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The disease called “Perfection”

Dinner

As a warning, the following post was written in complete desperation. I have recently learned some very sobering truths from people that I love dearly. These truths have set in motion a quest within me to do whatever I can to make a change. Today is not geared at funny. Today is geared at something much greater.

I have to wonder. Am I the only one aware that there is an infectious mental disease laying siege on us as individuals right now? There is a serious pandemic of “Perfection” spreading, and it needs to stop. Hear me out because this is something for which I have passionately and constantly hurt. It’s a sickness that I’ve been trying to put into words for years without much success. It’s a sickness that I have personally struggled with. It’s a sickness that at times has left me hiding in dark corners and even hating myself.

And chances are it’s hit you too.

What is the disease called “Perfection”? Perhaps a list of its real-life symptoms will help you better understand it.

We live in communities where people feel unconquerable amounts of pressure to always appear perfectly happy, perfectly functional, and perfectly figured. “Perfection” is much different than perfectionism. The following examples of “Perfection” are all real examples that I have collected from experiences in my own life, from confidential sources, or from my circle of loved ones and friends. If you actually stop to think about some of these, you will probably cry as I admittedly did while writing it. If you don’t, maybe you’re infected with a little too much of this “Perfection” infection.

“Perfection” is a wife who feels trapped in a marriage to a lazy, angry, small man, but at soccer practice tells the other wives how wonderful her husband always is. “Perfection” keeps people from telling the truth, even to themselves. My husband is adorable. He called me a whore this week because I smiled at a stranger. When I started crying, he said he had a game to go watch. I love him so much.

“Perfection” is a husband who is belittled, unappreciated, and abused by his wife, yet works endlessly to make his marriage appear incredible to those who surround him at the water cooler. “Perfection” really does keep people from being real about the truth.  You would have laughed, guys. She said that I suck at my job and will never go anywhere in life. Then she insinuated that I was a fat, rotting pile of crap. Isn’t she the best?

“Perfection” is a daughter with an eating disorder that keeps it hidden for years because she doesn’t want to be the first among her family and friends to be imperfect. She would give anything to confront it, but she can’t because then the “Perfect” people would hate her as much as she hates herself for it.

“Perfection” is when a son has a forbidden addiction, and despises himself for it. “Perfection” makes us believe that nobody else could understand what it is like to be weak and fall prey to the pressures of the world.

“Perfection” is a man who loathes himself for feeling unwanted attraction toward other men.

“Perfection” is a couple drowning in debt, but who still agree to that cruise with their friends because the words “we don’t have the money” are impossible ones to push across their lips.

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6156 comments
vee
vee

I'm very insecure about my arms....to  me they are freakishly fat and disproportioned from the rest of my body. I never ever show the them. All my outfits are coordinated around little sweaters to cover my arms. I will never... ever ...wear a tank top. I never show anything above the elbow.

chs
chs

I am a 21 year old college student. While I consider myself a happy person, I think I have struggled with loving myself over the years. In middle school and high school I was always worried about what I looked like. I felt I could never compare to the other pretty girls. I was extremely self-conscious. To this day, i've never had a boyfriend. It's hard to be myself around guys because i'm so worried about what I look like or if they're judging me. Because of my dad's job, I've had to move to a different states time and time again, so I was always the new kid. I am not nearly as self-conscious as I used to be, i've learned to just accept how I am. 


I also deal with the fact that most of my friends are attending universities, and I attend a community college, and still live at home with my parents. On top of that, I have no idea what I want to do with my life as far as a career goes. So, I do worry and struggle with being confident in myself. It helps to think positively and just be thankful for the life I live.

antonio hill
antonio hill

i pray for you all i feel and understand but i i feel like god loves you the way you are...

person 1
person 1

I have A.D.D. and I know I am not alone and no one is alone just like me.  I also sometimes am a person who moves so slow on work and I get really frustrated with people around me just like other people too. 

jalenb
jalenb

no ones perfect, get over it. be yourself, be happy, never give up no matter how much you want to. your only a failure. if you "give up"

arianakiva
arianakiva

Looking at this article, I recall how angry I was growing up in a world that told me I was fat when I actually was not.  NOW my body is quite fat.  I became what I was told I was.  If I don't heal my relationship with my body and food I WILL die of this.  The first step for me was to start to work on forgiveness.  I had to forgive myself for taking on the BS society, media, etc. said to me and hating what I looked like because I didn't "fit in".  The next step was harder... forgiving everyone else who told me and still tells me that I am not acceptable.  Now that I'm "old" (52) I can never belong in the imaginary group of beautiful people.  Why imaginary?  BECAUSE NO ONE - not even the people who seem to belong FEELS like they BELONG there!!!  If they say they do they are probably lying - at least a bit.  Either we are all beautiful or none of us are.  A friend of mine wrote a song about this... it's called Loving Ourselves Into Love.  Being a singer, I couldn't even sing the song for a very long time because I'd cry every time I tried to sing it.  Eventually, I was able to sing it for others and I got it recorded last year.  If you want to listen to it search on KIVA and Loving Ourselves and you should find the song on the CDBABY website.  Please do take care of yourselves and do what you can to move forward in your healing.  Thanks for reading.  Good luck to us all. 

Sad Girl
Sad Girl

A lot of me just looks really weird. im not a good mom i get so mad then  feel bad. i feel bad for wanting to leave my boyfriend even though he hurt me cheating, so i still stay. how do i feel bad for him? hes so mean

ConfusedHearts
ConfusedHearts

I started having affairs 2 years ago because I feel worthless and am desperate for affection even though I know it's not real love and it's not as fulfilling - it's a temporary cure for my ailment. If I start to have feelings for someone I'm sleeping with I sabotage it because I can't have anyone getting too close. My boyfriend of 9 years started sleeping on the couch 5 years ago after our second child was born. I know he resents me for having children because now he has to be responsible. He could just leave and let me find happiness with someone else who would take me and the children happily but I know he doesn't want to look bad to friends and family or be the guy who ditched his family because he hated the responsibility. So instead we all live together miserably. Perfectly, imperfect. He acts like he doesn't know of the affairs but I think he just lets me do it. Which hurts more. I believe in God, I feel ugly inside - I used to be wholesome and have high moral standards. Now I am amoral and sinful. Black inside, rotting to the core - I have become the woman that I hate in the process of searching for a filler for the hole in my heart. Sadly, everything I do leaves me more empty but I can't stop. I need this to feel anything. Sometimes I wonder if I really care about anything anymore or if it's just a charade. I used to be motivated, driven, full of heart - no one could tell me I couldn't accomplish something. Now I'm the one telling myself I can't accomplish anything. I feel like I have no direction, no plan, no will power - nothing to work for. He will never leave, I will never be happy and this is all there is. I used to judge woman like me so harshly, but now I know... now I know why you need this. I know why you do this, and I know why you can't stop - because I can't stop. It's all I have that makes me feel anything.

