No right to feel bad

I’m feeling increasingly crap these days. I’m having a much harder time eating. I don’t sleep through the nights anymore. I’m even more touchy than I usually am. I spend a large part of the day crying. Small things set me off. A constant feeling of trepidation closes in on me. It’s really unpleasant. It exhausts me. I feel bad.

And at the same time I am terribly reluctant to post about it, because I feel like I have no right to complain or even feel a little bit bad at all. I’ve been reading blogs of people who really struggle. So much they don’t want to live anymore. That’s serious. And while I have had flirts with the feeling, I’ve never been that bad. Depression isn’t so big a part of my lucky bag of mental health conditions.

I also have a mom who’s not working, but is only doing the household and helping me get better, a dad who earns enough that the family is nowhere near financial want and siblings who are quite understanding and don’t look at me funny (most of the time) when I am being difficult. I really lucked out with the life I have now. I feel awfully guilty for struggling. Guilty for not being better. Angry at myself for wanting to write that I’m not feeling good, because it’s illegitimate. Because it only shows how ungrateful I am. That I don’t deserve any of the good I have. I feel like a sham for saying I’m struggling, even when it’s true, because I’m just too thin-skinned and have no right to feel sorry for myself.

That’s how it feels. Like I ought to be ashamed of myself for even writing this post. Like I should give my life and the good things I have to someone who would use them. Not whine, or struggle or feel bad despite everything. It makes me want to hurt myself and punish myself by NOT doing it at the same time. Because not doing it is more torturous. Which I deserve.

Feeling awful and guilty about not feeling bad enough, yet considering it bad already. I kind of notice it’s a sick and twisted thought, but I can’t get rid of it.

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14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. weordmyndum
    Dec 17, 2012 @ 20:38:44

    The thing about feelings is you can’t choose them. A lot of people seem to think otherwise (the “just think positive and you’ll be fine” crowd), but I can only assume that these people have never dealt with intense emotional distress.

    I don’t believe in set concepts are right and wrong, good and bad. Their definitions vary widely between different people and situations. Accordingly, I don’t think any emotions are inherently bad or wrong, even the ones that are less socially acceptable. I can make a bad choice or take a wrong action in response to an emotion, but the feeling itself is not wrong or bad. Defining it as such just creates a redundant, nasty guilt cycle: you feel guilty for feeling crappy, which makes you feel crappier, which makes you feel guiltier…

    Basically, you have the right to feel however you feel. It took me a long time (and a lot of therapy) to believe that, and I still struggle with it sometimes–but it’s true. You are allowed to feel whatever you feel.

    • Lola
      Dec 18, 2012 @ 06:02:24

      You are very spot on about the guilt circle. I slide into it a lot, feeling guilty for feeling bad, feeling more bad because feeling guilty feels bad, and then feeling ever guiltier… I wish I had an easier time accepting that it’s okay to feel bad, even when I have good things in my life at the same time. That feeling bad despite the good things does not mean I am being ungrateful or undeserving. My mind is so quick to draw that conclusion, it’s not funny. So thank you very much for the reminder. ❤

  2. Bourbon
    Dec 18, 2012 @ 00:28:51

    The easiest but worst thing to ever do is compare yourself to others. Let yourself feel your pain, your struggles. The added guilt of “but others have it worse than me” is a killer. I fall into that trap a lot. It is the most frustrating and pointless trap ever. It doesn’t help us and it doesn’t help those who we *think* are “suffering” more than ourselves. Just let yourself feel your life and your pain xox

    • Lola
      Dec 18, 2012 @ 06:17:11

      So true that it’s the easiest and worst thing at the same time. Also true that it’s utterly pointless. I suppose half my problem is that I look outside myself for reference a lot to find out where I stand and feel lost if I don’t, but once I look, the comparing happens. But it’s a good idea to remember that it doesn’t actially help anyone, neither ourselves, nor those who we consider to be suffering more. That nobody is helped by our feeling guilty. To me it kind of feels like by feeling guilty I am at least somewhat appeasing the inevitable critique and disdain of others, but I guess that is one of those “in MY head” things, the internalized voice of my birth mother, and not something that really goes on in the heads of others. Thank you, Bourbon! ❤

  3. finallyamanda
    Dec 18, 2012 @ 13:10:51

    This is your blog to write about your feelings! And that’s what they are, YOUR feelings! Just cuz you don’t feel suicudal doesn’t mean u don’t have the right 2 have a bad day or 10 n write about them.

