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fuglyduckling's avatar

I'm afraid to speak out because of my upbringing?

Asked by fuglyduckling (405 points ) August 16th, 2014

Ever since I was a little kid my parents thought everything I did or said were idiotic. I would be hushed. Little funny mistakes I’ve done were treated like the end of the world. I was even beaten up on multiple occasions because of small things. In dinner tables I were always quiet. When I spoke I was talked on by someone else in my family and ignored most of the time. I was very quiet in classrooms. I believe that anything I say would be idiotic and looked down on, so I don’t speak. I wanted to do many things but I’m afraid of doing them because I think I’ll fail anyway. I don’t know what to do at this point as I am in my twenties and still my comments are being looked down on by my parents and siblings. If I share with them something I’ve said or done against a behavior I disagree with, my sister says I am an idiot and that I should have better things to do.

At this point I need your opinion on this. Its hard for me to speak out at all. I regret everything I’ve said or done after awhile because, well It was just idiotic wasn’t it?

I want to do so much in this world, I always have. I want to be the change I want to see in the world. However in the back of my mind I am an idiot, a loser, a failure, and anything I do will fail because its stupid. Please help me. I really need help. Do I just go for it and fight with how I was raised every single day? How do I stop fighting with it and win? Because I hate the thought of being a failure all the time which is on the back of my mind in everything I do or attempt to do. I don’t wanna live like this if its gonna stay there. Can I forget those many years of my life?

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8 Answers

pleiades's avatar

It seems you grew up being told no a lot.

The beauty of life is you can break those chains and pursue your dream with rigorous work, organization and focus.

dxs's avatar

Try hanging around people who don’t bring you down so much. That’s a really hard mindset to get out of.

hearkat's avatar

I had a lot of self-esteem issues from being abused psychologically and sexually in childhood. These messages of being “not good enough” are so deeply ingrained that it really is best to get professional help to work through them.

I found it helpful to remind myself that everyone has some degree of insecurity and self-consciousness, and only develops confidence through practice. I paid close attention to those around me who seemed so poised and composed and dignified, even when challenging someone or speaking out against the status quo, and tried to emulate them in my own actions. This felt very unnatural at first, but the more I worked at it the more comfortable it became. I’m still far from being a diplomat, but I’ve come a very long way from where I started.

After putting these techniques into practice, I learned here in the early days of Fluther that what I was doing is much like Cognitive Behavior Therapy. I suggest that you find a mental health professional in your area that is trained in that technique and go meet with them.

pleiades's avatar

@dxs It definitely is a hard mindset to break. I was raised being told no a ton!

I’m not sure if that affected my hermit lifestyle but I figure I like to be project based at home anyways. Still though as a child I would explore outside nature all the time, but now that it all requires money I hardly care for going out as a priority.

chewhorse's avatar

That’s terrible! Your parents were self-centered and empathetic to your psychic. This causes many phobias. I hope you have over come your belief that they were telling you a truth because they weren’t. I don’t even know you but your beautiful and your character is righteous.. Believe THAT.

Dutchess_III's avatar

^^^ I second.

Pandora's avatar

Can you forget? No.
Can you learn to let go? Yes.
It took many days to develop your current lack of self esteem. It will take many days to dig yourself out. I’ve known some people like that over the years and it isn’t enough to hear from other people that they are valuable human beings, just as they are. They have to be actually willing to listen and to do the work and take risks and pick themselves up when they fail. You are always guaranteed to fail if you never try. You have to believe you are worth the adventure of life and living it to its fullest.

Whenever I feel self doubt, I always remember what my dad told me. God doesn’t make junk. That won’t mean anything to you of course if you don’t believe in God, but whether you do or don’t I’m a firm believer that people aren’t born junk, but they certainly can make themselves into junk. What I mean is that we are all born with the potential to touch other lives and add to humanity. You don’t have to be a genius, or a millionaire or a famous person to qualify as being a worthy human being.
If you honestly wake up every morning and strive to do better every day, than you are a worthy human being. By worthy, I mean, worthy of love, worthy of respect, worthy to live in joy.
We all make mistakes. That is how we learn.

Imagine for a moment you have a child who doesn’t believe they are smart. Would you shrug and tell them they are right. Or will you tell them they won’t get any smarter by not trying and risking some failure but assuring some successes since they won’t give up? Hopefully you would tell the child the second part. Now imagine that child is you. Some people also have different ways of learning. Find out what works for you. As you learn more and push yourself, you will find confidence will slowly replace doubt. You were not born junk. We are all beautiful gems that simply need some shaping and buffing for the beauty to come out. Sounds like your family didn’t appreciate what they had. Maybe they were never fully appreciated either. That is their problem. Don’t make it yours.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

Think of the satisfaction you will feel when, one day, you have affirmation from the rest of the world. Whether it is winning a coveted prize, becoming a vital part of an organisation you’re passionate about, or turning up to the family reunion in several years time driving a Bentley, set a goal and stick to it. Use their negativity to spur you on to prove them wrong. You’ll make something of yourself, as long as you maintain the drive to do so. Hard work and a lifelong dedication to learning can bring anyone success, no matter where they start from.

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