Bri
Bri

This is the first article I felt compelled to comment on. This really hit home for me. I am guilty of feeling many of these things. Thankfully, I never was a victim of bullying from anyone else, but only from myself. I suffered from very bad acne throughout all of high school, and still struggle with it. I wouldn't even look anyone in the eyes because I thought I looked too bad for them to see me. I struggled with depression for many years, but never told anyone because you 'can't have problem if you're normal' and also because any time you mention things like that to people, they see you as weird or crazy, or some "out of the norm" person. You tell them you wanted to die and they back away like you belong in an asylum. I have tried fitting in, acting a certain way, saying certain things, so that the right people would like me. Any time I "geeked out" about the "nerdy" things I like, the difference in the way I was treated was astounding. It took me quite a while to be okay with everything about me. I still struggle sometimes, and I struggle with unfairly judging others. It's almost a natural reaction with the way our society is. It's usually when I stop to think later that I say to myself, "who am I to say that about someone else? I don't even know that person". I catch myself doing that way too much. But you hit the nail completely on the head here. I don't think anyone could have said it better. You truly have a way with words and putting them together just the right way. Honestly it is so nice to read a blog like this that is from a guy, as weird or stereotypical as that might sound. But I think most guys are too afraid to write anything with emotion, feeling, or passion. What you write is amazing. Thank you for putting it out there.

Mena
Mena

Look into Brene Brown's work; you'll love it! :)

helpingyou
helpingyou

It is daunting to consider being "real" for an extended period of time. Although it is easy to do while reading this article in the confines of my private space, it is truly hard to imagine being "real" out in public. Expectations are high and are coming from about a thousand different angles, but the one expectation that really matters is my own. It is difficult to want to break down that barrier, but I think I may have found my personal solution. Setting realistic goals and then telling someone else about them. When you think about it, all we really have is our word, and our word carries lots of meaning with those that care about us. If we make goals to better our personal thoughts about perfection we may succeed at a higher rate because we are held accountable by our friendship and our word. 

Tabby
Tabby

What has always been interesting to me is that seeking perfection to ridiculous standards can exist in someone who has really good perspective on the world.  It doesn't seem possible, but it is very true.  In my case, I have been a perfectionist since elementary school.  It is just part of who I am.  Much of the perfectionist tendencies are not from societal pressure, but simply internally produced expectations.  I had a hateful father.  I had a wonderful mother.  Neither of whom instilled perfection in me.  I grew up with a good full view of the world.  I have always known how lucky I was to never be hungry, never be forced into labor, never be severely abused, having access to good education, being smart, etc.  But, somehow, I have always found reasons to loathe myself.


In school, failing to produce an absolutely perfect cover to a book report would send me into frustrated tears and keep me up crazy hours.  I was talented in swimming, but in my view, was never good enough because I couldn't best my prior time at every meet.  I hated my pale skin.  I felt awkward and quiet.  I was always my own worse critic.  I got teased in school very little.  This was my own doing.


As an adult, I lost much of the awkwardness and found I could talk to people.  I became less OCD and failing to draw a completely straight line was not so important.  However, the constant competitive battle within myself was always alive.  I went to med school and made one B in the entire 4 years.  That haunted me.  I went into surgery because I knew it would be difficult.  I was successful in training, but I was no damned unhappy and isolated in my 4th year that I would contemplate suicide daily on my drive home.  I had the perfect lethal solution to ensure that I wouldn't be a failure at suicide and would accomplish my goal.  I really did want it; it was a fantasy.  But, I felt that I couldn't do that to my mother.  How could I break her heart?  I had some hope that conditions in my life could improve. 


And, things did.  I got married to a good person.  I have the best, most joyful son you could ever ask for.  I have a modestly successful practice.  I haven't been sued.  The job can have long hours but I have made peace with some of it.  But, the self loathing is always there.  I make less money than the average colleague in my field.  I do not like most of what I do.  This practice is more business than medicine.  I hate that I am unable to cook a decent meal for my family more than the minority of days of the week.  I have the full pressure of being the primary breadwinner of the family.  I am a college athlete who is only thin because of work and no longer has any athletic talent.  I used to write and do other things and I have now created a life that doesn't allow for much.  I have become (or, have always been) a glass half-full type of person in every arena except for my relationship with my child.  I feel that that perception will someday be dangerous for me and my husband, but I'm not sure how to change it.


I am pretty good at hiding all of this and projecting a pretty good image.  I have no one to speak to.  My husband understands some of what I feel, but I don't want my struggles to become a centerpoint of our lives.  My friends are good people but they have problems of their own.  I don't take frustration out on my son.  I am certainly the happiest when I am with him.  I have tried to find solutions, but I feel that I am stuck.  I have to continue with this job to be a good provider for my family.  I find it difficult to set my expectations lower for myself.  I think my mindset creates a lot of unhappiness for me, but I almost feel that I was made to be this way.  I think it is a disease, but I'm not sure that we can all escape it. 

bubbiesbub
bubbiesbub

PLEASE ANSWER THIS QUESTION! What is the difference between perfection and perfectionism?   

