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no self-esteem
February 3, 2005
1:16 pm
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msguud
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Can someone PLEEEAAASSE tell me how to get some self-esteem. Even the trainer at the gym that I met once told my sister I sure am hard on myself. Everyone says about me: You're successful, you're good looking, your 26-year-old daughter that you brought up virtually by yourself is very beautiful and successful and excelled at everything she did, dance, piano, skating, has her own condo she bought at 25 years old, I live in a nice house that is almost paid for, I have many beautiful things, a nice car, a good job (two of them), I have survived a horrible abusive relationship for 11 years, I worked on myself in a 30-week course on abused women, then 2 years of counselling, felt a lot better about myself, then started up with relationships again and am back where I started, feeling like a piece of shit because he left me. I know it was going nowhere, I know he was no good for me (just like everyone said). How the hell do I get some self-esteem so I don't keep making these mistakes? I'm 55 and I want a good relationship. I don't want to be alone. I've been alone a long time. A lot of people would kill to have what I have. I don't even care about my "things". I want love, not inanimate objects. I do love my three dogs tho. I'm lonely and can't seem to get myself talked into the fact that I'm worth something. Has anyone been in this postion and gotten out of it? How do you get self-worth? I feel like an anexoric and people say you're too thin - all she sees is fat. It's so hard to make myself think I'm worth something in spite of everything around me. Please, someone, please tell me how to get it......

February 3, 2005
1:48 pm
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gingerleigh
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When you figure it out, write a book and make a million bucks. I'll buy it. *grin*

Self esteem is an issue that I struggle with also (and I think many here do too). I find that I feel happiest and most "in myself" when I'm focused on something that brings joy to my spirit. It has nothing to do with anyone else. For me, it's music. For others, it can be art or gardening or making things or connection with nature or talking to God or any number of things.

Can you think about anything in your life that warms your spirit in this way?

Self esteem... such a tricky beastie. People who point out to you that you should feel great about yourself because you have this or that or did this or that are missing the point. Self esteem is different from pride in accomplishments. Self-esteem is basically self love, loving yourself just because you exist, because you are, because you are truly a unique manifestation of the universe and therefore you should be loved, and you are loved, whether you see it or not at the moment.

February 3, 2005
1:59 pm
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CAMER
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i think self esteem is more about you from the inside...what you think of yourself...as a whole person, are you kind, caring, sweet, and what you offer to yourself and the good things in this world. I think the more I believe in myself and not worry about what "others" clarify me as, such as pretty, good job, nice car, nice house etc.....and know just by looking in the mirror that I am attractive, and yes, i am sweet and nice and truely believe in it, it help ME feel better about myself and hold my head up high, yes its the beleif that only I can have.
Hope that made sense!

February 3, 2005
2:07 pm
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on my way
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Wow, I can relate. I am 51, survived an abusive relationship, my marriage of 18 years, when I left I had no self-esteem, was spiritually, mentally an physically exhausted. I then took my teenage sons, who had multiple problems as a result of my divorce, my oldest bipolar, on drugs, dealing, getting into fights, and his younger brother following suit. My youngest was having problems in school and resented his older brothers causing such havoc in our lives. I have pictures of plates in my wall, where my oldest through them from so much anger.

I got them into counseling, and 5 years later, I cannot tell you how proud I am of them. They are awesome young men, absolutely awesome, it is a miracle they survived. It is a miracle I survived.

I am attractive, do not look my age at all, and am currently geting my degree as I never finished college. I have plans goals. I have recently found out that I am bipolar/depressed as I could NOT figure out why my life was not working, and had not worked for a long time.
I started dating someone 2 years after my divorce, literally fell in love with him, but it did not last. My self esteem was also low, I sort of enmeshed myself in his life, and felt I had to have him to make me happy. The break up devastated me, and my self esteem became lower and lower. I felt rejected and hopeless, 2 things I had previously told myself that I would NEVER feel again.

