Hi, new to these boards

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Registered: 03-26-2003
Hi, new to these boards
4
Fri, 06-12-2009 - 12:57pm

Hello. My name is Beth.

I have been a member of Ivillage for years and have made several posts in the past on the Depression Support Boards. Although depression is something I have struggled with for years, and still dealing with it (untreated), self esteem has also been an area of struggle in my life as well. I am currently trying all I can do to improve my thoughts, my image, and just who I am in general ..... I go through this every so often and it can at times be such a tiring process. Which is why I am here.

Where do you begin on the things that have gone through my mind about who I am, my appearance, my life...?? Right now, all I can say is that I feel like a yo-yo and I am just ready for some long term stability in my mind and soul. Like I said earlier, I cycle through stretches of time where I think I am okay and life is not so bad and then there are stretches of time where I honestly do not want to leave the house. My goal is to, yet again, find something positive in myself, find a little happiness and stay there. I simply do not want to have another wasted, sad, poor poor pitiful me day.

I feel like I am rambling, but this is how my thoughts are. I am 35 years old, will be 36 in a week. I am a middle child in my family and growing up, I had the popular sister and the class clown brother... yet I was in the background trying to find where I fit in. I am almost positive this has molded who I am today as I STILL try to fit in and be accepted with whomever I choose to be friends with or choose to work as I am still trying to find my footing in Education.

I am not by any means an unattractive person and I am extremely blessed to have a youthful appearance. I tell people that I am soon to be 36 and I am told I look more like late 20's and early 30's. Granted, I have no children yet, and one day that is a dream and I am sure the aging process will go in full gear when that happens :-) I have an hourglass/fuller figure and I feel so stupid to say how much I absolutely hate having boobs and thighs. Then I read about real women facing a real battle with breast cancer (such as Christana Applegate) and have to have their breasts removed and I feel ashamed for hating what I have.

All of that being said, I look at myself in the mirror and I do not see what people tell me they see in me. I do not go shopping for clothes often and tend to settle with old, comfortable styles that I have. I guess it is because I value my appearance so little to want to keep more fashionable and up-to-date?

Getting past the vanity, what bothers me most is what I think about myself on a daily basis. My flaws are my obstacles and I want to do all I can to get past them and be a better person. I am a people-pleaser, yet have such high expectations for whatever it is I am doing... whether those expectations are for myself of the person I am doing all I can do to make happy. As I have been told quite a few times in the past, my expectations can be quite unreachable and I need to be a little more grounded. I also see myself as a nobody who often times has no purpose in this world. I also apologize FAR too much about things in and out of my control. Worst of all, I care far too much what people think of me.

I am well aware of how deep this post is, and probably quite vague, but I just do not know where to start. I have a love and appreciation for all life, yet I have a hard time accepting who I am and often ask what is wrong with me.

I am married and have been for 12 years. I am married to a good man, but there have been past years where things were not good and I was verbally and physically abused (mildly). He does have a controlling nature, but often times if I sit and listen to where he is coming from, I may not agree, but I can understand. We have no children yet, and that is something I want more than anything in this world, but it literally has been one thing after another with jobs and life.

I did stray from my husband last year. We were having issues and someone took interest in me and made me actually feel something I had not felt in years. Crazy thing is, this person is thousands of miles away from me and is only a name online and a picture still saved in a file on my computer. We had something going for 6 months until he decided that who I was... insecure, needing of attention was not something he could handle. He recognized my good heart and said I am probably the kindest person he has ever known, but that he just could not give me what I needed (again, this is where the exceedingly high expectations come into play). To be honest, this relationship needed to end for several reasons and I am still trying to come to terms of being rejected by someone else. I care little to stray again, as I am not proud of myself for letting myself feel this way, but what's done is done and what else can you do about it... Regardless, what I did was not fair on my husband, the other person's girlfriend and their two children. For that, I will forever more be sorry, as I never wanted to hurt anyone or breakup a home. I just wanted to be loved. My husband and I are doing better now. He does not know the depths of that relationship, but I think he did see me distancing myself from him and is now doing what he can to be more of a positive thing in my life. He is giving me more positive attention and is now starting to listen to me.... there have been times in the past where I felt like I was an unheard voice in this marriage. But, I have tried to communicate that with him and I have to give him credit for giving me a voice again (sometimes)

I know it is possible to find happiness in myself again. After high school, I lost quite a bit of weight and was rather outgoing and somewhat popular in college. I participated in Student Government and was a Hostess on campus. After I graduated, I kept up a great exercise routine, kept busy and started enjoying life. I so badly want to find that person again. I wish I knew what has changed, happiness tends to be a short lived thing and personal, positive thoughts seem to be so rare. Now I am not as active as I use to be and it is a HUGE motivation to get myself out the door and exercise (and I LOVE to walk... always makes me feel better). The weight is settling in again and at my age, it is just harder to lose. Really, all I need to lose again is 15/20 pounds, but I have to wonder, if I do accomplish that, will I REALLY feel better about myself?

There is more that I have experienced in my life that I have not posted here. This post is quite lengthy enough and I believe I have given a clear enough picture of who I am in a nutshell. One day, I just hope to look in the mirror and say "there is somebody special."

So, where do I start?

