Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

For serious and at times in-depth discussions only, covering the original TV series, the movies End of Evangelion and Death & Rebirth.

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Sun Jan 03, 2021 11:31 am

One More Final:

*It is our last day on the Virgin Islands. I walk to Drunk Bay with my Dharmachakra pendant in hand. For the sake of my well being I decide to get creative. Among the rocky shore I decide to make a small totem, a broken log, dig up some rock, place the log upright and gaze at my Dharmachakra. I kept it around my neck to keep myself anchored to this reality. But now that I feel confident in moving forward I feel I don’t need it to remind myself who I am. I placed the pendant around the totem. It feels complete. To me, this was an act of symbolism in the art of letting go; to place a piece of the past upon a benchmark in the endless sea of time where it remains, and move forward from there. “Take care of yourself.” I, with the wind at my back, and head towards calmer waters.*

~Fin~
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby BernardoCairo » Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:28 pm

Man, that was one of the most interesting threads that I've ever read on the internet. I'm really late to the party, so anything I write is probably gonna sound redundant. To avoid it, I'm just gonna talk about my personal experience after watching the movie.
But, first, I would like to point out something. I found it very interesting how you managed to connect so much to the characters even without seeing the original series first.
The End of Evangelion is a lengthy movie that takes advantage of it's already stablish cast of iconic characters. It doesn't need to waste time introducing who these guys are, because you already know that and care about them. That's why the scenes are so impactful. But I guess, it was powerful enough to invoke many feelings in your heart, even though you were a newcomer. Interesting.
Anyway, back to the topic. I can relate to you in some regard. The movie broke me. But, unlike you, it was in a good way. I mean, it didn't solve all my problems magically, as people often say it does. Instead, it made me want to change.
Do you know when you wrote that the two endings represent different paths that Shinji could have taken? I disagree. For me, both outcomes are complementary in a way.
Both are sending the same optimistic message to the viewer: Reality kinda sucks, but it is our ability to keep moving forward that matters. Nothing is perfect, but that's fine. If we keep pushing it through and trying to be better every day, we may indeed find moments of happiness.
But while the original has a more idealized ending, here we have a more "grounded" outcome. Yeah, now Shinji and Asuka are more willing to love themselves and accept each other, but the change doesn't come overnight. In fact, the Third Impact still happened and there are also consequences for that.
Those two are on the right track, but there is still a lot of work to do. Until then, they will remain insecure, afraid and will hurt each other from time to time. But at least they will be experiencing all of this in the real world, growing and learning from their mistakes. Living, like any other human being.
In a way, that was exactly what I experienced after watching the movie itself, way back ago. I was tired of hating myself, escaping from reality and not being able to enjoy the good things that happened to me. Basically, I was tired of the way I was living. I wasn't happy with myself and I wasn't doing anything about it either (just like Shinji). But that changed.
Seeing Shinji and Asuka (characters that I see myself a lot in) finally accepting reality, was not only emotional, but also made me want to live more, love myself and be thankful for those who were really willing to help me, who cared about me. After all, if even they were able to do themselves this favor, why couldn't I?
I know it sounds silly and cheesy as all hell, but it is the truth hahaha! I still have a lot of problems to work with (some even with regard to how I'm obsessed for attention and can't connect to people in general), but at least I'm feeling better about myself and I'm doing therapy (which is something that all of us should do)!
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Mon Jan 11, 2021 3:48 am

Now that I think about it, all I truly want is for the hero inside me to feel happy...
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Wed Jan 13, 2021 3:10 pm

View Original PostErgoProxy wrote:Freud is nowadays laughed at (but politely) even at academia. His system, at its very best, makes for a protoscience, as it tries to explain everything by repression of sexual desire and resulting traumas. Even more, the way it is constructed makes it impossible to diagnose anyone as sound and sane; in the end, everyone is labelled as mentally ill person, dealing with some trauma(s). Now I have a question for you: why do you think you should believe that? Because I would bet any money this is not what Anno thinks; he merely wanted to show us that, given powerful enough tools, the Westerners would do anything to make Fruedian babbling real, turning the whole mankind into a madkind.


