He who cannot bear doubt does not bear himself. Such a one is doubtful; he does not grow and hence he does not live. Doubt is the sign of the strongest and the weakest. The strong have doubt, but doubt has the weak. – Jung
Insecurity and doubt are fairly common. Whenever I have talked about dealing with Imposter Syndrome- people nod. A handful will readily chirp: Oh but everyone has that!
I used to get a little annoyed by this until I realized: that’s actually probably not far from the truth.
I talk here and there about how I often feel like I am somehow out of place. As if I shouldn’t be attempting to get my Masters, because of…reasons. It’s a very strange feeling. I had a bunch of reasons for going back but a large part of it was that I really hated how I felt about myself and all it’s myriad of self-destructive manifestations. I bust my ass and watch my GPA go higher and still feel weird. Like I shouldn’t be here. It is fading a little at a time, but man, it is a bastard.
For the past few years, that’s something I have been an active participant in dismantling in my own psyche. It’s not all shits and giggles because frankly: not everything you set out to do, even when you try your hardest, is going to work out.
I don’t tell my kids they can do anything they put their mind to, because that’s horse shit. What you can do, is to push yourself beyond what you think you can do and go from there- the journey not the destination, blah blah blah. My father’s favorite quote of all time, I think, used to be Life is unfair. I hated that quip, I did.
So, for a long time and still yet today- if I can make life a little more fair for someone else, I try to. Different blog post, I guess. But it’s still something I bear in mind: rather than bemoan it, I’ll set goals I know I can achieve in with those that may involve outside factors beyond my control. In terms of parenting- this has always landed me squarely in the middle of a whole mess of parenting bullshit.
Kindly Take Your Mommy Wars and Shove Them Up Your Ass
I feel like this deserves a mention because jesus christ, Mothers are the most insecure, projecting bunch of petty ass ninnies there are. You know what? I was goddamn Super Mommy. I still am. An extended breastfeeding, baby wearing, cloth diapering, homeschooling, baking goddess of the fuckin’ hearth.
Maybe I’m a damn serial killer. Maybe I’m raising my kids to be serial killers. Maybe I’m a liar. Maybe I’m raising my kids according to the Hitler Youth manual- but goddamn, some people seem to think that it’s the breastfeeding, baby wearing and all that shit which matters.
I’m just gonna slide this out there- it doesn’t. It honestly doesn’t. And it is absolutely no excuse to be an utter cunt to other mothers. It’s just not.
Nor does it mean you should be assuming I think you’re shitty because you don’t do the things I do. If you wanna know the truth: most of it involved my being neurotic.
Not about parenting. About other things. You can throw that right into any other hobby I’ve got- and most of them involve keeping incredibly busy. Because if I keep my brain busy, it doesn’t bitch at me about shit.
Yeah, it honestly had nothing to do with any other mother on the planet. Over the years I have had far, far too many mothers come to me who felt like failures or felt like shit because they couldn’t do A Thing or The Things. That’s fucking awful. Nobody should feel that way and yet- our lovely society condemns even those who are doing their best for some reason or another. This is hard enough without that. Raise a decent human being. That’s really it. Beyond that, who gives a shit?
Though, There Are Some People I Don’t Mind Showing Up At All-
Because those people are assholes.
Let’s talk about romantic insecurity a minute. Now, this one’s another absolute bitch of an insecurity because…in addition to any personal insecurity you may have, you get to throw in trust issues. You get to throw in projection if you in fact, have some desires you’re not eyeballing. You get to throw in the fact that no, Virginia, you cannot control other people. You get to throw in the fact that sometimes, people are complete and utter shit bags.
I’m just going to slide two very strong opinions out there-
You go after someone who you know is in a committed, monogamous relationship? You’re an inexcusable piece of shit. But, you are slightly less of an inexcusable piece of shit than the person stepping out. (I could also go into being dishonest in poly or non-monogamous relationships and all the ins and outs- there are, in fact, ins and outs: far too many to list but you get the idea.) If you didn’t know, the minute you do know, you should respond by being insulted beyond belief because you are worth so much more than that. And then you should shame the fuck out of that person and cut them out of your life. Let me be clear: I blame the cheater much more than the one enabling it. Like 90% more. That does not mean the enablers get a free pass: it just means I’m more inclined to blame the one who made the commitment they cannot or won’t honor.
