I’m more negative than I realized

I’ve always thought of myself as an optimist.

The future will be better.

That keeps me going.

When I think about myself I focus on the negative, though.

I have a lot of good qualities.  I hesitate to share those.  I feel like I’m bragging.

I don’t think I should ignore my negative aspects.  Those need work.

Maybe the trick is to focus on the changes I want to make.

Trying to be authentic

One of the problems I have with social media is that most people only show the good part of their lives.

I’m all for positivity.

But surely not everything in your life is wonderful.

Surely you have bad days.

I want to know who my friends really are.  Good and bad.

I haven’t been one to share much of anything.

I’m making up for that now.  😉

Purging my demons

I keep things bottled up.  I’ve been doing it for a long time.

It feels good to finally let them out.  To let them go.

Some of these stories have been rattling around in my brain for years.  Some for decades.

The way I’ve been living my life isn’t working for me.

I’m not talking about being married.  Or having kids.

I’m talking about negativity.  Self-defeating thoughts.  Self-defeating behavior.

It seems like there’s a set of bad choices I keep making over and over.

I’m hoping writing them down will help me define them concretely.

I’m hoping it will help me recognize when I’m thinking about making them again.

I feel like some of those choices have cost me my integrity.

I’m hoping I can get it back.

 

Worst. Girlfriend. Ever.

I’d just had my heart brokenTwice.

I was also feeling desperate.

My artist friend decided to take me around to “visit some people.”  The people he took me to meet were all girls.  We went to several apartments full of girls.

She was the only one who blatantly flirted with me.  So she was the one I liked.

My friend warned me that she was just a flirt.

That didn’t stop me from getting attached.

She was sweet at first.

After a couple of months she started to show her true colors.  By then we’d lost our virginity to each other.

She was critical.  She’d make fun of me – the way I walked, the way I talked, etc.

I didn’t have a job at first.  She said if I didn’t have a job I was worthless.  I took my first phone job because of pressure from her.

She wanted to go out to dinner and a movie every night.  I’d spend entire paychecks on dates with her.

She’d insist they weren’t “real dates” because I didn’t call her in advance to set them up.

I’d take her roses every week.  That didn’t make her nicer to me.

At one point we were engaged.  I bought her a cheap little gold ring.  It was all I could afford.  Later she got upset and threw the ring at me.

I hid things from her because I was afraid she’d be mean if she knew.

I quit one phone job because I couldn’t take it anymore.  I lied to her and told her I was still working there.  I didn’t want to deal with the consequences of her knowing I had quit.

Before I got another job her sister’s husband’s brother decided to sell his car.  My girlfriend decided I was going to buy it.  She was tired of driving me around.

I didn’t have enough money to buy it.  She decided she would lend me the money.

A few weeks after I got the car a found another job.  I finally told her I’d been lying about working at my previous job.

She was furious.

I didn’t see her for a few weeks.  Eventually she started seeing me again.

A few weeks later we went out.  I was really tired.  Neither one of us could decide whether to go to dinner or to a movie first.  Eventually she got mad and told me to just take her home.

I did.

I dropped her off.  She slammed the door as she got out.  I drove off and didn’t look back.

There was a girl at work I sat next to.  We would joke around together.  I think she might have dated me.  I think things were going in that direction.

After a couple of weeks my girlfriend begged me back.  I wasn’t sure I wanted to get back together at first.  I ended up getting back together with her because it was easy.

What a mistake!

She used to taunt me with this line from Poe’s Trigger-Happy Jack: “You can’t talk to a psycho like a normal human being…”  Ironic that she would say that to me…

The abuse didn’t usually cross over into physical abuse.

One time she kept pinching my arms.  She wouldn’t stop.  A little while later a bunch of red marks showed up on my arms.  She had the nerve to ask where they came from.

I’m pretty sure she was bipolar.  She was never officially diagnosed.  Any time I even hinted that she might need some kind of help she’d get mad.

She had threatened to move out of her parent’s house multiple times, but never did.  Eventually my mom’s water heather started leaking and soaked my bedroom floor.  My girlfriend talked me into getting an apartment.

There was a neighborhood I liked.  It was close to her work.  She told me I shouldn’t move there.  She talked me into getting a cheaper apartment in a much rougher neighborhood.

Sometimes I wonder if she was trying to kill me.

Eventually she cheated on me.

Her family went on vacation to the same place every year.  She told me she always got sick and had a bad time.

We’d been together about a year and a half.  It was vacation time again.  She wasn’t going to go.  She was going to spend time with me instead.  A few days before her family left she announced she was going with them after all.

That Saturday I had a bad feeling I’d never had before.  I decided to go to her house, just to set my mind at ease.

I looked in the window.  Her family never closed the blinds.  She was sitting on front of the computer with a guy I didn’t recognize.  I found out later it was a guy from Texas she’d met in a chat room.

I guess she couldn’t find anyone closer…

She came to the door.  She tried to calm me down.  I asked her when she was going to come get her stuff from my apartment.  She said she’d let me know.

She’d broken up with me multiple times.  I guess it took me breaking up with her for it to stick.

She’d still come see me every few weeks.  One time she stopped by on the way home from work.  Eventually it became obvious she wanted more than conversation.  I thought she wanted to get back together, so I went along with it.  Afterward she told me we weren’t getting back together.

A few months later she was over to visit.  I walked her out to her car.  I went inside and looked out the window at her for a while.  She sat in her car looking back at me.  After a few minutes I looked down.  After several minutes I looked back up, and she was gone.  I went to bed that night still missing her.  The next morning I didn’t miss her any more.

I still owed her the money for the car when we broke up.  She had also bought me some things over the course of our relationship she decided I “owed” her for.  I decided to give her the money rather than argue with her about it.  It seemed like a small price to pay to have her out of my life.

Initially I gave her the checks in person when she’d come to visit.  Once I didn’t miss her any more I started mailing them to her.

I delivered the last check in person.  She’d held onto one of the keys to my car.  She’d threatened to take the car if I didn’t give her what she said I owed her.

After that I cut her off.  Moved.  Changed my phone number.  Blocked her email address.

I’m sure she’ll be mad if she ever reads this.

She’ll probably never talk to me again.

That’s probably for the best.

“What do you care what other people think?”

I try not to.  But I do.

I worry if I write too many good things about myself people will think I’m bragging.  That I’m full of myself.  Maybe that’s why I write so many negative things about myself.

There are a lot of things I do that I don’t want to do.  Mostly those are things other people want me to do.

I’m a people-pleaser.  I want people to like me.  To love me.

That’s not such a bad thing by itself.

I do things that make me unhappy to make other people happy.  That’s when it becomes a problem.

When I become a doormat.

I avoid the news

I used to obsess over the news.  I’d check the Drudge Report multiple times a day.  I’d read all kinds of news articles all the way through.

I was miserable.  My wife told me I spent too much time reading the news.

I stopped going to the Drudge Report.  I checked the news less.

I started feeling better.  But still not great.

I find that I feel better if I don’t check the news at all.

Watching the news is depressing.  I gives a skewed view of the world.  It’s almost all negative.  Sometimes there will be a positive story thrown in.  But most good news doesn’t get reported.

If you’re a news junkie, try avoiding the news for 30 days.  If anything really important happens you’ll still hear about it.  See if you don’t feel better.