other people.

I know people in general seem to really like being hot and in the sun. I am not one of them though. This heat is awful. I could not sleep for being too hot. There are only so many clothes you can take off. I perpetually look like trash, but how else can you even dress when it’s this hot? Now the long count down till autumn begins. It really is a long count down too. So many months. Still, I do get to study in the garden and I guess that’s a little bit nice. Work on my tan lolz (for those of you that don’t know me, I’m dedicated to the paley cause. Factor 50 sunscreen? Yes please). I’m not destined for hot weather. Give me autumnal layering any day.

I went out last night and got hideously drunk.  So drunk in fact, I’m not sure I had that much fun. I don’t think I didn’t have fun. I defos had a bit of fun, but I don’t think it was constant. I duno. I was an idiot though because I was drunk and now it’s all I can think about. I think about things I said or did and I get so angry at myself and just want to cry. I hate it as well because at one point in the night, I suddenly realised that I was rubbish and no one liked me and then got really sad and self-conscious in a drunk way, but couldn’t go home because it was dark and I had to wait for someone to walk me. I honestly wish I hadn’t gone, which is sad really because I like my friends and enjoy seeing them. It gets really difficult to see other people because I always fail to behave the right way and I fuck everything up. It’s ok to do that when no one else sees, but the things people must think of me… It all makes me feel ill. Really really ill. And I just hate myself for it. Sometimes I think I shouldn’t drink because I always get really drunk, but it makes me more able to have a conversation with anyone and if I don’t talk enough, I’d still be getting everything wrong. Plus I get all of this when I stay sober too and I know that.

There seems to be a pattern in all of this. What happens is I see people. Generally I get way too trashed, which is great at the time, but I always regret. I end up doing or saying things wrong and being a massive idiot. After the event, I think back to it and realise I had no control over what I was doing and wasn’t really me and wasn’t really present. I then feel like everyone must think I’m a joke and a bad person and stupid and they’ll laugh and never want to see me again. I get so upset and angry with myself that I feel sick. I then resolve to never talk to anyone again because feeling like this is way worse than being isolated. It lasts for days, sometimes weeks. It’s not like, a little bit sad, but more like everything gets fast and I can’t make sense of anything or do anything other than hurt and feel overwhelming shame. I start to think that being social just isn’t worth the fall out. I’ll maybe send a group text to everyone, apologising for being awful, then I’ll start isolating myself. This isolation can last anything up to a month, though I will make a few dramatic attempts to make sure people haven’t gone in that time because I get scared they’ll leave forever. Then I get lonely. I start to think that maybe this time I’ll be difference and I can make it ok. That maybe people won’t just think I’m a dick. So I start making tentative steps, replying to texts, calling people etc. That builds until I see people, then it’s back to square one.

Does everyone feel like this? Are most people ashamed when they talk to people? Do most people spend so much time hurting because they believe everyone thinks they’re boring/an idiot/ugly/stupid/inappropriate etc.? Do most people believe that their only spoken to or included out of pity?

I really don’t know what to do about this. It actually hurts me to have friends. I get like it with my family too. The worst is when I’m halfway through a sentence then realise I’m talking and have to just stop and leave. It’s not very nice and I don’t know how to make it better. In general, the fall out is getting worse each time. I don’t know if that’s causing me to feel worse in general, or because I feel worse in general, but it’s getting harder to pick myself back up again. I feel like there is no right action. I try really hard to make myself into something good. I’m a conscious effort. Yet it never ever works and I just end up devastated because whatever I change and attempt to fix isn’t enough. It’s just all for nothing. I do work really hard though. I just can’t seem to hide all the stuff that makes me awful. It’s like trying really hard to look nice with clothes and hair and make up and cosmetics – you’ll still look bad if you have an ugly face and there’ s shit all you can do about it. Except that applies equally to the inside stuff as well as the outside stuff. You can only work with what you have, and if all you have is awful, no amount of dressing it up can take that away.

I don’t just do this with people I care about either. I also do it about my university lecturers. My GP. My treatment team. Shop assistants. Basically anyone who sees me or hears me speak. It just hurts more the more I value the opinion of those involved.

