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Abuse and self confidence(23 Posts)
I was mistreated as a child and in an emotionally abusive marriage with my only partner of over 20 years.
I struggle in some social and work situations particularly where I have to be confident and speak up, in groups especially.
People think I’m very capable at my job but I feel a fraud sometimes. I’m trying to overcome these anxieties but I don’t seem to be getting anywhere.
Am I just fucked up for life?
I wish I could exude confidence. But I’m getting on now, and I can see I will never win.
I’m actually angry with myself. Why can’t I just be like everyone else and think I’m amazing (as they do about themselves I mean?). Be kind. Having rough day
I'm sorry you're feeling like this. I have a similar background and feel exactly the same. Be as kind to yourself as you would to others
I think that a lot of people who seem to exude self confidence feel the same underneath. I hope things get better for you.
Thank you Carrie, sorry you’re in the same boat but I’m sure we’re not alone.
Yep. Im having counselling now but feel its fundamentally changed me. At 40 I feel my life has progressed so differently from my non broken frienda.
I suffer from work anxiety and her terrible panic attacks. Yet people at work think I'm super confident at what I do. But that's because I prep prep prep and prep for anything that involves presenting etc.
I also get beta blockers from my GP. These might not stop the nerves or thoughts but they do stop the physical symptoms such as racing heart
It’s debilitating! I’m already on anti anxiety meds. What do beta blockers do?
I can just freeze or I feel my voice shaking. I’m alright once I get going but I feel everyone sees how completely shit I am...
Life ent easy for anyone but I am sure that all the put downs and neglect have sunk in. I’m only hanging around because of my son.
Sorry you explained what beta blockers do. Are they compatible with anti anxiety meds?
They are anti anxiety meds too.
I also take diazepam, but only if really needed, for say a large presentation in front of lots of people. I maybe use 10 in 6 months. But that helps loads. Sometime just having I tablet in my pocket can be enough.
Thank you WhoKnew, I’m really grateful for this I think it could definitely help me then. I’ve made an appointment with my gp. Any particular type you would recommend? May even see a private GP as the next avail nhs appointment is a long while off.
A poster posted on mumsnet that a wise woman once told her something to the effect of we compare our internal feelings with people's external projections. That post had a significant effect on my perceptions of people and I realised when I started to focus on other people and not be fixated on my anxiety, lack of confidence and self esteem, I saw other people's vulnerabilities and lack of confidence. Also look up imposter syndrome, i think there's alot of people like us that feel this way and feel other people have their shit together but just as we try to mask it so do they.
Your feelings are very, very common, you're not alone .
Your sound depressed when you say you are only hanging around for your son. I would speak to your GP about this, glad you have made an appointment. Being constantly anxious can be exhausting and lead to depression.
Beta blockers are good as a short term measure for specific situations but for the longer term have you thought about cognitive behavioural therapy? It can be very good for identifying unhelpful, often unconscious, thinking patterns and beliefs, and suggesting more helpful ones. I personally have found it extremely enlightening. Thoughts are powerful things.
I think you may have PTSD from both your childhood and marriage. So c-PTSD and PTSD. If so, you need targeted help and support.
Your Dr could prescribe Prozac. Still an AD. This one is different though. Try it and see if it makes a difference. In the mean time, ask your Dr to refer you to a psychiatrist.
If you have it it will mean trauma therapy. If you decide to get it treated.
Good luck, OP.
You’re all really kind. I appreciate your responses and will take your advice. I have had counselling (psychiatrist/counselling) and did find it helpful - that was a long time ago. Thanks for that different perspective Ididit, I need to shift my way of thinking. Everyone else isn’t perfect and in a position to judge me. I just have to believe it
Just went to private GP - cost a bomb but she was a really lovely helpful lady who told me she knew exactly how I feel and takes beta blockers herself for anxiety associated with presentations. Armed with my script now.
I cannot thank you all enough I think this could make a big difference.
And the pharmacist also just told me these meds are a life changer (unbidden!).
How the hell have i never heard of them before
Do you mind me asking what meds you've been prescribed? I'm in a similar situation and would be really interested to know. I hope they help you
Hi Carrie, it's Propranolol - a beta blocker. Not for every day use - just something to take half an hour before presentations.
I'm honestly so relieved to have something to help me out. Will take it for the first time this week. I'm hopeful.
Are you still in the marriage OP?
Medication can be a life saver for many people but you shouldn't have to medicate yourself to remain in an abusive marriage.
This isn't said from a place of judgement op, but it will inevitably be causing all sorts of indirect emotional fallout.
I am indeed. It's tough. When I explained to him that I had screwed up a presentation he was initially supportive & told me I should be more confident as I'm very good at what I do. But when I explained I had seen the GP and given meds he was dismissive/didn't think it wise to take something because of some random GP. Reminds me of when my son was a baby I said I thought I had PND he didn't want me seeing the GP. I ended up having a breakdown and he then arranged an appointment with a psychiatrist.
We had marriage counselling and it only confirmed that this is an abusive relationship (she straight out told him he is emotionally abusive and asked him why he is punishing me for his own mother's mistreatment of him). He drove the counsellor nuts by acknowledging he had to change/needed anger management/counselling himself and then did nothing (over a period of months).
To complicate matters our child has been through a very rough time medically, and we will never put it behind us - ongoing meds/testing to last a lifetime for him.
I told my husband i wanted to separate - he ran and told our son and asked him who he wanted to live with. Which made my son distraught and led to me caving and staying in the marriage.
Not great is it.
Propranolol are great, I have some and take, as and when needed for presentations. I've had them for over 10 years now and I only take them for really big presentations or meetings, interviews etc now. When I first started I used to get anxious and have panic attacks all the time, now I rarely need them. I spoke to my counsellor about stopping taking them, but she said not to stress, as I'll naturally need them less and less, and she was absolutely right. Good luck OP
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