LightThief87
LightThief87

Wow, I just wrote a big long response and then deleted it because I didn't want to read comments from people telling me that my problems are small and I should feel lucky and blah blah blah. So, I'm starting over and writing it again because I realized that is what this post is all about. I have had several bouts of suicidal thoughts, I'm just like the girl you described in the post. I constantly feel like I can't live up to what and who everyone else wants me to be. I get depressed about men, money, friends, school, work, and pretty much just life in general. I have to regularly remind myself that while I don't have a lot of friends, the ones I do have are incredible. I have divorced parents who drive me nuts (more so than your basic everyone's parents drive them nuts), but they love me so incredibly much and would do anything for me. I have had horrific cheating boyfriend after horrific cheating boyfriend, but I'm not with those bad people anymore. It takes a lot of work to stay positive and I often fail, but because of Dan and my own will to be incredible awesome me I keep truckin' and I hope I can help everyone I meet do the same.

ShoqFullONuts
ShoqFullONuts

I needed to read this post on "perfection". You have me, a 45 year old father of two, in tears. You wrote the story of my life. You pushed my buttons. I was raised to seek perfection at all times. "As man now is, God once was. As God now is, man may become". I can't tell you how often that was drilled into my head as a kid. Or bringing home a report card with all A's and A+.... and a C+ in typing. That is all I heard about at home, that C+. I was too thin. Now I'm too fat. I was too young, now I'm too old. I can't measure up to (fill in the blank).


I struggle to keep this under control and not make my two boys feel that they need to torture themselves physically and emotionally to achieve some impossible standard of perfection. I struggle because I don't want them to grow up doubting themselves. I don't want them to ever wonder if daddy would love them more if instead of a B they got an A.


Don't even get me started on the whole coming out thing. I started that process while still an LDS missionary. Fun times (not!)


Anyway, thank you for writing this. I needed to read it/hear it from someone

Dee
Dee

I've been suffering with similar issues to some of the previous posters to the point of a clinical depression diagnosis. One thing I have learned is that imperfection IS perfection.

There is no one else like me, for all of my flaws and faults, that is what has moulded me and made me the person I am today. We spend so much time trying to fit in with this idea of perfection and that idea of perfection that we forget that other people are doing exactly the same thing. Perfection is different for each of us, no one idea fits all.

I'm not a superhero, a model, a genius, or particularly remarkable in any way. I am not religious particularly, but I do believe that you should treat people as you would like to be treated, and not take everything at face value. I live my life, pretty much to suit myself. Of course I compare myself to others, that's the society we live in, but now I don't JUDGE myself against others. We all do the best we can. We're only human, and if you're not making mistakes, you not learning anything.

What's the saying? "Those who mInd, don't matter. Those who matter, don't mind."

And to all of you single parents out there, no child ever said of their childhood how fabulously tidy mum or dad kept the house. They remember the dragon's nest dad " found" in the back garden, made out of a pile of autumn brush and leaves with the ornamental 'eggs' in it. They remember the day they made pastries with mum, the kind with the dirty finger prints around the edges, that dad loved because they tasted soooo good!

You are the sun, moon and stars to your children. You are doing a fabulous job. You're doing your BEST! The only opinions that matter are of the small, or not so small, people you care for.

Our time here is all that really matters. Time spent with loved ones, people that make you feel good, blood family or chosen family, that is the most perfect thing there is.

Perfection is imperfection, all those little quirks that make us what we are. We are perfectly imperfect, who could want more? :)

guest
guest

Growing up: "Perfection" was  not being able to have friends as a child because then people will see what goes on behind closed doors. "Perfection" was long sleeves.  "Perfection" was being the Top 10 of your graduating class because that is what the world sees.  Perfection was being too afraid to move out because then someone else becomes a target.  Perfection was a house being more important than a child's safety. 


Now: Perfection is not wanting anyone to see what I look like in a 2-piece bathing suit because I have had children.  

Michelle
Michelle

I felt the need to come back and read this post (this was the one that got me 'hooked' on your blog in the first place). Today I was again confronted with the perfection that my family expects and that I constantly fail to achieve.
 

Most days we're all able to ignore it  and play Happy Family but today someone felt the 'need to speak out'. Just because they think my degree is useless, my job isn't glamorous (they will only use the one word in my title that sounds fancy), just because my house isn't the shining monument to cleanliness that theirs is; they feel the need to speak. They just can't believe that I'm happy. I love my degree, love my job, feel at home in my house. Sure it's messy but I would rather sit and paint with my 1yr old than dust. I'd rather spend an hour doing something I love than packing away toys. 

I'm happy. Why can't that matter? Why do they need to force their unhappiness with my situation onto me and make me unhappy? And they wonder why I put more into my relationships with my friends, at least there I'm not judged with white cotton gloves run along shelves.

MonicaJimenez
MonicaJimenez

Great post! Had me in tears. Now let me tell you about my real.... I work my bottom off trying to support my children alone, I have 5 of my own and 2 stepchildren from a previous relationship that I intend to always be there for! My children range in age from 4 years to 16 years old and they all have different interests, sports, band, garden club, reading club, chess club, spelling bees, brain bowls, its insane. As I said I am a single mom and work full time, recently quit a part time job that I had on top of the full time job as I was just overwhelmed. I cry at night now not sure HOW I am going to make it without that extra income, and I WILL NOT allow myself to fail my kids. I sometimes seriously hate when I do have the day off and can go to pick up the kids from school and my sons friends mom is there as she always is, she devotes all her day, every day to volunteering at the school and all the kids love her, even mine, because she is always there, and my kids always ask when I can go and do that all the time! I sincerely wish I could tell them I will be here tomorrow but I cant and I hate that!

I try I really do try to make it to as many of the kids' school activities as I possibly can, as many of their games and practices as I can make, as many of their band concerts and competitions for various other things, I TRY! But alas, I am not able to make every one of them.

I try to find at least one hour HOPEFULLY 3 days out of the week, 4 if I am lucky, to go to the gym and make myself sweat, I feel like that is my punishment for not being able to be the perfect mom that I so often see others being. And as you can imagine, having 5 kids has taken its toll on my body, I am not super overweight but I could lose a good 25 pounds at least.

I spend most nights alone in my bed crying myself to sleep because I feel sometimes like just giving up (one of the many reasons I am so grateful for my children, because they keep me going every single second of every single day).

I somehow manage to make sure homework gets done, and breakfast is on the table before school and dinner is on the table just as soon as all homework is done and then we always play a short game before getting ready for bed. Its hectic.

