October 26, 2019 at 8:49 am #319843
“My voice was high pitched and I didn’t like what I saw”- thing is you can adjust and change your high pitched voice and you can change your posture and facial expressions, you can learn to make and keep eye contact, you can learn to behave, appear and sound the ways you approve of, ways you feel comfortable with.
How long is your train ride to visit family, how long will the gathering be and what specifically worries you about the upcoming family gathering?
anitaOctober 26, 2019 at 9:21 am #319857
group therapy could be very helpful. I will have to really step out of my comfort zone, but I know it could be very worth it. I don’t know if I can gather up the courage. But it could help to overcome my fears and improve my quality of life.
The train ride would be 5-7 hours, by bus maybe 8 or 9 hours. The gathering will be held at one day, there will be lunch and later coffee and cakes. It usually lasts from 12 am to about 5 or 6 pm.It is at a holiday, on Thursday, so I have to take a day off from work/uni. We will eat at a restaurant everybody will sit at a table together and eat and talk, sometimes we go for a short walk (usually it is in small groups and I walk with my siblings and mother).
The gathering is something I dread every year. I am not very close to most of the people there. It is to celebrate my grandmothers birthday. I am not very close to my grandmother. We always lived in different places and I saw her maybe 3 or 4 times a year. And back then I used to spend most of the time with my cousin. My cousin and I are now estranged. She and her sister have her life together, they finished their studies, have a partner, a job, a child. Me and my siblings though, we are still figuring things out.
In the past, there was lots of comparison between my uncles daughters and me and my siblings. For example, school grades were compared or when my uncle talked about my cousin singing in the choir and having a great voice, my father had to point out how good we are at painting.
One year my godmother (who I barely know), said to me “I pray for you that you will someday find a man. You are also not so young anymore”. I guess she meant well and it is partly hilarious to me, but still..
I just feel like a total loser there. That I haven’t accomplished anything in life… I don’t want to answer questions about my studies from people who are complete strangers to me. Maybe I should relax more and then people would also accept me… Maybe I should be more open. I guess I also have a negative attitude…
I feel I have to go there, or my grandmother will be insulted or sad. When I didn’t come some years ago, it was taken as an offence.
OOctober 26, 2019 at 9:22 am #319859
My mother and sister also dread this family gathering by the way…October 26, 2019 at 9:29 am #319863
Maybe I am not trying hard enough with these dinner type situations… From the start I think: when will this be over? I hope nobody talks to me… If somebody wants to start a conversation, I try to escape it… It is no wonder if I come off as unlikable.
Basically I think: “I don’t want to be here” but I still go because I feel obligated. And then I feel like I am ruining it for everybody else, by being so tense and not talking enough.October 26, 2019 at 9:34 am #319865
A five to 9 hours ride each way for 6 hours of you feeling “like a total loser there” is a bad idea, it makes no sense. If you want send a Happy Birthday Card to your grandmother. If she disapproves of the card- you will not be there to witness her disapproval.
The last thing you need is witnessing yet more disapproval from family.
October 26, 2019 at 9:45 am #319871
- This reply was modified 2 weeks, 5 days ago by anita.
when I wrote to you, I was thinking to myself: maybe it is possible not to go to the birthday celebration. After all, I have a good excuse: I live far away and I have to work and go to uni on Friday.
Maybe I can offer to visit her another time. At least then I can concentrate on one person, which is easier for me. My sister also suggested that we go and visit her together another time. We could bring a board game, maybe it would make things less awkward. One time I went to visit her on my own and we watched old photos and talked about old times (which I am very interested in).
At the birthday gathering we usually don’t talk much anyways… So it could be a better idea not to go.
Thanks anita again for your message. It helps me to see things clearer.
For today though, I will go offline. I hope you have a very nice day and take care of yourself!October 26, 2019 at 9:54 am #319877
You are welcome. I definitely agree that it is better that you visit your grandmother at another time, when it is convenient for you. And because you feel uncomfortable in group settings, better chose 1-to-one, or a very small group setting (you, your sister, and grandmother) over bigger group settings.
