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How do you toughen up? (bit long,,,,)

(17 Posts)
bananafish Mon 14-Jul-08 16:08:36

Not sure if this is in the right place, probably more about relationships with yourself. But there seem to be lots of feisty, able women on here and I just want some feedback if possible.

How, how, do you toughen up and stop being the sort of person that other people talk to like dirt?

Anyone out there done it? How does one command respect, because I am really, really bad at it.

I get the whole theory that people only treat you how you let them treat you, but really I?ve had a bucketful of rubbish thrown at me lately, and I don?t know how to shovel it back.

From DP who actually called me from the living room into our bedroom to turn the bedside light off? I mean, come on. Really, is that not taking the piss?
And whilst he has many nice qualities, including putting up with me who can be a grumpy resentful mare, he also acts like a sulky, shouty child who is not getting his fair share of my attention. Which he isn?t, but maybe he would if he pulled his finger out and helped me a bit instead of moaning about the fact that dinner isn?t ready, after I have spent an hour putting DS, (2) to bed.
Do I sound whiny? I can?t tell anymore. I do know that I am bloody exhausted, and if one more person, just one more, asks me for something, I am liable to go postal. (deep breath)

And this ghastly cow at work today who when I went over to her desk to ask her something fairly important couldn?t even be bothered to look up and acknowledge me, but just waved her hand in my face and said: ?look, email it, OK?? And I?m not some junior nobody - I have allegedly important big cheese professional job, at which I am spending increasing amounts of time, trying not to cry.

All stems from seriously fucked up abusive childhood ? and have had counselling and it has mostly worked. But good grief this year has been an absolute shocker in terms of terms of me going backwards.

OK ? that actually feels better ? thanks for letting me vent. But my question still stands, can you learn to stand up for yourself better?

?.sorry for name change, but feel the need to be someone else.

maidamess Mon 14-Jul-08 16:10:10

You decide that what people think of you doesn't matter and stop being a people pleaser.

And PLEASE tell me you didn't turn the light off for your husband.

Dior Mon 14-Jul-08 16:13:57

Message withdrawn

NotQuiteCockney Mon 14-Jul-08 16:15:33

How long ago was the counselling? Have you fallen back in to bad habits from childhood?

You know you can stand up for yourself better, but you need to make conscious the bad feelings from your childhood, realise they are ridiculous, and change your way of doing things.

PatienceRequired Mon 14-Jul-08 16:16:41

Very slow gradual process, sounds like yoour counselling helped, given that you have had a bad year perhaps you should have some more?

I think everyone would benefit form regular impartial counselling/offloading just to feel that it is ok to feel the way that they do.

Ps i am not a fiesty strong woman, i dont think, but my "friends" have no idea how insecure i am really. And my dp probably dosent understand the extent of it either.

I had 3 sessions of counselling in the past, which were brilliant and would love more to deal with my issues but they aren't at enough of a crisis point to warrant all the hoops i would have to jump through to get it right now. eg childcare, money etc

If you can why dont you have some more. I think self belief is the key to where you want to be and counselling may give help you get that.....

SubRosa Mon 14-Jul-08 16:18:12

I'm no expert, but yes, a lot of it could stem from an abusive childhood. Basically, through no fault of your own, the abuse made you feel like a worthless piece of shit, and no-one has ever bothered to make the effort to teach you how to stick up for yourself.

It will take time, but as Maidamess said, you have to stop bothering what people think of you. (It's easy to say I know, it took me years.)You don't sound whiny btw, please feel free to vent as much as you like.

maidamess Mon 14-Jul-08 16:18:51

Also, please don,t think everyone apart from you is strutting around full of confidence and swagger. Even the most self assured person can be floored in certain situations. Its whether you let it crush you, or dust yourself off and get back up again that can make the difference.

