I have often wondered why I am so repulsive.  Why others are accepted, cared for, wanted, loved…but I’m not.  Why they find substitute parents, a loving and devoted partner, a helping hand when they need it, someone to give them a hug, to hold them, to watch out for them, to invest in their life in various ways, to mentor them…and I don’t. 
I realize I’m far from perfect.  I understand that I’m not one of the pretty ones.  Not one of the cool or fun or lovely people out there.  Not one of those who has a pleasing personality.  But what is it about me that makes me so horribly repulsive and disgusting? 
After I broke my hip in my mid-30’s, ending my over-exercising anorexic days, I gained weight at an outrageous rate.  I restricted myself to eating only every other day and limited myself to a mere 500 calories on the day I ate, but I still gained.  The result:  I was overweight for years.  And nothing I tried seemed to work when I attempted to lose.  As layer after layer of disgusting fat was added to my fairly petite frame, I began to feel even worse about myself than usual.  My husband had never loved me, but the more I weighed, the more ashamed he became…of me.  The less he wanted to be seen with me.  I felt his rejection acutely and I obliged, staying at home and letting him do whatever he wanted without me.  So he didn’t have to feel the shame of towing the Goodyear blimp along behind him.  I thought at the time, if I could just lose weight, maybe he would be able to tolerate me again.   While it was clear that loving me was totally out of range, I couldn’t help but wonder, was I also asking too much to be tolerated?
And now, thanks to an active eating disorder (again), I’m finally thin.  Not as thin as I want to be, though the doctor tells me I’m underweight (what do they know?).  But I’m acceptably slender.  Yet, I am alone and isolated.  Still unwanted and unacceptable.  I’ve been divorced for over 10 years and have not once had a man ask me for a date or show the slightest interest in me.  Why?  What is it about me that is so horrible?  Wasn’t losing the weight supposed to make me adequate?
I realize the eating disorder is unacceptable behavior.  I realize it’s shameful, something I have to hide.  Because no one could possibly find value in me when I’m doing this crazy dance with food, right?  Except…I know quite a few people who are doing the same dance and they are loved, wanted, valued, cherished.  People worry about them because they have opened their heart to them and don’t want them to die.  Those people are involved, doing things to help their struggling loved one overcome.  Helping them to see they have worth in spite of glaring imperfections.  Why can’t this happen for me?  Again, what is it about me that keeps me from being loved and accepted?
Depression is not pleasant.  It makes everything hard.  It causes each day to be cloaked in a dark cloud.  It erects brick walls and barriers and roadblocks that others don’t see and don’t have to deal with.  I do understand this also makes me an undesirable.  A defective being.  I get that it makes being around me a challenge.  But again, I know other people who are depressed and they are still loved, valued, wanted.  Others can see there is more to them than depression and their resulting flaws.  They are not rejected because they struggle, even to the point of being disabled and mostly unable to function.  Why am I so much worse than they are?
I am in debt…yet another thing that makes me undesirable and defective.  I’m frightened over what is going to happen because I’m reaching that point where I simply can’t pay my bills.  There have been times in my life where this was not the case.  I used to have more than enough.  And you know what?  I GAVE to others who were in a situation like the one I’m in now.  I didn’t just give a few dollars here and there.  I gave THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS of dollars to others when they were in the hole and couldn’t dig out.  I did this for years.  But now, when I so desperately need help, I can’t even find a friend who will buy me a cup of coffee.  I know people who have a lot of money.  A low interest loan could totally turn my world around.  It wouldn’t even HURT them.  But no one will help me.  And that is so painful.  Because I have helped many.  So, what is it about me that keeps people from lending me a hand…or making me a deal on a loan?  I know people who have had houses and cars and a great deal of money given to them.  No strings attached.  Nice house.  Nice cars.  A lot of money.  People just seem COMPELLED to help them.  But I lay in bed at night in terror.  And I’m alone in this.  With little hope.  Why?
