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May 27, 2024 26 mins

Bedrotting was a social media trend that raised a lot of eyebrows and questions. Recent analysis has labeled it as 'languishing'. We delve into what it is and the implications.

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Speaker 1 (00:05):
Hey, this is Anny and Samantha. Welcome stuff. I've never
told you a prediction by her radio.

Speaker 2 (00:18):
Oh ye'ah. So in one of our last episodes or
recent episodes with Joey, we discussed how like social media
platforms such as TikTok has had a huge influence in
like reclaiming or recreating terms us to become more either
gendered or just putting a new QC name on things
like girl dinner. We specifically talked about girl whatever, girl

bossing that's kind of been a little before them, but
the girl dinner creating these gendered ideas, by the way,
which is essentially snacking. But I think it's funny because
I was like, yeah, this is girl dinner. I mean
the chagoo tree board for dinner like that.

Speaker 3 (00:52):
I do that often. I'm not gonna lie.

Speaker 2 (00:54):
But one of the terms that we did bring up
but really didn't get into was bed rid because I
discovered it and like, what is that? That just sounds gross?
So ady, had you heard this term?

Speaker 1 (01:06):
Would I actually think I was ahead of you this
grid because and I want to say this, I want
to be very clear, I am not on TikTok. So
if I sound like an old person talking to the youth.
I heard about concerns around it on like what it

meant on news sites like CNN, And then I saw
a stand up act where it was essentially like it
was on Stephen Colbert. Stephen Colbert brought out his writer
who was young, a woman, and was like, what is this?
And she explained it and then they jokes and sue,
So I had heard about it. That is the context. Yeah,

I heard about.

Speaker 2 (01:52):
I mean this is right on part because I was
a year behind, Like all of the articles that I've
seen recently about bed running has been in twenty twenty three,
so August of twenty twenty three, so I'm a little behind.
I may have seen it and just bypass because I
don't want this.

Speaker 3 (02:06):
What is this?

Speaker 2 (02:06):
I do this on a daily? Are you gonna make
fun of me? Are you gonna call me out? I
don't need this or a monthly, not daily, not daily,
I swear to guys.

Speaker 3 (02:14):
I'm okay, I promise.

Speaker 2 (02:16):
But so before we start, of course we're talking because
it's my Monday minni, and when it comes to Monday
minnis that I do, we often talk about social media
and how it's calling me out. And why is it
necessarily call me out. I don't need you to tell
me in terms of what's wrong with me, but yet
you do, so I'm gonna.

Speaker 3 (02:31):
Share it type of thing.

Speaker 2 (02:34):
Or we talk about mental health stuff, which is essentially
the same difference. I'm like, why we still talking about
the things that are wrong with me? And everybody has
to deal with it, So let's go. So this is
my segment. So many users have been saying this specific
term bed routting, which to me makes me picture the
scene from seven, you know, the one where they died
of sloth and like you, they are encrusted into the

bed and I'm like.

Speaker 3 (02:57):
God, yeah, and that's the scene I have.

Speaker 2 (03:01):
Y'all's still one of the most like scary movies, but
I can't watch it because Kevin Spacey's a dick and
he ruined everything.

Speaker 3 (03:08):
But all that say, that's what I pictured it.

Speaker 2 (03:11):
But it's really the idea of taking self care to
bed or spending a lot of time in bed by choice.
And that word is by choice, because we know sometimes
people are bed ridden and have situations where they have
to be and they would rather not be or all
of that. So please understand what saying by choice. And
here's what Forbes says. A bed rot is when you

feel stressed or anxiety or in some way feel overwrought
with emotion and then end up spending a lengthy period
of time in bed to rest or cope. And now
we're not exactly talking about depression either, So what we're
talking about in this whole conversation saying like pre depression

or like not quite depression. So we're gonna put that
in this caveat. So many have talked about as a
way of taking some time off to just relax and recharge,
but there are a few who are her a bit
concerned by its effects, as you were talking about earlier.
Any here's a quote from a CBS News article written
about it. They say the trend has faced criticism from
the wellness community as well as doctors, especially for people

dealing with depression or anxiety. Quote it can worsen overall
health by increasing risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease. A psychiatrist,
doctor Rishik what Tom said. Doctors say bed riting can
disrupt healthy sleep patterns, adding is okay to slow down
for a day once in a while if you're really exhausted,
but if bedwriting becomes a barrier to living a full

