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Breaking up with an old friend

Saturday, April 13, 2013

I've never talked about this here, but before I got hooked on Food Network I was just as hooked on the Investigation Discovery channel. I've always loved mystery stories, so it grabbed me easily. I was a loyal viewer for several years. It took me that long to realize something.

Unlike the novels I love, these stories are about real people and the horrors that happen to them. If I'm reading a Dick Francis or Martha Grimes or Lisa Scottoline novel, nobody actually gets hurt, nobody is left to mourn. When it's a real tragedy with real victims, it's something entirely different. And it hurt me to watch.

I realized something else -- my depression got slowly but steadily worse. I've lived through enough horrible things in my life, some I've talked about here and some I haven't. I don't need to watch more as "entertainment."

Food Network celebrates creativity, hospitality and community. These are all things I crave that my life lacks right now, but it gives me impetus to look for it. All watching ID did was bring down my moods and focus on the worst in people rather than the best. And a total sidebar -- I love FN''s focus on charity. They give large amounts of money and encourage their viewers to donate and support good causes, particularly regarding childhood hunger. I don't know another TV outlet that does that.

ID, thanks for the years together. But for my own sake I need to put you in my past.
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  • JUNEBUG4967
    Oh I know what you are saying, and the same is true for the 24/7 coverage when it come to a tragedy! Once I was hearing repeats the TV went off on Monday. I stopped a couple of times after that to say prayers for the people in Boston, but 'Lawsa Mighty!' I sure couldn't stand to stay tuned in for every little quirk or wrinkle the rest of the day. That will send a person round the bend quicker than most things I know! I am so glad to hear you are gaining insight and wisdom and are able to cut out the things you know are not helping you. Perhaps at a later date, you will be able to see the wine as a treat if you only have some a couple of times a month. I'll bet you can find some of the little one serving bottles if having a full one around is too much. Congratulations on learning this about yourself
    1283 days ago
  • OPTIMIST1948
    You are doing the right thing.
    1284 days ago
  • MAGGIE101857
    So true! It's one thing to know it is "pretend", another to know you watching a horrific crime and a family's pain. Glad you were able to recognize the effects and make a wise choice.

    My DH and I were talking the other day about the Food Channel; who would have thought it would have become so well loved and watched by so many! We enjoy so many shows on it, even if it makes me hungry!

    Our newest addiction if Duck Dynasty! You may think it's a little off the wall the first couple of episodes, but after that - you are hooked! Happy, Happy, Happy as they say!
    1284 days ago
    Good for you to have discovered what shows bother you. emoticon
    1284 days ago
  • MISSG180
    You are absolutely right about those shows. Good for you saying goodbye.
    1284 days ago
    How wise and intuitive you are!
    1284 days ago
    Isn't it amazing that the things we watch do truly have an affect on our emotions and our moods. Good for you for making the switch!
    1285 days ago
    I had a similar realization about fiction crime shows. While I enjoy them every once in awhile these days, I cannot sit down for hours at a time anymore. I was having horrible nightmares as well as an increase in depression. Hope you find something else to enjoy in it's place.
    1285 days ago
    Media has a strong effect on your mind. That goes for people and your environment as well. You chose, and that choice will have direct implications for the state of your wellbeing.
    1286 days ago
  • DMORELLI1031
    I lost my son last year, in a car accident, since then every time I watch tv I see accidents no more movies for fn here I come
    1286 days ago
  • PATTIE441
    I'm so proud of you for realizing how certain shows can affect you. They do that to me too. I love Food Network and The Cooking Channel and Hallmark and the Travel Channel. They are definitely more uplifting, and I feel they make me happier to deal with the all that is going on with my family right now. I think you are awesome! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1286 days ago
    Lady Irish I love reading your blogs! You have become so thoughtfully positive with your life lately that they are a real pleasure to come to. emoticon changes in You! Keep on Keeping on Woman! emoticon
    1286 days ago
    Don't forget about is also upbeat and has happy ending. That an the food channel are my channels of default.
    1286 days ago
    Good for you for recognizing what was bringing you down! Many people don't have that kind of introspection, and don't realize how they can improve their lives by making some simple changes. I hear you on the positivity-I like watching DIY network because it's mostly about people doing things that make their lives better.
    1286 days ago
    I like a good mystery but not the gory kind. I also like it to have a good ending.
    I love the food network and it is more uplifting but it also gives you a mystery..who is going to win cupcake wars or chopped? Who is going to win sweet genius or challenge? It is fun and leaves you guessing. I don't read the newpaper or watch the news for the same reason...hubby fills me in. emoticon
    Have a great day .
    1286 days ago
    I think LIS193 expressed my thoughts! emoticon on recognizing what makes you feel better and worse.
    1286 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/14/2013 6:32:40 PM
    I too love the Food Network and Hallmark and other upbeat and POSITIVE shows in general. Like you I found that the more involved in tragedies, sadness, and weeping of others the more depressed I become. Watching positive, upbeat shows helps lift my spirits and even when I am DOWN, it makes me smile.
    1286 days ago
  • MARIANNE9855
    I love to read mysteries, some fictional detective shows but mainly I watch sports- particularly the NBA. There are lots of interesting story lines but nothing that I worry about - its great escapism!
    1286 days ago
  • STAY39
    Good point! Life is hard enough to add more negativity in. Good for you!
    1286 days ago
    Good for you for kicking toxic programming out of your home. So much of it is panic-peddling. Like you, I have been through tough circumstances and have no need to relive them vicariously through watching true-crime programs.