Because if there is anything I’ve learned in life, it’s that nobody is perfectly sound or sane, for expecting perfection itself is an imperfection among humanity. I’m certain that everyone on this earth has had at least one emotionally overwhelming and overwhelmingly incomprehensible experience in their lifetime. If what you say about Freud is accurate than the way he says it makes it sound like we all belong in an asylum. Although the man does have nuggets of truth; unhappiness can be a result of societal needs conflicting with man’s desires.
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby UrsusArctos » Wed Jan 13, 2021 3:24 pm

View Original PostHopelessromantic wrote:Because if there is anything I’ve learned in life, it’s that nobody is perfectly sound or sane, for expecting perfection itself is an imperfection among humanity. I’m certain that everyone on this earth has had at least one emotionally overwhelming and overwhelmingly incomprehensible experience in their lifetime.


I'll admit I skimmed over most of your posts, but your mention of a Dharmachakra makes me think you have at least a passing interest in Buddhism, and early Buddhism (not the later theistic stuff) tends to focus heavily on the imperfection and transience of life, and staying unperturbed in the midst of it all. If you're really willing to dig into the core of Buddhism, I think you might find it much to your liking.
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Wed Jan 13, 2021 8:39 pm

View Original PostUrsusArctos wrote: I'll admit I skimmed over most of your posts, but your mention of a Dharmachakra makes me think you have at least a passing interest in Buddhism, and early Buddhism (not the later theistic stuff) tends to focus heavily on the imperfection and transience of life, and staying unperturbed in the midst of it all. If you're really willing to dig into the core of Buddhism, I think you might find it much to your liking.


I’ve already found many of the concepts of Buddhism and Hinduism to my liking. The trouble is much of 2020 has left he discouraged and disinterested not because I was unable to do them, but because I was, and practically still am unable to take others along for the ride. It’s hard to feel self-confident when so much has happened beyond your control yet it affects you directly. Btw, I was hoping if you could read some of my posts.

I read a book today that was given as a gift. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox, and the Horse by Charlie Mackery. It tells the value of love and kindness. I recommend to anyone reading this to read that book, because just moments earlier I finished it and it is beautiful.

Some of the quotes I can remember from there are, “Just take this step. The horizon will look after itself.” “Don’t measure how valuable you are by the way you are treated.” “Tears fall for a reason and they are your strength, not weakness.”

Come to think of it, while I was reading that book I shed tears myself. And I’ve been thinking, could it be that maybe, just maybe, I’ve not been giving myself the affection I need? Now that I reflect on it, I can think of why that is so. The truth of the matter is I hate myself for not appreciating The End of Evangelion like the others have, expecting it to cure my depression like the others have claimed, for not taking Evangelion as a work of revelation like the others. So in my utter confusion I became obsessed with it hoping to find the cure that others have claimed to find. But in reality, all I was doing was using a self detrimental method of escapism.

Now that I truly think about it, the main reason why I kept coming back to Evangelion is that my biggest insecurity is being left out of a group. I dislike being alone, even though I’m used to it. I want things fo change, but due to this fucking Covid-19 virus, my apartment complex has shut down in the name of insurance policy. The majority of my neighbors are shut in and won’t go out with me even when I invite them.

I want to be part of something bigger than me, something that feels alive, something where I feel I matter. That’s why I kept coming back to Eva, because I didn’t want to feel left out. But it only caused me more pain.

I want to change. But amidst the societal chaos I am unsure where among my emotional garden I should place my efforts, more specifically, efforts that’ll earn me friends close to me.
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby UrsusArctos » Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:46 am

View Original PostHopelessromantic wrote:The truth of the matter is I hate myself for not appreciating The End of Evangelion like the others have, expecting it to cure my depression like the others have claimed, for not taking Evangelion as a work of revelation like the others.


Revelation, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. Evangelion is an obtuse work of art, and in many ways difficult to understand and follow, End of Evangelion being filled to the brim with bizarre, surreal, and horrifying elements. There's no reason to hate yourself for having your own take on what is, in the end, a work of art. Some people find it a cure for their depression, others don't. No two people see the same work of art the same way, and whether we appreciate a work of art or not depends on how we, as a society, make it out to be in context.

Escapism is when we seek to make sense of the world we're in while removing our ability to have agency, to affect it, and to let those things we don't like go by. If you're actively seeking to make sense of it and change it for yourself or for others, it's not escapism.

And I completely empathize with you about the wreckage caused by the godforsaken Covid-19 pandemic. The virus really has left society in so many places worldwide in a shambles, and I completely understand why your neighbors are shut in: they're terrified of the virus. And a lot of people right now do seek to earn friends online or be part of something bigger than them, something that matters to them, because that's something that we get from being with other human beings. In a way, one of the reasons I keep coming back to this site is because it feels like I'm somewhat working and interacting with people again, and doing something that means something to others.

