Looking Out for Number One
Why do we have such a problem with this? Why can some of us never do this? If we’re such stigma busters, why do we find it so easy doing it for others, but not for ourselves?
All we may end up doing is busting our own teeth to bits of dental shrapnel with steel jaws of silence. Busting our own stomachs into holes with repeated uppercuts of pain we feel we deserve. Busting our own hearts to shreds with guilt, shame and denial.
I don’t want to belabour the beatings I’ve been giving myself lately. However, I don’t think I can be too successful, there. I need them to serve as examples. At least to a degree?
When I write all of those things, to a lot of people (to a lot of you!) I’m sure it can seem very tiring. Also, annoying, pitiful and like never ending cries for help. Probably like a lot of attention seeking behaviour, too. Even this post may sound a lot like that!
When I write in that manner, it is a cry for help! Though, of a different sort? I want to help myself but I don’t know how. It is also “attention seeking behaviour.” Though, in a different way, as well? Something inside me desperately needs attention.
Just like trying to help myself, I get so lost and don’t know how to find whatever it is that needs attention. Then I think, even if I could find it, would I know how to attend to it? What attention to give it? Maybe I sometimes do manage to figure it out, but I’m still too lost to know what to do about it. Does anyone else feel the same?
I definitely welcome any “help” or “attention” from others. Perhaps if people still struggle with those words and the phrases that surround them above, better words could be: support, recognition, empathy, validation. I’m not sure. Playing Jeopardy with the semantics of psychology is a game that could last a person’s entire life.
Coping mechanisms, strategies, reinforcement of all types of things one can learn to deal with their issues are all good. Still, they are very hard to put into practice—and keep practising. Not that they should be thrown out the window altogether, but I feel “learning” tends to have a very slim chance vs. “unlearning” a lot of the time. Again, does anyone else feel the same?
Either way, for all of us who stigmatize ourselves, we’ve got to somehow get this mental (un)health albatross free from our necks before it chokes us to death. I wish I could offer a solution but I’m still looking.