I am a pleaser. I love to make others happy.
When I was young my mother walked away from her family. She left me for reasons I have spent my whole life trying to understand. Although I know it was deeper then I could ever imagine, she wasn’t happy. This kind of thing isn’t that common, but it happens. I stopped looking for an explanation and instead I have been trying to move on.
There is this sensation deep in my heart. There was this burning feeling, a belief that I wasn’t good enough. If I was a better daughter she would have stayed. A better student, a better athlete, a better soul. All of these things drove her to leave me. I wasn’t good enough.
So I started out on this journey, to prove that I could be good enough. This is how I became a pleaser. Senior class president in high school, scholarship recipient to the college of my choice, magna cum laude, a job 2 months after graduation. Working two jobs and writing on the side, always trying to better myself. But I didn’t just use this strategy with myself, I have branched out to other parts of my life.
I’m a pleaser with relationships. I stayed with a guy longer than I should have because I believed that I didn’t deserve him. I made myself believe that I couldn’t be good enough for him. I was damaged, so I had to try harder. If only I was prettier, skinnier, and sexier he would truly love me. With my friends I feel that I have to be fun, outgoing, kind and trustworthy. If I can prove these things then I am worthy of their friendship. I have to try harder to keep my friendships, because so many have come and gone. I hold on tighter than I should.
The smile I receive from being a good friend or a friendly co-worker makes me so happy. To know that you were the reason that person cultivated that smile. To make someone genuinely happy is always my goal. It’s the greatest feeling. I am always putting others before myself and that makes me happy.
Sometimes it can back fire. People will take advantage of the kindness and never repay you. I don’t need anything in return, but being disappointed is the worst. To do so much for someone and to care about their well being and happiness while they don’t care about yours is the biggest disappointment. I guess the only good thing about your mom leaving you at a young age is you learn to expect disappointment. Although it still stings, you become numb to the heartbreak. You move on to the next person to please.
I believe that being a pleaser is what makes me who I am. I can’t fight the joy it brings for me to make someone else smile. Maybe one day I will find someone who wants to make me just as happy. Until then I will give everything to those I love.
That burning feeling in my heart has decreased to a small glowing flame. The burning desire to please is still there, it is just less noticeable. It has taken me some time but now I have realized that the most important person I need to please is myself.