Out of curiosity, did you finish watching the series? I know that Evangelion can be painful, but it's a form of pain that you can take over and own. Asuka reminds you of a bully who kept attacking your sense of self-worth? You can get a chance to fight back against Asuka's character, since Asuka, after all, is a fictional person. Something else traumatize you? You can face it and go on with it. The great Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa was with his elder brother after the 1923 Kanto Earthquake left the region around Tokyo in a burned shambles, and left corpses floating in the water. Kurosawa's brother told him not to look away from the corpses but to look at them, and to face his fear of them, until it passed over. According to Kurosawa, it worked. Evangelion doesn't even involve real human beings, real tragedies, or real horrors, and you can face yours through it.

Our site is running the Eva commentary project right now, and there's a relatively small number of people who are working on it behind the scenes. If you're willing to continue to watch Episode 08 and go past all the pain of facing Asuka, you could comment on the episode and conquer your fear of Asuka, who is voiceless and reduced to a number of still frames on a page for the commentary. And if you're really willing to put in the effort on it, you could join the commentary project and be part of it backstage. Do think about it.
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:36 pm

View Original PostUrsusArctos wrote:And I completely empathize with you about the wreckage caused by the godforsaken Covid-19 pandemic. The virus really has left society in so many places worldwide in a shambles, and I completely understand why your neighbors are shut in: they're terrified of the virus. And a lot of people right now do seek to earn friends online or be part of something bigger than them, something that matters to them, because that's something that we get from being with other human beings. In a way, one of the reasons I keep coming back to this site is because it feels like I'm somewhat working and interacting with people again, and doing something that means something to others.

Out of curiosity, did you finish watching the series? I know that Evangelion can be painful, but it's a form of pain that you can take over and own. Asuka reminds you of a bully who kept attacking your sense of self-worth? You can get a chance to fight back against Asuka's character, since Asuka, after all, is a fictional person. Something else traumatize you? You can face it and go on with it.


I appreciate that you are willing to empathize with my emotional wreckage. I too understand that other people are terrified of the virus; but I don’t let my fear of the virus dictate my actions. I still go outside, I still want to be active, I still want to live life and congregate by finding alternative solutions. But when almost no one else is willing to do so with me, no one who I can share this life of mine with, it hurts.

As for facing my fears, I’ve always felt that there’s a difference between overcoming your fears and growing numb to them. One is coming to terms with them, the other is blocking out emotion to eliminate fear. I could argue that fear kept our ancestors alive in times when survival was less likely, to know when to light a torch and keep the hungry predators at bay. Fear is an instinct; everything that comes after it is a reaction.

And no, I haven’t finished the rest of the series. I tried viewing episode 8, but as soon as Asuka appeared I couldn’t stand her, especially the way she treated Shinji. And as I’ve said before, I’ve treated Shinji like a little brother after Max committed suicide so I wouldn’t feel alone. I feel if I am to continue on I must put further distance between myself and Shinji so I don’t feel detrimentally affected by his suffering on a personal level. I could argue that Asuka was given a voice by her actress, and because she’s fictional I can’t attack her at all.

I suppose I should mention something else, another trauma that EoE brought up which I haven’t revealed before. When I was in 10th grade, there was this student named Jake, who also had issues of his own. In a manner of speaking he reminded me of myself and my own inner turmoil. So I quickly decided to befriend him. I lent him my therapy books as a gesture of kindness and caring. I developed a purpose to act as Jake’s emotional guardian, and it’s one of the only things that kept me emotionally afloat. But as time went by he grew more resentful of my presence, no matter how much I encouraged him. He even said he would rather put up with the bullies rather than have my pity. This broke me, as I felt I have not only failed as an emotional guardian, but also lost a friend. I started to have this paranoia that Jake would be driven to kill himself by jumping off the roof of the gymnasium, and I would witness the horrific event. I would mourn his death kneeling at his mangled corpse as my mind would snap in two.

So when I saw Shinji witnessing the corpse of Eva-02 being dragged away, I screamed internally.

The things shown in Evangelion may not be real, but the feelings and fears it invoked within me are real, including the fear of being left out and the fear of facing catastrophic events beyond your control.
Last edited by Hopelessromantic on Fri Jan 15, 2021 11:41 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Berserk EVA-02 » Fri Jan 15, 2021 9:56 pm

View Original PostUrsusArctos wrote:What makes it worse is seeing Shinji staring at Eva-01 in quiet despair. All he had to do was holler for his mom, and he'd have been able to do something about her...alas, Eva isn't the kind of show where the boy saves the girl.

