When I was a child, I was told that I am not worth the breathing air that keeps filling my lungs. When I was a teenager, I was told that I am a waste of skin. When I was an adult, I was told that I was selfish.
Why? Because I am my father’s child, a father who left his sick wife to fight for a better life for himself. Because I defended myself, and because I wanted to build a life for myself without having to care for anyone else.
The hostility I experienced as a child and young adult still weigh heavily on me. I was neglected and abandoned; at the same time, I was emotionally blackmailed into doing things I didn’t want to do for a sliver of affection. Everything I ever did was negatively criticized and belittled.
It turned me into a starving adult—a doubting person. And I don’t trust. I don’t trust that love is free, that people like me just for me. I wasn’t taught that I don’t need to bend backwards to be liked. And I also wasn’t taught that it is okay not to be liked.
The better part of my adult life, I was a people pleaser. I said yes when I wanted to say no. I did things I didn’t want to do, and I never had the guts to stand up for myself.
It took a lot of work, and I am still not there every day of the week, but I am learning to say no and accept that some people will not like it. I am learning to like myself (my needs, and wants, and wishes) first – even if that means that others need to wait. And I am learning that I have to stand up for myself because no one else ever will…
Am I loveable? Yes I am.
Am I beautiful? I have my moments – even being chubby and overweight.
I am unique – everyone is. I am me.
The older I get (and I am only thirty-seven), the easier it is to say ‘fuck them all’ I am living my own life, the way I want to live it. But… It is hard for someone who is riddled with self-doubt and low self-esteem.
Last night, I was looking at the fading self-harm scars on my arm. I am not sure if they are apparent and visible for people or if I see them because I know they are there. Feeling them with the fingertips of my right hand, I remembered reasons, moods, and triggers. And I wanted to hug the young woman who never learned how to deal with emotional pain. I want to tell her to be free and disregard others. I want to tell her to live her life, without fear of not being loved. Everything will be okay.
But… No matter how much I change and how much I open up I will always stay a guarded and abused child. I was spoiled for anyone trying to love me…