On this rather cold, damp Saturday I have stumbled upon a blog meme hosted by Sam Winters and decided I should participate. Partly because I love memes as they get me writing when I’m too clogged to think of anything to write and partly because this week it’s about self-esteem. It’s something I used to have but now – courtesy of abuse, mental health and homelessness – do not, but I’m working on it.
So, for the first time, enjoy:
1. How was your self esteem growing up?
When I was a young thing I remember my self-esteem being relativly ‘normal’. Perhaps I’m looking back with rose tinted glasses but I was a fairly well adjusted child until the bullying set in, after this, it was all downhill.
My self-esteem collapsed during my late childhood and early teens to the point I couldn’t communicate with others, period. My impersonation of a turtle would have easily seen me triumph a series of Australia’s Got Talent as I skulked through my formative years a frustrating mix of fear, anxiety, stress, self-harm and depression.
I wonder how different my life would be if the bullying had never happened, as I’ve often placed blame for who I became on this period.
2. Do you ever have a hard time with morals?
No. Perhaps because of my low to non-existent self-esteem, perhaps because of my heightened sensitivity, I have always been a sickenly moral human being.
It annoys me no end how ethical I have been in my life, especially when I see others with questionable morals, abusing, attacking, lying and cheating their way toward their goals.
From where I stand I would rather not achieve those goals than achieve them by destroying others lives and self-belief along the way.
3. Do you eat in bed? If yes, what?
I do. I tend to comfort eat during a particularly bad day. There’s nothing more I like doing when my self-esteem is low and anxiety high than cranking open a tub of mint choc-chip ice-cream or bag of lime and black pepper chips whilst watching a marathon of my favourite TV show du jour.
4. What was the last movie you hated and why?
Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows as it was absolutely atrocious. The first was an entertaining contemporary take Holmes, this sequel was over-stylised wank. As for that ending, fortheloveofeverythingholy give me Moffat and Gatiss’ take anyday.
5. Have you ever felt that you lost it all? If yes, explain.
I haven’t felt that I lost it all I have lost it all.
In 2007, whilst suffering from glandular fever I was, in chronological order: diagnosed with another serious illness, dumped by text message, lost my college course as a result of this, suffered a mental breakdown and subsequently, over the following three months, lost all income, money, savings, possessions, social networks, support and hope. As this was happening my ex was systematically abusing me psychologically and emotionally until I attempted suicide and, after this failed, forced out of my home (and city) in order to escape her continuing abuse.
I have never been the same since nor have I really had anything in my life.
6. Have you ever been stalked?
There were times during the abuse where I felt like I was being stalked. My ex would ambush me at my bedroom doorstep, turn up in my room unannounced, text, email and phone me continuously and generally harass me to the point I was too scared to leave my room. But I put this down to the abuse rather than actual stalking so I’m not sure if I would go so far as to commit to that term.
7. Do you believe in ‘self help’ for problems, or do you prefer therapy?
I believe self-help can be effective as long as it is combined with therapy and professional counselling. Over the years I have read numerous self-help books, and although I believe they can assist for relativelty simple issues (such as a breakup or short-term stress) for more complicated problems such as anxiety, depression, trauma etc. therapy is, for me, a prerequisite.
For the record, I’m really not a fan of the ‘self-help’ book movement. Whenever I think of it, I think of a satire called Happiness by Will Ferguson, which is a far more entertaining and useful read than any self-help book I’ve come across.
8. What celebrity do you think should make a run for office?
Shaun Micallef, if only to add some much needed intelligence to the Australian political system.
9. Do you believe in happy endings? (We do. That why this is the last question!)
For many years I believed there were. But after everything I’ve been through, everything I’ve seen, all the pain I’ve had to deal with and all the agony I’ve witnessed others go through, I do not.
I’d like to, but nowadays I just can’t.
Should you have any questions, queries or comments feel free to have your say below.
- Creating healthy Self Esteem. (spiritual-philosophy.com)
- Low Self-Esteem and Bullying: How are they related? (education.com)
- Climbing the Ladder of Self-Esteem (psychcentral.com)
- Self Esteem (alternativo21.wordpress.com)
- Cyber Stalking as Domestic Violence (temenos2.wordpress.com)