bad?

Sounds like something he would write... Possibly in "Notes from the Underground," making bad decisions just to prove you can make decisions, not being a piano key, and all that. I thoroughly enjoyed that novella.

I think there's some level of comfort in unpleasant emotions, especially if they're ones with which we are very familiar. You know what to expect when you feel those emotions. There's something almost unpredictable about "feeling better," plus something fleeting about it as well, which can make the return to negative emotions that much more difficult.

Basically, I just wanted to tell you I understand. I used to pick the same awful fight with my husband over and over because I "knew" the outcome even if that fight had nothing to do with what was upsetting me. For a long time, I was avoiding discussing what was really going on in my head because the unknown was scarier.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:40 AM #3
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Default Re: Why do I enjoy doing things that make me feel bad?

Yes, I meant Notes from the underground, you got it correctly! I couldn't remember the exact quote.
Thank you for your response Romansunburn, it's definitely interesting and there's truth about what you said.
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Old 12-15-2018, 05:47 AM #4
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Default Re: Why do I enjoy doing things that make me feel bad?

Sometimes we unconsciously seek pain/suffering because its faniliar.
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