But here is the kicker.... wait for it... I AM PERFECT! Not in my own eyes, mind you, as I have heard said we are own worst enemy or harshest judge, that is very true for me! But in the minds of seven sets of the most beautiful eyes I have ever seen, I AM PERFECT! They don't judge me because I am overweight, they don't scold me or give me the evil eye because I wasn't able to make last practice. They ADORE me and they tell me every day that they love me and that they are happy to call me mom... that's all the judgment I need... so Sally next door who is still married and has one child and has everything in order can keep giving me the disgusted look all she wants, I have all I need and want. =)

AshleyEA
AshleyEA

In complete tears! Really struggling with this "perfectionist" thing.I was diagnosed with diabetes an the age of 22. It has pretty much devastated me. I dropped out of school and lost my financial aid. I've been a complete train wreck lately. Slowly I am working my way through it. It's never easy but I just have to keep telling myself to do my best. This post really amazed me.

Anon
Anon

I am those people you think have it all together. I've been overweight my whole life, but I've taken the healthy turn -clean eating and exercise- for some months now and I feel beautiful some days, even sexy. I have a nice job, make decent money and are pretty young to be a project manager here. I have a boyfriend who loves me and whom I love, a mom and sister who are the best I could've asked for, and lots of friends to keep me occupied every single day of the week and whom I have to cancel sometimes because I need to sleep. I am a master of smiling and chit chat, of looking confident and in control, and getting along with everyone and handling anything.


But I will always feel like the funny fat girl of the class, that needs to be there because there is always a fat funny girl in the group. I was with more guys than I'm proud of just because I couldn't *believe* a guy could look at me and want me for real. I couldn't believe my boyfriend really liked me at first. I don't think I inspire anyone with my life. I always feel like my work is being overlooked and it's not worth it, that I'll be sacked any day despite peeps telling me I'm exceeding expectations.


I feel like I fall short to all my friends. They're too smart, too popular, too fun or too cultured for me. I don't really fit with any, and I try to not fall out of touch with them because then I'll be less smart, less popular, less fun or less cultured than I already am.


I feel like I need a masters to keep up with my peers (and one in Europe, god forbid I don't go to a high profile mba), a higher salary, to be CEO of Apple and look like Giselle Bundchen to deserve the people I have around me. To deserve the love they give me.


I guess that no matter how good life is, at heart I'll always be the fat funny girl who gets along with everyone and that everyone pities a little and lets her tag along. That no matter how much I work and study, I'm always a bit on the short side, and my friends and peers will always be doing better at life. I feel undervalued by others and overrated by myself, and worse at life than most people. I loathe my dad for delayed reasons, and I'm scared I'll never really care enough for someone to cry at their funeral. I feel selfish and guilty for feeling all these things, especially for having built a small compartment in my brain to store everything and not look into it unless I'm in a really low day (together with stuffing my face with food and gnawing at my nails until I got to the cuticle. Later, I'd go to the gym and put on fake nails -God forbid I was seen with un-manicured hands).


I'm a confident smiling facade that never really feels adequate or satisfied. And I'm scared half the time of being a failure in life, love, family, friends and body. I don't want to be a mother until I have all this worked out.

Kaycie5
Kaycie5

What my Gramma engrained into my head my entire life is...You are too fat...Finish that food on your plate!  She doesn't care what is happening on the inside, only what you make it look like on the outside.  I was Never overweight as a child, ever, but she told me that ALL the time.  "You eat that and you're going to get fatter.  Finish your plate, do you know I went thru the dirty 30's and we had to scrimp and save and had to go without food."  I am 40 years old now and she still tells me the same thing.  I wish she would just die already...harsh?  Probably, but it's the honest truth.  I am not strong enough to tell her to fk off, at least not out loud.  I am so sick of having to act so perfect around her.  I am now 70ish lbs overweight...now, I am actually fat.  I used to be bulimic because I thought I had to be.  That was something that you did to help you get perfect.  I love my gramma, because she's my gramma, but I truly hate her.  I have never said that out side of my head before.  I hate her for making me feel like anything I do is not ever good enough.  I hate her because I can't stand to look at myself in the mirror.  Besides doing my hair and makeup, I have not actually "looked" at myself in a mirror in years.  I casually glance to make sure things are in place but I have no self esteem.  I really like "who" I am but I can't stand what I look like.  It's not even that I think I am ugly, because I don't think I am, I'm not gorgeous either but I am fat and feel disgusting.  I want to be motivated and het healthy but I feel like I will just fail at that again. Why bother trying when I won't succeed? 

My brothers new baby is 4 months old...my gramma has already started calling her fat.  It angers me to no end.  WTF is wrong with that woman?


My life has been a series of events

Age 1-16 My mom beat the crap out of me with brushes, belt buckles, rolling pin, fist, feet, hair brushes, spatulas, etc.


Age 5-16 My mom joined a new religion and went super strict and made us follow and strive to be perfect, I wasn't allowed to like boys, or talk to them unless they went to the meetings too.  I wasn't allowed to have birthdays, or go to my friends.  I had to not participate in any "worldly" activities...so I had to sit off to the side at school.  Oh heaven forbid if I faltered she beat me behind closed doors.


Age9-12 my mom's uncle molested me and I never told anyone until he was dying and my mom was beating me because I wouldn't go see him in the hospital.  After I told her, she laughed at me.  Nice mom!


Age 13 My dad was killed in a car accident by a drunk semi driver...my mom's beatings got so much worse than before.  He was my rock, he saved me from her and now he was gone...he left me...alone.


Age 14 We moved to another town far away from my friends and memories of my dad.  I met an amazing boy and fell for him hard.  I started sneaking around...now that was fun!  She found out and made him come to the house and she brought out the bible and quoted scriptures to explain why I wasn't allowed to date him.  I was soooo embarrassed...but we kept dating on and off for 3 yrs.


