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Maximus0988

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I wear a mask with literally every person I interact with IRL. It slips on automatically. I don't know how to stop it. This started sometime in my early twenties, after the worst of the traumas. I don't know how to take it off and show the real me. My fear won't let me.

 

Even before, my childhood was hell, and I'd learned to hide a lot of the real me. I'm really sensitive, expressive, and emotional, but most people at school (both adults and kids) thought I was like a robot. It only came out in the stories I spun out in my head, and later learned to write down.

 

But I still don't think I even let myself write to express myself fully. I think that's why I have such trouble finishing things: I stop before I get to the parts that are really revealing/emotional.

 

It's like I'm waiting for permission, validation, and safety to be that way. I don't know how I'll ever get it.

 

I'm praying to God that things change once I get to grad school...and that I get in some place nice in the first place...far away.

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Frozen...I'm exactly the same way. Always hiding my sadness, pain, anger, anxiety etc. I was taught to do this at a very early age...that no one cares what I'm thinking or feeling. I don't matter. My dad and mom were so like this as well, the only difference is they chose to be this way. I can remember my mom putting on a fake smile for company when she was actually very upset. Over and over I saw my mom and dad do this and I was forced to. I've been working with a therapist to unlearn these habits and thoughts but it's not going too well.

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Thanks, Bella. That made me feel less alone. It's hard unlearning these things, for sure. Peeling off a mask that's welded into place by intense fear and trauma...I think I've managed layers here and there with safer people, but never the whole thing.

 

Part of why I like DF is that seems to allow a way to bypass that superficial barrier altogether. Though even here, it's hard to actually expose what's under it. There's another kind of mask that comes with selection, just choosing what to say or not say. For me, it's such a tricky thing: revealing too little, revealing too much, or just revealing the irrelevant and keeping hidden the raw, electrified stuff that's actually got me in a fix.

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They say I should just please myself and not care what other people feel about me, as long as I'm happy with myself.

 

But the problem is that pleasing myself is the easy part. I can't find anyone worth my time, once I do please myself. I tried, but I believe I have legitimate reasons that prove these relationships are a waste of time. I have no hope in ever finding better relationships, no matter how good of an attitude I put on.

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I wear a mask with literally every person I interact with IRL. It slips on automatically. I don't know how to stop it. This started sometime in my early twenties, after the worst of the traumas. I don't know how to take it off and show the real me. My fear won't let me.

 

Even before, my childhood was hell, and I'd learned to hide a lot of the real me. I'm really sensitive, expressive, and emotional, but most people at school (both adults and kids) thought I was like a robot. It only came out in the stories I spun out in my head, and later learned to write down.

 

But I still don't think I even let myself write to express myself fully. I think that's why I have such trouble finishing things: I stop before I get to the parts that are really revealing/emotional.

 

It's like I'm waiting for permission, validation, and safety to be that way. I don't know how I'll ever get it.

 

I'm praying to God that things change once I get to grad school...and that I get in some place nice in the first place...far away.

 

Frozen: You and I share the fact that we hide behind a mask, hiding our real selves.  I too am very sensitive, expressive, emotional like you, perhaps too much so.  I am always looking for validation of my feelings.  But for me, that can only be achieved with my doctor and therapist.  I am afraid of even talking about it with friends because I feel I they will run for the hills.  

 

You say you are going to grad school.  That is so huge, and a new beginning for you, a new wonderful world to explore.

 

My gut feeling is things will be alright for you.  You deserve that!

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Thank you! That means a lot. I think deep down I believe that, too, that things will get better. It really helps to hear it from someone else, though.

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Sad not to be spending Christmas with my dad.  He was my best friend, the only person I trusted and really truly loved.  My mom passed in 1999.  She was amazing and I miss her so very much.  I'm left with an older sister who is very mean and toxic.  We have not communicated for six or more years, and even though she has reached out a couple of times, I have responded that i would be open to e-mailing, but the hurt she has caused me really throughout my whole life supersedes my having any allegiance to her.  

 

I wish things were different, but I know, if i spent Christmas with her family i would be ignored and torn apart.  Just like what she did to my father and I when we flew to Montana for a Christmas.  I could put up with her put downs of me, but not our father.  She is very very damaged according to my therapist surrounded by her husband and children all enablers.  

 

I just miss my dad and mom and the Christmas's we had.

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I wear a mask with literally every person I interact with IRL. It slips on automatically. I don't know how to stop it. This started sometime in my early twenties, after the worst of the traumas. I don't know how to take it off and show the real me. My fear won't let me.

 

Even before, my childhood was hell, and I'd learned to hide a lot of the real me. I'm really sensitive, expressive, and emotional, but most people at school (both adults and kids) thought I was like a robot. It only came out in the stories I spun out in my head, and later learned to write down.