    • Lola
      Dec 18, 2012 @ 13:47:12

      Just like with many things, I kind of keep on forgetting that this is, indeed, MY blog to write about anything I please. My feelings easily start to think it’s other people I need to please and other people’s expectations I need to live up to, not my own, even on my own blog. So thank you for the reminder, quite needed! ❤

  4. nobodysreadingme
    Dec 18, 2012 @ 13:12:53

    Lola, I may have said this before; if so I apologise for having a brain like a sieve.
    There’s is no reason to feel guilty. If you had a broken leg, you wouldn’t feel bad about being down about it. If you had diabetes, you wouldn’t think ‘Hmm, I should be better.’
    There’s a vital difference though. With a broken leg, people want to sign the cast and commiserate. If you have diabetes, people sympathise with you for having to inject yourself and watch what you eat and drink Broken leg, broken pancreas=sympathy

    When you have a broken head, it’s different. People don’t understand in the way they understand a broken leg. But you can no more think your way out of a broken head than you can think yourself out of a broken head. They’re both broken, and take time to heal.

    I know this from bitter experience. Tomorrow id the 19th of December, and it’s always a bad day for me. I can already feel the slide coming on. I should be running round the streets whooping with delight about my blogger of the Year nomination, but I’m not. I’m sinking slowly, just as I knew I would, and just as I fervently hoped I wouldn’t. My heads broken again.

    When things are good, be grateful. When things are bad, acknowledge they are, but without guilt. Your head’s broken just as surely as any leg..

    Someone once said to me ‘Never beat yourself up. The world can do that for you.’

    Good luck

    • Lola
      Dec 18, 2012 @ 13:58:08

      Thank you,

      No need to apologize, and certainly not for having a brain like a sieve! My brain is like that, too. (And you haven’t said it before either, at least not that I recall, but hey, see the comment about my own brain. 😉 )

      You’re right, when you have something like a broken leg or pancreas, people understand it and react accordingly. Nobody would ask me to run a marathon with a broken leg, and nobody would invite me to the sweets shop if I had diabetes. But when something in your head or heart is broken, then people don’t understand as easily. That often makes me feel like I shouldn’t be struggling. But I agree, broken heads and hearts need time to heal, too.

      I’m sorry tomorrow is a bad day for you. Jan. 15 is such a day for me, so I can relate. Be good to yourself and give yourself time to hurt. Sending you lots of good thoughts for tomorrow. ❤

      • nobodysreadingme
        Dec 18, 2012 @ 14:47:02

        Thanks for the thoughts. Don’t waste too much energy on me.
        The worst thing is that tonight I should be going to my Writers’ Circle, but I know by the time the meeting ends I’ll be a mess, and I really don’t want to inflict that on people

        • Lola
          Dec 19, 2012 @ 07:16:46

          You’re welcome. I don’t think good thoughts are ever wasted. What did you end up doing about the Writers’ Circle? I hope you found a decision about going or not that you felt okay with?

          • nobodysreadingme
            Dec 19, 2012 @ 09:51:38

            I decided against it. It was to be a social rather than working event, and even with the temporary high from the Blog of the Year nomination (don’t forget to vote!) I was on a slide. didn’t seem fair to impose my crap on people who were out to have a good time, so I held back

  5. life is terminal
    Dec 18, 2012 @ 20:57:12

    One of the most painful, lingering wounds I’ve endured is the belief that I deserved what happened to me. Somehow, in spite of years of therapy and reading and reassurance that it wasn’t my fault, I still believe – deep down – that I deserved it. The really sad part is how hard it is to believe that I deserve to heal. I deserve to heal. You do too. Keep reaching out and let us remind you when you can’t trust it yourself 🙂

    • Lola
      Dec 19, 2012 @ 07:23:07

      Thank you very much. I am very familiar with the belief that I deserved what happened. Caused and invited it, even. So that now I got no right to complain or feel bad, having brought it upon myself. I know it’s what I was made to believe by my abusers and that it’s not true, and I do much better recognizing that, but yes, it makes it really hard to believe that I deserve to heal from it. Thank you for the reminder. And yes, beyond a doubt you deserve to heal too!

  6. Joyce
    Sep 17, 2013 @ 13:47:34

    Reblogged this on MAKE BPD STIGMA-FREE!.

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