Age 16 (almost 17)  I moved out, 3 hrs away from my mom.  Freedom!  Except for the "elders" of the religion that my mom knew, they tried to keep me in line.  When that didn't work, they kicked me out...duh, I wasn't going anyways, but they advised the other teens there, that I was a bad influence and not worthy to be friends with...Yep.  I wasn't having sex, or doing drugs, I had good morals but liked to go to parties and drink.  I was living on my own, going to grade 12 and working 2 jobs...but I was a bad influence...ok then!  Thanks for that self esteem booster.


Age 17 Started dating a boy who I thought was super gorgeous and would be fun to hang around with for a few months...23 years later, we have 5 boys and he's still the love of my life...I just wish I loved me more so I could let him in more.  Because of the way I hate my body and for the things that were done to it as a child, I have a hard time letting him love me.  I was never "fat" until after I started having kids, but I always thought I was because my gramma told me it was true. 


I like who I have become, I love being a wife and a mom, everything that has happened to me has made me the person I am today.  One of my twins was telling me one day that he's really sad he didn't get to meet his grandpa.  I told him I was too but then told him that if he hadn't died, I never would have meet his dad and that he never would have been born.  I also told him that if I had to choose between my dad and him, that I would always choose him.  That I would go thru all the pain of losing my dad again, just so I could have my kids.  I told him that maybe my dad had to die, so they could all be born...we both cried. 


Anyways, I could go on and on.  Sorry it's so long already  :)


One new thing I learned today hit me hard...It was the quote from the Perfection blog..."I believe in God, but not religion. It took me 30 years to find the courage to say that. It took me 30 years to believe that I could be a good man and still believe that."


I have always had a firm, strong belief in God but have never, ever, went to any other religion.  I believe for the most part everything I was taught, but I was never "perfect" enough to "do" the religion thing.  I really think that's ok.  I have good morals and my kids are all very polite and brought up well.  We live respectful lives and we don't need a religion to tell us if we are good or bad, it's what's in our hearts that matters. 


My goal for today is to look at myself for 30 seconds in the mirror and say 2 things I like.  What's yours?



me
me

I am 29, and single mother to a beautiful, wonderful two year old.

As far back as I can remember I wished I had never been born, I always imagined that if life got too hard I would walk into the ocean. When I was 12 years old I remember for some reason my grade 7 teacher getting into some stupid religious rant because someone in the community had killed themselves. I remember the feeling of despair I had when he said that it was a sin to kill yourself and a crime too.

 My parents had both been abused and neglected as children and they both did their best to try and raise us differently, but they had passed on to us the feelings of being separate and different from everyone else, of being judged not as good as everyone else, simply with the way they interacted with the world. I understand that now!

I never knew what was wrong with me growing up, I looked at myself and my family with disgust. I thought that everyone hated me. I walled myself off from the world.

If I had killed myself back then I never would have known why I felt that way. I never would have fallen in love, which was something I will never regret. I never would have gave birth to my wonderful son, and experienced the life altering event of becoming a mother. I wouldn't have come to know and love my family as an adult, and I wouldn't have got to know myself!

AOT
AOT

I am an 18-year old sorority girl that has been struggling with an eating disorder for almost a year now. I either eat less than what a child eats or don't eat at all. I come off as being confident and always happy. Truth is I often find myself looking at thinspo wishing I looked like they did and crying myself to sleep. I blackout daily and go to the doctor about blacking-out but refuse to tell them the truth. My boyfriend saves my life on a daily basis. He ask me what all I have ate and when I did so. I have became a little better the past couple weeks but am scared I will get bad again. Words cannot describe how great full I am to have a boyfriend to check up on me and call me beautiful on a daily basis. If it wasn't for him I would probably be in the hospital by now. He is the best thing that has ever happened to me. An eating disorder takes over the persons mind and that is all they think of. Please if you think someone you know has one talk to them and do not joke about eating disorders. 

123iamhj
123iamhj

Biggest Struggle

The biggest struggle I've had in my life was my high school years. I would say that high school was not how I planned. I lost many friends throughout the year and I wish I could have most of them back. I went to one high school my freshman, sophomore, and junior year then right before my senior year I moved to a smaller high school to finish my schooling out there. I'm not going to go in detail on why I moved and such but I will tell you a little bit. At my old school, freshman year wasn't so bad, then sophomore was worse and my junior year was a tad bit better. I thought I could jack around in school, but that was not the case. My grades started to slip and I started becoming friends with people that I should not have been friends with. Once I moved schools it felt like someone had lifted a heavy weight off of me. Honestly, if I could back a redo everything I would.

“You now” to “You then”

Hannah, don’t worry about high school anymore, enjoy what you have now and also enjoy the friends and family that are right in front of you. Just be yourself and the true friends will stick around. Work on your grades and schooling now, so that your future is very successful for you.

My perspective

This perfection article has helped me realized that no one is perfect and everyone has flaws. Don’t worry about being perfect, just worry about being true to yourself. It has made me look at many things from a different point of view. I know now not to take things for granted and enjoy what is in front of me instead of the past.

amilucetta
amilucetta

I'm 28 years old and I've only had one boyfriend. We went out for a year and half thinking that I was in love with him and I wasn't. It was so hard for me to breakup with him because I thought I would never meet another person who would want me like he did. I finally did break it off, but I cry all the time thinking I'm never going to find someone else. The worse part is people think i'm happy being single and enjoying my life, but inside i'm just so tired of rejection and guys trying to get one thing out of me. 

tooImperfect
tooImperfect

I have hated my life since I have memory of it; yes, since I was a little person. I adopted a compulsive layer syndrome to make myself feel better, since I was 4 years old. I have compared my life with the life of others everyday of my life. I have felt bad for not loving my mother, for blaming my father for not allowing me a "normal" life, my older sister for always competing with me for my dad's love.

I have a life that is not fulfilling, even though there is nothing important I don't have (family, health, work, home and food). 

In my life, I want others to see me perfect. So there is nothing that I didn't know, didn't see, didn't do, haven't try... when the reality is that all those things I brag about having done are not true. When I know deep inside that I am too imperfect. I want to be the best worker, the best colleague, the best son, the best boyfriend, the best brother, the best friend... the smartest, the happiest, the most hard worker, the nicest, the most helpful... so that people would like me and accept me.