Judging by the mechanics under which Yui operates through EVA-01, I don't think it was out of Shinji's negligence that the EVA didn't activate. The first possibility I see is that Shinji saw EVA-01 covered in bakelite, assumed that there would be no means to help and so simply sat there in despair thinking there'd be nothing he can do. And due to the mind state brought upon by this conclusion, Yui simply wouldn't activate EVA-01 as she would not sense that Shinji is seeking to get in the EVA. That'd be until Maya would be screaming at Shinji for not getting in the EVA where his mind state would go from defeatism to frustration, and there Yui would finally sense Shinji's will to get in the EVA and would thus activate. Under this wishful interpretation, neither would be to blame for not assisting Asuka's battle against the MPEs as it would have originated from an inconvenient misunderstanding. The second possibility is that Shinji wanted to get in the EVA, but Yui considered it futile to save Asuka and simply waited out for her defeat until it'd let Shinji get in the EVA. Under this context the timing between Shinji's frustrated response to Maya and EVA-01's activation and hand advance would simply be case of timing with no causal connection. Under this context Yui would be to blame for the negligence, though even then it is likely that she simply viewed the Third Impact as inevitable and that Asuka would decease anyways, and thus did not bother valiantly fighting off the MPEs solely to temporarily postpone Asuka's death. In both of these scenarios Shinji is hardly to blame for this.

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Fri Jan 15, 2021 11:35 pm

View Original PostBerserk EVA-02 wrote:In both of these scenarios Shinji is hardly to blame for this.


And yet so many people online including on YouTube and Discord blame him for being a wimp and a coward. To this day, I still feel nothing but pity for him. I just wish others would leave him alone.

I understand I am being redundant, and keep bringing up reasons of why I am still hesitant to watch the rest. I want to protect myself and walk away from things that poison my soul. I want to maintain my sense of self-worth and keep my guard up in the face of danger.
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Sat Jan 16, 2021 6:45 pm

View Original PostZusuchan wrote:I actually think EoE's ending is a cautiously optimistic one, since it says that no matter how fucked up and horrible things get, it's still possible for people to get over their problems and forge actual connections if they try really hard.


As hopeful as that quote sounds, there was one point in time (10th grade) where no matter how hard I tried things truly did get worse. I could argue that the only things that made be different from Shinji was that I entered with an open heart, and tried my best to befriend others, even if I didn’t feel like I was trying hard enough. But we were both living a parallel fate. The only good things that brought ne happiness at that place were short and brief.

If other say that the moral of Evangelion is to “love yourself”, then I want to believe them. But in Eva’s case it just doesn’t work with me. Not the moral itself, but in the method it was presented.
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Mon Jan 18, 2021 11:14 pm

View Original PostErgoProxy wrote:The universe may punish you for being stained... so purify yourself, by working with your will to become able to veto whatever you feel makes mess in your mind. Veto Evangelion. Just say "NOT and ANTI"; "I don't like you and now go away from me". Escaping to NERV is not a solution; only WILLE can help.


Admittedly, it’s hard for me to Veto anything especially when it forced me to question everything I knew and believed in, including my core philosophies. Simply vetoing a message isn’t enough for me. It won’t just go away easy like that. I was never one to veto anything in life because I was always taught to listen before I made a decision.

To be honest, I am having a difficult time trusting my own thoughts on EoE, considering how many people said that viewing it before the series skewed my perception of the entire franchise, which I will agree with. On the other hand, I also trusted others words that the film “cured them of their depression” and was a “happy ending”, so I held those expectations and to my dismay backfired completely. Now, I am unsure whose word I can trust the most when it comes to Evangelion, especially when Anno said that there is no correct interpretation.

As for loving myself and taking care of myself, I truly believed I already had achieved that, that I crossed the threshold back in High School. I was living on my own, doing my own groceries and laundry, volunteering and going out with my friends. Enter COVID-19 and shit hits the fan. It’s been almost a full year since I saw EoE. I just want my life back, a life where I can make decisions without others having to constantly interfere. Is that really to much to ask the universe?

