The ‘I’m At Capacity Right Now’ Meme Perfectly Takes The Piss Out Of Self-Care

"If she’s your girl then why did she text me 'Hey! I’m so glad you reached out. I’m actually at capa–"

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We’ve all been the person who unloads their problems onto a friend, and the person who helps with their friends problems.

Most people would say that’s how friendship works — an equal give and take and the general concept of being there when someone you care about needs you. But one woman has come under fire for sharing her take on emotional labour and, in particular, her cold rejection template to Twitter.

Melissa A. Fabello is a social justice advocate who recently started a Twitter thread about the importance of “asking for consent for emotional labour“. After a friend text asking if she had the “emotional/mental capacity for me to vent”, Melissa made a 17-tweet thread all about the topic.

Melissa explained that while she has some friends she would absolutely make time for, she appreciates that her friend asked. This is because the text “asks permission to vent, rather than unloading without warning” and “acknowledges that I have limited time and emotional availability”.

The Dreaded Template And Memes

The ‘I’m At Capacity Right Now’ meme came from the last tweet in the emotional labour thread. To finish her thoughts on the topic, Melissa uploaded a super cold and robotic template for “how you can respond to someone if you don’t have the space to support them”.

“Hey! I’m so glad you reached out. I’m actually at capacity/helping someone else who’s in crisis/dealing with some personal stuff right now, and I don’t think I can hold the appropriate space for you,” the template reads. “Could we connect [later date or time] instead/Do you have someone else you can reach out to?”

Beyond the emotionless wording of the message, people absolutely despised the idea of using a fill-in-the-blank template on your friends in need. The message, which quite honesty sounds like an out-of-office responder over Christmas, just lacks empathy.

While Melissa was criticised for her take on emotional labour, this is the internet. So the obvious natural response was to take Melissa’s template for how to support a friend and turn it into one giant meme.

In conclusion, just be there for your friends when they need you to be.