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January 13, 2003
2:01 pm
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I have been coming to this website for a long time now and have only written once. I am nervous about sounding stupid or not really understanding the discussions. That is ridiculous since I am not a young person any more.
I have been in counseling for about a year and a half now to deal with anxiety and how it controls me. I worry too much about what other people expect from me and I worry about making dumb mistakes. You really can't learn who you are when you are constantly trying to please and make others happy.
I guess I really don't need anything right now from the group but wanted to take a step and write my own post. There have been many times that I would loved to have joined in but was afraid of not being accepted. I sound pitiful. I am really doing ok but am tired of dealing with so much self doubt. Thanks for reading this.

January 13, 2003
2:19 pm
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Post away. Don't worry... you'll never be as stupid as me when you post stuff.

January 13, 2003
2:21 pm
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hi tooscared, welcome!

Just join in and relax.

About fear of mistakes - Think of it this way: Only very intelligent creatures (man, some mammals, few birds) play during their youth, and the very intelligent ones keep the joy for playful behaviour until old age. This is because playing, trying out things is the best way to learn, to find out how things work. No mistakes - no play - no learning - no fun. That's what our biology teacher told us 😉

January 13, 2003
2:46 pm
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Welcome! Hope to hear from you more on other threads too 🙂

January 13, 2003
4:51 pm
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Thanks everyone for responding. I really appreciate your comments and acceptance. I will try to respond in other threads too. This is just very unnatural for me and a little uncomfortable. I do want to change though and trust others. Eve, I like what your biology teacher said. I hope that I never get to the point where I don't want to learn. It is just fear that holds me back sometimes.

January 13, 2003
5:12 pm
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Hey....ME TOO!!!

Nice thing about growing older (50 now)
is that you staart not worrying ( as much) about things like what others think about you.

It helped me to think about how much I respected those I was worrying about...like the boss I think is a dimweed...I should be scared of what HE thinks???? NONONONONONONONO

Of course it took a bit of discussion with my tharappist to get to that point.

And it takes practice.

Good luck

Taalk to you later.

January 13, 2003
7:15 pm
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tooscared, I get that way too...

Please just come on in and talk to us. It's good to have you here.

January 13, 2003
7:38 pm
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tooscard, your posts sound very intelligent. This is a welcome place for you.

January 13, 2003
7:39 pm
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Who wrote the book feel the fear and do it any way.. this is a safe place

January 13, 2003
8:06 pm
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Wow guys: You make me feel very welcome. It is good to know that others feel the same way. I am 39 and approaching 40 very soon. Maybe I just expected more emotionally out of myself by this point in life. I am very blessed with a wonderful husband and kids. I don't know how I got so lucky. I just want my kids to be proud of their mom. Sometimes I feel guilty going to my therapist because I have so much to be thankful for. It is just nice to have someone to talk to though that I don't have to worry about what they are thinking.

January 14, 2003
7:25 pm
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How do you learn to like being by yourself instead of constantly needing to be with others. I try to stay very busy running my kids places and doing different errands. I don't like to be by myself for very long. I start to get very critical of myself. I feel like I live life on the surface and don't really let myself get down to the core of anything. I do enjoy being with my kids and interacting with them, but I feel lost in the shuffle of things. I am a wife and mother but that feels like all there is to me. It is how I define myself. I guess I feel that those are the things in my life that make me worthwhile. Does anyone else ever feel this way? Is this just how it feels to approach 40 and want more?

January 15, 2003
10:51 am
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Hi tooscared~

I must admit that the 40-something questioning of yourself is very normal. When younger we dream of being a rock star or beauty queen, married to prince charming and having children who never have runny noses.

As I have grown older, I know I don't have the voice to be a rock star, way too heavy to be a beauty queen (not at 41 anyway!) and I didn't marry prince charming either the first or second time. Oh, and my kid ended up having snot running onto her shirt at an early age. I'm not sure why we take all the fantasy we are shown in preschool and try to turn it into reality, but in truth life is not that way.

Comparing yourself to some ideal person will always be self defeating. Go to the mall and look at the faces of the people who pass. Some are angry, some are sad, a few are closed off from the world, and even fewer are laughing or have a smile on their face. Take a notepad and make categories, like 'Fat', 'Skinny', 'Ugly', 'Beautiful', 'Competent looking', 'Out-of-Control'. Make a mark on only one when you look at a person. At the end of the day, you would have a mixed bag. And each of these people will look different tomorrow. We are all a mixed bag. You are no exception.

I like how you mentioned that you defined yourself as a wife and a mother. I bet you are good at these roles in your life. But...try to make a 'secret' person. The person who is at your core. You really need to have alone time to find this new person. Many people start a journal to do this. Try to find out what you really enjoy doing in life, what you think (not what you are supposed to think), what makes you angry, and all those other hidden (i.e. secret) things that makes you tick.