All of this is accentuated by the fact I’m completely unsure of myself. I have no belief in myself so struggle having any facts. And I don’t mean “self-belief”, I mean just knowing anything about myself. I don’t really know what I like, what I look like, what I think, what I feel. Everything about me feels like a performance of a person, but none of it is actually true. I can honestly sit there and worry if I’m actually having a thought or whether I’m just trying to convince myself that I had that thought to trick myself into being a more convincing lie of what I want to be. This is particularly horrible when it happens about negative things because I start to freak out about why I could possibly want to believe negative things about myself and my life if they’re not true. I think I have “identity issues”. Basically, I’m convinced everything from my nail varnish to my mood isn’t actually me, but rather something I’m pretending to be because in reality, I don’t have a person. This means that every time I get it wrong, I’m being judged as awful not for something I am, but for getting the concept of personhood I’m trying to achieve. I’ve fucked up the fake reality I created in order to be a person. I can’t even get the things I create right, let alone whatever the fuck I am.

I know you’re supposed to try to challenge these sorts of beliefs. I know you’re supposed to learn to accept, and maybe even like, yourself enough to not constantly think your way into hurting. However, I get really reluctant about challenging any of this. To me, if I was to start to believe that maybe the way I am is ok and that maybe no one thinks all that much of it, I’d look like more of an idiot and be being so stupid that people would judge me more. In my mind, believing and acting like you are better than you are not only makes you a dick, but it also turns you into more of a joke than you already are. So because I’m convinced the beliefs I have now are true fact, I don’t want to change them because then I’d only be worse and people would only laugh about me more and I’d only be more of an idiot. Which doesn’t solve anything and I’d still be the boring/an idiot/ugly/stupid/inappropriate etc. one no one really likes that much. Except I’d be a fool for tricking myself. This thought process is part of the motivation behind this post – alerting people to the fact that I am aware that I was a complete waste of space yesterday, so they don’t think that I think that I’m fine. Heaven forbid.

So then the only options become to try harder because I’m obviously not trying hard enough if I don’t get it right, or give up entirely. I oscillate between the two. Perfectionism? Black and white thinking? I think it might be.

And the thing that’s really annoying about it is that chances are, no one even considers me. I literally never think “oh gosh. Such and such was a complete wasteman yesterday. I don’t think they’re worth much” so I doubt many people actually spend that long thinking like that about anyone. Everyone is was too absorbed with their own lives anyway to spend too long considering other people. Sure, you do think it in passing, but no one analyses all my actions like I do because really, I’m not that interesting to them. So anything I do is all just a bit of a waste of time. I’m probably forgotten anyway.

Also, the fact that I’m so concerned probably makes my actions and words even worse because I just can’t be relaxed.

So if seeing people makes you so angry at yourself you can’t think anymore, isolation makes you lonely, trying to be better always fails, changing beliefs can only make things worse, and all of it is entirely pointless, what are you supposed to do? I obsess over how others perceive me so much that it hurts me and there doesn’t seem to be a way out of it all. It’s purely lots of pointless thought cycles. It’s not at all about what other people do or say, it’s only my thoughts that are the issue. And I let it get to me so much that it really impacts my day-to-day functioning.

And see right now, all I’m thinking is “Well if you try hard enough, maybe you’ll eventually succeed at being better. Then you can believe you’re better because you will be. Then this will all be fixed. Stop fucking up for a second and maybe you can earn it.” It’s exhausting.

Not that I’d actually consider it, but it all makes me kinda miss restricting. Restriction is rubbish, but it’s really simple. You have a right thing and a wrong thing to do. There are clear outcomes. It’s predictable. And you don’t give a fuck about anything else so nothing else bothers you. Actually having enough cognitive ability to think about more than food  and weight changes everything. Suddenly, your whole world goes from simple to complicated and hard. I miss the simple. I don’t think the pay off is worth it though.

But there are positive things about yesterday.

1) I got a hair cut. It’s short and choppy and nice. I like it more because I have limp and lifeless hair, so long hair tend to look a bit lank on me. Plus I think short hair looks better on me. Statistics show that men think longer hair is more attractive in women, which scares me as I’ve probably made myself way more butterz to the entire male half of the population. I hope not though. I’m trying to ignore the fact that research would suggest my hair would now be considered uglier because I like my hair short. I used to have it really even shorter than this for lots of years and I thought it was good then. It makes me happy because I think short hair looks more like me. Then I dyed it brown. For the first time in over a year it does not look red. Yuss! Having the same hair for too long makes me antsy.

