All the advice, everywhere, about abusive relationships tell you to get out – to leave – to stop the monster that is hurting you. But what do you do when the person making your life unbearable, the person that is making you desperately want to die to make it stop, is you? What do you do when ‘I hate myself’ isn’t just a throw away comment, but is, instead, a pain so deep that you would do anything to make it end?
I’d Be Better Off Dead
Sometimes it feels like it is impossible for anything to get better – you’ve screwed things up so badly that there is no coming back. Nothing you do is right, nothing you do is good enough. It feels like there is no escape, because the person you need to run away from is the one person you can never leave behind. I understand that feeling well; I have been there myself, standing in the ruins of a life I have obliterated so completely that I cannot even find the pieces, let alone start to put them back together. How do you start to repair things, to build a life that feels worth living when the moment things seem to get better, the moment something good happens, you self destruct and blow it all to pieces again?
Here on SF, I see it every day. Kind, warm, caring people who give up their time and energy to reach out and help other people in pain, because they know what it feels like to hate yourself – what it feels like to loathe yourself with such venom that you want to die. The world is full of good people who hate themselves so much, feel so disgusted by their mistakes, by their own thoughts and actions, that they believe they would be better off dead. I have spoken to literally hundreds of them. If you are reading this, there is a good chance that you came here because you are one of them.
Maybe you are here because you feel like you don’t deserve forgiveness. You do. I don’t know what you have done, what choices you have made. I don’t know anything about you, but I know that if you were not a good person you would not feel so bad – you would not care so much that you want to die. If you deserved the hate you direct at yourself, you would not be able to feel it. You deserve to be forgiven. You deserve love and support and people who care about you. You deserve to be heard.
I am not trying to tell you that you are perfect just the way you are. Nobody is perfect. But imperfection is what makes us able to empathise, to love, to do the amazing things that humans do as they strive to be better. I am not telling you that you do not need to change; everyone changes, over time, and if there are things about yourself that you truly hate then you can work on changing those things. I know how easy it is to think that you need to change everything – that there is nothing good worth keeping or saving. You’re wrong. You may need help to see the good things; that happens when you have spent so long in such a dark place – it is hard to see the light. It is okay to need help. It is okay to ask for it. You may not feel you deserve it but you, like the other hundreds and hundreds of people who come to SF hating themselves, are wrong.
It’s Easier to Believe the Bad Things
Sometimes self hate doesn’t even come from things we did, or the mistakes we made. Sometimes self hate is built by other people – people who lie to us about who we are. Bullies come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes they are people who pretend to be friends, sometimes they are parents. When they are people who are supposed to love us, it is easy to believe that they are mean or violent because we deserve it.
It is hard enough when the negative words in our heads are our own. When they belong to people we love, it is that much harder to ignore them. To be told that you are not enough – not smart enough, not pretty enough, not g00d enough. If you get told often enough that you are a failure or that you are stupid or broken or ugly, especially by someone you love, it is easy for those lies to become your reality. Please, don’t let them. I know it is not easy and I know it hurts. I know that the only thing you want right now is to be someone worth loving, to be someone who deserves to live. I know you don’t believe it is possible and that is okay – let us believe it for you until you are ready to hear the truth from people who see you without the blackened tint of self loathing. Talk to us.
Depression is a Liar
Depression lies. It is a dark insidious thing that creeps into our brains and whispers to us that our more negative feelings about ourselves are true. Many people have no idea that the sucking black hole inside them that makes them feel like people would be better off without them is an illness. Depression makes people pull away from their friends because they believe they are bad for them, that they will hurt them. It tells people that ‘nobody likes you anyway’. It distorts and it warps and it leaves you believing there is nothing good left. Depression can make you believe that you are a worthless failure that will never amount to anything; it can make you believe you are too ugly to leave the house and that the world would be better off if you were dead.
If you feel any of these things, however much you believe that you feel them because they are true, you need the help of a doctor and you need the support of people who understand those feelings. I understand you do not believe you deserve that help. I understand you hate yourself because you believe you deserve that hatred. Let us show you that isn’t true. Join our community and talk to people who have beaten those feelings, people who can help you change the things you want to change and accept the things that you simple do not need to. Let us hold a candle in that darkness and show you the good things you cannot see for yourself.