No, I am not understanding of this and I never will be. That is not insecurity talking. Not even remotely- it’s a sense of honor I didn’t always have but upon, oh, growing the fuck up and not being a selfish shit developed. Though I’ll crack jokes about knowing your role- because really, this whole “side bitch” “boss bitch” what the fuck ever thing is hilarious: you’re all fighting over dishonorable pieces of shit, you realize this right? You deserve the insecurities you’ve got there, kid.
What you don’t deserve is to pretend or imagine you’re anything more than a couple of dung beetles fighting over a juicy deuce. And that shitbag? Should probably come to terms with the fact that he isn’t monogamous and just grow a pair and be honest about that- or stop pretending that fooling people who want to be fooled is a giant accomplishment. It is not. Bad relationships? Fix it or end it. Don’t drag other people into your trainwreck. Don’t look to the magical penis or vagina white knight to come save you. Hell, if you’ve done this you probably already noticed you whine an awful lot about Why Can’t I Ever Find a Good…
Well, because good people don’t go trolling for partnered partners. That’s why. As with just about anything else, if it’s a repeat problem with assholes- maybe that asshole is you.
The thing about that is-
Being jealous and accusing people of cheating when they aren’t is horrible. It’s like a slap in the face of trust. I get that, because that’s how I feel about it but my god, that one is a hard road- especially when you’ve dealt with really bad relationships in the past.
The first thing you really have to do is work on your personal insecurities by way of working on yourself- trite, but absolutely true. I’ve noticed over the years, the more I work on me- the less twitchingly paranoid I am. I started working on this one ages ago, long before I even met my current partner because, frankly: I hated how that felt. You live your life in the fear of what others do or do not do- you’re going to get pretty ate up. That includes your partner.
The thing is, though: I don’t believe in the socially accepted shit about many acceptable behaviors. First off, I’ve mentioned this before: our commitment to each-other is a commitment to our home and family. While a lot of pop psychology fans state otherwise: you bet your ass that means we can and have vetoed the shit out of some connections. You don’t interlope here and you shouldn’t try. You will fail. I know that beyond a shadow of a doubt- because we have both done this move for several significant relationships in our lives:
Except, if you think he did it against someone I was close to and I did it against someone he was close to- you are mistaken. The sad thing is, those people, even when confronted with the fact that it did come from the source and not partner pressure- still blamed the wrong person. I had a best friend of over two decades whose solution to everything was that I cheat. I tried really hard to sort of wave that off, until her jealous efforts became way too much. I cut her off, he didn’t insist upon it nor did he ever pressure me to. He had a best friend from childhood that engaged in some mindblowingly insulting behaviors. Again, I didn’t end it- he did.
Those friends who we keep around aren’t those who accept everything we do or try to blow off glaring red flags when they’re concerned: they’re ones we trust well enough that their opinions, thoughts and feelings aren’t due to jealousy but actual concern. They do not encourage unhealthy behaviors or codependency- hell, we both have friends that the other just can’t stand. That doesn’t matter. What matters is they respect the relationship and what it means.
The friendships that I actively cultivate, it’s not that they wholeheartedly support everything I do. It’s not that they even refuse to utter an unkind word about my partner or my own behavior: they do. And I do, too. The point is, even if your goals aren’t like ours- and they may not be, that’s absolutely fine: the people you surround yourself will in fact, have a great deal of bearing on your security levels. A lot of people blah blah blah about no one makes you feel inferior without your consent- which is, to some degree, true.
That does not, however, absolve us all of cultivating friendships that uplift and encourage- rather than keep us in the toilet. In terms of romantic insecurities- we are not absolved of shitty behavior with that, either. We are responsible to one another. Ultimately, it’s absolutely true that no one is responsible for your emotions and how you act on them but you: but it starts with not blindly groping for any connection you can grab in the name of some shallow feeling of acceptance.
Who in the hell wants to be accepted by a bunch of idiots with poor judgement skills and no honor?