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My Boyfriend thinks highly of me…And I feel undeserving of it

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  • #389430
    StarFlower
    Participant

    Recently, a guy friend of mine who I’ve known since 8th (We’re both juniors now) confessed to liking me. Though I’ve never really had feelings for him above being a good friend, and I agreed to his advancement and we’ve been dating for a week now. I’ve found him quite enjoyable to be around, and he speaks fondly of me.

    The problem is that I feel undeserving of his affection as I’ve done a lot of “unholy” things to put it lightly, things that involve me hurting (not physically) other people. I worry that if he knew the truth about me, he’d be disgusted and upset that he wasted his time on someone like me. So I’m in a bit on a conundrum here; if I’m honest with him about the things I’ve done years ago, he’ll be disgusted and leave me. If I’m not honest with him, then he’ll be in love with someone I’m not. Just to clarify, I’m not faking my personality per say, but I’m definitely not honest about everything that I’ve done. The things I’ve done aren’t just small, forgettable one offs either, I’ve suffered a lot just about thinking obsessively over what I’ve done. The incidents don’t involve my boyfriend, but am I being dishonest if I don’t tell him despite those actions having occurred years ago while I was a different person? Does my boyfriend deserve to find someone truly worth his praise?

    #389431
    StarFlower
    Participant

    Just to clarify, I’ve known by boyfriend since 8th grade, not since we were 8

     

    #389439
    anita
    Participant

    Dear StarFlower:

    “The problem is that I feel undeserving of his affection as I’ve done a lot of “unholy” things to put it lightly, things that involve me hurting (not physically) other people. I worry that if he knew the truth about me, he’d be disgusted and upset that he wasted his time on someone like me… The things I’ve done aren’t just small…  those actions having occurred years ago… Does my boyfriend deserve to find someone truly worth his praise?“-

    – a lot depends on what you are referring when you say “unholy’ things” and how those unholy things hurt other people. Maybe, depending on what those things are, you can make amends to the people you hurt. Maybe there are things you can do to correct some of the hurt you caused by helping the people you hurt, or by helping people you never met who are hurt in similar ways.

    Would you like to explain a bit the nature of those unholy things, if not in detail, then in a general way, as well as how those things hurt other people?

    anita

    #389440
    StarFlower
    Participant

    Well, they were to my younger siblings. They weren’t affected by it physically l, and mentally, they just see me as their older siblings. I won’t go too much into detail, but it was basically a terrible oversight without malicious intent, something that while might not affect them, I still think about and shudder. I try to be a good sister and friend in anyway I can, and people (for the most part) believe that I’m an inherently good person. I never NOT help some one, and I never go out of my way to be spiteful. I try to act “good” but then I remember these events and remember that I’m not as good as people say that I am. It’s been like this since middle school. I’ve been the “good” kid, the “good” daughter. But I don’t feel like a good person because of these things. Like I said, terrible oversights on my part that didn’t mentally affect anyone, but are still pretty for a lack of better word “unholy”. Had I never done those things, if I knew what I knew now, then perhaps I wouldn’t feel like such an imposter. I’ve talked to my mother on the subject, but she just tells me that it’s the past and there’s little I can do change it, which is very disheartening to hear.

    #389441
    SSS
    Participant

    If you are no longer that person, no longer guilty of doing bad things, then aren’t you a person deserving of his kindness?

    It’s for you to forgive yourself, and hopefully show those you hurt that you are aware of how your behavior affected them. All easier said than done. However, it’s hard to imagine you could ever feel “worthy” until you work toward and through it.

    If you truly are no longer that person, and trust that your past behavior is in the past, I’d offer not telling him of these “unholy” things. Not everyone can look beyond such things, can forever change how they see you. Only you know if those bad behaviors were put to rest. If they are…consider that some things are best left in the past. If you think you are still capable of doing bad things, I think he has a right to know if it would be of concern for his safety or others.

    Until we find worth in ourselves, we’ll forever feel like a fraud when someone values us.

