1. When an individual is self pitying to the point of nausea they are said to be holding a "pity party"; this is especially the case when said individual is with a large group of friends and yet insists on sucking the life from the room through pity. Not to be confused with energy sinkholes

2. When a group is made up with "pity partying" individuals and as such, radiates an enormous amount of self-pity. This phenomenon is to be avoided at all costs as it may spiral inward into a black hole.

The arrival of a new year usually causes many of us to pause and reflect on what we’ve accomplished so far in our lives as well as what lies in store in the days to come. For most people who live a somewhat balanced life, the good times and the bad times seem to even themselves out and they take what life has thrown at them.

However, there are a handful of people, who, for whatever reason, deem it necessary to burden the rest of the world with their “crisis du jour” and can suck the air out of the room with their constant state of bellyaching and whining. What follows is a few suggestions for both those seeking pity and those on the other end of their complaints to help you :

A: If you’re the host, throw yourself the best damn pity party the world has ever seen.

B:If you’re an attendee, some simple tips on what to say and what not to say to those who seek your audience.

Rule Number 1 if you’re the host:

First of all you have to enumerate your feelings. Are you sad about something? Does this sadness lead to anger and add additional stress to your already stressful life? Why can't the rest of the world understand me? You also have to annunciate your contempt for your family members and so-called friends about the lack of support you’ve received over the years and rather than blame yourself for any shortcomings, cast aspersions towards them. After all, you can’t expect anybody to pity you unless you’re the victim of “something”.

Rule Number 1 if you’re attending:

This is kinda of a tricky one. Is the person hosting the party giving you a true reason for you to offer up your condolences and support or have they become some sort of one trick pony who prattles on about the same thing on a fairly consistent basis? I’ll leave it up to your good judgment and level of interaction with the host to make that call.

Rule Number 2 if you’re the host:

Just like in the corporate world, there are certain buzzwords or phrases that you need to use in order to throw a successful pity party. Here’s a short list that you can use as a guideline to help you get started.

  • Hate – This word needs to be used in context as it could be directed at yourself or at others or , quite possibly, both.
  • Depressed – After all, you wouldn’t have called this little soiree if you weren’t.
  • Nobody loves me – It doesn’t matter if this is true or not, after all, it’s how you feel that matters.
  • I feel so alone or I want to be alone. Even though there are thousands of options to rid yourself of this feeling, it’s still a sure fired way to get somebody’s attention.
  • Suicide – This is a tricky one and should only be used as a last resort when all else fails as it leaves your audience feeling very, very uncomfortable for obvious reasons.

    Rule Number 2 if you’re attending:

    For the most part, see Rule Number 1 if you’re just attending. If the conversation denigrates to the topic of suicide and depending on the nature of your relationship you have a couple of options available First, if you’re not qualified to deal with such issues or your show of support is ignored and/or otherwise deflected back to you by the host, suggest that they get some professional help. Remember, threats of suicide should never be taken lightly and if you deem the threat is serious enough a call to the authorities might be order.

    Rule Number 3 if you’re the host:

    Depending on the length of your party, let your personal hygiene go to shit. Don’t bathe or brush your teeth for days on end and wear the same set of clothes or pajamas until they feel like a second skin. If you still have an appetite, let the dishes pile up in the sink or stashed away in the dishwasher. After all, you’re here to wallow in your circumstances and nothing says wallowing like do nothing at all to change them.

    Rule Number 3 if you’re attending:

    For the most part, see Rule Number 1 if you’re just attending. This one is also a bit tricky. If you happen to be physically there you might want to gently nudge the pity seeker into some kind of state of cleanliness. Personally, I wouldn’t go so far as to doing their laundry or washing their dishes since this will just encourage them to do the same for future events. You do not want to become their enabler. If you're just there as a “virtual guest”, it really doesn’t matter.

    Rule Number 4 if you’re the host:

    Sometimes you just want to become numb to your feelings and surroundings. You might think that excessive use of alcohol and drugs or any combination thereof might be the best way to accomplish your means and deaden your pain. This is not true. Any state of inebriation will only further your cause in drowning out any of the voices that are there to try and help you. As a result, you might find your voice and/or temper rising and tears falling down from your eyes and rolling down your cheeks.

    Rule Number 4 if you’re attending:

    For the most part, see Rule Number 1 if you’re just attending. Once again, if your host tries to offer you up something that they are having try and refuse their offer. Pity sometimes seeks its own level and you might find yourself revealing something about your life that you’d normally prefer to remain private or reveal to a select few confidantes. If you’re in the “virtual word” try not to comment on their slurred speech or diminished typing skills. Have plenty of Kleenex on hand to help dry away those tears.

    Rule Number 5 if you’re the host:

    Do something mean to somebody you feel has either slighted you or whose opinion you don’t agree with. It doesn’t matter if this slight is either real or perceived and is best done anonymously when directed towards your target. That way, you can get a certain degree of satisfaction that you’ve at least done something to assuage your own feelings and you can have that sweet, sweet feeling that comes with revenge. If you’re really down in the dumps, you can conspire with some of your more like minded friends to do the same. There’s nothing like a good conspiracy on which to build a long and trusting relationship.

    Rule Number 5 if you’re attending:

    For the most part, see Rule Number 1 if you’re just attending. If the person seeking pity decides to let you in on their little scheme and it doesn’t involve physical violence there’s really nothing you can do about it. Sure, you might want to try and talk them out of their actions but chances are it will fall on deaf ears. If, for some reason, you decide to participate and sink to their level, you might want to consider hosting a pity party of your own.

    I’d also like to note that in no way shape or form am I an expert on these kinds of matters nor have I had any professional training. These were just a few instances and suggestions that I’ve witnessed across the years and I’m sure I missed the vast majority of what constitutes a successful pity party.

    During that time, I’ve also come to realize that nobody is perfect at life and if they claim that they are, they’re probably lying or just plain deluded. After all, it doesn’t come with a book of instructions and many times we’re just left to fend on our own in the best way we know how. We’ve all had our ups and downs along the way and each of us has their own way of dealing with them.

    Good luck and enjoy life as best as you can.

    Save your hugs for somebody else. Those are reserved for a select few people in my life who have actually earned them and aren’t doled out at random. They mean more that way.

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