So scared.

Discussion in 'Suicidal Thoughts and Feelings' started by Dying embers, Nov 14, 2008.

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  1. Dying embers

    Dying embers Well-Known Member

    I'm away from home at college for the first time in my life, with nowhere to hide, and I'm finding out just how sheltered I've been, and it's killing me.
    There are 3 things.

    In one half of my course, I'm in small tutorials of 5 people most of the day, which means that for every essay or review we do I have to give presentations to everybody in the room and answer their questions before I can start it, which I just can't manage at all without looking a fool. I can't think on my feet and I speak almost incoherently around these super smart, confident articulate people who look at me like "How did she get in?"

    The other half of my course requires sharing my creative writing, which is just the most painful thing in the world. The feedback I'm getting isn't all negative, but it bloody terrifies me how easily any little note of criticism can make me feel like pond scum. How much I've got invested in this when I'm just another hack. When my writing gets criticised I feel like my whole life is phoney, that I'm a ridiculous nothing with jumped up ideas. I started writing when I was happy, for fun, but somehow over the years I got all stupid and romantic about it, started using it as a crutch and stopped looking at it objectively, but now the truth of its mediocrity is out and I realise I have nothing to fall back on.

    Then there's socialising, which I'm not terrible at (though I find it hard to make deep connections), but these days I'm so insecure that every time I raise my voice or speak or do anything to call attention to myself I feel like I'm being phoney again. I know that if someone criticised me harshly enough for it that I'd reflexively deny any opinion or personality I show before I could even help it, so surely that means to be anything is to be fake cos I don't have the strength of my convictions.

    The criticisms I'm getting are killing me every day, I can't even look at people who I've made a fool of myself in front of, everytime I look at my own handwriting (even lecture notes) I get a sick flush of shame that stops me from concentrating. I used to automatically take notes in lectures and add little thoughts of my own which helped me work better later, but now I find myself having to steel myself against the mocking voice in my head if I'm even copying something down. It takes at least 60 seconds before I can write anything, and I rarely get beyond the first sentence. I feel like I'm trying to outrun the shame which can catch me midsentence and just make me tail off. Every time I get these little sharp moments of shame I usually yelp something like "no!", which probably doesn't helping my social cause any either... :laugh:

    The worst thing is that I know it's not the criticism itself I hate (because I really do want to improve), but the realisation of how fucking weak I am. I want nothing more than somebody to tell me the truth about myself, I know that I need it. But I just can't take it. I just can't, something's wrong with me. I just can't express myself at all. It's making me despise myself. I've got nothing to back myself up with.

    I've put all my life into unattainable dreams I know I'm not good enough for, and then I've done anything I can to avoid putting them to the test so I could live in illusion a bit longer. I spent all my teenage life getting lazy self-esteem from the fact I got good grades in a crappy school and that I did some half-assed angsty scribbles which my friends assured me were good. That was all I was, all I needed to justify myself, I never made the effort to extend or question myself once. I've been terrified of growing up, have drifted from my friends because I secretly resent them for growing up themselves, and I've stopped doing anything proactive with my life cos I'm terrified I'll be exposed for the sham I am. So for the last 5 years I've been nothing, and there's a big black hole where my personality development should have been. I really don't wanna kill myself, but I don't wanna kid myself anymore. It's just too late. I can't take this, and I can't live out a quiet life somewhere away from the university because this is what I want to be doing and I couldn't live with myself if I failed. I'm so weak. Suicide seems the only option. It's much better than becoming bitter and twisted, I don't wanna be hate-filled, but the more I self-loathe the more my inner mocking voice starts ripping on the outside world too. It's happening more and more. I really don't wanna die hate-filled!

    I'm only book smart, and nothing, nothing else, and it's the worst thing in the world.

    (Anyone who stuck out my navel-gazing to the end- you are a saint, even if you don't comment. Thank you. :smile:)
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2008
  2. Shadowlands

    Shadowlands Official SF Hugger Staff Alumni

    So you're just starting. It's ok. You get better at presentation and gain some confidence. Just relax.

    (Yes, I did read it to the end and thought to give you a hug. :hug:)
  3. Dying embers

    Dying embers Well-Known Member

    Thanks a million :) (And also to your avatar for reminding me to go read Calvin and Hobbes which always cheers me up.)

    But that's just it, I know I won't get better at presentations or at taking criticism. Each bad one makes me worse. Everyone thinks I'm a retard now and doesn't even listen or expect much from me, which should be a blessing, but even with the spotlight off I still feel I can't think at all straight because everything I thought I knew has been destroyed. If it was the place or the people that was messing me up then it wouldn't be so bad, but its not. All they did was fill me in on the truth I've been avoiding and no matter how away I go I'll always know it now (which I'd want to I suppose, even if it's hopeless, it's better to be honest). I mean, the whole trap is logical: I'm only here because I lied my ass off in the interview... and I can't continue being like that because I can't stand it... but if I disown it all then I don't deserve to be here and am a fraud because I have nothing but lies to offer... but this is the only place I want to what do I do? I think something's telling me that I deserve to die for the pretentious asswipe I've been in the last 5 years, because I just can't see any noble route of continuing that doesn't lead to a nervous breakdown. I know this all sounds melo-dramatic and ridiculous, and I'd love nothing more than to be able to think that in 10 years time I'll look back on it and laugh my ass off, but I just can't believe that will happen. I don't change, I don't know how to, I've been far too passive all my life.
    It's about far more than just academic stuff, its a fundamental flaw right at my centre that makes everything hopeless, and its the most pathetic type of flaw there is. At least most fuck-ups are attractive when they bare their souls, whereas I'm probably the least interesting fuck-up that there's ever been.
  4. snowraven

    snowraven Well-Known Member

    :smile:Moving up from school to college can be a scary experience. It's like you go from being a big fish in a smallpond to being a small fish in a big pond. Suddenly there are a lot of new things in your life and you move out of your comfort zone. Feelings like yours are probably experienced by the majority of students. Most are just good at hiding them. You will grow into that bigger fish.Standing in front of any group of peopleto give a presentation is also scary. That again does become easier the more you do it. As for your writing your post shows you are not a fool. It is well written, clear and coherant. One point though (which is not a critisism) is that you say you can't change and yet you say you started writing when you were happy. This itself shows you can change. It is always good to look at ourselves clearly but please don't be so hard on yourself. You obviously have talent. Best wishes.
  5. Stranger1

    Stranger1 Forum Buddy & Antiquities Friend

    Hello Dying Embers,
    Why don't you make an appointment with one of the school counselors and tell all, (except the part where you lied to get in. you need to keep that to yourself). I agree with the others that you aren't comfortable yet with the change. Try going to the student union and find a group you think would work for you and join it.
    Your thread was very well written and the emotion was there. So I know you are capable to write. You just need to get over your fear. Go hang out at the snack bar and do your homework there. Even though you aren't participating in conversation you are still being exposed to others. Who knows you might get approached by others there and make some friends..Take care and I hope things get better for you.Stay Strong!!~Joseph~
  6. Dave_N

    Dave_N Guest

    Hi Dying embers. You're in college now and you have to give it your best shot. You just have to learn how to take criticism well. Remember, they aren't criticising you, their criticising your ideas, so don't take it personally. College is all about sharing your ideas and having people listen to you. Try to hang in there. :hug:
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