Posted by: Gretchen | 2009-09-23

Stuck in a hole

Hi Doc... I' m stuck in a hole and I don' t know how to get out. I was always teased because of my looks and voice. I have a really bad self esteem. When I was 16- 17 years old I went through a rebelious phase and did some things I' m not proud of and can' t forget, but people liked me during my rebel phase. I started dating my boyfriend when I was 16 and I love him to death. When I finished school I started working with his mom at her office (she got me a job there). But then things went sour. In order to stay the " cool"  girlfriend, I stayed at home while he went out 3 times a week. His mom started slacking off at work (I was sort of living with them at that stage) so after about a year when I was just about doing all her work I was going to tell the boss. But my boyfriend beat me to it and told his mom- all hell broke loose. She started badmouthing me to everyone, even the new girl who I was friends with. So after another few months of working in a horrible working environment, I left. And I' m doing really well at my new job. So during my lunch I' d go to the old office to visit my friend. My other friend had started working there as my replacement. After a while I noticed they were acting strange and I found out from another friend (I later found out she was also part of the friends plot to destroy my reputation) that they had been badmouthing me too (it' s been two years and they still talk about me)! So I thought, that' s ok- I have my school friends. But my school friends would decline my requests to go out every week and I' d later find out they went out that weekend together. It was the one girls (we' ll call her Jane) birthday and I sent her 3 messages to say happy birthday (1 SMS and 2 over mxit) but she never replied. A few days later I asked my other friend what Jane did on her birthday and my other friend said that she had just done something with her family. Some time later I see my friends tagged in an album (named Janes Birthday) on Facebook. They all lied! Since then (two years ago) I haven' t been out much (on Saturday I went out for the 1st time in 2 months). I don' t want to go out, not even with my boyfriend. I' m battling to make friends and even summon up the will to go out. I' m only 22 but I feel that the whole world hates me. My friends and my boyfriends family just used and abused me. I don' t even want to spend time with my family. I don' t want this anymore- I want to have fun again and not be scared to go out.

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Our expert says:
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Sounds like you've been unfortunate in your choice of friends, and have made too much of your self-worth dependent on what other people might think of you. So counselling, especially of the CBT form, to grow a better self-image and self-esteem, could be useful. And it could enable you to form new friendships with good people, who have better things to do than play nasty bad-mouthing games about others.
Try geting involved in worthwhile activities --- with church and youth groups, charities, etc., where you will emet new and a better class of people, with possibilities of fresh friendships.

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