2) I got to dress up as trailer trash because it was so hot. I was really, really self-conscious. Especially when I actually saw people I know. But it is really fun to strut about in ripped fishnets, tiny denim shorts and cropped tops with your headphones blasting summery tracks and dancing down the road. I put on a personality and I enjoyed it for a little while.

3) I had the foresight to marinate some chicken so my dinner today was properly good. Jerk chicken and coconut rice. Om nom.

See! I’m not all dark and stormy nights. Just mostly.

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10 Comments

Filed under life, recovery

10 responses to “other people.

  1. It’s like reading about my “personality” or lack thereof. I spent so long projecting an image of a person I thought other people wanted, that almost I had different “characters” of myself for different people.
    I spent all my time with friends, trying to explain to them “I’m not stupid, or boring or an idiot, would a boring person do this? *dances on bar*” seriously. I found alcohol did make it worse, but then people would say, “You are more fun when you drink” then I thought, well they must need me to drink to deal with me. Etc.
    I do it with my treatment team too, and I struggle afterwards with going over everything-i-have-said-and-how-they-might-have-taken-it, over and over in my head, then next time I see them, I feel I have to explain myself. It sucks when I have to go back, and I dread appointments sometimes, because I wonder if what I said could have possibly been taken the wrong way/deemed inappropriate/just a stupid girl with an ED.
    I don’t know who, exactly, I am.

    I guess, one has to learn who they are first before anything else? Theres a big difference between arrogance and acceptance. I struggle with accepting myself, but then think, HOW can you accept yourself if you don’t know who you are?
    That’s like saying, “you have to like this person, who you’ve never ever met and don’t even know, just because I told you, you had to like this person”. You can’t. I don’t think.
    I don’t know about you, but I try so hard to fit in, I almost screw it up anyway.

    I’m glad you had your hair all done nice. And grats on the trailor trash outfit, although I’m sure it wasn’t that bad.
    coconut rice is the business, don’t know how I lived without it. Jerk chicken rules. Kudos on the eats!
    And I’m totally with you on the heat. It sucks. I ALWAYS wear factor 50. My skin is transparent.

    • How do you learn who you are though? I was like this pre-ED and I had no idea what I was then either. It’s really difficult. If you can’t even work out whether the thoughts you have are your actual thoughts, where do you even start.
      It sucks. So much. Constantly trying to be the right thing in all the different scenarios. Because you can never get it right.
      I wana accept myself though. But if you’re unacceptable, even just acceptance would make you look stupid. I duno.

      I am so hot all the time I hate it. I have managed fishnet sunburn though which is kinda cool in a werid way. I look scaley which, seeing as it’s temporary is actually fun. Being a paley has some advantages.

      And trust, it was really that bad on the trashy front.

      x.

  2. Jerk chicken and ripped fishnets….?
    i think summer is here!!!
    x

  3. I just want to give you a hug xo

  4. BAH. Sorry you’re so down in the dumps chick, I am definitely not the best person to give advice about social situations though I’m afraid. All I can say is, if you feel you can allow yourself to go out with your friends you should definitely do so, regardless of how you perceive yourself. I’ve said it before, your friends wouldn’t invite you places or reply to your texts if they thought what you do about yourself. (That sentence doesn’t sound right, but I know what I mean!)

    I love the sound of your Saturday, denim shorts in the sunshine and jerk chicken sounds ace.

    Chin up chuck, wish I could do more xx

    • Hopefully I’ll work out how to navigate the social thing at some point, but right now it’s genuinely so hard I just can’t. It’s horrible and confusing and I end up hurting. I hate it. It’s all well and good saying you should go out anyway, but if you then end up really devastated because of it for days, is it worth it? I haven’t worked that out uet either.

      Pity. Pity is why people invite me places. Because they are nice and don’t want me to be lonely

      Gosh I’m a bit of a pessimist sometimes. This is probably a bad time to reply.

      Love x.

  5. I wrote a post a while ago about why I travel, and this ‘lack of identity’ thing has a lot to do with it. I realize this more and more and more now. I have no idea who I am either, none. I copy others easily, ‘fit in’, and then turn 180degrees when Im in different company. Completely confusing, not just to others but mostly to me. Also, I’m a dreamer. I can live inside my own head. My dreamworld. When I’m aloneI over analyze situations (happened or potential) and then I’m what I wanted to be, you kno? I say the right things, make the right jokes, act nonchalant and caring etc. But the ‘daily Sooz’ can never live up to that. And thn still, I am unsure which one is ‘me’.

