I’m Not GOOD Enough

It’s 2022 so most of the kids who grew up in the late 90s heard the message that they are great just the way they are. I remember encouraging my own students from 1991 – 1998 to proud of themselves and not to try to live up to standards set by a society that may not reflect their own lives. I was good at telling them but not internalizing it myself.

Why do I not feel GOOD enough? It is probably because I had a dysfunctional parent who was narcissistic and abusive for a large part of my childhood. No, not everything is HER fault, but kids are kids. If we are told enough times that we suck we tend to believe it especially if it comes from a parent who is supposed to adore us.

I am an intelligent woman and I now KNOW that I am who I am and I do not have to apologize for it. But even now, if I am sad or feeling vulnerable, those old feelings sneak in. They are like old socks. You don’t really love them and there are some holes but they sure to fit perfectly.

It is really confusing when your mom is there one minute doting on you in front of others, smoothing down your hair and soaking in all the accolades being poured upon you. Teachers are saying you are so smart, neighbors say you are so mannerly, relatives talk about what a good child you are for being so obedient. Then, after a night of drinking and allowing her own insecurities to set in, that same mom comes home enraged and with every hit tells you that you are worthless, stupid, unwanted, ugly, etc.

I have always said I’m an emotional sponge. This is the reason I could not continue in “special education” as they used to call it. I loved those students who were born with so little and struggled so hard. But I was not a good fit for that section of education because I went home and bawled and felt sorry for them and that was EXACTLY what they did not need. Thankfully my mentor could see it and pushed me in another direction.

Children want more than anything just to be loved, nurtured and to have fun. They deserve that. As I dig deeper into my childhood traumas I am even more sensitive to the say I parent. I feel I am doing a good job but I know that what I went through is not something that will disappear. So I try to make sure my girls do not get the “I am not good enough” message. I discourage blame and rage and encourage deep breathing and taking time to think about ones actions. When they do overhear me argue with their father I am quick to tell them it was not because of them and they do not have to do anything to “fix” it.

I do not think my kids are growing up in a perfect environment, but I know they are growing up in the best environment I can give them. I’m sure they will talk to their therapist about me but that’s okay – I’m just happy they will know they can see a therapist!

Great article:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-legacy-distorted-love/201410/do-you-feel-not-good-enough

Published by bridgey1967

Loyal. Funny. Sensitive. Loving.

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