micci25 Mon 14-Jul-08 16:19:34

start treating them the way they treat you!! my dp thought it was acceptable to speak to me like i was something he had stood in!! i gave up saying "i dont like it when you say that/speak to me in that way" and he has begun to realise that i can shout louder, swear more and come up with far more cutting insults than he can! funnily enough he doesnt speak to me that anymore grin

now if only i can get him to remember where we keep the dyson.........hmm

if my dp had called me into the bedroom to ask me to turn off the light i would have done so but then in a baby voice would have said "ill just go and get your nappy and we will get that stinky bum done, we cant have you getting nappy rash my little one" or i was in a really bad mood he would have just got "f*ck you lazy b*stard you have legs use them"

i also had an abusive childhood but mine worked in the opposite and gave me strength if i lived through my fathers abuse then i can survive anything and no man could hurt me in that way again!!

if dinners not ready its not ready if dp moans i smply come into the living room sit down and say "do it yourself then tosser!" <he cant he cant cook and unless he apologises quickly dinner is burnt and he goes hungry - didnt take him long to learn this>

bananafish Mon 14-Jul-08 16:57:15

Maidamess - I hang my head in shame as I did actually turn the damn light off. Then huffed and puffed to myself as opposed to saying in a clear voice, "no, do it yourself, and I don't appreciate you calling me here for something so trivial."

See I know what to do - I just seem to have mislaid the ability, temporarily, I hope.

I would love to go back for more counselling, but our household budget will no longer stretch to that....

I am falling back into old habits and you are all right, I need to pick myself up on it, as I know that I deserve better....
...somewhere inside. I know.

quinne Mon 14-Jul-08 17:02:07

Just laugh at people who treat you badly like they couldn't possibly be serious when they ask something so ridiculous! Try to make the laugh sound genuine like you really think they are joking and do the precise opposite of what they commanded!
If you take people who treat you like that seriously, then by your reaction you are treating their behaviour as it it is viable.

Also it annoys the hell out of people when you laugh at them because it belittles their efforts.

pagwatch Mon 14-Jul-08 17:04:27

I have figured this out back to front - my MIL was a total dormat and she and I talked about it.
My thing is to remember that I am modelling life for my DD.
I would never want her to accept a man calling her to turn off a light ( seriously - you did that !hmm) so I would never let her see me doing it.

But then my DH feels the same and would not behave badly to me because it is a big part of being a father

bubblagirl Mon 14-Jul-08 17:26:11

i'm a pleaser and bit of a pushover but just getting to a point where i cant see why i'm wasting time making everyone else around me happy when i'm not

time for me now if people dont like me for not doing things for them then i can do without and as for dp stern talking to put your thoughts forward and stick to them it'll probably gain you some respect

he only does it because you do it for him next time dont do it ask him to do things for you and start trying to get relationship on an even keal mutual respect and start doing things in your life to make you happy

i know i'm starting to do it now and dp has changed alot he is more considerate still doesnt do as much but is more thankful and does do alot more for me than he used to

but your right people will only do what you allow them to and if you want things doing you opnly have to ask

Pruners Mon 14-Jul-08 17:40:12

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Pruners Mon 14-Jul-08 17:42:21

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susia Thu 17-Jul-08 00:38:40

Hi this is like another thread on here. Being assertive is a fine line from being bad tempered. If you think you are right, then other people sometime irritate you and then you say something. This is assertive/bad tempered but not an enviable trait.

For me it is easy as I wish I wasn't but am how you would describe as assertive (and I would say irritable!). If my husband had said that I'd say 'turn it off yourself, you are in the room'! and for the woman at work, I'd mutter something like '...just wanted to talk to you face to face about it but never mind'...quite rude but that's what I would have done.

quinne Fri 18-Jul-08 12:01:58

I'd agree Susia. In fact I'd go further and say that people who are simply rude and selfish would often describe themselves as assertive rather than see themselves for what they really are. Anyone who says "I always say what I think" or "I like to call a spade a spade" for example...

toastandbutter Fri 18-Jul-08 19:41:33

Ditto, quinne. My SIL says things like that and she's a selfish cow who doesn't care about anyone's feelings so long as she gets what she wants. But if anyone treats her likewise it's all outraged "How very dare you..."

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