    When I travel this is less of an issue. I get to try to be different ‘me’s’ and see which one I like best. People don’t already have preconceptions and earlier stuff to built upon when it comes to ‘thinking to know who I am’. I get to play around and ease into a ‘me’ I think suits me best. Still, I am unsure whether its the real me or just one I like. So still, it’s hella confusing.

    And I do it too with dressing up btw. I don’t know why you picked an outfit you describe as trailer trash. You like the association of the rebelness? Or you think its you? Or you like to make others think you’re the rebel? I feel it helps me when I dress a certain way, I act a certain way. When I dress like trailertrash, I’ll act more rebellious/nonchalant, when I dress hippy, I act more freeish, when I dress as the perfect daughter in law, I act more politically correct etc. I guess this is part of the confused identity too. With this, too, there are things I prefer because I like how it makes me feel more, but again I am unsure if this is thus who I am or if it’s just an image I’d like (hippy, fo sho).

    have no idea where I’m going with this comment because this is not at all answering any of your questions or problems. I guess all I’m saying is I’m with you on the confused identity front.

    Hugsxx

    • You got me thinking Ellie. When I started recovery, I made an alphabetical list (OCD? Nahh!!) that I filled in gradually throughout the weeks/months with words/things/stuffs (<its a word) that described/fit 'me', or I liked, etc. Not "tall blond skinny chick", but stuffs beyond that. I made two, actually. One for me to fill in and one for my mom to fill in about me. I still have em, never continued to work on em. But I found them helpful. They made me think about things. Silly things (fav colour? Silly habbits?) but also deeper things (personality traits? And do I want to keep them, evolve them or change them?) etc. Maybe you could do a version of it? Either it be a list, an alphabet, a collage (digital or on paper) etc with things that 'suit you'. That are Ellie. Whether current, past or future. Just stuffs you (like to) associate with you. And see where it will lead to? Try and work from there (maybe with your therapist?)

      • Lolz at alphabetical you know. That’s exactly the kinda cracked out idea I’d have to make it look nicer and more organised.

        The thing is, this sounds so hard. There are lots of things about me I think might be me. I know I’m not the same as anyone else (not extra specially, but just normally) and I have a lot of traits, but some of them are harder to oin point. Especally because I spend a lot of time freaking out that my thoughts aren’t even true. Like a lot. I will try though. I do think I’m stubborn. I do think that I’m arguementative. I do think I get bored easily. Those things are defos traits. I could try and get something down. That sounds like a good idea. I might do it right now. :) x.

    • This is a really interesting comment actually. And one I should contemplate more.

      I’m actually the same with the analysing. My brain is constantly having conversations and playing out situtations. It’s terrible when it starts happening when you’re in company or you’re in company and you start to feel like you’re in a head conversation. Then you just stop knowing what’s going on.

      I’m also kinda desperate to get away from all the people I know. I don’t want to be near them sometimes because then I can’t erase my past and their preconceptions. I don’t travel really, but I do get those same urges for new people and situations.

      I don’t think I associate with rebelness. Or that it’s me. Or that I want others to think I’m a rebel. I think it looked so trashy because it was hot tbh. But the particular take on clothes for hot weather has changed a lot. Pre-ED, I was a little more tomboyish, though not at all a tomboy and dressed pretty provocatively to feel better about myself. With ED and the Boy, I started to want to look like a good girlfriend so it was all pretty dresses and skirts and vintage clothes and all that jazz. But I’d still dress provocatively for nights out and things. To feel better about myself. Now though, with recovery and no boy, looking this way makes me on some level believe I’m able to hide the way I feel. Know one will know I think I’m an awful, ugly, scared and really upset person if I look kinda tougher. I probably don’t look tough, but I try to. It’s a bit like pre-ED clothes, but only more defined if that makes sense. I just like to look like I don’t give a fuck about the world and what people think of me because really, I care so much it makes my insides hurt. Dressing up is like protective armour. I’m a big fan of hiding in plain sight and I dress like a weirdo in order to do so I think.

      I like this comment and I shall think about it more I think x.

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