One of the hardest aspects for me to deal with in my depression is the self-doubt. The feelings of self-hate and the lack of self-worth can be debilitating. I have a constant stream of thoughts as if on repeat:
You’re not good enough.
Who could ever love you?
You aren’t worthy of anything.
You don’t deserve to be happy.
It becomes so utterly overwhelming it’s impossible to ignore. After years of listening, the thoughts have become second nature. I’ve come to believe that the self-doubt is a part of who I am, a part of my personality, and a part of how I define myself.
The Whispers in Your Ear
Imagine someone sitting on your shoulder. Imagine hearing a whisper behind you.
“You’ll never amount to anything”
Can you hear the cruelty in her voice?
“You’ll never be good enough”
Now imagine hearing that voice, constantly, whispering that kind of negativity in your ear.
She’s there when your alarm goes off in the morning and you contemplate the point of getting out of bed.
She’s trained you to avoid mirrors because when you do see yourself, she’s there to remind you of how ugly and unlovable you are.
She’s there when you see a friend to tell you that they’re talking to you solely out of pity and really don’t want to be there.
She leaves you desperate for others’ approval and taunts you by nearly phishing for compliments, only to immediately convince you of their deceit. “Remember, you aren’t worthy”.
Because of the Whispers
And because of her, you end up questioning all of your decisions, sometimes unable to trust your own judgment.
You refrain from speaking in groups out of fear of sounding stupid or having to explain yourself.
You find yourself constantly asking questions you already know the answers to.
She makes you question all of your accomplishments, giving caveats and excuses – “you only got an A on the test because it was easy; everyone got an A”.
You find yourself apologizing. A lot. Even when you’ve done nothing wrong or don’t know what you’re apologizing for. She’s made you believe you’ve done something to upset someone and you need to fix it. Having someone angry or upset with you only confirms your fears of being unlikable and unwanted, making her whispers louder.
Worst of All
And worst of all are the days when she tells you that your life isn’t worth living. She assures you that nothing will ever get better and the defeat you feel is there to stay.
But on those days, somewhere deep down, there’s another voice that convinces you to keep fighting, move forward, have hope that it will get better.
I wish I could keep that voice around. I wish it didn’t take falling into such a dark hole or reaching such a low point to hear that quiet voice.
When I look in the mirror and the self-deprecating thoughts begin to focus on my flaws, I wish I could hear that voice say, “I accept you, just the way you are”.
I wish I could have a conversation and not analyze whether or not the person actually wants to be there.
I wish I didn’t interpret every situation or tone of voice to mean that I did something wrong.
I wish the voices in my head of self-doubt and hate could instead be voices of reason and hope.
I hate you.
I am good enough.
I am loved.
I am worthy.
I deserve happiness.