I don't know your history, so I can't tell you why you would try to hide from your inner core. Have you had some bad things happen to you? In your childhood? Would you say you have been very sensitive all of your life? Only you (the secret you) needs to investigate these issues. It is a very personal, private and self-satisfying journey when you begin to discover yourself.

Just look!! You posted your first thread! I can tell this was a big step for you, and you should be proud of your accomplishment. I would love to correspond with you more, so keep writing!!!

(((((HUGS)))))

Jenny

January 15, 2003
11:20 am
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Hi tooscared,
Raising children and keeping a smooth running household is a Big Job.
I learned that after that, I needed to have some time for me. Do you have any hobbies or interests that you have always wanted to explore or do? Dare to Dream about You.
Alot of people identify who they are by what they do. Workaholics can't be happy unless they are doing. Life is an adventure. Dare to live. I remember the first movie I attended by myself. It was an assignment by my counselor. It was so scarey going and buying that single ticket. Finding a seat....then the lights went out and it didn't seem to matter.
I was practicing dining alone. I would take a book for distraction. I thought others were thinking I was such a loser to not have any friends to dine with. Then I started noticing that being alone was getting easier....you could order what you wanted and leave when you were done.
Try baby steps. Little by little you will appreciate all your fine qualities and realize you are much more than Wife and Mother. You are a Unique Individual who is creating your own image of your life.
Best Wishes.

January 15, 2003
11:36 am
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Hi Jenny and MJ~
Thanks for your advice. I need to learn how to enjoy being by myself but right now I can only stand it for a short while. Then I have to find something to do with someone else. I think I have always been a supersensitive person. I have a problem in trying to "read" someone and know what they are thinking or feeling. I try to be the peacekeeper and keep things running smoothly. The problem with that is you tend to brush over problems and never really deal with them. I hate confrontation and am learning how to deal with it by talking to my counselor. The thought of someone being upset with me is too overbearing sometimes and I tend to not stand up for myself or I belittle myself. That is not good. I will try some little steps though like eating alone in a restaurant or somewhere. It is just hard when you really don't like being by yourself. I had a full time job last year as a teacher but with budget cuts I was laid off. I do substitute but you really don't have a feeling of belonging when you do that. I really don't have any hobbies or interests right now. I just kind of feel lost. I will write more later. I am leaving to go be with a friend and get out of the house. Thanks for writing.

January 16, 2003
10:19 pm
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I agree that being a wife and mother are big jobs. I love being both, but I sometimes feel like they deserve someone a lot stronger emotionally. I can't shake this feeling that I am just an outside participant in life. Too scared of getting rejected or facing conflict to form my own ideas about life. Growing up I didn't dare disagree with my parents about morality issues or just any issue in general. To me it just wasn't worth the fight. I learned to just shut down and not think for myself. I think my conflict now is that as I get older I am finding that there are things that I want to discuss and decide on for myself. I just feel like a child's mind in a grown up body. I feel like I am on a different level when it comes to discussing very deep ideas. My husband encourages me to stand up for myself and with counseling I am learning how to talk to him and work through some of our issues. Maybe it just starts in small ways like that and then you move out to feel comfortable in other areas. I am searching because I don't want to live like this forever. I also don't want my daughter to have these same self doubts. I am probably rambling and I hope that this makes some sense.

January 23, 2003
6:33 pm
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tooscared

You make sense...I too have struggled with my self-esteem all my life. And being codependent on other people really does not help. Sometimes I feel like a loser. Not smart and letting other people run my thoughts and life. There are so many old tapes running around in my mind that are hard to discard. Most of the time my Hubby treats me like I am a child and he is the father and he knows best for me. You start to feel stuck in this life that you never thought would be. I used to have so many dreams and hopes and ideas. They seem to be so far covered inside me that I even forget what they are. No I'm with ya tooscared. I think there's gonna come a time where we both have to stop being scared and stand up for ourselves and become what we want to be not what anyone elses wants us to be.

:)Jaskid

January 23, 2003
7:11 pm
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Hey Jaskid,

Thanks for responding. It is good to know that others feel the same way I do. It is hard to not replay the old tapes in my head too. It even seems like the older I am getting the more some of the low self esteem issues are affecting me again. I think it is because for the last 15 years I have been so focused on my kids and family that I have let that be what defined who I was and am. When I have to rely on myself and present myself to people it is extremly hard to do. I really haven't had a life of my own outside of my kids, husband, and church. It feels like I am such a shallow person inside - that there isn't any real depth. I think I know that isn't true, but it is hard to allow myself to know what I want out of life without being consumed with what those around me need. I know that we are going to figure this out! At least we are acknowledging the fact that there has to be more.

