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to really hate birthdays in general - apart from my children's!

(12 Posts)
FlightHattendant Sun 30-Aug-09 21:08:31

I've just always felt very very sad around my birthday. Excited about it as a child but usually a bit uncomfortable as well, I didn't like being the centre of attention and only ever had one party, when I was 9, which was a disaster as I ahd to invite only 5 children and therefore it was the ones who'd invited me, who didn't all get on...anyway...

then I got older and fell out a bit with my family, and told them not to buy me gifts, because I was struggling to figure out how to fit in with them and for a while didn't see them at all. They carried on but I didn't want 'things' as I didn't really feel like they liked me iyswim (ungrateful maybe, but it hurt)

Since then anything they have got me ahs emphasised the feeling that they don't understand me, or like me, or know me. Finally I've said I'd rather no gifts as I feel too old now (keeping it polite iyswim) and we've agreed a family rule not to do adult presents. The kids still have loads for theirs, that's all hunky dory.

Last boyfriend I had made no effort despite his being 2 weeks before and my really making a big deal of it for him - thought he cared for me, too - and the one before that it turns out was already living with some other bird when he brought me a present, which he had chosen but didn't seem to be quite 'there', like he felt it was an obligation. So far nothing has shifted my belief that I'm not loved, or wanted, or cared for enough for someone to really want to buy me (or make or whatever) a nice present that I will like.

This sounds so shallow and crap - but I always just feel miserable and want to cry when that time of year comes round. It's like being at a big party where nobody knows you - you feel more lonely than ever. I wish it would just never be my birthday and I could forget feeling so rubbish about it.

Does anyone else feel like this? Why is it so symbolic, and why do I even care?

FlightHattendant Sun 30-Aug-09 21:11:13

..I do have one very close friend who sends me something, and for that I am eternally grateful. I'm being silly really.

It's the family side of it I suppose.

chegirl Sun 30-Aug-09 21:26:50

It sounds like birthdays really trigger some difficult feelings and memories for you. No wonder you dont like them.

Birthdays are sold as being the day we are all supposed to feel special and wanted. It just doesnt work like that for all of us.

For people who are adopted or have given a child up for adoption they can raise very difficult issues. For the bereaved they are yet another reminder that our loved ones are not with us. All I can think of on my birthday is that DD is not here so what is the bloody point (ray of sunshine that I am)

Birthdays really suck for some of us so YANBU. It would be nice for you if you could find a way of at least tolerating them and not feeling so down.

Hope you can one day.

FlightHattendant Sun 30-Aug-09 21:30:17

Chegirl sad i'm so sorry about your little girl.

You've much more reason than I have to feel sad. I seem just to wallow for no reason, ridiculous really.

Thankyou for such a wonderful post. You've got it right on the nose I think.

chegirl Sun 30-Aug-09 21:48:10

We all have our reasons flight. Yours are just as valid as mine.

Only thing is that there is some hope that you can find a way round this? At least if you could really pin down why birthdays make you feel so bad. It may help.


NinjaRain Sun 30-Aug-09 21:51:32

I understand your wallowing though. It is like mine. My birthday seems to the bigest diaster of the year. I feel the same about christmas too. And yet I have no good reason (unlike chegirl) to feel this way. I have cancled my birthday and locked myself away until it was over before. And then dealt with presents or what ever i was supposed to another day.

This year I had a lovely day. I spent the day taking ds to a museum he wanted to go to and then spent the afternoon with my favourite cousin, and their dcs. It was about the kids getting on and having fun not about the birthday. So it was lovely. I am dreading nxt yr though. sad Its not just you.

dogofpoints Sun 30-Aug-09 21:58:06

aw flight. What a sad tale.

How old are your dc? I've always been touched by how much the chldren like to do special things on my birthday. Couldn't you introduce some family birthday traditions that show you love each other (even though there are problems with your wider family)

FlightHattendant Sun 30-Aug-09 22:03:19

Thanks for talking me through this a bit. It is about getting to the bottom of it, I just can't seem to manage to though.

Ninja I a sorry you feel the same. Do you know why it is?
Ds1 is making a difference to me now he is old enough to empathise...he knows he likes birthdays and wants me and everyone else to enjoy them too, he;s been making me little cards even though it isn't for a while smile

I've no idea why it is so upsetting. i wish I could understand it. It does help just to do other nice things that aren't about it being a 'special' day, that takes the pressure off - and the kids don't understand my feelings on it so I can make it a nice new start with them.

NinjaRain Sun 30-Aug-09 22:21:54

SIbling rivarly and pretending to like each other on special days resulting in meltdowns. Plus like you I hate being the center of attention and have a phobia of having my photo taken. I feel the same way about any special event. The word wedding makes me run in blind panic. Not one for me (unless its a secret one). Soem people just feel like that. For me Ds understanding doesnt help as he doesnt. But i can focus on doing something special for him thus the day is not about me and i feel better. It has made a difference about christmas. Eg. for this year we are going to see ex (ds' dad)and take him to sandringham as he would really like to see the queen. Speical but nothing to do with me. It works for me. If i dont feel like dealing with presents and cards I dont until i am ready to deal with them. Or i let ds 'help' me. I have been know to open mail over a month late.

I enjoy the rest of life instead. After all brithday and christmas are just 2 days of the year. And you are allowed to feel miserable some of the year. SO why not those days. There's a lot of choice when there is 365 days to play with.

FlightHattendant Mon 31-Aug-09 07:43:13

Ninja, that sounds like you really have it under control at least practically speaking.
Well done...I will try and follow your lead. Perhaps the most important bit is actually admitting it...then you can take steps. I haven't quite got there yet - I spend a few weeks looking forward to it in a vaguely excited way, in case it does produce the miracle, finally - but then I get real a few days before and realise it isn't going to happen, then the actual day just makes me miserable even though I'm sort of prepaered.

I hate other grown ups' birthdays too - the whole thing is highly embarrassing. I've not been to a wedding since I was 15 and had to be a bridesmaid. Terrifying I agree. i'd just never want all the fuss iyswim.
I even ran away from a tour de france parade thing once, the whole crowd cheering just freaked me out.
I am glad it isn't just me - thankyou so much for sharing x

diddl Mon 31-Aug-09 08:04:41

Slightly OT, as I don´t actually hate my bday-apart from it making me one year older blush, but TBH, as long as I get a card from hubby & children I´m not really bothered about presents or going out.
As long as they remember.
We often take the children where they´d like to go to celebrate!

FlightHattendant Mon 31-Aug-09 09:25:30

That's it Diddl. I wouldn't mind just a thoughtful card from someone who really actually loved me, but nobody does, I don't think. If I had an actual husband that would kind of speak for itself and I wouldn't care, after all they'd have married me, that's enough proof really smile

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