I am 30 years old and I have a number of friends that I can count with the fingers of one hand. And I know that I can relay on them for anything but just the occasional facebook chat to catch up with: how is everything? Good? Great, I am happy for you. Miss you, see ya soon.  

I feel lonely, angry and frequently feel envy of others lives: the relationship they have, their families, that material possessions and even if they are friendly and go to parties and enjoy them.


But all these is what everybody doesn't know...

AshleeCainBlack
AshleeCainBlack

I am 32 years old, and two years ago I left a marriage of 11 years because of my ex's  addiction to pornography and his refusal or inability to change.  Because of his shame at himself and what he did he became, mean, almost cruel to me in action and in the words he would say.  Because of my fear of not having a "perfect live" I stayed for years in this relationship. I had myself convinced I could never survive without him.  No one else would ever want me.  

I also have a disease called multiple sclerosis that makes life extremely hard for myself and those around me.  I fall very often and get hurt, and am ashamed to explain why.  I have fatigue so bad there are days even getting out of bed is to much for me.  I have 4 children I am raising on my own now, and every day I feel like failure and a terrible mom.  Certain that no man could ever really love me again, not with all my "issues".


But every day with the love my children show me, the love my family and friends show me, I am trying to learn to love who I am.  To be confident in myself.  I have made mistakes that will haunt me for the rest of my life, but they don't make me a bad person, they make me real.  I don't hide my disease anymore.  I talk about it freely.  I talk about my ex's addiction to pornography and how it affected and hurt me, even though the same I feel is terrible.  Slowly learning to be real, and loved this article!! 

Keala96707
Keala96707

My reals are...

I have a mother who thinks I’m a horrible mother and would be a far better parent to my children than I can ever hope to be. I have confirmed this with family and friends to whom she has said derogatory things about me. I never hear it straight from her and I expect I never will. I know I’m not the ‘perfect’ parent, but I never professed to be either. But she apparently is, and my not even desiring to be ‘perfect’ obviously makes me substandard. Yet I don’t have the strength or energy to confront her about this because no matter what I say, I’m always wrong. So I just let it eat away at me and make me feel hurt and angry and inferior.

I have children that I love dearly and wouldn't give up for anything, yet I have, at times, taken out the frustrations of my life on them with hurtful words.

I have fought with my weight my entire life. I know all the ‘right’ things to do to lose weight, but I have zero motivation to do them even though I have surpassed 250 lbs. I have hated my body for the last 22 years because it doesn't look the way it ‘should.’ So many times I have looked at myself in the mirror and told myself that I didn't deserve to be ‘normal sized’ because I never worked hard enough at it. Never mind that I have been on Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig combined more times than I can actually remember. And every time I lose about 20 lbs. and start to feel really good…and then I get tired of the food, or tired of counting every little thing that I put in my mouth, and I end up gaining it all back. I can kind of deal with all of this at home, but am at a point where I really hate going out in public, and when I do, I must make my face as ‘perfect’ as possible. I tell myself that if my face looks fab, people won’t look at my size. It’s the only armor I have to deflect the comments I sometimes hear. I console myself with the thought that even though I’m fat, at least I’m not ugly, too.

I have a husband whom I love, who loves and desires me. And I have cheated on him because the attention from other men was more intoxicating than morphine, yet the sex itself was totally unsatisfying. It always started out as a simple flirtation, and then I couldn't stop it from crossing the line. Meanwhile, sex with my husband is awesome 98% of the time. I can only interpret this behavior as a way to make me feel better about being overweight, because if men still desire me, then I must not look as awful as I think I do. And then I remember what I did to feel that way and I feel even worse than I did to begin with.

I never completed college (3 different schools) or trade school (2 different career types), and so I add this to the pile of things I've failed in my life, which add to the reasons why I feel worthless.

I have fantasized many times about suicide. But I love my husband and my kids so much it hurts, and I know I could never do that to them. I’m pretty sure they’re the only reason I’m still here. So I just keep going through the motions of my life in the hopes that some magical day I just won’t care about what anybody else thinks anymore. I crave the freedom that would bring me more than anything else.

iphone123
iphone123

The biggest struggle I've had in my life was my high school years. I would say that high school was not how I planned. I lost many friends throughout the year and I wish I could have most of them back. I went to one high school my freshman, sophomore, and junior year then right before my senior year I moved to a smaller high school to finish my schooling out there. I'm not going to go in detail on why I moved and such but I will tell you a little bit. Freshman wasn't so bad. Sophomore was worse and junior year was a tad bit better. I thought I could jack around in school, but that was not the case. my grades started to slip and I started becoming friends with people that I should not have been friends with. Honestly, if I could back a re-do everything I would.

Englsih093babe
Englsih093babe

I feel like I am in a deep hole that just gets darker with each passing day. Ever since my parents divorce I feel that I am always looked down upon as the good child and that I could never do anything wrong. This has created so many problems for not only myself but the ones I love around me. I have fallen into the spiral of drug use and it scares me because I never thought I would head down this sort of path. I try every day to keep away from these harmful substances, but I find myself being drawn back.

Big tuna
Big tuna

The biggest mistake I have survived is wrecking my truck. The hardest part of this wreck was when it was happening. After it happened I was getting out of my truck I was in shock about wrecking my truck because it happened so fast. Another reason that this was hard for me because I had times were I couldn’t trust myself driving and I had a fear of how mad my dad will get.

Dear Nathan make sure you watch what you are doing when driving. Keep both eyes on the road and don’t look away. If you do look away from the road make it brief and look in front right away. I wrecked my truck because I wasn’t paying attention to the road. This message is from future Nathan and I hope you will learn better from the advice I give you because I can’t redo that mistake.

What this perfection article tells me that every day that there is going to be struggles. Like when I wrecked my truck I thought to myself I am going to struggle trusting my self-driving again, but the article tells me that you will just have to move on and trust yourself so that when you move on I could have more confidence.

Wheeler Kenya
Wheeler Kenya

Kenya English 093

The perfection article tells me that there is every battle to every bit of a struggle ; but for every struggle and battle there is an out standing ending. That will sooner or later start a large rewarding beginning. I realize through this article that every one struggles with their inner selves. That will once struck an out posing reaction that will be the opposite of the struggle, that then it will be over came and worked upon. For the result that went wrong in the beginning to then now have an outstanding reward. I now realize that most people not just my self struggle with the thought of perfection; now I begin to understand that it is okay to be imperfect.