life or taking care of daily responsibilities, it might be
a sign to seek help. If I'm finding myself needing
more and more of this, doctor, what Tom said is
a good reliable sign that there might be some other
problems going on. And of course there's some questions with that.
Is it really needing a day off laying around in
bed or is it something more? Again, some TikTok users

actually have contended that it's actually something known as languishing,
And before we jump into that, I think, like that's
really important to understand when we're talking about laying around
a lot versus a day or so off. I've definitely
done this where I'm like, you know what, screw this,
I'm gonna go get my computer. I'm gonna go get
tucked into my bedroom and have the TV on there
and work from here, like this is what I want today,

this is all I need. I'll get some snacks, I'll
get my water, and here we go. But I've definitely
had moments where I'm like, I'm asleep till sixty till
like three in the afternoon, because sleeping is a better
resolution than to be up like, you know, that's definitely
like that danger zone where we have this conversation. I
hate the term bed rotting because just rotting is not

a fun term to me. So I'm really surprised that
they took that twist, like rotting is not the most
like I would not affiliate that with self care.

Speaker 1 (05:57):
I mean, I feel like it's a similar to what
we talked about with Joey. There's something interesting that's happening
where women, especially are I guess we're like pulling back
the curtain on things that for a long time we've

pretended haven't been happening, or at least a lot of
us have, and we're giving them these names that are
either dramatic or kind of infantilizing, what have you. But
I feel like bedrotting is sort of a case of exaggerating,

maybe not, but like it. It doesn't sound pretty, it
doesn't sound gendered, it doesn't sound nice. It's kind of
the opposite of what we would normally attach to something
women would do. So I think it's one of an
example of that of women being like, gus, what this
kind of thing you see me as publicly behind the curtains.

Speaker 3 (07:01):
That's just.

Speaker 1 (07:03):
What I kind of feel is going on in here.

Speaker 2 (07:05):
There's also some like vility in that conversation that this
system trying to get viral, so like, yeah, there's apparently
like seventy five point five million videos related to bedriding,
so I think this may be part of that conversation
because also I got onto a different rabbit hole, which

I want to come back to with gen Z terms
that have like different meanings of like you're just rebranding
one of them, and I don't know if it's a
joke naut and again I want to revisit this is
the ideal of a gen Z dude dating a gen
X or an older millennial woman being called hag Maxer.

Oh but then I see that and it says like
there's a Luna the warnings in Twitter that says it
that it may be a four chan joke that just
exploded and people have latched onto Oh yeah, so things
like that that kind of have happened, which I'm like, yeah,
that makes sense, And though like they took it from
milf to cougar to this that, I'm like, they just rebranded,

and I feel like it's not necessarily better, right, Yeah,
just say another video popped up on my feed where
it says because I had not been on the bed riding,

I just saw it once and maybe because I didn't
watch it, I moved on. But then a video came
back and was like, I'll tell you what this actually is.
It's called languishing. So I went down this mental health
rabbit hole, and here's what languishing is. An article from
Real Simple titled what is languishing They Say? The American
Psychology Association Dictionary of Psychology officially defines languishing as the

condition of absence of mental health, characterized by on we
thank you for the assistance, apathy, listlessness, and a loss
of interest in life again, so it's very close to depression,
they move on. Languishing can also be described as a
doling of our emotions, says a Dion Mesger, MD, a
psychiatrist practicing in Atlanta. It's not sadness, but a lack

of joy, she says, is a neutral feeling of emptiness.
American sociologists and psychologist Corey Key's PhD was the first
to use the term languishing as a way to describe
a person's mental well being. Much of his research has
approached mental health as a continuum, with the idea that
the absence of mental illness does not automatically translate into

the presence of mental health. More specifically, on one end
of the spectrum, Keys would describe someone who was mentally
healthy as quote flourishing, while someone with an absence of
mental health would be languishing. In his seminal two thousand
and two paper on the mental health continuum, Keys knows
that the peace people who are languishing face a risk
of a major depressive episode that is two times higher

than those who are moderately mentally healthy and almost six
times greater than those who are flourishing. So with that,
it's not surprising that the pandemic has really impacted the
growth of languishing as well. Many of us has come
to this point either being anxious or completely ambiguous about
what we are doing in the future. As the nysut

dot org puts it, quote, you may not have symptoms
of mental illness, but you're not functioning like you used
to and worried about your mental health over time. Languishing
is not clinical deppression, but may dull your motivation, ability
to focus, and makes you feel a sense of stagnation
and emptiness, maybe even joylessness and aimlessness. It may be

the prominent emotion of post pandemic for many of us. Yeah,
and I think that's really kind of that conversation we
continue to have of that, like we cannot get out
of this phone. It's really hard for me as an individual.
Of course, we're going to talk a little more into
it in just a minute, but like it could be
the added plus of like this is my trauma response
to begin with, so coming into languishing is just a

natural state. Also, I am a more depressive individual, so
therefore this isn't like the normal state. So I'm like,
I'm good compared to my depressive state. Everything's Fineya, Everything's
just fine. Or perhaps it's just as the newest way
of understanding that midlife crisis, which I've talked about repeatedly,

because I'm like, do I have it?

