Why saying ‘You’re not bad really’ doesn’t work (and what to do instead)

Why saying ‘You’re not bad really’ doesn’t work (and what to do instead)

I used to think that one day, maybe one day (a long time in the future), I’d be ‘normal’ and then I wouldn’t have these thoughts any more. You know the ones I mean: ‘You’re stupid’, ‘No one likes you’, ‘You mess everything up’, ‘You’re such a waste of space’, ‘Things won’t ever get better’, ‘I feel so ashamed’, ‘I hate myself’, ‘I wish I could die’.
There’s a tonne more. They blare out in my head like the world’s worst playlist, always nagging away at me, undermining me, picking me apart.

How shame saved my life

How shame saved my life

I couldn’t understand how other people could live without shame. I couldn’t understand why they didn’t cringe at the sound of their own voice, or gag at the sight of their own reflection. I couldn’t understand why some were happy to be the centre of attention – even quietly at the centre, not in a raucous, narcissistic way. They didn’t mind people talking to them. They didn’t mind people noticing them. I couldn’t think of anything worse.

Anger says no

Anger says no

For a very long time, I didn’t ‘do’ anger.

In the family I grew up in, the adults were allowed to be angry, and even my sister was, but for some reason I wasn’t.

When there’s no hope

When there’s no hope

Real hope isn’t cheap. Real hope is born out of a bloody struggle. Hope has guts. Hope is what you’re left with when you’ve stared down the despair. So how did I get from hopelessness to hope?

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