Wheeler Kenya
Wheeler Kenya

            Kenya English 093

You then, you are beautiful amongst any trial you are taking upon. You then, are courageous and found of the trials that life it self is taking you on. Not every one can make it threw tough spots and trials they crumble quickly. You then, your struggle is a book to be written to help someone end there struggle. You then, struggle is not meant to last for ever, but it has an ending lesion learned. You then, keep your head up there is a large ending to any strong beginning.

Wheeler Kenya
Wheeler Kenya

Kenya English 093

One of my biggest struggles in my present life is becoming a single mom at a young age. And trying to be that perfect mother; when knowing that no one is perfect. I have found it to be very hard and most of the times very stressful. I also lost a lot of what I once called my friends. I sometimes feel like I am on an island all alone. I feel that sometimes the only person I have to listen to me is my daughter. It sometimes puts me in a distinctive spot in my life when i have know one there for me. Or everyone seems to busy for me. Ialso struggle with my self esteem I see my self really fat and ugly since i have had a child. I have put on an extra 50lbs. It is very hard to cope with. Especially when society being my family and friends constantly point out the fact that I look a lot bigger than I used to. Having a kid no one ever said that it was going to be easy but it slowly but surely sunk in.

Wright6
Wright6

I am a mom of 4 beautiful girls and our life was turned upside down a year and a half ago. My husband was involved in a car accident that was not his fault. He was hit head on by a teenage girl who claims that she dropped her pop and crossed the center line on a curve going 60 in a 45. My husband went through 3 major surgeries (each about 4 hours long.) He was in hospital for 2 weeks and in nursing home for 2 weeks and in a hospital bed in our living room for 7 months. Because of the accident: he walks with a limp every day. He lost his well paying job (one that we could afford for me to stay home with our kids and not work). He now works for little over minimum wage and less than 40hrs a week because they want to keep costs down. That out of his $345,000+ hospital bills, we have over $15,000+ that we owe for something that was out of our control. 

No one knows:

That I am still angry, I still cry every time I think about it, I am still miserable after it has all been said and done. My family has been traumatized by what happened. My daughter cried every night that daddy didn't come home for that month, because she wasn't old enough to understand why it happened and why daddy wasn't tucking her in at night when has their whole life. My husband and I cannot leave the house without the kids asking 50 questions and giving 50 hugs and kisses and crying because she is afraid that we wont come home. That the kids now are scared to spend the night anywhere because it reminds them of when they had to stay at family's homes while mommy and daddy stayed at the hospital. They are terrified when dad leaves the house that "some lady is going to crash into him again" and he will get hurt like last time. That live fear of losing our home every month just trying to figure out if he will make enough on each check to pay the rent, utilities, and all the other bills. I had to go find a job that fit our schedule and barely get to see my kids anymore. That I try to hide behind the mask of self assurance I put on everyday to tell myself that I am ok, that I am happy, that I can smile in all adversity, that everything will work out; when all I want to do is hide. Hang my head, shut all systems down, stop smiling, and hide. The only positive side, is my family. Even though we are still broken; we still have each other. My kids bring a REAL smile to my face, their laughter is slowly healing the wounds that are there, and my husband..... HE IS MY ALL. He keeps me going, he keeps my head up, he kisses my tears, and comforts my doubts.

ShortySmallz
ShortySmallz

@Sad Girl Get out of there girl, you can do it, and there is someone waiting out there who can make you feel good things instead of bad ones. 

Mimifrance
Mimifrance

@ConfusedHearts Hello there, I want to tell you that your story is touching me and I understand why you might feel the way you do however this person you once were is still in there you need to nurture her back to life... Please leave if not for you, at least for the sake of your children. Children know, feel everything that i going en in an unconscious way and this is not the mssage you wnt o give them about love...You have the choiceto leave if h won't do it. Loads of love and I hope you will do what ibest for you and your children. You CAN DO IT !!!

ShortySmallz
ShortySmallz

@ConfusedHearts I could give you sympathy if you didn't cheat. That's SO FUCKED UP and you should genuinely feel shame for your actions because they are wrong. Get out of there, pronto, but come clean first because he has a right to know. No wonder you feel so ugly (I'm not supporting this mindset, only explaining it), your actions are as ugly as they get. Come clean, break up and move on with your life. Cheating is NEVER OK, period.  It's wrong to blame him and claim he knows about the affairs, that's your attempt to justify your weak, disloyal behavior. If you are not getting what you need from your relationship you have a right to leave (or create whatever changes are necessary), but cheating is unforgivable in my book and so long as you behave that way you will deserve every inch of misery you experience. 


Your post suggests that this stuff all happened to you without your consent. It did not. We are all masters of our own destiny, unless we choose not to be. Your situation is a culmination of your poor choices, and by making new, better choices you can have a new situation. I'm not trying to shit on you, I'm trying to give you a level of honesty you will sorely need if you're going to wake up from this delusional mindset you've trapped yourself in. Anyone can be redeemed, once they take responsibilty for their wrongs and agree to do right in the future. 


 This "I'm too afraid to leave but I will let another man stick his dick in me as often as possible to cope" attitude you have is disgusting and makes it hard to sympathize with you because what you're doing is reprehensible. There is no excuse for lying or cheating, period, and when you learn to live your life by that standard of accountability instead of justifying your behavior and wallowing in this victim mentality then perhaps you will find contentment again.  You have a hole inside because you've helped to create a hole inside, it takes two to tango, it's not all your man's fault. Here's a quote for you: "When I lost my excuses I found my success." You said you "can't stop." Why? Do you not control the motor functions of your own body? Are you not in control of your mind and your thoughts? Stop lying to yourself and learn to take responsibility for your actions, then your whole life will change. Sorry to be harsh (it's not something I normally do), but you need to hear this cold hard dose of reality.

DELOVELYDEANGEL
DELOVELYDEANGEL

@ConfusedHearts I know how you feel and what you are feeling. HUGS you are not alone. I was there for 2 years.

