Paging Dr. Cave: Nick On Regrets And Saying Goodbye


‘Perhaps it is useful to see our lives as a series of failed or abandoned dreams, but to also recognise that these dreams are the very architecture of our humanity; to lovingly accept our shortcomings and lay them to rest in the knowledge that growth and regret go hand in hand, as do failure and potentiality.’

The Red Hand Files delivers yet again. If you’re new to the RRHF, it’s basically Dolly Doctor, but the doctor is Nick Cave and he doesn’t answer questions about getting your period or whether you should lose your virginity to Greg or Steve. Instead, he addresses the bigger, more difficult questions and issues that all humans face, and it’s brilliant. Last month, Nick made it okay for me to continue enjoying The Smiths despite Morrissey’s politics not lining up with my own anymore.

This installment of Dr. Nick is concerned with regret and goodbyes, and—my God—will it make you feel better about both:

‘Many of the regrets I have today seem to revolve around my past inability to say goodbye. For many years my way of dealing with things was to cut and run and not look back. I was forever fleeing from something or someone or someplace, a disastrous situation, for example, or my various addictions or ruined relationships. This state of flight felt like a creative, motivating force, yet was actually completely devoid of reflection, and certainly unimpeded by the corrective influence of regret. I felt that if I ever stopped I would be eaten alive by the chaos that followed me around like a stray dog. It took many years before I found the resolve to turn around and stare down the imagined monster of my past. I found, when I finally looked, many ancient and festering wounds that a timely and heartfelt goodbye could well have healed.’

He’s putting the world’s therapists out of business one post at a time. You can—and should—read the entire post here. And you can also listen to the global premiere of the new Bad Seeds album, Ghosteen, here, and buy some tissues to get you through your tumultuous breakthrough here.

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