My oversharing posts are very personal and may seem like oversharing aspects of myself, so realize that there may be content that is triggering for some. I will not be posting trigger warnings on these posts, so recognize if you don’t want to hear about issues that someone could be facing in life because of their present or past these may be posts you want to avoid from me!
“How I Feel About Me”
I recently started back into therapy with a much better fit for a counselor for me. I have seen numerous counselors over the course of my life, for various reasons. The most recent being issues related to complex trauma that I have experienced in my life. One of the things that I am working through, that is attached to all this, is that I constantly am seeking from others “permission” to do what I want. This manifests itself in my life in almost every single way that one could imagine. It can be a bit exhausting to always be allowing others to tell me if I can do things or I have to worry about them before I can do what I want with my own life, but it is a product of my past, as I am learning. It also means that often that I don’t seem to care enough about myself or my own opinions. My brain constantly tells me that I am not important and that others are more important. What they want is more important than what I desire for my own life.
One way that this has manifested in my life is through reading. Recently, I started looking through my old blog posts on here and also my GoodReads TBR. When I started doing this I could see, for the first time, moments that I allowed the YA book community to have a say in what I was doing on my blog. While I love many people in the YA book community, I am not necessarily the largest YA reader. I am a mixed genre reader, always have been. I enjoy reading a variety of books because I feel it is the most well “me” in terms of reading. I realized this was happening with my reader after I finished a book that I am going to be reviewing soon (Assaulted Caramel by Amanda Flower), which is a mystery book. My brain had been telling me to read a mystery for about roughly 7 months, but every time I went to read one I would think that the YA community wouldn’t want me to read this. I was worried more about what this singular community felt about me than I cared about my own enjoyment. I can see on my blog posts where I started to read a YA book and then didn’t complete it. As a result, I ended up reading a lot of shorter books so I had content for the blog. I also noticed how much of the content was not what I ever intended for this blog to be. I have always wanted to have important discussions, I wanted to review things that I never got the opportunity to do from all aspects of life (mostly movies, tv, and books). I can see moments where I started to do this (i.e. Messy Confessions videos). I would always stop though worrying that people would think I was just “seeking attention” for the things that I have dealt with or that it was content they didn’t want to see from me because it wasn’t “book content.” This mystery book made me have to face myself in a way I wasn’t expecting. It caused me to stop reading for a few weeks. The only book I had been able to read was “Not Like Everyone Else” by Jennifer Leigh and the only reason I could push through that book was because it was for a fellow blogger. My brain kicked into that bad mode, which is not due to anything Jennifer did, I fully support her book and have so much respect for her! This doesn’t change the reason behind being able to finish her book during the worst reading slump of my life. I can say this is the worst reading slump of my life because the only other time I wasn’t reading like this was during the time I was literally homeless. I wouldn’t necessarily call that period a reading slump. It was something different. This small little mystery book made me realize that I had been “seeking permission” to be a blogger. To post what content I wanted on my own blog. I was looking for someone to tell me I was allowed to post what I wanted. It is painful to write that as well. That I was constantly trying to get others in the community to be happy with what I was doing. It is deeper than just wanting readers, which we all do. It was that I actually was worried at all times that someone would say or do something to me. It is an irrational part of my brain that I have to work through. Mental health issues suck, for real.
In my life, I ask my partner every single day what we are doing with that day. He would get annoyed. He would wonder why I would constantly ask him this one question every single day. Then he started realizing I couldn’t make up my own mind what I was doing in my day. He started recognizing that I wasn’t able to decide what I was going to do within my day because I was literally afraid someone would get mad at me for doing the “wrong thing” during the day. I also would be waiting for what someone else wanted to do because they were more important than me, so I always had to be ready for what they wanted to do. My wants were not important. What I wanted to accomplish in the day were not important. This is exhausting and hurtful. A bitterness starts to form within you when you are like this all the time. I know this for sure. I had such bitterness towards myself and him because I could not do anything I wanted. We just realized recently why I was doing this, so now daily he asks me instead “What is one thing you want to do for yourself?” when I asked him the dreaded question. It makes him happier and makes me have to start caring how I feel. It is not perfect yet and it will take my probably years to process that out of me with him. It is just a natural state for me with people.
When I go into public, I get anxiety because I am always wondering what others want from me. What they are going to want me to do. Do they want me to get out of their way? So they can shop easier. Yes, these are things that cross my mind when I am out. Every moment of my life, I recognize that I worry about these other people. It has always become part of my transition from male to female. I started the process of transitioning 2 years ago. I changed my name to Cassie and I was ready to move forward, but I started worrying about how the world would think about me. Yes, every single transgender person worries about this in some regards, but mine was again slightly different. I didn’t want to make other people uncomfortable with me. They mattered more than me. I haven’t worked through this one yet. It has impeded me moving forward at all. I present as male most of the time regardless of how I feel. I present as male because it will make everyone else happier and feel better in their daily life. I don’t want to be the reason someone else is upset or uncomfortable because they matter more than me.
There are other areas of my life that this manifests as well, but I think I have revealed enough for one post. This is all because of my past. Everything I shared is because of moments that have defined me to this moment. Things that I have been through. I recognize I survived it all, but moments can still live within you in your present as well. They can warp your brain to believe things that are not true. I try to remember that they are not true and that other people forced these thoughts into my head throughout my life. Processing pain has to be done in therapy! I have learned when such horrible things have happened to someone that you have to have someone to support you. You have to process that pain. I have to process that hurt. Some days are naturally going to be easier than others. If I have survived knowing this about myself, I know anyone reading this can place one foot in front of the other and keep walking on this journey of life. You can do it. I am surviving, you can as well. This doesn’t mean your heart won’t hurt. Mine does all the time. Other people still matter to me more than me, but I am learning how to process the untruth that is apparent in this. I am learning that I matter. My opinions matter. My heart matters.