Edited 6/12/2009 1:00 pm ET by sunflowers_271

Edited 6/12/2009 1:08 pm ET by sunflowers_271

Edited 6/12/2009 1:34 pm ET by sunflowers_271




Edited 6/12/2009 2:15 pm ET by sunflowers_271
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Registered: 05-06-2007
Fri, 06-12-2009 - 8:44pm

I first want to say "Welcome" to the board and how nice it is to meet you.

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Registered: 03-26-2003
Sat, 06-13-2009 - 4:02pm

Hi N2ishn and thanks for your reply.

Depression is something that does run in my family. My mother, my sister, my father, and I do believe my brother (who also has anxiety issues) have all been diagnosed at one point in time with depression. Also, and something depression is quite symptomatic of, we all (with the exception of my brother) have been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid. I do not know if my situation is different; I went to see an endocrinologist about two years back and he thought my pituitary gland may be the cause of my thyroid problems. This is the point where I expect to be wagged a finger or two at (and I deserve it) ~ I stopped taking the generic synthroid a while back. There were economic problems where I was working as an aide (and the following year would have been my tenure) and I was pink slipped. I was the insurance provider, because it was cheaper through the school system. So, currently my husband and I have no medical insurance, and although there are cheaper alternatives out there ... I know Blue Cross has one ... we are still at a point where we are living paycheck to paycheck and one more added expense would break us. That being said, I am trying to secure a position of some kind in the school systems where my husband and I recently relocated (to be closer to his job). Insurance is forefront in our mind and as soon as something opens up for me, that will be the first thing we address. This is also the reason why I am not pursuing anything for depression.

I was diagnosed with depression about 8 years ago. As a matter of fact, I was diagnosed with quite a few things... mainly stress and life related. At the time, I was being treated quite poorly at the school where I was teaching (there was an extremely high turnover rate at that school and a few years before I was hired, there was a falling out among many of the teachers), my husband and I were arguing and divorce was being thrown around a lot, finances were AWFUL, and honestly I think it was about that time where I started breaking down. I finally started seeing a therapist after I started thinking that dying sounded a heck of a lot better than living. I was put on Zoloft and took it for about a year (maybe).

You are very correct in saying that I did have some esteem years back when I was in college. I had lost about 40 pounds of my high school weight and found myself involved in the school and in the community. I had a car, yet I walked EVERYWHERE, because I loved the beauty of the campus and went to the gym and lifted weights and participated in aerobics 5 - 6 days a week. I was accepted by my peers and that was a good feeling and something I did not have in High School. It was this time where I felt most alive and vibrant. Since then, there has been only one other place where I felt that accepted and it was when I taught 5th grade at a private school in Georgia 2001 - 2003 school years. Then life hit hard again, the change in administration angered many parents, children were pulled from the school and my unit was cut (along with three others and several aide positions). I do not think the school has been the same since, and it is a shame because that school was going in a positive direction under old administration.

Something that I had in my favor when I was younger was that I had a strong mental plan where I wanted to go in life. I knew at the time that God put me on this Earth to be a wife, mother and a teacher... I am a nurturer by nature. The three things I wanted to be, I felt so strongly in my soul, that this was a positive and successful direction. My husband and I were dating at the time, we were married soon after I graduated and things have yet to turn out as I saw in my dreams. I seem to be struggling in my career, we have no children, and marriage is not as easy as it could be at times. I have stated several times that my husband and I have gone throw AWFUL fights .... some that have led to him threatening to hit me, I have had hot soup thrown at me, a remote thrown at my head, and my his hand around my neck with me pressed against the wall. There were also times where he would get so frustrated with me that he would break my stuff... figurines, computer parts, etc... Now since, he has apologized and gotten his temper in check (for the most part). Pretty much all I deal with now is the periodic clash with my husband's personality. He is very intelligent and very much feels he is right and will not take the time to listen and think of what I have to say. He is also store manager at a local and successful computer store and brings that personality home with him too... speaking to me as if I am an employee instead of a wife. But, he is a good man and is trying as hard as I am to make it through bad stretches and stressful times in life. With the exception of my indiscretion last year, we really have made an agreement to work through this marriage. We certainly have both made our share of mistakes.

All in all with all of the struggles that I have had to endure over the past 8 years or so, I have learned that I can not trust anyone and am scared to death to let someone within arms length of me emotionally (and at times that does include my husband), I fear I will never get a classroom in the area where I live, and I am quickly approaching 40 and fearful that a child may not be in my future. Throughout time, I have lost faith in many things. Something that I still struggle with, there are those stretches of bad days where I feel useless and alone when I pray that I can just lie down and not wake up again for the sheer purpose of finding some peace. I will not take my own life... this is something I have put considerable thought in, but if God wanted to take me, I would not put up a fight. There just gets to a point where you try and try and give it all you can, run into that brick wall enough to simply say "Why am I trying anymore..." I know we all have experienced this. Some people can just pull themselves out of it easier than others, I guess.

On a positive note, there are those good days where I do step outside to feel some sunshine on my shoulders, breathe in some fresh air and wonder why I would want to leave a world as beautiful as this. And then I feel guilty .....

How did my life get such a mess?

Sorry for the length of this again. When I type like this, it helps me organize my thoughts and helps me heal some. I am trying to reach out all I can and am open to whatever suggestions, advice, whathave you... my feelings will not be hurt, I assure you. I have open ears and an open mind.

Thanks again,
Beth

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Sat, 06-13-2009 - 4:04pm

http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-bhivfitness is not showing as a valid link.

Beth

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Registered: 05-06-2007
Sun, 06-14-2009 - 10:55am