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Feeling better, but having trust issues.


psycholuigiman

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So, I've been posting a lot here lately. Well, a lot for me anyway. I've asked this forum for help with my first real break up, help with explaining my emptiness after a huge accomplishment left me feeling way less fulfilled than I thought it would, and the forum even helped me by giving me a fresh perspective on my low confidence and new ways to improve it. I'm extremely thankful for this forum's help, and I hate to keep asking for help while barely offering help to the other members, but I guess I don't hate it enough cuz I'm about to do it again.

Now to the point. I really have gotten a lot better. My feelings towards my ex are much healthier than before. I'm more comfortable with my accomplishments (even hung up my Bachelor's degree in my room so I can remind myself I'm not a total failure. Never hung up anything in my room before). I've started cooking more and I learned to sew and that has helped too. Yet, I still had a really bad breakdown the other day. I'm surrounded by people who love and respect me. They don't take my depression lightly either. For some reason though, I don't trust any of them when they tell me I'm too hard on myself or that I don't deserve to be miserable or that I'm worthy of love. It's like when anyone says that stuff to me, part of me takes it at face value while the other part of me says "If you knew me better, you wouldn't feel that way". It's freaking awful! I don't know how or when or why I started disregarding all the nice things people try to tell me about myself, but I'm aware of it now and it needs to stop. Otherwise, I may never form a new, healthy relastionship with anyone again.

So, does anyone have anything to say on the matter? Even if you have no idea how to get over trust issues like this, I'd appreciate it if you shared your own experience. Sometimes a fresh perspective is just as helpful as actual advice.

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I have this issue as well. I have a hard time believing anything good anyone has to say about me, and disregard anything nice said because I feel like they have no idea who I am or how I really am.

If you have loving, helpful, and depression sensitive family, friends, and support perhaps opening up about exactly how you feel will help. 

My idea with this is: it opens you up to be more vulnerable, it allows them to see who you are and imperfections that you may be uncomfortable with, and most importantly it allows them the ability to show you or prove to you the compliments they give you.

If you have loved ones that are ready and willing to help you in this journey, you have a good chance of success.

Wishing you all the best.

Edited by Tid322
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Hi psycholuigiman,

Thank you for sharing - it sounds like you've benefited tremendously from this support network, which is great news.  There is no wrong way to utilize DF, so you need not concern yourself with the give-and-take you noted - you never know what the future holds regarding your DF postings.

As you are clearly aware, trust is an incredibly complex feeling of comfort in self and others - it does not come cheap and can easily be shattered.  The greater the perceived damage, the more difficult it is to reconstruct.  This is not only a personal, psychological ramification - the brain learns how to survive and adapt.  If its surroundings prove untrustworthy, it will learn that trust leads to pain - which it will avoid at all costs.  From this lens, it is understandable and completely normative that you would struggle to believe others.  I could say that when many people tell you something, there is a strong possibility that they are right, such as when they say you "are too hard" on yourself.  But it is obvious that you have the insight to recognize that this stems from trust and other thoughts that you harbor about yourself.

It seems that you find yourself surrounded by supportive figures, which can certainly prove advantageous in this process.  You report cognitive distortions related to self-image, of which I cannot know the origin, but we can certainly speculate that self-image is closely tied with our interactions with others.  When a break-up occurs, or people abuse our trust, it is quite easy to look inward for the problem.  You have already done much of this work to improve your feelings about the break-up, and there are also automatic thoughts lingering, such as "if you knew me better, you wouldn't feel that way."  This may not be true.  

If there is one thing that I can provide beyond the above, I would say that it is important to challenge your thoughts to the best of your abilities - this is generally how one may overcome negative automatic thoughts, which are exacerbated by underlying beliefs about the self, others, and world.  If possible, when a thought arises, question it - ask yourself if there is sufficient evidence for it being true; ask why you may have thought that rather than something more positive.  In doing so, these challenged thoughts become less automatic because the brain is being retrained by its owner (you) to question its idea of what is adaptive based on previous experiences.  Do your best to recognize those who actually can be trusted, such as those you mentioned in your post.  In time, and with enough work and positive experiences, trust may not be as much of an issue as it currently is.

Again, I appreciate your candid post and truly hope that your ability to trust others and develop close, meaningful relationships with others improves.  You are on the right path and continue to share on DF when concerns arise - keep up the good work.

Best wishes.

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