• Abby Asuncion Media

So, I changed my name on Twitter

Updated: Oct 12, 2020

For a while, my Twitter name revolved to a different “Abb” pun every month (i.e. Cinnamon Abble, cAbbtain America, MegAbbatoon, etc.). I began this “good morning!” positive tweet ritual where I would tweet some words of encouragement as we started the day. This marked the end of my Abb-pun era and the beginning of the positABB era.

Maybe it seems like such a minuscule thing to make such a big deal out of, but at that time in my life, it defined who I was. Initially, it was mostly me talking to myself as a self-love exercise. That ritual began to pick up as people started to apply those messages to their own lives. For a while, I was kind of on a high horse about it. I thrived off of being everyone’s source of positivity and encouragement. People said that they kept up with my tweets and that they genuinely helped them get a good start on their mornings. Someone even told me that they woke up in the morning just to see those tweets. Some people paid those tweets no mind, but others felt a real connection to them. Eventually I ran out of “good morning!” tweet ideas but continued to reply words of affirmation directly to people’s tweets, regardless of whether or not I was well acquainted with them. I became known as the “positive person on Twitter” to a lot of people. Every now and then I would get flack about it, with people saying that I preach positivity but don’t exercise it.

This was and wasn’t true. I’d like to think that I was the person that offered the “bright side” of things, or at least the person that helped people ready themselves to push through their problems. I take a lot of pride in being the person that validates experiences and reaffirms others. If I showed an ounce of anger towards people, the first thing that people would point out was that I wasn’t being the positive figure that I claim to be. I even suppressed a lot of my negative emotions because I didn’t want to drop the facade of being the positive person. Don’t get me wrong, I am far from a perfect person and I will admit to some questionable/unethical actions in private. Again, it was and wasn’t true.

The truth is, I’m human. Maybe some people are equipped with the ability to completely negate negativity (ya.. I know, double negative blah blah), but I was not one of those people. It wasn’t that that kindness was fake; I genuinely felt happy to be that positive influence for others, and I genuinely felt happy that others were happy. But in turn, it left a burden on me. I was given flack for voicing an opinion that was anything other than positive and my feelings of sadness and anger were invalidated.

Somewhere along the way, I stopped trying so hard to be an active source of positivity. I stopped being conscious of it. I didn’t even realize it until I noticed that I became a flat out negative person. I think things started to take a turn for the worse when my first three semesters in college took a burden on my mental health for various reasons. I didn’t necessarily project that negativity to others (at least not generally.. well, I hope not) but that negativity was self inflicted towards myself. I started to loathe not only my life, but myself. Yes, everyone has moments of self-depreciation, but at the time, it became all that I knew. Any output of positivity started to feel forced.

So I changed my twitter name because 1. I don’t feel deserving of the title anymore and 2. Earning that title was dehumanizing and tiring. I have my own demons that have become increasingly harder to bear and sadly, I’m still in a state of negativity towards myself. It would do people more harm than good to see me self-depreciate when they expected so much more. But maybe that’s big-headed for me to think that I have that much of an effect on people.

Regardless, I hope to move past this state of negativity to once again become a positive outlet. This time, for my own sake rather than for others’. For now, my Twitter name is ᜃᜌ, which is the word “kaya” in a discontinued Filipino text called Baybayin. The word “kaya” means ”I can.” This is my first step towards healing; knowing that “I can.”

I can overcome my demons.

I can better myself for my own sanity.

I can be my best self to offer to others, AFTER I’ve learned to take care of myself.

Hopefully, one day, I will honestly able to say that I have reclaimed my title as positABB.

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