I made an OC of Eva, which was inspired by my own experience: https://www.reddit.com/r/wholesomevange ... 000123742/

The truth is I hate myself. I really want to change, I really really do, just like Shinji wanted to change in episodes 25 and 26. But the finale makes it seem so fucking easy. I blame myself and beat myself up for not changing fast enough, so I begin to ponder how I’ve been loving myself lately, or if I’m not loving myself enough, or doing it the wrong way all this time. It’s fucking hard to work to get your life back when outside forces prevent you from doing so, when the decisions you made had unknowingly put yourself into a world of hurt. I’m crying because even after all this time I still hurt...so much...
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby UrsusArctos » Tue Jan 19, 2021 2:44 am

Try to edit your posts together into one instead of posting one at a time and bumping the thread up. If you can't do that, I or one of the other moderators will do it.

And please don't multiple post in the future. It's lousy posting practice and generally strongly discouraged, except in the Fandom area where it is often necessary.


View Original PostHopelessromantic wrote:As for loving myself and taking care of myself, I truly believed I already had achieved that, that I crossed the threshold back in High School. I was living on my own, doing my own groceries and laundry, volunteering and going out with my friends. Enter COVID-19 and shit hits the fan. It’s been almost a full year since I saw EoE. I just want my life back, a life where I can make decisions without others having to constantly interfere. Is that really to much to ask the universe?


Alas, one may ask the universe, but the universe plays no human rules and gives and takes as it pleases. It is human society and collective human effort that hold out against the vagaries of the universe. Petition the heavens and pray to the gods though we may, it is what we do with our own hands that matters in the end.

You're not alone in suffering from the virus, small consolation though that may be. We all are caught out in lives where others interfere and try to make decisions for us. Our very sense of independence is often compromised in the smallest, most commonplace things. Frustrating? Yes. Annoying? Tremendously. All we can do is fight back and take back control on our own. The only advice I can give you is this : Don't give in.

Perhaps you should watch Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann soon, it's just what the doctor ordered!

The truth is I hate myself. I really want to change, I really really do, just like Shinji wanted to change in episodes 25 and 26. But the finale makes it seem so fucking easy. I blame myself and beat myself up for not changing fast enough, so I begin to ponder how I’ve been loving myself lately, or if I’m not loving myself enough, or doing it the wrong way all this time. It’s fucking hard to work to get your life back when outside forces prevent you from doing so, when the decisions you made had unknowingly put yourself into a world of hurt. I’m crying because even after all this time I still hurt...so much...


It seems that there's something comforting in self-hatred, something comforting in hating oneself because that self-hatred is a constant, a known thing. It is comforting indeed to hate oneself, and to keep crying because one is hurt. One gets used to the pain, and can't imagine a life without it. The prospect of change is more terrifying than the warm pain of self-hatred.

Perhaps a reframing of your situation would help. Would you prefer a certainty of pain, tears, and self-hatred or would you rather make an effort to get your life back, and have a chance of finding a small amount of bliss instead of pain?

Human beings may have trouble finding happiness, and may find misery far easier to relate to than happiness, or bliss. But to live a life unperturbed, with a mind free of grief and pain, that is something to go for. Is it easy? Is it hard? You're free to decide that for yourself. In the end, it's all in your mind.
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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Tue Jan 19, 2021 4:42 am

View Original PostUrsusArctos wrote:[color=#007000]Perhaps you should watch [b]Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann soon, it's just what the doctor ordered!

Perhaps a reframing of your situation would help. Would you prefer a certainty of pain, tears, and self-hatred or would you rather make an effort to get your life back, and have a chance of finding a small amount of bliss instead of pain?

Human beings may have trouble finding happiness, and may find misery far easier to relate to than happiness, or bliss. But to live a life unperturbed, with a mind free of grief and pain, that is something to go for. Is it easy? Is it hard? You're free to decide that for yourself. In the end, it's all in your mind.


I would gladly take your recommendation as others have recommended it to me before. Sadly, I witnessed [spoilers] Simon's newlywedded wife Nia died, and after all that effort to save her too. I know an ending doesn't have to be happy to be great, but after discovering anime such as Guilty Crown and Elfen Lied (I love dogs :(), you could imagine how skeptical I am when it comes to anime, and the weight of expectations, because I felt mine crushed when it came to Gurren Lagaan. If anyone deserves to be happy its Simon. If Simon was content with this fate that's fine, but the fact that others encouraged him to bring her back is proof that it isn't selfish to begin with despite the fact some fans use this among other reasons as an argument. But what does he do? Passes along the drill and ditches his friends for good? Nuh uh. I'm with Adam Malkovitch on this one.

