I am sure many other than myself have struggled with this, but for now I will put my own personal experience in.
For years I have struggled with low self esteem. I struggled with it severally when I was between the ages of 8-15. I used to sit in my room and write hate letters to myself for hours, and was never noticed except by my mom but even she didn’t know the full extent of it. I also distanced myself form my family because I thought that I made them look bad. I didn’t confess this until years later or if I did it was taken lightly.
When we moved back to Canada I didn’t have the luxury of locking myself up in a room so I switched to just doing it in my head. So that was the end of the “letters” but not necessarily the end of the words that went onto the paper. I hid it better but got into more things that I really shouldn’t have. You see, from the time I was 7 (actually before that but that’s another story), my parents were so busy with other things. I saw them practically everyday, but it wasn’t the seeing them part it was the part that they had no time to sit and talk. My brother and I went to school, so there was no time during the day, and on weekends my mom was usually on the phone interpreting for my dad or we went to see another couple (which all us kids hated going). There was no family time that year. Then we moved to Australia, that was a year that is muddled together. Also that was the year that I started the hate letters. We then moved back to Canada, and eventually started traveling in a 24 foot travel trailer (21 feet living space). We started spending a little more family time, but there still wasn’t much as we traveled with another couple that always had to have a 2 hour meeting everyday followed by a often lunch of thank you, and then another often 1-3 hour latter in the day, and another quite often after supper too. Mom was also -when not over there with dad- on the phone interpreting most of the day. So I was often left with the cooking, looking after and putting to bed the younger ones. I grew up really fast and although with all this responsibility, I still had very low self esteem.
I had considered cutting myself, I was close to it but I knew I couldn’t handle the pain and my parents would find out quick because I wore tee shirts quite a lot and didn’t have many long sleeved ones.
One of my main points of low self esteem was my size. I was always large for my age. So I thought maybe I could remedy it with anorexia or bulimia, I was again really close to it and only Yahuweh knows why I couldn’t do it. But even at the age of twelve and never having been exposed to it openly before, I knew what it would do to me and my family.
I was convinced that I didn’t matter, I didn’t have the amazing testimonies my brother did, or go through difficult trials like he did, I was convinced I didn’t have a role to play. This went on for some years. I still struggle with it today. I don’t have the stories that my brother or dad does. I was always very quiet, I stood in the back corner but yet people said that I lit up the room just by being there but I never could believe them. I still have a hard time. Maybe it is because of all the blackness I see inside of myself that I can’t see it that way. I used to feel that they said something nice about everyone else so they had to say something about me. This is a mistake of mine. I should have accepted what they said instead of shrugging it off and saying horrible things to myself that it wasn’t true and it was just to make me feel better.
A couple of months ago I finally told my dad about it all. We worked through it, not all of it but a good majority of it. I know this will be one of my hardest battles to fight. I‘m not victorious yet. There is a long hard battle to fight but hopefully the battle will be shorter than I think.
I don’t want this to be a downer but an encouragement to those out there going through the same thing, you’re not the only one. There are those that have gone through the same or similar. And no matter how far you seem to be in the pit, there is always a way out through Yahushua HaMessiach (The Messiah).