Thank you for wishing me well and have a calm and pleasant weekend yourself.
November 1, 2019 at 10:49 am #320857
- This reply was modified 2 weeks, 5 days ago by anita.
I ended up not visiting my grandmother. It will be better if I go see her at another time. We talked on the phone, it really made me realize that we grew up in very different times. Our ways of seeing the world are different.
This week I managed to ask my professor if he can take a look at my drawings. Then we had a normal conversation, with me showing what I did so far and him giving advice. I feel proud of myself! Because I almost wanted to give up on this class. But I didn’t.
This is the way forward for me: no longer hiding myself at any little (supposed) sign of disapproval from others. Seeking confrontation. Being me, even though some people will not like it. Being more accepting of myself, even though others might find me weird.
I wish that I would have done this last year. In the dormitory situation and with K. But o.K., maybe at least this situation made it clearer to me that something has to change.
Today I also asked my therapist about group therapy and she will tell me more about the options next week. It will be scary though.
Thanks for your wishes, my weekend was calmer last week. And this week too. Tomorrow I will work on my drawings and maybe go to the museum later. How about you? I am wishing you a good weekend this week as well.November 1, 2019 at 11:07 am #320863
Congratulations for the following:
1- not traveling to visit your grandmother.
2- not giving up on the class, for asking the professor to look at your drawings and having a normal conversation with him.
3- for your objective to no longer hide yourself when sensing disapproval, and instead, being you, “accepting of myself”!
I hope your therapist will have group therapy options to suggest to you next week. “It will be scary though”- by accepting yourself, you have to accept your fear and feel empathy for yourself for being afraid, instead of judging yourself harshly for it. Empathy for yourself is key.
Good to read that your weekend was calmer and hope this weekend is as well. Thank you for wishing me well.
November 3, 2019 at 9:28 am #321103
- This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by anita.
I tried my best to do better. Sometimes it works, sometimes I cannot stop thinking self-depreciating thoughts.
To not judge myself harshly is hard, especially if I feel that I might have hurt another person. It is hard to forgive myself.
This weekend I spent at home for the most part. Not a good idea. I was quite unproductive. Better to plan my next weekend better, plan some activities.. Maybe ask a friend to do something together so that I will follow through with it.
Hopefully your weekend was good! I am glad I can go to work tomorrow and my day will be more organized.November 3, 2019 at 10:48 am #321115
I wish you cared as much to not hurt yourself as you care to not hurt others. Just as you wouldn’t say deprecating things to another, don’t say those to yourself. You are no less of a human than anyone. Aim at treating yourself with as much consideration as you show others.
Hope you have the organized work day you are hoping to have tomorrow. Here it is still the weekend, Sunday 10:48 am as I type this.
anitaNovember 3, 2019 at 11:53 am #321139
somehow I had this thought for a long time that it is o.K. if I get hurt, as long as the other person is o.K. But of course, this doesn’t work, it is a very unhealthy way of thinking. And ironically, I will probably hurt others more if I half-heartedly do things to please them.
This other poster who also named herself “Lily” reminded me of the time K. asked me why I never kissed him. And a lot of guilt and shame came up.
I need to leave the story with him behind me, but somehow I always think of these things. Maybe I should distract myself more… There will be a lot of work to do next week and there is also a block seminar next weekend. So hopefully my head will get occupied with more productive things.
The past is the past, next time I can do better. I would even say that to the man in the dormitory, if he had completely changed his life and become a better person. Then I should extend the same compassion to myself!
There is actually a lot to be proud of lately!!! I need to remind myself of that!
1. I am doing better at my job. I get along better with my colleagues and they seem to appreciate me now. The people of the company even told me that they want top keep me. Also I have improved when interacting with clients and even my chefs noticed. I overcame my fears there.