As for reframing of my situation, I tried to do a little mind hack. I took Sachiel's advice and treated Shinji as an archetype. To me, he's the archetype of a little brother, someone who I treated Max as before he died; a person who lives under my shadow. As I stated before, I created an Eva OC, an "Evangelion-ized" version of myself that reflects me more clearly than Shinji. My theory was that if I could partake in an act wherein my OC contributes to Shinji's happiness, I could subconsciously achieve closure and fulfill that archetype. Sadly, a majority of Evangelion servers on Discord have already banned me, and that's partially my fault. At the very least, I made something. And if that doesn't work, then I can refer to the Shinji Ikari Raising Project. If you claim I can reframe my situation, why not repaint the image of Evangelion with something more lighthearted without all the existential Freudian apocalyptical teenage angst? Because the most I want out of Eva is for everyone, including Shinji to live life, and they deserve to live a life of happiness. And I would be willing to help them achieve that, even if I can't.

Self hatred is something I haven't felt in a long time, and it's stuck with me for the majority of 2020, and with good reason, although those reasons weren't really beneficial admittedly. And I truly want to change, to love myself and accept myself who I am despite all the shit I've had to put up with recently and the things I've lost that helped shaped me into who I am. Now that I truly think about it, are self-hatred and self-love one capable of overlapping each other? Or am I simply overthinking myself in the name of logic?

I'm not saying I can live a life and maintain a mind free of grief and pain. Everyone has had a painful moment in their life, just as everyone falls and scrapes their knee at one point. But this was different, all the events that happened in 2020 not only opened an ancient scar, but cut a new one deep into the fabric of my psyche. And trust me, trying to keep watch of multiple mental scars at once can be exhausting. And the fact that it's all in my mind is both reassuring and worrying. On one end, it's within my control. On the other, I cannot just flip a switch to make the pain go away. For the majority of the duration of the second half of 2020 and this new year, I have been doing what I can to make an effort to improve my life. But it's hard to make an effort when much of it has ended up in vain due to a fucking virus. Truth be told, I've felt a lack of enthusiasm.

As for what the doctor says, I have a therapist already, but he barely knows about Evangelion and the massive impact it has on the anime world, an Impact I feel overshadowed by the reflections of my own personal traumas that it brings up. If anyone knows of a therapist who knows about Eva, I would appreciate it. I want to take care of myself, and I believe knowledge and enlightenment can be a gateway to laying these troublesome thoughts to rest.
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Mon Jan 25, 2021 4:38 pm

Bad news and good news. I sent an email to Doctor Nerdlove and got a reply. Bad news: what I informed him of was well beyond his paygrade. Good news: he sent some valuable insight to me as followed:

“What I can say is that part of the issue is that you’re relying far too much on one series to be your Rosetta stone and provide you with the keys to unlock everything. Part of why this is a bad idea is that, frankly, EVA isn’t just the work of Hideki Anno, or any one person. Much of the reason why EVA progresses the way it does and the tv series ends the way it does is because GAINAX and the production studios had a heavy hand in shaping the series and direction.”

I can agree. If I was in the shoes of Anno and felt my own company intervening with my vision, I’d feel out of place as well. To me, the story of Evangelion isn’t as fascinating in comparison to what happened behind the scenes.

“The problem with “The Hedgehog’s Dilemma” is that its’ an illusion; hedgehogs mate and have young, after all. They’re capable of adjusting their quills so that others can get closer, and people can learn to avoid or work around those quills. But it makes an excellent excuse for keeping others away by someone defining themselves as being unlovable and pushing folks away in the name of “protection”.

I couldn’t have said it better myself. It would explain why there is much emphasis placed on that aspect in the series, especially when the characters themselves who have traumas of their own apply it to their own lifestyle.

“The End of Eva is the warning to people not to treat Shinji as a wish-fulfillment character because their view of it all is toxic as hell.”

I wondered how that could be so. Then I thought, what makes a wish fulfillment character? Sympathy, being one of them, as when such a character gets what he wants, we feel the same for him, which by definition is an expectation. So what if the audience’s expectations of a wish fulfillment character easily reflect the expectations they apply to themselves? And the reason why some people act so toxic in the Eva fandom is because their expectations of the series weren’t met? That would explain why I joined a roleplay server on Discord only to discover the owners were planning on giving Shinji a harem by the end of the climax. (Facepalm)

One of the reasons why I dislike Asuka is because I had the expectation by that the end of the series she’d lighten up to Shinji at the very least. The fact that she didn’t make any progress whatsoever with him made me feel very frustrated, especially after all the times she pushed him away. I admit, sometimes I mistake hope for expectation. Because I had hoped that Asuka really would meet those expectations and make a change. I understand that she’s been through a lot of childhood trauma, arguably worse than Shinji. But like Doctor Nerdlove said, “understandable is not the same as acceptable”. I for one believe it’s downright wrong to make someone suffer for your own personal hatred.
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Javi2541997 » Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:43 am

View Original PostHopelessromantic wrote:​​This is my message in a bottle.


