short shame and self-sabotage


today i had a therapy session where, as per usual, my therapist was amazing and gave me a lot of things to think about.

the thing is, lately i've been feeling overwhelming guilt about a whole lot of things.
if someone were to ask me my top four regrets, i would be able to list them instantly. 
it's easy to have regrets.
we all do things we don't like and wish weren't associated with how people look at us. 

so that is part one of this post.
i am a nice person who sometimes does horrible things that i end up regretting dailydailyeveryday.  
this is what a circle of shame looks like: i am horrible i do terrible things i am a horrible person i don't deserve to be alive.  that is just one little example of the interior monologue that plagues lots of people, especially if they are depressed.  the point is, it isn't actually useful to think about things this way.  there is a tendency for me to hate myself as much as possible, so that it will matter less when other people hate me.  i hate myself for more things than you could possibly imagine.  i come up with new things to hate myself about on a daily basis.  
the logic here is this: this takes power away from other people.  the power to hate me, i guess.  because when you do hate me, it can only affect me so much.  if i think i am fat, it hurts less if you call me fat.  if i think i can be immature and abrasive and rude, it hurts less when you think that about me.  
it's a simple enough defence technique, and it comes into play a lot of times.  

basically my whole life and self-image are constructed on this sort of self-sabotage.
these four little regrets are just things i have been thinking about today, out of many days in many years.  i have lots of other regrets that i won't list on the internet or try to get people to forgive me for them.  it would just take forever.  and probably be a pretty mood-damning thing to do.  but another thought came to me.  maybe it isn't fair of me to take that power away from you.  maybe people need to have the power to hate me in order to have a normal relationship with me.  maybe it isn't fair that i hate myself more than you ever could so trahaha now i am immune to your hate.  maybe if i really listen to people, my life wouldn't be about trying to get people to forgive me for things but to let them know that i am sorry, and they can forgive me when they forgive me.  i need to learn to let people forgive me on their own time.  

ultimately, it's about relinquishing control. 
it's about saying to yourself 'it is ok if my exboyfriend hates me, it is okay if that person hates me, h8ersgonnah8' etc instead of hating yourself even more.  

there are different kinds of shame.
there is the self-sabotaging kind of shame that is a song that goes like this: howcouldidothatiamahorriblepersonihatemyself.  and there is the healthier more wholesome song with a much nicer tune: i did something i regret, i made a mistake, but that is okay.  it is okay to make mistakes.  there is nothing i can do now but say i am sorry and try to do better.
i spend my whole life trying to be better than i was the day before.  sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.  sometimes i just get really angry and end up doing stupid things like leaving angry notes on my neighbour's car because it was blocking mine, or being immature and snarky in a facebook fight about victim blaming.  
those are two of my mistakes.
maybe my standards for myself are too high.


depression gives me a reason to hate myself.
and that is what is wrong with shame and self-sabotage. 
there is no love in this.
there is no gentle voice saying youcandobetter or yourebetterthanthis except for if you look deep enough, you'll know that the reason you feel this guilt is because you're better than this.  you are better than your actions.  don't list your regrets.  think of the ones that come to you instantly and then leave them.  apologize to someone if you have to, but be careful.  once i had a near-manic break where i wrote 97 apologies to people i knew because i felt bad about basically everything.  i would recommend not doing that.

that's all i have to say really.
just try, really try, to find love for yourself.
or at least take a breath and just stop with the self sabotage.  you're hurting yourself.

Comments

  1. Thanks! I try to remember not to tear myself apart, because there are others who will do that for me.

    Today I have the pleasure of reading through the results of a feedback survey that my manager and I prepared to get thoughts from my co-workers. So that's going to be fun... I'll let you know how it goes.

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