Not Good Enough.

I am positively in inspirational heaven with all the material I have to read, watch and do. My potential is endless right now, and having literature and other forms of inspiration in abundance leaves me feeling so excited, almost so that I can’t sleep at night. Having said that, I feel I am on a really great path in life. I’ve spent some time re-reading old blog posts and see only growth. I am not perfect, but my present and future look great to me from here. It’s things that have happened in my past which hinder my progress and agitate my anxiety.

I lay in bed earlier and thought about my behaviour. Being a Psych major, I am constantly over-analyzing myself and my actions, diagnosing myself and telling myself that I act a certain way because of things that have happened. One incident came to my mind. One that I hadn’t thought of for a long time, but that which I feel contributes sincerely to the things I do, the way I see myself and my actions.

I am the youngest of three in the family. My father is emotionally dead. We have never had any kind of relationship. In fact, he makes me feel like a stranger in my own home. I’ve always experienced rejection from him. If not making fun of me, he never attended school events, dance recitals, University graduation etc. He makes me feel nervous even talking to him. I try hard not to blame him for anything. My brother, who is 6 years older than me is a great friend of mine today. As a child, however he used to hit me a lot. He lacks respect for women and it’s evident in the way that he physically and verbally interacts with my mother and I. For all of my years living at home, he used to do this thing that made me feel insignificant, like what I ever had to say was unimportant and that I should just be quiet. This has stuck with me to this day. If I am in a social situation, I am quiet and shy and nervous. I don’t feel good enough to speak, or feel like what I can contribute is good enough. When ever I would open my mouth to speak he would say, under his breath “Be quiet” “No one cares” “Shut up” or “Shhh!” and then carry on talking in my place. This affected me more than I thought. Coupled with this, is the fact that my father always used to embarrass me in social situations and say “Keep quiet, Helena – no one can get a word in!” making fun of the fact that I rarely spoke. My friend and I went out for dinner with some other people the other day. I felt awkward and I was quiet and she said that exact same thing to me, leaving me with those exact feelings I had as a child at the dinner table. I witness what this has done to me in the way that I never feel good enough. I am constantly seeking approval “does this look OK?” “Is this right?” etc. I suppose all of these feelings came rushing back after the dinner with my friend.

My question now, is – how do I deal with these and other demons?

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Korea, Love and Longing

South African with a passion for writing, photography... and nothing much else. I travel the world in order to find the country I like the best. Four years in South Korea makes me a winning survivor of Google translate and charades. Currently, living in Spain. - Love

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