First of all thank you so much for sharing to us your personal experience not only in EVA but yourself develas a human. I guess that as I read in this thread from other users, we all have sometimes a Shinji Ikari situation. I agree in all of your points you have written about ep 25 & 26 of EVA and also EoE. Nevertheless I want to share with you my personal life experience at just 22 years old (it was my age when I watched Evangelion for the first time)

EVA didn't cure my depression too. I respect all people opinions about the anime and film but I didn't was my case. Evangeline taught me to accept me life and go on but with my depression in the pack. I felt so related to Shinji because I lived a similar crisis in higschool and college: "I have fear of being hated for others. I do not want to be alone. As long as I did not even tried to meet new people because I was afraid the would reject me" (this fact is pretty interesting because it is suffered by Asuka Shikinami in 2.22) So I had a period of my life where I no trusted anyone. I was like a lone wolf trying to roll on my own life. I guess this could be sound so selfish.

Nevertheless I wanted to take a "chance" and starting to be more positive or social. This was the worst thing I ever did in my entire life (promise) because I was a jerk I acted like a souless dude without personality. So despite the fact I started getting more "mates" I was empty because nobody liked my hobbies and I didn't like them ones. After re-watching EVA I realized something important for my life: I will be alone physically the rest of my life probably and it is cool. EoE sends the message to Shinji that sometimes we have to accept the reality as it is because probably if you change the status quo you will not be as happy as you have expected.

So since then, I accepted my reality no being so optimistic and go on in life the best I can do not hurting others but also no being hurt by anyone (hedgehogs dilemma)?

Again thank you for sharing you personal experience was a pleasure.
Shi ni Itaru Yamai, Soshite

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Tue Jan 26, 2021 9:14 pm

View Original PostJavi2541997 wrote:[EoE sends the message to Shinji that sometimes we have to accept the reality as it is because probably if you change the status quo you will not be as happy as you have expected.

So since then, I accepted my reality no being so optimistic and go on in life the best I can do not hurting others but also no being hurt by anyone.


As much as I applaud your acceptance, I digress it will never be be enough. As Doctor Nerdlove stated, the problem with the Hedgehog’s Dilemma is that it’s an illusion. In the case with Shinji Ikari, he is unwilling to confront his fears and connecting to others because he is afraid of being hurt and hurting others as well. The reason why Shinji has already accepted the reality that he is alone is because that is the reality he has chosen to live by, and due to his fear of abandonment is not working for him at all. And I fear that if you continue to live this lifestyle, you’ll end up miserable for the rest of your life.

If there is anything I’ve learned about life, it’s that sometimes taking risks pays off. This world is too fragile and this life is too finite to simply pass up. Acceptance is one of the first steps to happiness. But mere acceptance is never enough to live a fulfilling life. Doctor Seuss himself once said, “Unless someone like you cares an awful lot, it’s not going to get better; it’s not.” I am not just what I am, but what I choose to become as well; to rise above my status quo and achieve inner peace.

True, if you change your status quo, the chances are you will not have the desired outcome you’ve expected. But one of the lessons of EoE is just how damaging the weight of expectations can be. Gendo expected his son to do all the work for him so he could see Yui again: and look how well that turned out. Asuka expected her to impress everyone and expect perfection in every aspect of her profession, but ended up setting herself up for failure in the long run. Shinji on the other hand had absolutely no expectations not just for anyone but neither for himself either, which ultimately attributed to his passive nature.

I also quote myself from my autobiography; “The truth of the matter is this; there is no shame in being yourself, loving yourself, standing up for yourself, and reaching out to others. The only truly shameful act in this world is to deliberately prolong the needless suffering of others and yourself in the name of status quo and ego.”

Like EgoProxy himself said, “Dare to differ”.

Like I say, “Rise above your status quo.”