 

But I still don't think I even let myself write to express myself fully. I think that's why I have such trouble finishing things: I stop before I get to the parts that are really revealing/emotional.

 

It's like I'm waiting for permission, validation, and safety to be that way. I don't know how I'll ever get it.

 

I'm praying to God that things change once I get to grad school...and that I get in some place nice in the first place...far away.

Hey frozen, I would say this is both a pretty normal reaction to childhood trauma, as well as a normal defense mechanism for personal safety that most people implement. Most people wear a mask in real life, and hide their emotions and deepest pain from others. Most people are afraid to reveal their true selves in fear of being rejected or subjected to more pain. This is just a normal part of everyday life within our culture and society. Most people put on a "brave face" or a "tough facade" yet may feel really differently inside. And then those with trauma understandably have this defense mechanism to avoid additional pain. There's nothing wrong with protecting yourself from getting hurt. We all have facades...

 

And yes, even here, we pick and choose what we want to talk about perhaps also out of protection since you're revealing your wounds to people you've never met IRL... on the one hand, that can be liberating because it's also very accepted here to be vulnerable and exposed, but in doing so, you also expose yourself to your own vulnerabilities and old wounds, which I think we all try to protect to a certain extent. Or I know I do.. even on here I don't reveal everything that's happened to me because I don't want to open old wounds and pain. I think this is all just a very natural defense mechanism in both regards. We also have to continue functioning in our lives, so letting down your guard at all times can make one feel more "open" and raw. Not sure if this makes any sense!

 

(((Hugs)))

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I wear a mask with literally every person I interact with IRL. It slips on automatically. I don't know how to stop it. This started sometime in my early twenties, after the worst of the traumas. I don't know how to take it off and show the real me. My fear won't let me.

 

Even before, my childhood was hell, and I'd learned to hide a lot of the real me. I'm really sensitive, expressive, and emotional, but most people at school (both adults and kids) thought I was like a robot. It only came out in the stories I spun out in my head, and later learned to write down.

 

But I still don't think I even let myself write to express myself fully. I think that's why I have such trouble finishing things: I stop before I get to the parts that are really revealing/emotional.

 

It's like I'm waiting for permission, validation, and safety to be that way. I don't know how I'll ever get it.

 

I'm praying to God that things change once I get to grad school...and that I get in some place nice in the first place...far away.

Hey frozen, I would say this is both a pretty normal reaction to childhood trauma, as well as a normal defense mechanism for personal safety that most people implement. Most people wear a mask in real life, and hide their emotions and deepest pain from others. Most people are afraid to reveal their true selves in fear of being rejected or subjected to more pain. This is just a normal part of everyday life within our culture and society. Most people put on a "brave face" or a "tough facade" yet may feel really differently inside. And then those with trauma understandably have this defense mechanism to avoid additional pain. There's nothing wrong with protecting yourself from getting hurt. We all have facades...

 

And yes, even here, we pick and choose what we want to talk about perhaps also out of protection since you're revealing your wounds to people you've never met IRL... on the one hand, that can be liberating because it's also very accepted here to be vulnerable and exposed, but in doing so, you also expose yourself to your own vulnerabilities and old wounds, which I think we all try to protect to a certain extent. Or I know I do.. even on here I don't reveal everything that's happened to me because I don't want to open old wounds and pain. I think this is all just a very natural defense mechanism in both regards. We also have to continue functioning in our lives, so letting down your guard at all times can make one feel more "open" and raw. Not sure if this makes any sense!

 

(((Hugs)))

 

Thanks, Hope. You're dead on about the second part; I do try to avoid reopening wounds. That can be a problem when someone thinks I won't let them close - I don't want to talk about these things and open a can of worms that will not only disturb my equilibrium but possibly poison the air between us, at least in terms of unbalancing us both and losing any possibility of connection (which is exceedingly rare for me, anyway).

 

However, that's not really what I want to reveal. I usually don't want to talk about that, anyway, or at least, I don't want to be known by that. If that makes sense.

 

What I hate is that I can't be myself. Putting on a brave face, with most people, usually doesn't result in acting like a robot. With me, I'm so emotionally locked up that I can't be emotional, expressive, show my sensitivity, in public. I know this isn't how it is for most people because most people don't act anything like I do in public. They're affective, and express affection easily (even if it's insincere, the point is they don't feel completely awkward and unworthy, anticipating being laughingly repulsed by the person they're comforting or reaching out to). With me, I'm extremely...mechanical. Like a computer. My presentation has been called clinical, even with subjects I'm really passionate about (even when I thought I was showing some passion!).