January 24, 2003
2:44 pm
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I've been trying to figure this thing out for soooo long. But you're right We will. I think it's easier just to give up and let others define who we are, even though we know there's so much more inside us. Of course we love our children (I have 5 by the way) and our husbands, but there is a yearning inside for us to be individuals too. My hubby tells me: Oh you're just not happy with the life that God has chosen for you, being a wife and a mother. Oh is he soooooo clueless. And sometimes he thinks he knows what God has for me, hmmmmm let me see, doesn't that make him think he knows God's mind. Instead of Listening to everyone else I'm starting to listen to my heart....that inner voice inside me, pushing me to be all I can be, And this scares him because he knows if I became really strong, Look out, there aint nothing I couldn't do. He likes me weak.....makes him feel in control.
See God has stirred something in your heart tooscared and you can't just ignore it. He wants us to totally trust in Him and not in Men. I really feel he gave us all these emotions for a reason....not so we could keep them bottled up inside like our significant others would like. Be quiet and things will run smoothly. Just go with the flow...(Who's Flow?) Why won't you listen to me he says, I say Because I'm listening to my heart and God Lives there. Sometimes I wake up feeling like a failure because I didn't do this or didn't do that, Well that's me and the world making me feel this way. Consumed is a good word....It's sooooo easy to be consumed and sucked into what we have been taught or what we should think or feel, that we become kinda numb and just go through the motions really forgetting ourselves and taking care of everything else that we become lost in this dark place that not even those around us can help us get out of anymore. I have slowly been diggin my way out of this deep dark pit I find myself in I think I've been digging straight and now it's time to start digging up till one day I reach the top and see that light, breath that fresh air and feel free of all these burdens I have carried for too long. Sometimes we might feel we are alone, but we aren't, HE's holding us in his hand letting us go through these struggles knowing that we will become stronger people. I wish HE could just do it all for us, but HE knows what's best and I do believe we are still standing for a reason, or maybe even crawling...lol
Hang in there, Gain comfort in knowing that I understand where you are at. I get up in the morning, (Barely....hehe) look in the mirror and say to myself, YOU CAN DO THIS!

Take care tooscared,
:)Jaskid

January 24, 2003
5:36 pm
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Hi Jaskid,

It sure does sound like we are going through very similar feelings and emotions. I feel like God has been teaching me that I can't rely on anyone or anything for my happiness except him. That is so hard though because it is a step of faith to not rely on others and trust our own thoughts and feelings. I don't have much success at that so far. My husband is a very strong focused person. Almost too focused sometimes. I think he has good intentions when he says that he is going to do something or come home at a certain time, but something always happens and he doesn't follow through with his plans concerning me or home. I have gotten to where I only believe something when I see it happen. It saves a lot of heartache when you don't count on things happening until they actually do. It kind of like when your kids are younger and you don't tell them about a surprise or something until you know without a doubt that it is going to happen. You just save a lot of disappointment from taking place. I have a lot of anger that I keep inside over past hurts. It is very hard for me to express those things because the peace maker in me doesn't want to rock the boat. I am trying to learn through counseling how to deal with conflicts and that anger. I am also working on how to deal with my anxiety that seems to rule my life. I am thankful that we are not alone with God, but I am also thankful for people like you who are here and want to support others. What a wonderful feeling to know that others care and will listen. Have a blessed weekend!

January 24, 2003
11:50 pm
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I was involved with an alcoholic/bipolar man for the past 4 years. Needless to say I found myself with a lot of anger. I also found that I am codependent. I am seeking support as I struggle in my healing process.

January 25, 2003
3:34 am
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What, exactly, does it mean to be codependent?

January 25, 2003
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Hi Free, You know I have never thought of myself as codependent. I thought it was a term used to just describe people who were involved with substance abuse partners or were in abusive relationships that were somehow depending upon others in that unhealthy relationship. But after reading the codependency thread and the information I am finding that it is anyone who depends on others to determine their happiness or how they feel about themselves. At least that is what I am starting to get out of it. I think that I am starting to see myself fitting into that category.

jctsa210~ Hang in there. I am sure that you do have a lot of pent up anger and emotions after dealing with a hard relationship. This is a good place to talk and get your mind cleared. There are a lot of nice people on this site with very helpful advice.

January 25, 2003
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TooScared - that stuff you wrote about your husband not following through on promises, it is not you with the problem, it is him. It's about standards you set yourself. Your's are higher. I believe that you should say want you mean and do what you say/promise. Or your promise/your word is worthless. I never make promises I can't keep, or say I will do something then don't. I have been let down badly by others who's word means nothing. But once I realise that they don't hold the same values, that they are unreliable, I set my expectations accordingly. If they say they will do something, I take it with a pinch of salt. If you expect nothing, you will never be disappointed. And it will not bring you unhappiness.

January 25, 2003
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Weel, I don't think I'm codependent anymore then. I don't rely on anybody but me. I like people and their company. Ya know, I thought my life was so good before my ex was arrested last October for sticking bullets in my mailbox. I thought I was so happy. Everybody has a cross to bear, I really thought him being a pain in the butt and dv survivorhood was my cross. After he was arrested Oh Gosh I was so terrified. then anger hit. Now, just scared, a ilttle angry, and sad. Last night when I was going to sleep I started to cry. Maybe having a pity party for myself. Maybe crying the tears that should have been shed long ago. I dunno. But right now I'm not happy. And I want to be, again.

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