I have been puzzle over this phenomenon for years: it seems like the sweetest people I know are the ones who secretly write suicide notes night after night while the assholes of the world have self-confidence to burn. Now I’m finally settling down to try and understand it.
I believe it isn’t hard to figure out after all. Those people who are labelled “sweet” are usually sensitive, not just to the feelings of others but their own as well. In other words, it’s easy for an asshole to hurt them by exploiting that sensitivity and making the sweetheart feel terrible about themselves.
Assholes, on the other hand, have no such weakness. Their souls are made of kevlar; they have no sensitivity whatsoever. Every asshole is the same: they plow their way through life like rhinos, not going a damn who or what they trample on their way. Look at my former brother-in-law as an example: this dickhead is notorious for abusing women, yet he thinks he’s God’s greatest gift to them. He actually sat at my mother-in-law’s kitchen table and said, “I am who I am. If a woman doesn’t like it, they know where the door is.” I remember thinking, “They probably TRY to go through the door, but they have a hard time doing it while you’re choking them out!”
It’s not right that an asshole like that thinks so highly of himself, while some guy who never even considers raising his hand to a woman contemplates suicide on a daily basis. I think a changing of the guard is LONG overdue. I see no reason why a person can’t be sweet AND proud at the same time. Do we have to be as arrogant as my brother-in-law? No. We should never think we’re perfect, because no one is. But we also don’t have to feel as bad as we do.
To all my fellow sweethearts out there: we are kind, caring, wonderful people. Don’t let ANY asshole make you think otherwise.
You are probably saying to yourself, “Okay, Steve, but how do I do that? You can’t just tell me to not feel bad about myself and leave me hanging. Tell me what to do.”
And it’s true. A lot of the bullied, down-in-the-dumps sweethearts are so down they can’t even begin to see up. The truth is: I don’t know what will work for you. All I can say is what worked for me.
All cards on the table: yes, I WAS a suicidal sweetheart back in the day. I can remember thinking of suicide as young as age 11. For a long time I didn’t know what to do. I was the same kind of person I am now, and yet I was miserable.
No one showed me how to get over it. All they said was “cheer up” (if they liked me) or “stop whining” (if they didn’t), and neither response helped. I didn’t know what would work; I had to FIGHT FOR IT. I had to try different things out.
For the longest time, I thought maybe knowing a martial art would help. Confrontations with bullies always started out verbally for me. I figured that if I ever talked back to them, then it would quickly get physical…and I wasn’t sure I could handle myself in a fight. So I bounced around a couple martial arts schools until I landed on wing chun. This helped my self-esteem SOMEWHAT, but not enough. I still got walked on more than I cared to admit.
Then I got into working out, starting off in late 2010 with a program called 10 Minute Trainer by Tony Horton. At first I noticed no difference but, by the time I had finished P90X, I was in better shape and, when confronted by someone trying to bully me, I noticed a fascinating thing:
I DIDN’T TAKE THEIR SHIT ANYMORE!!!!
Did I still win every confrontation? No, but at least I had the guts to stand up.
I’m not saying being more fit will work for you, but it might. All I’m saying is: if you want to stop feeling like crap, then you may have to fight for it. I did. No one HELPED me build my self-esteem. For you it might be the martial arts. It might be getting better at an instrument. It might be painting a picture. It might be excelling at some subject like chemistry or physics. Who knows?
All I know is this: if you don’t want to be bullied, then you have to speak up and say, “FUCK YOU, I DON’T DESERVE THIS TREATMENT!!!”
What worked for me may not provide the keys to the kingdom of self-esteem for you, but I hope that I at least kick started your brain into thinking of things that MIGHT work.