I do realize I have a lot of broken places in my soul.  The early abuse…sexual (my father), physical and emotional (both parents), and neglect caused major weaknesses and deformities in my foundation.  I have holes and gaps and fragile areas that others don’t.  This is likely the source of the depression I have battled my entire life, the eating disorders I’ve struggled with periodically, the fear that plagues me.  I know those broken places also make me less acceptable.  The brokenness manifests in a myriad of ways every day.   For example, depression makes it nearly impossible for me to tackle cleaning my house – and it needs cleaning and organizing.  Badly. I also have phobias about water, getting wet, touching wet tile and porcelain.  That makes cleaning a lot more challenging as well.  All of this is related to being sexually abused by my father in the shower, along with him squirting sperm on me when he would ejaculate after pulling out of me so as not to impregnate me (thank God for small favors).  Wet equates to sexual abuse.  I curl my toes in the shower and hold my breath.  I can’t tolerate sitting in a bathtub.  I can barely handle a wet sponge.  I also never learned how to do normal things like cooking, socializing, having fun…because my family was anything but normal.  And I’m timid about undertaking new tasks at times. So yes, I’m a screwed up, fragmented, decidedly wrecked person.  Not stable.  Does this also make me unworthy of care and assistance?  Does this cause people to flee from and avoid me?  Am I that totally unpleasant to be around?  Am I that completely worthless?  To the point of not even being human?
It would seem so.
And sadly, I’m not pretty either.  I’m not terribly ugly, but I’m not cute.  Not one of those people who draw people because of their appearance.  And my personality isn’t warm and fuzzy.  I’m introverted.  Cautious.  Somewhat distant…because I’m terrified of people.  Does this also make me unworthy of being loved?
I have always elected to be kind, non-judgmental, forgiving.  I have refused to be bitter, to hold grudges, to fuel anger, to lash out at others, to blame.  I have tried to accept responsibility and I’ve worked diligently to change…often without little impact…but I’ve still not given up.  I’ve given to others, listened to them, cried with them.  I’ve worked hard, been honest, loyal, caring, diligent.  So there are a few good things in the mix.   I know I have difficulty reaching out when I need help and maybe that’s why help is never there.  I reach out in very subtle and cautious ways.  Because I’m so afraid of the rejection that typically follows.  I know I’m wholly imperfect.  Vastly damaged.  Far from anything resembling normal.  Does this make me the scum of the earth, someone to be shunned and rejected?  By everyone?
The crazy-making thing about all of this is that I’ve encountered so many people who were messed up, broken, depressed, overweight, addicted, ill, stupid, and ugly, but they were loved, wanted, appreciated and accepted.  I’ve seen prickly, nutty people who had loving husbands and supportive families.  I’ve watched people who didn’t work as hard as I have worked receive help to move up and get those promotions.  Those raises.  Those good breaks.  I’ve seen people who take, take, take receive whatever they needed…and people have been happy to help them!  But though I have always given, given, given, now that I am in need, no one is there to offer assistance.  I have to find a way to get through on my own.  Or perish trying.
So my question is simply:  Why?  If others can be terribly flawed and still have value, still be loved, still be accepted, why can’t I?  What is it about me that makes me so worthless while they retain great worth?  Why can’t I be worth loving?  Why can’t I matter?  Why can’t I catch a few major breaks?  Get the help I need?  Why am I so alone and unwanted?
Am I cursed to travel through life broken and alone?  And without anyone in my life to help me begin to see my value, will I ever be able to love, accept and cherish myself?


One thought on “Why”

  1. My heart hurt for you reading through this. That place of despair seems endless. I am fractured and broken and lost, too, so for whatever it’s worth – we are walking through this together. I believe you have so much worth. I also believe you were dealt a shitty hand and that it effects who you are today. But you have infinite worth. No matter our history, no matter what makes us broken, we are worthy. You are not the exception. You are the rule.

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