not feeling too good about being me

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-16-2008
not feeling too good about being me
Sat, 04-18-2009 - 6:58am

I am at an all time low at the moment. I don’t really know where to start with all this but I haven’t been happy being myself for about a year now.

I used to be a happy person and one that I felt like could have a good laugh with people. That’s all changed now and I’m too self conscious to even be myself anymore.

It all started first of all last year when I had problems with my nose due to perennial rhinitis. This affected my nose, constant itching and discomfort etc which sometimes made it hard to socialise properly and be myself. But I don’t know whether it is directly from this but my voice has changed. I remember writing on a board about 6 months ago and saying ‘I feel like my voice might have changed’. No, I know it has changed. It sounds hollow and weak and unless I’m talking to a person face-to-face they tend to have problems hearing what I’m saying. It really annoys me because when I got out anywhere to bars or clubs or socialise in a group then people have difficulty hearing what I’m saying properly. Other people tend to talk naturally and sound really clear. My voice is unclear and I am so oncious about how I sound that I now tend to get my words mixed up as well.

This may seem like a small problem to most people but it is making my life hell and unbearable at the moment.

Everything is changing around me now and I’m starting to see the world differently. I tend not to speak up very much anymore and have lost confidence in myself totally at the moment. Because of this as well I feel as though I get picked on. Most of the time it isn’t nastily but it still hurts me. Like people in work or when I go out with my friends, they will laugh at me or make a joke because they know probably that I won’t respond because I’ve got such a low self-esteem or even when I do respond people don’t seem to hear me or the person will speak over me and be clearer and more confident so I will be the person who gets buzzed off. I feel like I am starting to become the idiot now who is the butt of all the jokes and it is making me feel really sad and depressed. I feel like people know they can get the better of me so they do.

I did actually become so self conscious over my voice that I booked in personal voice therapy but when I had this, the therapist said my voice was fine. This was in a small room though with just the two of us so of course my voice could be heard fine but I liked someone to be in my shoes when I’m out and my voice sounds weak compared to everyone else. My voice also seems to tire very easily as well which makes it hard to speak naturally. I’ve also been doing a voice care and help tape for the past few months, I stopped doing this for a bit but I’m going to hammer it now and do it loads because I don’t want to feel like this anymore. I looked at a few confidence and voice courses on the internet not too long ago but they seemed very expensive. I am starting to think though that I’m not bothered about the cost anymore because if it could make me happy again I would pay all the money I’ve got and give up all my possessions because nothing means more to me. If anyone knows of anything good then please let me know. I am willing to try anything now.

Also I feel as though people are very fake at the moment. I was riding high a few years ago and had loads of people who wanted to be my friend and a few girls that fancied me. Now I’m not feeling too good about myself it feels as though people don’t really want to bother with me anymore. I’m still the same person. I tend to get very bitter at the moment as well which I know is not good for me and think to myself just wait until I am full of confidence again and I will make you feel the way you made me feel.

In a way there has been some good things about this though because I’ve come to appreciate the real honest people in my life even more. These were just people I taken for granted before like my girlfriend, my mum, my best friend and my brother. I feel as though I may have not treated them badly but just taken them for granted in the past and I will definitely not do this anymore.

I’m sorry about ranting on but I am at the end of my tether now and just need to get out of this rut. I’m determined not to let this get to me anymore but it has got to a reallu bad point now were sometimes all I want to do is sit up in my room and be away from the world were no-one can hurt or make a fool of me.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-21-2008
Mon, 04-20-2009 - 10:56am

I remember your old post. The truth is I do not know what you should do because it all depends on what you want.

I know people who are certainly different than others, one of my friends for example is 78% deaf and can't actually touch his shoulders due to a genetic thing. He does end up being the butt of alot of jokes, but he doesn't mind it - in fact, he's the one making the jokes most of the time. He has taken on 'this is who I am, I don't care' attutuide, but he also trusts that the people who are laughing are the friends who will also be there for him IF he asks. (It's kind of hard to be there, when you might not realize something is going on.)

I also know of someone who is taking steps to be more confident. She is avoiding scenes like clubs, where she feels insecure, and starting off small. She goes to bowling alleys, restaurants, etc. And she practices speaking up, though she doesn't do it much, she consciously is trying to do it more and more until she is comfortable with it. She wants to be more confident and she wants to learn to talk up in conversations. This is a very hard thing for her, but change doesn't come easy.

Lastly, I know of someone who as decided to just change how they are. They went from outgoing to shy. They don't mind the change and joke how they get alot of "me-time" now. He's says alot of his old friends were fake and he is happier this way. He doesn't have to deal with trying to push himself to be outgoing or involved, nor does he have to deal with jokes and annoying humor (according to him). This to me is an easy option, but not everyone would be happy with this.

I would take a close look at yourself and think on what you want to do. I would also listen to your voice. While it doesn't sound the same as it use to, to your ears, it is your voice and there is nothing wrong with it. We don't mind people with accents, we don't mind people who are loud, we don't mind people who are soft - so why let it get us down? Or better question, is it truly worth our happiness and our self-esteem? Because that's what we give up when we are not ok with ourselves and not doing anything about it. At least in my experience, that is how it goes.

Try journaling and writing down everything - as well as making a conscious effort to find support and to do things that make you feel happy and confident. Look all around you very carefully, sometimes we miss a great supportive line that could help us out, all because we are focusing too much on how bad things are. People often need to be told to help, specially with groups, so that might be an option as well. Take a few friends, one at a time, aside and talk to them seriously. I would be picky on what friends, but I'm sure there are some good people around you. You did pick them originally for a reason.

Hang in there, and I hope I've helped in someway.

~ Rain
~ Rain   
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2006
Wed, 04-22-2009 - 3:50pm

i've read that rhinitis can give you ear trouble (as well as nose trouble). i'm also wondering if it's affected your sinuses, maybe causing fluid buildup or something like that. so maybe your voice has changed due to either of those conditions. you know how you can tell that someone has a cold or allergies by listening to them speak? that's probably all it is for you. have you considered allergy medication (e.g., claritin)? i wonder if that would help with your nose, especially now that it's pollen season.