2. Last week at uni, I approached my professor and sought out the “conflict” instead of avoiding it.
3. My living situation has improved. I found a new room for myself, now I get along better with my roommates.
4. Now I also earn (almost) enough money to support myself.
5. Since I moved, I also cooked again and now my diet is healthier again. (It’s just small, but cooking is something that brings me joy and I missed it)
6. In therapy and also thanks to talking to you I am starting to understand myself better.
7. I am working on a zine, hopefully it will be a good way for me to express myself and find my voice. One comic will be about consensual sex for example and how it should be, so that everybody is safe.
I am feeling a little bit better now. Maybe I will turn off the P.C. for today. It is 8:46 pm here and I will probably read something now. Please enjoy the rest of your weekend! And thanks, I hope my workday will be good too!November 3, 2019 at 1:22 pm #321161
I read part of your recent post but am not focused enough to read thoroughly and reply. I will do so when I am back to the computer Monday morning my time, which is in about 17 hours from now.
anitaNovember 4, 2019 at 8:55 am #321287
Congratulations for improving your interactions with clients and colleagues at work, as well as with your professor, congrats for finding a better living arrangement and successfully moving and getting along with your new roommates, and for having shown appreciation at work, for working on your art, for cooking for yourself, eating a healthier diet and for almost earning enough money to support yourself!
“I had this thought for a long time that it is o.k., if I get hurt, as long as the other person is o.k.”- you expressed this thought, or core belief long ago, 2018. I do hope it changes soon.
You mentioned K in your recent post and you wrote in #7 “one comic will be about consensual sex for example and how it should be, so that everybody is safe”. I will connect K to the core belief and the comic mentions you made in your recent post:
– the relationship with K, based on your posts Sept-Nov 2018 consisted of him telling you that he loved you almost immediately upon meeting you and proceeding to have sex with you, as quickly. I don’t think the relationship consisted of a single date such as going to a restaurant or to the movies. You repeatedly messaged him and he repeatedly didn’t respond to your messages, you rarely spent time with him and when you did, he was often on his phone. All through this not-really-a-relationship, you were very worried about hurting him.
I think you worried that if you told him No regarding sex, that will hurt his feelings. My point is, it is not really consensual sex when a woman has sex with a man she just met so that his feelings don’t get hurt (hearing her say No to his sexual advances). Because this reason for a woman to have sex with a man is insane and dangerous: a woman will easily get a lifetime, even a deadly STD if she is to have sex with any man who wants to have sex with her, so to not hurt his feelings. It is not consensual because at that moment of consent, the woman is insane and the sex is definitely not safe.
Therefore, in the future, when you meet a man, please meet him repeatedly in a public place such as a park or a coffee shop and talk, get to know him. Do not spend alone time with him in your place or his until at least a couple of months of conversations.
I hope your week is a good one.
November 4, 2019 at 1:25 pm #321367
- This reply was modified 1 week, 3 days ago by anita.
my comic about consensual sex will have a text how in my opinion consensual sex should be. Both parties should discuss their feelings and boundaries honestly. Everything you want to do should be agreed on mutually. Every party has the right to withdraw their consent at any time, even when they are already naked, even when they did the same thing before, even if they are married and so on… Both parties should be in a state that allows them to give their consent (grown up, not intoxicated)… Things like that…
I think that I have not a too different view from you on how consensual sex should be in theory. But in my real life experiences everything got warped. I admit that I did not behave smart or healthy when sleeping with K without knowing him for long, not having built the trust to tell him my feelings openly, to say no to him openly.
My plan regarding dating are in line with your suggestions. But I am not dating right now and don’t plan on doing it anytime soon. I am not ready.
It is not true that I would sleep with any man, so that he would not get hurt. I had the hope to find love with K., yes it was not smart and quite naive of me, yes even delusional, to sleep with him so quickly. I need to get to know somebody very slowly and build trust.
I am not insane.
Anita, I am sorry. I get the feeling that my post has distressed you. Would it be better to not bring up the topic of K again?
- This reply was modified 1 week, 2 days ago by Lily.