I am my worst enemy…..as much as I wish it were not true, I am. I’m a bully. I bully myself so bad that some days I can’t shake it. We all do it I think. And here I thought people were assholes in junior high. I am way worse than that! Why do we do this? I am the hardest on myself, I am the most judgmental on myself. I rip myself apart daily. I am not good enough. Im not pretty enough. Im not skinny enough. I’m not trying hard enough. I’m not pushing myself hard enough. I’m a failure……what the heck am I doing to myself? I am so nice to everyone else. And I am not just saying this, I am like literally one of the nicest people I know. I’m proud of that. And I’m proud that I believe it enough to actually say it out loud. But I have a really hard time being nice to me. That needs work. I’m going to force myself to feel good about myself since it is always myself making myself feel bad about myself. Wow. Say that three times fast!
How do we treat ourselves better? What steps can we take to boost our inner self confidence? I’ve actually looked into this quite a bit. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m like a closet case “self help” reading junkie. I’m that lady in the bookstore that pretends to be blind when someone in the “self help” isle asks me if I need help finding anything. “Oh, this isn’t Victoria Secret? Sorry. I’m lost, and I am blind.” I don’t want people to know I need help. Just kidding, I don’t pretend I’m blind, but I would quickly ask them to help me find Judy Blume for my daughter to avoid them even thinking I was there searching for life’s answers in a book. And I actually hate bookstores so I never go into them unless I’m DYING to read something so I totally just made that up. Words of wisdom? I look that shit up on Pinterest in the privacy of my bed when my kids are fast asleep. I have learnt absolutely nothing from these things either. Okay, so putting my personal issues aside, let’s look at the bigger picture for a minute here…..I think I’m destroying my children’s self esteem by not being able to control my own personal low self esteem. And by destroying their self esteem, they in return are destroying other kids self esteem, and so on, and so on.
After writing about my esteem issues for a bit, I got to thinking….last year bullying was a MAJOR issue with my at the time 3rd grader. (She is now in 4th.) The ridiculous bullying in her class sounded exactly like things I would say at home about myself and never THINK FOR A SECOND that I was infecting my child’s mind. I never for a second thought that she could hold this stuff in her brain and actually use it against people. But those little 8 and 9 year old girls did. They ripped each other apart just as I sit and rip myself apart. Are my actions and words creating a tiny little bully in the making? Yes! As I look back and ask myself where was my child getting this from it suddenly hit me……
“I hate all of my clothes. Why do I look so fat? Why can’t I afford new stuff. I hate my hair. I need to go on a diet. Does this look okay. Do I look okay. I’m not leaving without makeup. I hate my nose. I hate my skin.”
I say one or more of these things out loud every single day. I don’t want my children growing up with these same thoughts, so why can’t I control them? My kids can see how these words I say about myself hurt, so why wouldn’t they use them to hurt others in the middle of a 3rd grade girl fight? I am not even joking when I tell you that these girls in 3rd grade were making fun of each other’s clothes, and calling each other fat, and ugly. This was only 3rd grade! Can you imagine what junior high will be like when they actually premeditate this stuff and can make sense of it? Yikes! And they pick this stuff up from me! They shouldn’t care about what they wear, or if they have extra weight, or if they feel pretty enough at this age. These thoughts have been imbedded in their minds from us. We are creating little mini bullies and we don’t even realize it. I only have girls, so I’m not sure how this could also effect your sons, but I’m sure somehow it does. It could very well set the standard of all females unreasonably high. If a woman is not pretty enough or skinny enough, they are not acceptable. This could say to little boys, “girls are nothing without a perfect appearance,” and little girls may think they they will BE nothing without perfect appearance. I never once complain about how I think I am not intelligent enough on a regular basis, it’s always vanity shit. Maybe I should start running around the house saying I’m not learning enough. I’m not driven enough. I’m not pushing myself to my full potential enough. I’m not fighting to make this world a better place enough. I’m not brushing my teeth enough. Maybe this would give my children the drive to want to actually be better at things that matter. Fill their minds with thoughts on how to be the best person they can be inside and not so much outside. (Like how I threw in teeth brushing? Everything always turns to my kids not brushing their teeth.)
I don’t know. Parenting is hard. But let’s at least try not to be so hard on ourselves in front of the mushy little sponge brains that absorb everything in our children’s heads. We don’t need to be the reason for adding another check mark on the old, “my kids an asshole” board. They are doing just fine filling it themselves! ❤️❤️