I rebuilt my self esteem by realizing that I did not need someone else to tell me who I am, that I did not need the approval of others to succeed, or FEEL successful, and that I was awesome without education, without looking gorgeous, just by being me. But it took time. I went to a 12 Step program at my church, learned about how much God loves me, inspite of who I am, and the only approval I needed to seek was His, ...yet I already had it. The 12 Step program took 2.5 years to go through. I have spent time getting to know me, what I want, what I need. I am not there by any means, and I too am a perfectionist...I have to have everyting perfect beofre I DO anything...but I am learning to let go and realize that there are things OUT of my control. This has helped my self esteem immensely. So, I believe it is a process, and from reading your thread, yes, you have accomplished alot and yes you should be proud of yourself, and yes you are too hard on yourself...but that only shows what high standards you have, so try to see that as a positive.

We are not meant to hate ourselves, we are meant to love ourselves. Some of the advice many give on this website, is get to know you for awhile. Read, take time for you, ask questions, read some of the old threads here...and start beleiving that you are great. Hope this helps somewhat.

February 3, 2005
2:26 pm
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bel
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Msgud, I also suffer from low self esteem but I think I have gotten better over the years and I am also 55 on Jan 1.

I have not been in a relationship for over 5 years now and I dont see myself getting into one ever again. I think I was born to be alone or a loner. I have many friends and have had a few relationships but I was alwasy taking whatever scraps I could get and let them treat me the way they wanted.

Now I take care of myself and well no men out there that I have met. It does not bother me if I ever have a man in my life anymore, Im used to it. Sure I get lonely and think what if sometimes but other than that my life is good. I have lots of family and keep myself busy.

Bel

February 3, 2005
2:27 pm
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kathygy
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It sounds like you are feeling rejected and blaming yourself for he break up. That can cause low self esteem. Stop blaming yourself and realize that these men has issues that have nothing to do with you. You can build your self esteem by saying loving things to yourself and refusing to be mistreated by anyone. Treat yourself in loving ways. Standing up for yourself is a get self esteem builder.

February 3, 2005
3:25 pm
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CAMER
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OMW...i like what you said, and I am so glad that things are looking good in your life...i had goosebumps reading of all you went thru, then reading the success of your life and the belief in yourself over time...what you said is an inspiration to this thread! thanks!!!

February 3, 2005
3:40 pm
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on my way
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Thanks Camer, that is very encouraging to me as well! Hope your day goes great!

February 3, 2005
4:29 pm
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Refuse2GiveUp
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Msguud-

I have a problem with this also. Seems alot of us do. I think it has to do with the way our society views women, but that's a big topic. Individually, I know that I had so much more self-confidence before I got into relationships when I was young. My first relationship I will never forget. I was strong, he was loyal, everything just clicked and worked. Then I moved away and started experiencing life and experiencing relationships and my self-esteem sort of went downhill from there. I hope that I can rebuild it, and I hope you can too. We can try together.

Refuse2GiveUp

February 3, 2005
5:19 pm
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msguud
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To everyone who answered. Thank you so much. On My Way - you really went thru and lot and succeeded. I'm going to ask a lady to be my AA sponsor tonite and start doing the steps. I never did do them. Maybe that's my problem in the long run. I was going to do it the other nite, but being codependent, it's hard for me to ask for help from anyone. It's doubly hard for me to think nice things about myself or say them. I just never have. Maybe 2005 is the time to start, eh? I did get my program at the gym today, so maybe once I lose 25 lbs I will feel better. I know I'll look better, that's for sure.

Kathy, yes, it is over the breakup. I was much happier with him. I still haven't got it thru my head that it was all his problem, not mine. If there were some things about me, I can admit it. I tried with him. But that's all the old co-dependency thing again. I'm working on that too.

Bel, you sound exactly like my girlfriend. She says the same things to me. I actaully did try saying to myself driving to the gym: You're super, you don't need a jerk bringing you down, you're worth more. Hopefully it will sink in the more I say it.

Thank you all for helping. Camer, you were the first person I read on here about my gambling boyfriend and I really love hearing from you. Thanks so much. I'm gonna try to be more positive.

February 3, 2005
5:29 pm
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on my way
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Sounds like you have a good plan going.
You mentioned not being able to ask for help...I still struggle with this,as it is also a way to build intimacy. Sometimes intimacy is a real issue with those (and I am one)who are codependent.
The 12 Steps are an awesome healing tool. Stick with it even when you feel like quitting, ok?

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