Speaker 3 (11:33):
Is this what's happening?

Speaker 2 (11:34):
Is this like that level of like, Okay, I'm not
quite here because I can't afford what used to be
the boomer solution of midlife crisis, because I still have
to keep working and I still have to keep pushing.
I have to do these things, and I'm not quite
to that point of like having you know, adult kids
or any of those things to focus on. That's a

whole different conversation. The emptiness that is not quite depression,
but just a sense of void and trying to fill it.
So we're languishing instead of full on mid life crisising.
Yeah I made that anyway. There's another term that many
have associated with this as well, called functional freeze. So
we know what the reaction freeze reaction is in a

trauma response. We've talked about that repeatedly in our trauma
series when we come back to revisit like Trauma Series
or trauma Reactions, We've talked about that as a thing
because I've talked about that, But that's what I do.
People think I'm being really calm and very good in
a bad situation, when in actuality I've disassociated and frozen.

I tried not to tell people that though, because I
think I'm really professional when in actuality I have no
idea what the hell is happening. But yeah, but this
is not exactly what we're talking about. I feel like
functional freeze is similar to that. And again, kind of
like how we said, how All was saying languishing may
be like the normal spot for those who are depressive
major depressive disorder. I think functional freeze is kind of
that level of like, Okay, we're not quite in that

trauma response, but it's just kind of like, yeah, this
is protection. This is me protecting myself in a constant
but in a more acceptable manner.

Speaker 3 (13:09):
We'll say like that.

Speaker 2 (13:10):
So, according to another Forbes article, functional phreezes quote a mental, physical,
and emotional state where people find themselves immobilized by inertia,
lacking the drive to pursue their goals or engage in
activities that once brought them joy, and it goes on
its onset. Mode can stem from various factors. Stress, burnout,

unresolved emotional issues, and a lack of clear direction in
life all contribute to perpetuate the sense of stagnation. As
responsibilities mount, individuals may withdraw from the world, retreating into
a state of numbness and apathy. The consequence of this
state can be far reaching, impacting multiple facets of an
individual's life. Relationships may suffer as communication WANs and social

interactions become superficial. Work or academic performances may also decline
over time. This pattern of avoidance and disengagement can undermine
self worth and contribute to mental health challenges such as
depression and anxiety. So it can also be a sign
of things to come, So just depressive disorders or anxiety disorders,
or having an attack coming on, so defensive attack or

an anxiety attack, all those things.

Speaker 3 (14:20):
It could be one of those things.

Speaker 2 (14:22):
And I find this interesting because I just told you
any that I'm like, yeah, I'm in this give up mode,
so screw it, like it's out the window where I
hit a wall and I'm just like I'm done, and
I will tell you and you know, we all have
our moments. And thus far, the last six months has
had a lot of like family emergencies. I have had

three different family members, close family members going into the hospital.
They're all okay, but they've had some issues. I've had
two funerals of very close relatives and like things are happening,
and I have kind of responded fairly well to the
point that I've just shaken it off and been like, yeah, okay,
next type of situation, which is kind of not normal

for me. But I have come to the point that
I think I'm in that phrase mode or languishing mode
in which I'm just like, all right, things are happening.
I can't crash and burn right now, so let me
do it this way, to the point that I am
not telling people about these incidents unless I have to.

So I've told you many of these things. Now I'm
telling our listeners because it affects my work. So I'm like, hey,
I might even have to do this. And I've had
to be like I can't be on this just this,
this and this, and then my partner knows about it,
and that's kind of it. Like I haven't told any
of my closest friends. I've just stopped talking until I

have to explain myself and be like, I'm so sorry.
It seems like I was ignoring you or I was
canceling because I was canceling on people too, And I
try to explain what's going on, but I just don't
have the emotional strength, I guess I say, like just yeah,
like that, I'm like, I want to explain what's going on,
Like it just feels worse for me to explain what's

going on. And it's a part of this thing, like
both trauma response all these things. And I know we've
gone far away from that conversation about bedrotting, but we
are talking about why people are saying that they need
these things or that these are good things or this
is like revamping of these words because we're back into
the state of the languishing of the functional freeze. I

haven't stayed a day in the bed yet, but I
do stay on the couch often until I have a
reason to get up.