Tm
Tm

@Bri I struggled with bad acne for years as well and still have light acne and oil and other crap that bugs me.  Most notably I still have the scars from some of my acne even after a $3000 surgery to remove them that did help a lot but didn't cure.  I couldn't even look myself in the mirror a lot of times because I was so ashamed of what I had to walk around in public with.  I even had a child around the age of 4 ask me what was wrong with my face.  I hold no ill feelings towards the child but i will never forget that moment and one girls reaction to his comment.  I completely understand your struggle with that and also with depression as I am struggling with that now.  Perfection can drive us absolutely insane if we're not careful and its so hard to break free from.  Thank you for your post.  Its always comforting to know that I am not alone and neither are you.

bubbiesbub
bubbiesbub

@LightThief87  You are soooooooo not alone.  First, you should see a psychiatrist to determine if you have clinical depression that could be helped with medication.  Next, you need to love yourself and realize that it doesn't matter what others' think!  It may be a long road, and you may need to hit bottom to finally get help.  I suffered like you do, but at the same time was an overachiever and no one would have ever guessed that I had a self esteem problem stemming from perfectionism. I eventually resorted to drugs, which was the best and worst thing that ever happened to me because I was finally able to get help. The most difficult thing for me was asking for help, because "look at me... I'm fine!"  I can't tell you how much better I am with God in my life (learned from AA).  Good luck.  I'll be praying that you find your way to a more serene and happy life.

cararac
cararac

@Dee You made me cry! Thank you so much for everything your wrote. I'm going to try my best to remember your words every day for my son. You are awesome :)

anonnykas
anonnykas

@MonicaJimenez You are such an incredible Mom. It's sad to say, but I believe mothers that love and give a full 120% like you do are a rarity these days. So many parents, today, lose sight of what's important and focus on material things rather than the irreplaceable experience that is childhood. No matter what you do in life, you should sleep soundly knowing you created 7 wonderfully grateful, happy people on this earth. I was lucky enough to have a childhood similar to your children's and despite always knowing that deep down, I went through some rough patches as a teenager (bulimia, depression, cutting, alcoholism), but have realized just how lucky I am more and more as I grow older. Please remember that if your children ever hit a rough patch as they grow older--it's part of life (or more accurately, the pressures of society) and in no way a reflection of you. But, based on your comment, I'm guessing I don't need to tell you that because it sounds like you will always be there for every one of those children no matter what. The world needs more people like you. Oh and btw, game night at your house sounds like so much fun!! I bet your kids will talk about that for years!!

4 under 5
4 under 5

@amilucetta  I as you many years ago. Keep on socializing & you will find him where you least expect it. Also, don't lower your standards or morals. I even used to tell guys that good things come to those who wait and wait they did-for a long time.  I also had a general list that grew as I had different relationships- age, height, education, religion & he couldn't be too good looking bc most of those guys are jerks. I even added the guy's parents has to still be married like mine.

I was 28 when I finally met my guy who met all the criteria & adores me 15 years later (most of the time- don't want to sound too perfect LOL!). 

Best of luck! He's out there. 

4 under 5
4 under 5

@tooImperfect I hope you can learn to love the true you. OR at least like him. Your second paragraph why you have trouble with relationships. Everyone sees through your stories & probably make light of them when you aren't around. Be true to yourself & the next time says they went skydiving or whatever (clamp your mouth sit for a sec then try asking how it was, ask lots of details & tell them you would love to try that (or not). If you make it about them you will start developing a friendship. Like you, many of us get tired of trying to compete & alee also looking for someone to enjoy our story & think we are awesome. Good luck! 

Anon
Anon

@Keala96707 I am not married, but I've also cheated because 'attention from other men was more intoxicating than morphine'. Whenever it happened, it was fleeting, unsatisfying and I felt guilty and devastated. It made me feel like the worst thing on earth, because my boyfriend loves me and I adore and our sex life is great. But the idea of another men, without an emotional attachment to me, without knowing me for my brains or my personality, would just desire me for a one night stand.. it was mindblowing. And it never ended well. I'm commited to remain faithful, but I haven't been on that situation again. I hope I won't be that weak. I hope I can love myself enough to not hurt the trust and love of my boyfriend again.

Kaycie5
Kaycie5

@Wright6 You are awesome!  My dad was killed in a car accident when I was 13, my whole life turned upside down.  He was my rock, I never had a good relationship with my mom because she was always so angry and would beat me.  After my dad was gone, she got worse.  Her anger was all consuming when we were at home, but out in public, everyone thought she was so awesome.  I am now a mom to 5 boys who I love so dearly and could never imagine treating them the way I was treated.

I feel for your girls and the fear they have of losing you both.  I wish my mom was half the mom you are.  I know she loves me...well mostly anyways, but I've never been perfect enough for her and it really make me hate myself, but at the same time, I really like who I have become and treasure the fact I don't hit my kids and hurt them that way.  I have stopped the cycle and that makes me happy.  I have so much guilt because she has Huntington's and it's a horrible disease and as much as I love her, I still have so much anger towards her.  I'm not a helpless child anymore, I finally have a voice...but because I am so cranky when she's demanding, I'm not the perfect daughter.  Hmm...anyways, Not sure what I am trying to say here.  lol


My whole point I think is, just keep making your girls know they are loved...that's all I ever wanted. 


ShortySmallz
ShortySmallz

By the way you're cheating on your kids, too, just so you know.

LightThief87
LightThief87

@bubbiesbub @LightThief87  I understand and appreciate that you are merely trying to help, but you completely missed my point. I have been to a psychiatrist and I have been on medication. The shrink helped a little, but the medication only made me a zombie and now that I am off of it I actually feel better because I can actually be a human being with real feelings both positive and negative. The last part of my post was the important part. While it's not easy for me to remember, I do have some of the most incredible people in my life and they, along with my own hard work, are why I am still here and why I want to continue being here. God has nothing to do with it and never will. I am my own person and I make my own decisions and I succeed because of me. Not because of God and I will never give him or anyone else credit for my own accomplishments. I appreciate your concern and your prayers and I'm glad you found something to keep you going. Thank you for caring and thinking about me.