If you want to change, you can. But change, as I have discovered takes a long and weary process. And sometimes you take a wrong turn and take a couple steps back. But is it better to have tried than have never tried at all, just as it is to have loved and lost than never loved at all. At first you don’t succeed, try try again. Eventually you’ll land that leap of faith. Eventually you’ll find yourself on the other side looking how far you’ve come.
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Javi2541997 » Wed Jan 27, 2021 1:54 am

View Original PostHopelessromantic wrote:. The reason why Shinji has already accepted the reality that he is alone is because that is the reality he has chosen to live by, and due to his fear of abandonment is not working for him at all. And I fear that if you continue to live this lifestyle, you’ll end up miserable for the rest of your life.


I respect and applaud your points of view because they are so interesting. But to be honest with you yes I have decided live the life I chose by. Probably as you said it is not worthy at all because it can hurt me in the long run but I am here to just accept who I am without scapism.
Also, another fact that the hedgehog's dilemma sticks on me is due to experience. You now living bad or fatal experiences drive you to be more isolated and do not want to "change" or give to myself another opportunity. This is the main reason why I rather talk through a forum with you (for example) than do it personally in "real" life with a colleague.

Yes sure, sometimes even if the background is not so positive we have to change and not be in the same "level" always. But since 2017 I decided not to meet people physically anymore because they will hurt me about the boy I am. Often I think I have to do a chance give me an opportunity and meet new people because I am in another type of age but I guess I am not ready yet.

So yes, I have decided for now on being "alone" physically but I never know what the future holds so probably I could change.
Shi ni Itaru Yamai, Soshite

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Hopelessromantic » Wed Jan 27, 2021 3:44 am

View Original PostJavi2541997 wrote:Probably as you said it is not worthy at all because it can hurt me in the long run but I am here to just accept who I am without scapism.

But since 2017 I decided not to meet people physically anymore because they will hurt me about the boy I am. Often I think I have to do a chance give me an opportunity and meet new people because I am in another type of age but I guess I am not ready yet.

So yes, I have decided for now on being "alone" physically but I never know what the future holds so probably I could change.


Accepting who you are isn't escapism yes. However, I digress that isolating yourself from the rest of the outside world is an example I daresay of escapism itself. Escapism by definition is diverting your efforts and focusing your attention away from the unpleasantries of reality. Not all escapism is unhealthy, and one could argue that humans need escapism to cope with emotionally, psychologically, or physically overwhelming scenarios.

But this...act of deliberate isolation is the type of escapism that'll lead you further down the rabbit hole. When there is little day to day action to witness in the surrounding environment, you start to lose your sense of reality. When you start to lose your sense of reality well...that's bad news.

Perhaps people have hurt you for the boy you are, but only you can take the necessary steps needed to develop and become a man. That however is not my place to determine for you. Whether you want to meet new people within your age group or not is a choice you need to make. But how will you know if you are ready if you do not take that leap of faith? How will you be able to test the waters if you never stick your finger in?

The future holds changes, and indeed things will change, no matter how much they may look the same. What really matters is how you can change yourself for the better. I believe with a little motivation and a touch of wishful thinking, you can get yourself on the right track.
Throughout my life, I’ve tried to fit in with the norm. Now I’m embracing the fact that I am a full fledged bohemian. Who said standing out has to remain a bad thing?

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Re: Message In A Bottle (How the End of Evangelion Traumatized Me & How I Overcame It)

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Postby Javi2541997 » Wed Jan 27, 2021 4:35 am

View Original PostHopelessromantic wrote:But this...act of deliberate isolation is the type of escapism that'll lead you further down the rabbit hole. When there is little day to day action to witness in the surrounding environment, you start to lose your sense of reality. When you start to lose your sense of reality well...that's bad news.


Agree with this point. But I have to say that I was like "forced" to join the rabbit hole because I didn't like my reality. This is so ambiguous because we don't even know what actually is the reality "itself". So I decided create my own reality instead of escape always.
It is true that isolation itself is bad. Nevertheless I feel somehow impossible to just leave my room and go outside and then see what happens meeting new people because I guess I have a 100 % chance of being hurt. Things take time I know I have to get out my own "escapism" of being in the rabbit hole. I am not ready yet.

So I guess I going to keep going in my own reality trying to be hurt and make painful things to anyone. Because you know when someone like me (or us) want to be not so "social" the people sees it "bad" like you are ill or something. I had a friend at college. I decided start studying in my rabbit hole instead going out with him. He leaves me and we are not friends anymore. I guess it is just my own fault but I don't know...
Shi ni Itaru Yamai, Soshite


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