The Bitter Divide

The Bitter Divide.

The Bitter Divide.

Last night I was watching the X-Men: First Class and one of the many themes of the movie was divisions and what causes them.  At first, most of the X-Men are friends because of the mutual abilities that made the different/better than regular humans with no gifts.  The world isn’t sure what to do with them, they are not sure what to do with each other, so they join factions.  Some mutants want to try to get along and work with the humans, others want to dominate and control them.  Some wanted to cure their “disease”, others wanted to embrace it.  Divisions happen every day between countries, states, schools, workplaces and even families.

Well, a big one happened to me recently.  My parents were on a mission in Mongolia for the Mormon church and yesterday were released from the calling.  They were heading home after a year and a half of living there and working among the people.  They are genuinely good people that have no hint of bitterness (skipped a generation, apparently) and have done their best to support me in whatever I do.  They even read my blog, which is weird, because they aren’t bitter at all. So yesterday as they were traveling home they got some time in between flights and FaceTimed us.  They talked to my wife and kids and excitedly told them about how they couldn’t wait to see us and how my kids had grown up so fast, and how they were so thankful to my wife for putting up with me for so many years.  Then they said they wanted to talk to me privately.  I got that scary “we need to talk” feeling in my gut.  What were they going to lecture me about?  What had I done wrong this time?

“Ben, it’s about your blog.” Why now?  They had read this thing almost from the beginning.  Even though they were on a mission, and even though they were millions of miles away, they had still managed to read almost every post.  It was easy for me to tell, because whenever I checked my stats, I would see the country of Mongolia.  It wasn’t possible that any other person in Mongolia would ever want to read this blog.  (Though the weather there suggests that one could be bitter, they aren’t going to want to read some crappy blog about it.)  “We’ve spent a year and a half trying to do our best to bring joy into people’s lives.  We just think your blog is too ‘negative’ and you should stop doing it.’

Punch in the gut.  How could they have been so supportive and then all of a sudden just pulled that on me?  They were right though.  And they were my parents.  Yeah, I am almost 41 and yeah, I have kids that need a good example to look up to.  I guess I should just grow up and stop the madness.  “Yeah, I had kind of been feeling bad about it, lately.”  Maybe I should just stop writing this thing.

So there had been this divide in our family.  Over this blog.  I just can’t let it come between us anymore.  So, I just think that it might be time to give it up.  As much advice on bitterness as I have to offer, I just think it will probably be for the best that I just move on with my life.  What do you think?  Should I continue?

Deep in thought this morning.

Bitter Divided Ben


You guys make me so  happy!  Not really, bitter!

You guys make me so happy! Not really, bitter!





April Fools Sucker!

April Fools Suckers!

134 thoughts on “The Bitter Divide

  1. Pingback: In case you missed it, because I missed doing it | Ben's Bitter Blog

  2. you scared me , even though i saw the date was april fool’s before i read…i can’t see this at sixty7% .. now my six is stuck…you & the synagogue have the same 3 inch black line over your blog, so every time i scroll it covers the likes & the 1st sentence.


  3. That was quite bitter, Ben. I don’t know what to say. I kind of panicked for a while, and some bitterness crept in, but then I saw you were just nudging us in the proverbial ribs. Good to know I still have a good source of bitterness for when I need it. 🙂


  4. Bitter Ben: all day today, people have been giving me real GROANER April Fools’ jokes that I saw coming for miles and miles, and you absatatively had me going on this one. Mormons in Mongolia? (Yeah. Right.) I should have smelled this April Fools’ concoction cooking bitterly on the spit miles away. You “got” me through an over-and-under utilized organ: my marbled heart. Next you’ll be uploading animated .GIF files from the “Lassie” show. (Assie??? Oh, ASSIE!!!!!!!) You had me going like Rudd Weatherwax had Assie going after Timmy down the well…well…well…oh, well…


      • Ben:

        I think part of what made the joke effective is that you started it off by talking about the X-Men, something seemingly tangential to your life and subject, then related it to your own life. It got the flow of the story going, and people were drawn in. Good going, Ben! A classic! (I was a little relieved to find out that your parents aren’t/weren’t really like that!)


  5. You ALMOST had me on this one. My glitter gut told me that it was an April Fools joke! Annnnd. I was right. Did you pull a prank on your wife? Or kids? My son didn’t. 🙂 But he did get his first contacts today. It was a milestone. 🙂


  6. Fantastic! I hate to admit it, but I was starting to wonder if it was true. Now that I’ve been made a complete fool of, I’m bitter. Well done, sir! You are truly a bitterness guru.


  7. You really had me going for a second there. Whenever people use Mongolia in their April Fools, they always manage to trick me. I think it’s because I assume Mongolia is the last place where April foolery would happen.


  8. Oh my, Bitter Ben, you are such a stinker
    Your touching story took me hook, line and sinker
    I understood and believed your leaving status quo
    Now I’m bitterly embarrassed if you really must know

    Up till the end, I should have known bitter
    We all count on Ben to not be a quitter
    He may sputter and spout yet we keep coming back
    For the laughter he brings, he has quite a knack!

    . . . Just don’t let it go to your head! : ]


    • I had a feeling this would work, but not so well. I am absolutely going to let this go to my head, so that when I get too arrogant and get my comeuppance, I will have something to be really bitter about.


  9. For one horrified moment I thought you’d seen some light, aghast, I began to mourn. If you changed… ack! Thank you for being you, still. (There is a single, diamond tear suspended from one long, curly, gorgeous eyelash and it will stay there until you notice and are overcome by the beauty.)


  10. You totally had me! As I read, I couldn’t believe you were considering quitting and then I was admiring you thinking of your family…and then, BOOM! I was relieved that it was all a joke. Who would I be bitter with?


  11. Ha ha brilliant! Just shows that you can do deep and thoughtful too, not just bitter – I was hooked and already preparing my rant in support..;-)


  12. Ok so I believe the bit about you’re folks being in Mongolia… (where I am a huge star, obviously…)…and I get the bit about family wanting you to just below up and stop the madness. But to give up must surely be an April fool’s joke! Where will we get our dose of “bitterness” without you? You make us laugh at our own stupidity! Ironically, that its what makes is…LESS bitter! Laughter it’s the best medicine.


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