You Are NOT Inherently Bad: A Follow Up

Today (just a few minutes ago), I fell into feeling like a horrible human being. It’s very hard for me to pull myself out of the upset once it’s begun because I feel that I don’t deserve to feel better. Right now, I don’t have any particularly good coping mechanisms. Most of the ones I “use” I can’t muster when I’m so upset (like buddhist mindfulness and thinking about how I would view someone I loved who acted the same way as me). But I thought I would share what happened so that you can see how ridiculous my reason for self loathing was so you can remind yourself that whatever you are beating yourself up for really isn’t that bad.

We don’t have a dishwasher. So, everything has to be done by hand. The dishes were built up today so I spent about an hour cleaning them and the countertops. My dad came down to the kitchen and I still wasn’t done (he hadn’t assigned me to do it or anything, but was aware I was washing them) and said “have you been doing dishes this whole time?” This offended me because he’s commented before that I’m not very fast but I don’t want to be any quicker because I like to get everything very clean (I’m not OCD, just educated on food safety). So, I said in a sort of annoyed tone that if he’d dry while I washed it would go faster. He then tried to put a teatowel down on a countertop I had not yet cleaned (he wanted me to put the dishes on that towel to dry) and I don’t know exactly what I said but it was something grumpy and angry about him not being allowed to do that since I hadn’t cleaned the countertop yet. I felt really bad right as I said it and apologized but I felt it was a bit unfair that I was the only one apologizing since I felt he was also partially at fault. So, I said I wasn’t going to clean the rest of them and went and sat at the table. I felt really bad about all of this and said that I don’t think I deserve to live with him anymore. He said I always deserve to but I never believe him about these things so I ran away crying and sat on the floor in his bedroom crying. A few minutes later he came up and I told him that I think maybe I’m being mean to myself because it feels abnormal to only be around people who are nice to me (I’m no longer living with my abusive mother) so I’m being mean to myself to make things “balanced.” Obviously I shouldn’t be doing that but when you spend 18 years with someone who hates you and then one day you’re surrounded by love it feels weird and undeserved. I’ll be better about dealing with this now that I’m aware of it. It does frighten me though that I could end up in an abusive spousal relationship because I would feel unhappy and unworthy with anyone who treated me well. Fortunately, I’m only 18 and have no interest in getting married for at least a decade. So, I think if I work at it I’ll be able to heal and feel worthy and end up with someone good.

I think overall that fight was pretty normal and not huge. It’s certainly not something that means I deserve to be homeless. Please tell me if these sorts of stories are helpful to you!

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