    Edit: Think of this: That he sees a part of you worth love, a part that has value, a part you may not have been aware of, or not accustomed to being acknowledged.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by SSS.
    #389445
    anita
    Participant

    Dear StarFlower:

    You wrote that these wrongdoings, those unholy things were “things that involve me hurting (not physically) other people” but then you added that these things “didn’t mentally affect anyone“- so, if they those things didn’t hurt anyone physically or mentally… then those things didn’t hurt your younger siblings at all?

    anita

    #389448
    StarFlower
    Participant

    Yes, it’s quite confusing, but in context, it makes sense. They’re young, so they don’t really remember anything except what’s in front of them.

    #389449
    StarFlower
    Participant

    You are right SSS. I’ve been trying to improve my past behavior, and I have been looking into seeing a therapist about my whole imposter syndrome. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get past my feelings on inadequacy.

    #389451
    SSS
    Participant

    I understand that you don’t want to get specific (and I respect that), but understand that there’s a disconnect between you saying it was “oversight” without malicious intent, that no one was really hurt, and that you did “unholy things to put it lightly.”

    Were there contradictory systems (beliefs, disciplinary, etc.) at work causing you to do what you did? (E.g., Following the example of a harsh disciplinary parent while not believing it was the right thing to do.)

    #389454
    StarFlower
    Participant

    <p style=”text-align: left;”>It was just me not paying attention, and failing to be aware of myself. I.E I wasn’t trying to be malicious, but ended up doing things I regret if that makes sense.</p>

    #389455
    StarFlower
    Participant

    My siblings were too young to understand the full story and the weight of my actions, so my actions still involved them, but they didn’t suffer particularly because of it due to not remembering/not really understanding what really happened. So to me, there are actions that I regret, but they don’t remember. I’m sure that if they did understand, then it would have been more gravel on my part, but I just could’ve worded it better instead of saying that I hurt them.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by StarFlower.
    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by StarFlower.
    #389504
    anita
    Participant

    Dear StarFlower:

    On one hand, you suggest that you are feeling guilty for things you have done, actions that you have committed: “I’ve done a lot of “unholy” things… things I’ve done… those actions… doing things… my actions”, but on the other hand you suggest that what you are guilty not for actions you took, but actions you failed to take: “it was basically a terrible oversight of oversight” (an oversight: failure to do something).

    On one hand, you suggest that you hurt your siblings mentally: “things that involve me hurting (not physically) other people”, but on the other hand, you say that you didn’t hurt them mentally: “terrible oversight… that didn’t mentally affect anyone”.

    On one hand, you say that you did a lot of unholy things, that the word unholy is putting it mildly, things that are not small: “I’ve done a lot of “unholy” things to put it lightly…  The things I’ve done aren’t just small, forgettable”, but on the other hand, you have done those things because you were not paying attention and without malicious intent: “It was just me not paying attention…  I wasn’t trying to be malicious”. I imagine that doing a lot of big, unholy things, to put it mildly would have gotten your attention, and some intent would be involved.

    My closing thoughts for now: to resolve your guilt and shame regarding those unholy things, you need to be honest with yourself about whatever it is that you have done. There is a saying: the truth shall set you free. It will not be simple to set yourself free from guilt and shame, but the beginning of process of freeing yourself is telling the truth: no excuses, no minimization, no re-arranging of the truth. I suggested to you that you don’t need to provide details here/ tell the whole truth, but whatever it is that you do choose to share needs to be true.

    anita

     

    #389507
    StarFlower
    Participant

    You’re completely right. Thank you, and have a nice night. I have a long recovery ahead of me. I think a therapist would be best suited for my problems at this point.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by StarFlower.
    #389509
    anita
    Participant

    Dear StarFlower:

    You are welcome, and thank you for wishing me a nice night, right on time (it is almost 8 pm where I am). A (quality) therapist reads like the right next step for you. If you want to post again, on this topic, or on any other topic- please do, and I will be glad to read and reply to you further.

    anita

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