    God bless you for taking one more step forward toward a healthier lifestyle. emoticon
    1286 days ago
    DH had the same problem with ID. He finally started watching Discovery. Glad you found an uplifting substitute. I also think people who celebrate and cook real food have less issues with weight control. This sounds like a win/win to me.
    1286 days ago
    There are so many disturbing shows on tv. Give me Hallmark/Lifetime movies and re-runs of the old shows that make us laugh (without being prompted by canned laughter after every dialogue)! But for the most part, I just stick to books!
    1286 days ago
  • LIS193
    What a great breakthrough! We don't need to watch stuff that makes us feel worse.
    Good for you!!
    1286 days ago

    I think that is SO VERY SMART of you. Put your focus on shows that are less emotion driven and more uplifting. Even neutral is better.

    Sort of related to this, I used to be a huge Real Housewives fan. Yet all of the constant fighting and backbiting really got to me! Now I only watch occasionally and am better off, for it.
    1286 days ago
    Sounds like a good decision. I am not familiar with that program, but I don't watch criminal minds for the same reason.
    1287 days ago
    I wish that the entertainment industry had a greater desire to add to the beauty of the world rather than highlight and capitalize on that which is dark and violent. If life does, indeed, imitate art, then perhaps artists, actors, video game creators, musicians, and others could focus on uplifting the world with their talents rather than contributing to the ugliness in the world. But that's just me... emoticon

    1287 days ago
    Woo Hooo for you! There is enough negativity to be found in everyday life at times, I tend to watch things like the Food Network and Cooking Channel and PBS. Just need something positive!

    HUGS and here's to continuing to find positive things!
    1287 days ago
  • KITT52
    I stopped watching the Food TV shows as they made me never stop thinking about food....they seem to stimulate my desire for food...sounds funny
    I stopped watching the ID type shows as they made me afraid that something like that might happen to me....
    1287 days ago
    I used to be able to watch things like that and never think about it or have it bother me but in the past few years I have found it increasing difficult to watch as well, I find it really brings me down and stays with me. So I understand where you are coming from, good for you for realizing and making the separation.

    I also love FN and all the inspiration they give and positivity. emoticon
    1287 days ago
    I use to watch forensic files and stopped watching for the reason that you mentioned.

    I love food network and watch it while exercising. Not sure if that's the best idea - yesterday they were making ice cream sandwiches. emoticon

    1287 days ago
    entertainment can be a diet in some sense too so good for you for making healthier choices!
    and btw I have always said the one person I would want to be stuck on a deserted island with would be Alton Brown emoticon emoticon love that man! and I am sure he would find good eats on the island!
    1287 days ago
    Its so sad how mean people are to each other
    1287 days ago
    so true cant watch horror shows too agree with you about Food Network
    1287 days ago
    I'm in the UK so don't know those channels but I am with you 100%.
    I only watch the news once a day to keep up with what's going on in the world and then it's off! It's way too depressing to have on all day (as DH would love LOL).
    Far better to focus on the positive in life, better to smile and be happy, than low!
    Great blog.

    Have a great Sunday hun emoticon
    1287 days ago
    I am in England so do not know the tv programmes you watch but it I do applaud your decision to chose positive over negative, I have to be careful what I read or watch on tv now in an evening .i am a poor sleeper anyway so any violence or distressing scenes get on my mind so I do not sleep. We ave to do what's is best for us now what's sponsors want us to see. Irene emoticon ,
    1287 days ago
    I applaud your decision to remove something negative from your life! Your focus on the positive can only benefit you.
    1287 days ago
    VERY wise decision.

    When hubby was alive he liked to watch that sort of reality show about the evil deeds of nasty people. I couldn't stand it so I would turn the TV down (he used to grumble but I firmly reminded him that he had hearing aids he could use) and then I would shut the lounge door and the door to the computer room. It mostly worked - I couldn't hear much of it at all. I won't watch shows that have an adrenalin rush effect, either, like a 'who-done'it, for the same reason - it brings me down and I end up with nasty nightmares.
    1287 days ago
    wise decision
    1287 days ago
    I love the food network too.I read mysteries (my husband says it is my British taste for gore ) but like you said real people are not being killed in my murder mysteries !
    1287 days ago
    My hubby really enjoys watching ID a lot. I enjoy the forensics episodes myself. But after having worked in Law Enforcement for so many years and actually seeing the families makes it difficult to watch some of the progams that are similar. Some of the cases seem like they happened yesterday I can remember them so well. I don't really need to see them while watching TV. Life's too short and I'm glad you discovered what was bothering you about the shows before they ruined your mental healt.
    1287 days ago
    I've had shows and movies that have made feel that way so I can relate totally. Congrats for realizing that you need to put it 'away' and put something positive there to replace it. I'm doing the same thing.
    So here's to the Food Network emoticon May it put you in the right frame of mind!!! I sure love watching it. emoticon

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1287 days ago
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