For A Long Time, My Anxiety Convinced Me I Was Unlovable

A lovable girl
Unsplash / Sharon Mccutcheon

For a long time, anxiety convinced me to stay home, to stay quiet, to stay isolated. I felt awkward in every social situation. I never knew what to say. I stumbled over words and had trouble making direct eye contact. Whenever I heard someone laughing, I assumed they were laughing at me. I assumed everyone’s eyes were on me, judging me, which is odd, because at the same time I felt invisible, like I didn’t matter at all.

For a long time, my anxiety convinced me I was different. I never fit in with my classmates. I didn’t get along with people my age. I wasn’t interested in doing the same things they were doing. I preferred staying inside. I preferred reading. I preferred keeping my distance from them, because they made me feel like an outsider. Every day I spent at school, I counted down the seconds until I could finally be home again.

For a long time, my anxiety convinced me I would stay single forever. Whenever I developed feelings for someone, I convinced myself liking them was pointless. I told myself they would never feel the same way about me, because I had nothing worthwhile to offer them. Instead of getting to know them and testing our chemistry, I accepted defeat without putting myself out there.

Anytime I liked someone, I never let on that I cared. I acted like being on my own was better, because if I admitted I wanted someone to kiss and cuddle at night, then my loneliness would hurt more. But the truth was, it already hurt enough.

For a long time, my anxiety convinced me I didn’t have any friends. Whenever I spent a weekend on my own, lounging on the couch because I didn’t have any plans, I chalked it up to no one wanting to hang out with me. I never sent the first text because I didn’t want to bother anyone. Asking someone to hang out made me feel like I was overstepping my boundaries.

I figured that, if they wanted to talk to me, then they would initiate a conversation. So I waited for them to make the first move. I waited and waited and when my phone screen remained dark, I assumed no one cared. I jumped to the conclusion that my supposed ‘friends’ were only around for show. Maybe they pitied me or maybe they were using me — but either way, they wouldn’t care whether they never saw my face again.

For a long time, my anxiety convinced me I would never make something of myself. I didn’t think I would be able to reach the goals I daydreamed about every night before bed. I doubted my own capabilities. Instead of seeing my strengths, I could only see my weaknesses. I decided I was destined to fail. I decided someone like me would never end up succeeding.

For a long time, my anxiety convinced me I was unlovable — but I finally learned that is not the truth. There are people interested in me, even if I haven’t been on a date in a while. I have friends who love me, even if we don’t talk every single day. I am on track to completing my career goals, even if I keep moving forward slowly.

I finally realize am worthy of success. I am worthy of love. My anxiety cannot take those things away from me. TC mark

Accomplishing goals is not success. How much you expand in the process is.

Stop searching for happiness in the same place you lost it. Change is not dismantling the old, it’s building the new.

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Image Credit: Unsplash / Sharon Mccutcheon

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