Signs You Have the Post-Election Blues

Maybe seek medical attention, but probably just re-watch The West Wing.

The calendar may read “November 7,” but it feels an awful lot like December 26 for all the politicos out there. After months and months (and months) of anticipation, stress, and excitement, Election Day has come and gone — most of it probably spent in line at the polls. Barack Obama has another four years in the White House and Elizabeth Warren is a senator, and whether you’re happy about that news or not, you may experience serious withdrawals now that the races are over. Your eye twitches when you realize there are no more polls to check. You tear up at the sudden decrease in opportunities to live-tweet. You may even miss the constant influx of Obama fundraising emails. (Actually, if that’s the case, you may very well have a mental imbalance. Get that checked out.)

“For all of us, life goes back to normal,” says Virginia Sapiro, dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at Boston University, who specializes in political psychology. “But some people have a period of political grieving.” We prefer to call it the “post-election blues.” If you’re unsure whether this is your diagnosis, here are 10 common (utterly unscientific) symptoms that might suggest you’re suffering from a case of PEB:

  1. You wait by the phone for a robo-call. But it won’t come.
  2. You already know that there are 1,462 days until the next presidential election. Or 208 weeks. Or 35,088 hours. Or 2,105,280 minutes.
  3. You now question whether playing with those interactive Electoral College maps was worth your time.
  4. You weep as you post a Craigslist ad for that $500,000 dressage horse you bought that suddenly seems like wasted backyard space. (“Seeking responsible owner for dressage horse: nicely combed mane; bred in Michigan; some days he likes carrots, others he doesn’t.”)
  5. Your face looks something like this upon your friends’ suggestion to “move on”
  6. Your recent Google searches include but are not limited to: “Hobbies,” “Art projects using campaign buttons and stickers,” “How to dress like Michelle Obama,” “Elton John ‘I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues’ lyrics,” “Scott Brown Cosmo centerfold,” “Does IHOP deliver?”
  7. You just don’t see the humor in signing your morning emails as “Mike Allen” anymore.
  8. You’ve DVR’d reruns of Sesame Street.
  9. You changed your Facebook status to “In a relationship with Nate Silver” in a state of loneliness. Aaaand you just added a clearly Photo-shopped picture of you two at a Celtics game. Things are getting weird.
  10. You begin to see Paul Ryan’s face in strangers on the street, or more likely, at the gym (if you even made it to the gym after that 2 a.m. IHOP binge.)

Hang in there, people. Only 126,316,800 seconds until Election Day 2016. And, for the love of God, wipe that syrup from your mouth.

(Contact a physician if symptoms worsen. Don’t enter if emotionally unstable.)