Speaker 3 (16:44):
Wow. That sounds real bad, y'all. I'm okay. I swear
I'm not in danger zone. We're good.

Speaker 2 (16:50):
But in the sense of, like I do go workout,
So I have told my workout buddies that I'm like
because I can do like.

Speaker 3 (16:58):
Zoombah and cardio jam.

Speaker 2 (16:59):
I love dance like oh, I love going out moving around.
So they feel like the closest friends I have right
now because I've seen them outside of you, who I
see multiple times a week, like, but like they are
people that I don't have. They don't ask me things,
you know what I mean, we don't get into in
depth conversation. And as for me, who needs in depth conversation,

which is this like oxymoron to me? Just don't want
to have it right now time that so therefore I
can't have any conversation with you because I don't know
how not to do that. And so all of these
things are happening, or like when I do work or
when I research that, I'm just like, yeah, okay, do
I have to go see people? Do I have to

do things? And like I'm forcing myself. This week has
been a busy week. And I say busy weeks. I'm
doing two things, two things outside of the norm, and
it feels kind of overwhelming already. But like there's this
level of trying to figure all these out. I feel
like most people know what I'm talking about. At the
same time, they're like Smith Stopp complaining, there are so
many things that have been happening recently that I'm trying

to figure out where to go. Some of the solutions
because we are coming back with solutions obviously that they
have recommended are as follows. So one of the things
that I've seen on several things was hiking and meditation

in nature, and they have a specific Japanese word for this.
I don't know how to say if someone leave it alone,
so I'm just gonna describe it to you, but I'll
credit this and essentially like as it says, you go
into the woods and actually concentrate and take a depth
and like be a part of nature and like focusing
on nature and all of that when I used to

not a sponsor, use Calm a lot. Like they have
a walking meditation episode and it's really lovely because it
has the woman that I liked tomorrow, which I talked
about a long time ago, and like being able to
like listen to your steps, listen to your breathing here
this and like having this moment of like okay, and
I would always just do one ear phone while I'm
walking because I'm like, okay, so I can Hey, I need.

Speaker 3 (19:08):
To be aware of nature. Someone's coming up behind me,
but I need to be ready.

Speaker 2 (19:12):
But all those things it was nice, So I was like, okay,
that's a nice one. And then they talk about reconnecting
to something that excites you or brings joy, like I
kind of have a hard time with to begin with, Like, y'all,
I've told you I try to find hobbies because I'm
like that's what normal people do. I cannot figure out
a hobby that I like, except for phone games, which

does not seem helpy connect with people, which again it's
kind of hard to even get to that point because.

Speaker 3 (19:41):
That means I have to explain myself and there's so
much to.

Speaker 2 (19:43):
Like at the same time, and you and I you've
talked about this recently. I feel like it's an inconvenience
for other people to hear about my problems. It's not
or it's not big enough for y'all to deal with,
or it's passed by so long ago that everything's okay,
so there's no need to bring it back up again.
So those like moments. But I do know when I

connect with people it does feel better. It's just that
beginning trying to get to that point unless it's a
lot of people I don't know and that I'm not
anxious and I'm like, I.

Speaker 3 (20:11):
Hate this, uh, And then I feel like this is a.

Speaker 2 (20:15):
Big one, And I do.

Speaker 3 (20:19):
Feel like this is where TikTok helps me. Stupid TikTok.

Speaker 2 (20:23):
Acknowledge where you are and if you're in a good place,
acknowledging that it's okay to be in that spot, and
to always remember you're always going to be in a
different mood, like it's not long lasting, hopefully eventually, and
even though if it is, there are usually moments of
sparks that you see, you're not going to feel happy

all the time. That's not a thing, you know, We
know this if you're a human. Even with the best situations,
there are still moments of I think we talked with
the Eaves, like we have a job and everything's great,
but then the anxiety of like performing or trying to
do something, or being relevant or doing hopefully hoping that
we were impactful so many things. And here's this from

and I thought that was really good. They were talking
about the pandemic times and languishing and they said from
and it's from Forward Wellnesscounseling dot com. Finding your flow,
blocking out time, and setting small goals all good ideas
and interventions. I often discussed with people in therapy. Doing
one thing mindfully, which can elicit a flow state, is

