It’s difficult to get someone else to see how harmful the desire to conform is when you, yourself haven’t broken away from conformity. There’s this longing to hide behind a mask or create facades to appear to stronger, wiser, more independent, or more superior than the rest of the world around us. These actions stem from not being 100% happy or being ashamed of who you truly are. Creating a false image or embellishing your life not only allows you to feel good about yourself, but it makes you feel good that others accept you. Even if it means being accepted for something or someone you are not. For years I didn’t have faith that I’d ever be anyone worth being proud of. I never believed that I was beautiful. I had all these things about me that were great but they were overshadowed by own negative thinking. When I allowed myself to believe the terrible things that were said about me my life took a terrible turn. I disliked so much about me it was sickening. My lack of love for self was disgusting. No matter how much I hated who I was I could never let those who took the time out to hurt me to see that side of me. I could never let them know they were succeeding in tearing me apart and breaking me down. I hid who I really was instead of embracing my imperfections and trying to find ways to correct my self-hate. I was more ashamed of me and afraid of finally accepting who I truly was. Even when life seems perfect and you have everything that you desire none of it really matters when you aren’t fully comfortable with the person that you are. None of my accomplishments and achievements mattered because I was at war with myself. No matter how many people told me how great I was and what I was capable of I was controlled by all of the negative things that were said and done to me. After a while I recognized that when you aren’t right with yourself it doesn’t matter how well the picture is painted for others. You can paint the prettiest picture for those on the outside but that still doesn’t change how you see you and what you feel on the inside. It’s so common to rely so much on the opinions of friends, the ones we’re dating, and family members that we ignore the most important opinion of all which is our own. We value others opinions so much we go the extra mile to appear all put together and perfect when we are really dying inside. There was a point in my life where I was dying inside. I wanted so bad to change the image I had of myself but I didn’t know where to begin. I had carried on the façade of me being this perfect existence for so long I didn’t know how to separate myself from that. I believe that part of my ill feelings toward myself derived from me internalizing so much of what people said about me.
When you’re young you have yet to figure out how to own your confidence. I took to heart whatever things I was told for years. It eventually developed so many unwanted negative feelings within. The older I got the worse it got. It was no secret I did not love me. Other people’s hate toward me had unwantedly caused me to hate myself. Eventually I just started to pretend I was flawless. I lived life wearing a shield to protect me from myself and others. They couldn’t harm who I pretended to be. I was being phony. I had created a façade. I pretended to feel good about the person I was instead actually attempting to do it. I wasn’t brave enough. It felt better to pretend to be something I was not. My façade was a confident booster. A very ugly one, but it was a confident booster. I relied on it and others to do what I couldn’t do myself. I needed validation just to feel good. Because I went through years of being bullied and slandered it was how I had learned to handle things. If you’ve ever had someone doing whatever they can to tear you down verbally and physically you begin to feel so many mixed emotions. More and more I had begun to feel unloved, hopeless, and non-valuable. My insecurities were far too powerful for me to bear. My refusal to fully embrace my flaws and insecurities made it easier for people’s attacks against me to break me down. I was too concerned about what was said about me and how it made me feel that I hadn’t realized I was allowing other people opinions to change how I felt about myself.
Eventually I could no longer keep up with the person I pretended to be. The negativity had broken me down to the point that I believed I was nothing. My weight had become an issue, the way I looked, the way that I dressed and even how I wore my hair. I hated all of it. It had gotten to the point where being bullied and made fun of hurt so much I hated looking in the mirror. I never saw beauty or hope. Things had gotten so bad. Other people’s words hurt so much that my thought process was all screwed up. My insecurities, self-doubt, and refusal to accept myself had all come from being bullied and tormented. I didn’t know how to block out the opinions of the world and just be me and love me for who I was. Eventually I had begun to harm myself. My suicide attempts started at a young age. In some sick twisted way I thought that it helped to ease my pain and suffering. During high school I wallowed into depression. So many years of being the reject I didn’t know how to step out of it. I continued to harm myself despite me knowing that what I was doing was wrong; I still continued to do it as if it was ok. I went through a heavy period of being bullied and tortured. The more pain I felt the more my attempts to harm myself worsened. Eventually I had become suicidal. My first suicide attempt I had taken a whole bottle of doctor prescribed pain killers. I remember waking up the next morning after I had done it and asking God: “why didn’t you let me die?” I ignored the message that I obviously had a purpose to live for. I didn’t see that I was being protected from self-destruction. I was so tired of the pain from others and myself I thought that the only way to deal with it was death. The physical pain I caused myself I could stop at any moment but it was the emotional part I had no control over. When I was randomly reminded of all the things that affected me emotionally I flipped. I had no idea how to manage it; my pain was now out of my hands. Every time the emotional weight got too heavy I’d harm myself physically to cope. Did I know it was wrong? Yes, but I had no intentions to stop it. Just like the people who went out of their way to torment me and bring me down knew what they were doing was wrong and had no intentions of letting that go either. Harming myself and acting out was a temporary fix and somewhat a call for attention. I wanted someone to see what I was going through so they’d ask what was wrong because I was too ashamed to admit that I had let others change how I felt and treated myself. My second suicide attempt was the scariest, most harmful thing I had ever put myself through. That night is one I’ll never forget.
Be Inspired. Be Encouraged. Be Blessed.