I think my biggest struggles, the source of my eating disorder, why I have an incredible lack of self-esteem and a huge part of my life in general is/are my insecurities. I've only just started realizing (or letting myself realize) this over the last couple months but I've become aware of how much it has influenced my life and how it effects every decision I make.
I am so concerned about what others think and am so driven by the idea of making people happy that I really have a hard time making decisions out of fear.
Over the last year I've learned a lot about myself: likes, dislikes, passions, goals, values, my mental and emotional habits, what I want in life, what I'm looking for in a partner, I've learned how to listen to, knowledge and feel my emotions and I have started learning to talk about all this kinda stuff. Now the tricky part is feeling insecure and embarrassed about it and I'm learning that this is extremely hard. Why can't I just be ME without worrying what other people think of it.
This is 100% why I constantly feel like I'm not good enough, the reason I push people away and why I have allowed the wrong people to influence my life. I can't believe it took me this long to really realize this and I'm really sad and disappointing with myself for letting it be such a big part in my life. *That being said I still wouldn't change it because it made me who I am and that's the person I'm trying to appreciate, but still*
I strive to please everyone but I go over and above to try to impress the people who feed my insecurities, the ones who have pointed out my flaws, made fun of them and have convinced me that my fears and doubts about myself are exactly what others think of me. I was seeing a guy for a while about a year and a half ago when I was deep into ED (but hadn't admitted it or had my doctor's diagnoses yet) and he was the kind of guy that immediately made me feel like I would never be good enough for him. But I wanted to be good enough for him. I was 95 lbs with my bones very visibly sticking out, spending 2+ hours a day working out, eating a very small amount, if at all, and I was constantly tired and lethargic. He would joke and call me fat, he would make fun of me for eating anything larger than a salad and I will always remember how much he bugged me for treating myself to some ice cream. Then, when I would spend even longer working out or wouldn't want to eat around him, he would make fun of me even more for it and get upset because I wasn't spending that time with him. It was exhausting, I didn't even realize I was doing it and it was absolutely toxic. This was not his fault and I don't blame him. I don't know if he ever really cared but if he did I don't think my insecurities would have even let me believe it even if he did.
I (for some reason) think that if I can get these people to like me, then maybe I'm good enough. I put everything I have into this unattainable goal and when I realize I can't please them, I run away, blame myself for it and usually come up with a story to tell my friends/family that it didn't work out. When I'm in these situations I don't realize it at all but looking back I know it isn't good for me and it feed my insecurities, my disordered thoughts and my inability to ever feel good enough.
No regrets, just lessons learned.
I read this today and it really hit a cord with me. Every. Single. Word. I could have cried when I read it because it is so completely true:
Full post from Tiny Buddha HERE.
So now that I've become aware of so much about myself and I've found ways to reduce my anxieties, work towards recovery and become more comfortable, I have insecurities about letting these things out and I am becoming crippled with the fear that people wont like the real me and that I'm not good enough (I'm starting to realize a trend with this).
For example; I get food anxiety. A lot. I have found ways to reduce this anxiety and to help myself move towards recovery (plans, sticking to foods that I'm comfortable with, making my own food, etc.) but normal/healthy people don't have these anxieties. This is why I don't go out to eat, I don't order food, I don't like when people buy me food and why I have such a hard time just deciding what to eat every day. I should not be this hard, but for me it is. I want to eat but don't want to gain weight, I want to recover but I'm scared. Plus, food is a very important part of my training.
Most people reading this have NO idea what this feels like and I am so happy you don't know what it is like, but for me it adds to the anxiety. This is absolutely no fault of your own and I know that. I feel like you're watching me, judging what I eat or don't eat, you offer me things and I say yes because I am so worried about what you think. I'll eat something when you're around out of anxiety and then have food guilt, I'll eat things you've made me thinking I'll be okay with when I'm not, or I wont eat something and be incredibly worried that you are judging me for not eating it. You want to go out to eat but I'm afraid there's nothing on the menu that will be "okay" for me, but I'm also afraid of being the one to pick where we go because I want you to be happy more than myself. It sucks. I can't even explain how much it sucks.
Again, not your fault. This is the way I am. It isn't always like this - as I've recently learned - but a lot of the time it is. I'm finding ways to be better at this and to communicate this.
I want you all to like me for who I am. The real me. Insecurities and all.
I don't project my insecurities on others, I just shut down, isolate myself and run away because I feel like it is easier than trying to explain myself or worrying about what you think.
My amazing friend Lauren reminded me that if someone doesn't like the real me, doesn't support me and wants me to be something I'm not, then they aren't someone I should have in my life. If someone WANTS to be with me or be in my life then they will understand and will do what it takes to make me comfortable .
This isn't just with food, this is for a lot of aspects of my life but food is definitely the biggest. I'm also incredibly insecure about my appearance, my ability to be a good employee and sometimes even about running.
I'm trying to be as open and honest as I can be with myself and with everyone around me but it is a work in progress. I'm learning to notice, understand and reduce my insecurities. I'm getting there. Please be patient and thank you for your patience and understanding.
One of the most helpful things you can do is to ask me. I don't mean ask me where I want to eat, but ask me what would make me the most comfortably and ask me questions if you have them. Get me to talk about it and open up if you can because in the end it will help me a lot.