a particularly great practice. So much of what we identify
as anxiety comes down to to do lists and little
problems that overwhelm us as there's too much to do
and not enough time to do it. Learning to tune
out that inner monologue that constantly drives us to do
more is in fact the key too and the goal
of mindfulness practice. And yet while the larger context of

the pandemic is acknowledged, the article's advice is directly squared
at the reader, implying a personal responsibility to manage the symptoms,
while otherwise disregarding the cause, over and against the impulse
to self discipline already deeply ingrained in so many of us.
I sometimes challenge much clients to consider, what, if how

you are coping right now is good enough? Could it
be that languishing is simply a natural reaction to those
prolonged stress and uncertainty. Maybe the response you are having
is a valid one, maybe a more appropriate strategy. So
I'm guessing they're trying to like you don't have to
do that mindfulnessing. Maybe a more appropriate strategy for coping

with languishing would be allowing allow yourself to take a nap,
allow yourself to take things off your to do list,
and opt out of a zoom meeting. Allow yourself to
continue to grieve the losses. This pandemic is not over.
The vaccine that we were told would return life to
normal has not allowed us to resume pre pandemic activities.

Yet we are still wearing masks and limiting outings and
a lot of us are. I want to put that
as an ass like it's I don't know how long
ago this article was written. So this is my little bit,
Sam's bit, but just a reminder. COVID is still happening
and a lot of people are still masking and limiting
their time out just as a reminder, and as we've

talked to people recently, they are still getting COVID. So
going on, we are still putting off travel plans and
family reunions. So in this endless, seventh inning stretch that
is the pandemic, maybe we could all use a little
more patience with ourselves to just be with no expectation
of doing more and doing better, allow ourselves to fill

whatever it is we are labeling this feeling and knowing
that this too shall pass. So I think, like, yes,
it's kind of trying to find that place where you
are specifically to this and again, like I said, like
letting it be, allowing it to be, calling it out
and then just kind of sitting in it. And it's
okay for for a suspended amount of time, y'all like

or not saying forever, don't do this forever because it's
ire some sashsome but I think there's a lot to
be said in this conversation, Like, yes, bedrotting is a
I want to say, funny term, but looking at the
bigger picture of what it is is also important. Again,

like whatever, the millions of videos that are out there,
because there's millions and then the millions of views that
they've all had, is a good thing to talk about
it. It has really opened up a conversation that I think
is really important. Not the self care but because you know,
self caacter is great.

Speaker 3 (24:34):
If what you.

Speaker 2 (24:35):
Need is a day that you just sit and watch
your movie and just not worry about the world, then
wonderful you do you, and like I'll do me because
that's what I want to do. But just a reminder
that they're usually bigger pictures of what is going on
and a bigger conversation of what needs to be said
or what needs to be realized at the very point

like listening to your body.

Speaker 3 (25:01):
M hmm, so there you go. Thank you for going
down my rabbit hill?

Speaker 1 (25:06):
Yeah, yeah, of course. I mean I think it is
important because so many of us feel like we don't
have control anymore. So when I feel like when I
hear this to me, it sounds like, well, what am
I going to do? So I'll just do what I
can to get to the the next bit. This is

really funny to me because I've had kind of a
hectic day and i have a lot to do. But
I was like, maybe I'll get in bed and like
read fan fiction, and to me, that's like the luxury
of all.

Speaker 3 (25:44):
Luxury, which is amazing. Yeah, but it's funny to me.

Speaker 1 (25:48):
I didn't know you were talking about this day.

Speaker 2 (25:49):
I was like, oh my gosh, and he's gonna go
bed rot y'all.

Speaker 3 (25:55):
The first time.

Speaker 1 (26:01):
Well, listeners, if you have any thoughts about this, please
let us know. You can email us the Stuff at
you mom Stuff at iHeartMedia dot com. You can find
us on Twitter at mom Stuff Podcast, or on Instagram
and TikTok at stuff One Never Told You. We also
are on YouTube. We have a tea public store, and
we have a book you can get wherever you get
your books. Thanks Zoways too, our super producer Christina, our

executive producer My and your contributor Joey.

Speaker 3 (26:24):
Thank you, and thanks to you for listening.

Speaker 1 (26:26):
Stuffan Never Told You is production of I Heart Radio
for More podcast from my Heart Radio You can check
out the heart radio app, Apple podcast wherever you listen
to your favorite show.

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