 

I'm probably the most sensitive person I've known, but I act barely human in public, and can't even bring myself to show real emotion, except maybe anger/irritation. Not anything vulnerable, even happiness (anything that made me happy was taken away when I was a little girl). I just want to be able to express myself in the way that I see most people can. To have my exterior match my interior instead of being a blank steel wall, though of course I would want to be able to moderate it reasonably like anyone. I don't expect to be transparent. But at least opaque. :) And I'd like to be able to control that degree of opaqueness to some extent, so that I could at least let a few "safe" people see through it. Being so sensitive and emotional and so unable to show it is agonizing; I've always been dying for some kind of connection, and that's what my stories always revolve around. I can't imagine being happy without ever letting someone "in" who's capable of returning it (and being worth it, of course).

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I feel like I was never allowed to be a girl. Anything girlish was laughed at, scorned, taken away, repulsed, or trampled on. I grew to fear such things. Being a girl...that was the worst.

 

Of course, it was real humanity that was scorned as much as femininity, in its way. They had no more clue as to what it meant to be truly human than truly feminine. (Or masculine, for that matter.)

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People who feel the need to self-medicate sometimes do it because they want to be in control of their life. When negative feelings or environments take control, they want the control back. It's still unhealthy. But it's something I noticed.

Edited by The_Unwanted

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Feeling discouraged. I don't feel valued at work. I am underappreciated, my points and suggestions go unheeded, yet they still expect me to perform miracles beyond my control when they don't listen to my guidance for improvements needed to succeed. How can I succeed when they don't follow my guidance or listen to my expertise? Very frustrated. :(

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People who feel the need to self-medicate sometimes do it because they want to be in control of their life. When negative feelings or environments take control, they want the control back. It's still unhealthy. But it's something I noticed.

 

Thanks for this. It's something I've been doing lately (I made a post in MNES) and I feel guilty about it. I know it's wrong and harmful but your post at least made me feel a bit less guilty.

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Do you ever wish you cared less (about anything) so you could get along better in the world? Not so much with other people, even, just in life. It would be easier to advance, succeed, stick with things.

 

I'm taking a class where I have to read really objectionable content. I'm getting a head start on the books to keep up, but it's hard pushing through even though I promised myself I wouldn't drop any more class. I have a hard time just keeping my head down and pushing through things like this. It's not religious or political qualms I have, either (think: hideous crimes against children not being acknowledged as such in some evil attempt at being "avant-garde" or some such BS). I've looked, but my other options for classes are not great, e.g., time conflicts, etc. Plus, I need certain credits.

 

I've just often wished I could be less intense. Not that I want to lose my intensity and how much I do care, because I don't; I just wish there were a way to control it, to turn it on and off. I find myself writing about people who can and it seems on par with a superpower to me. lol. It's a gift that makes life richer, and I've been told it'll make eternity brighter, but it sure makes it hard to get along in this world.

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Budfox...yes! Wind chimes are so horrible. I emphasize with you completely.

 

Ha ha, thanks so much. What really gets me is people thinking they should be able to inflict their tastes on others. It's like, ok I get it, you like windchimes but don't assume that all your neighbours do! I don't want to be forced to listen to somebody's windchimes, lol.

 

Another thing I wanted to post is just utter frustration and anger at the selfishness of people. My future sister in law moved into a nice little flat which cost her all her money. It was next to a lovely old cinema which never caused any problems. Recently the cinema was converted into a nightclub and she has to listen to music making her walls vibrate until 2am most nights. And drunken people coming to smoke outside, shouting after midnight. People just don't seem to give a damn about others as long as they're having a good time.

 

And yes, I know the authorities should do something about it but they are absolutely useless. She is starting to lose her sanity because of this (also had to start taking sleeping pills) and I can completely relate. She can't sell the place because who is going to buy a flat next to a nightclub? Just the utter stupidity of the authorities for allowing this and of the owner for not giving a damn at the distress he's causing....... makes my blood boil.

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So some people think I'm stupid enough to not notice how manipulative they really are. How hard is it to not notice when someone approaches me politely one minute, and then on the same day addresses me like I'm a piece of dirt who deserves to be humiliated, when other people are around?

He's gotta do a better job than that to make me believe he's worth my time. Either way, I only invest myself emotionally with people who prove to me they have something to give. It doesn't take much to upset me, but despite that I don't waste time.

Edited by The_Unwanted

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People who feel the need to self-medicate sometimes do it because they want to be in control of their life. When negative feelings or environments take control, they want the control back. It's still unhealthy. But it's something I noticed.

Thanks for this. It's something I've been doing lately (I made a post in MNES) and I feel guilty about it. I know it's wrong and harmful but your post at least made me feel a bit less guilty.

Happy to help.

I tell things as they are, without sugarcoating. :)

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