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I always think I'm going to fail

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I always think I'm going to fail

Postby Laserwolf » Sun Aug 01, 2010 10:28 am

I've always found it to be this cruel irony; on the outside I'm so fortunate, but internally, I have none of the discipline or sense of responsibility one would need to make anything of their talents. In the external world, I've been handed everything anyone could ever possibly ask for to achieve anything they'd ever want. I'm incredibly lucky and I try to remind myself of this often. I'm hesitant to elaborate for fear of coming off as a boaster, and I despise when people try to brag and act like they aren't; however, I find it to be relevant to the situation to do a little boasting (hehe) just to give you guys a clearer understanding of my perspectives (I'll try to keep it modest). Well, in terms of finances, I can't say that I'm from a fabulously wealthy family and I'll never have to worry about anything, but I can say that I was given more than enough assistance to have done something by now. My mom helped buy my first car, and also bought a newer car for me when I she felt I needed it. When I moved out she continued to pay my phone and my car insurance well into my 20's, and she'd give me a little money when she could to help out with rent and classes. My dad would also give me a little money every month, and at TWO different times in my life, he gave me $20,000 so that I could do something with myself. That's all over, but still, I had plenty of opportunity.

This is where I don't want to sound like I'm bragging, so I'll keep it quick and suffice it to say, my IQ has scored decently enough that one should feel good about it, I'm considered attractive, I put a lot of effort into dressing nicely, I grew up the class clown, and am usually the jokester; to sum it up, i'm generally considered pretty well spoken, charming, and presentable.

So, what's the twist? Well, my mom is crazy, schizophrenic. I grew up with zero structure, only saw my dad (who in fairness is brilliant and cool and normal, and I can see why he got the hell away from my mom) every other weekend. Grew up failing in school and not fitting in. Later on, getting picked on, failing miserably, socially awkward, expelled three times; I ended up finally getting kicked out of high school and going on a joke of an educational program that was independent study, meaning for the three and half years of my life where others were making best friends, getting into relationships, going to dances, falling in love for the first time, having their heart broken for the first time, going through the foundational things that will form their adult lives; I was a hermit, with no friends, who was scared to leave the house for fear he'd run into the kids that bullied him. Trapped at home day-in-and-out with that crazy mother I told you about. My life quickly began revolving around the internet, I developed a serious porn addiction that 10 years later I only now feel I am starting to truly overcome, and at 18 I got myself into therapy and began the gradual process of working through clinical depression, anxiety disorders, social awkwardness, no idea who I was, etc, etc, etc, etc, etc, and it goes on-and-on...

So where am I today, well, much better thank you. Not so socially awkward, gone through relationships and friends like normal people do, and I am starting to really feel like I almost really know myself; but that streak of failures, that just doesn't go away, man. I've had more jobs that I care to try to count right now, probably fired from more than half of them, gave up on the others, struggled through Jr college for four years and when I finally got accepted to a four year university, I just moved to LA instead and haven't gone back to school or figured out what I wanted to do since. LA was a disaster, went through all my money like I've done every time I get money, nothing useful to show for it, came back home to figure out how to get my life on track, and three years later, here I am still.

I believe that all of this happens, because due to the shortage of successes (to say the least) in my childhood and adolescence, I've developed a belief to my very core that I'm going to fail. Whether it be that I will give up, or that I just simply won't be able to do well, I believe, with everything that I try, that I will ultimately fail. I have a laundry list of things I KNOW I could do, and would LOVE to get out and really commit myself to, but they never become more than half-assed hobbies I dink around with in my room. I'm approaching 29 and I still can't even hold down a job. I've over come a lot in my life, and this is the next big one that I need to get through.

I truly do apologize for how long this is and I really do hope some of you read it and could give some good advice or point me in a good direction.
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Re: I always think I'm going to fail

Postby Chucky » Sun Aug 01, 2010 7:33 pm

You're sounding a bit like me, to be honest with you Laserwolf, but I am 27 now. I have that sense of failure constantly echoing in my head too, in everything that I do. It's still there right now, in fact, telling me that I won't be able to help you and that what I write here will just make you angry. Still, I must try my best.

It's perfectly fine to elaborate on your achievements, wealth, and successes in life. I encourage people who are feeling depressed to focus on - and talk about - these things because they often forget them. It sometimes helps me to look over my own CV / resumé to see all that I've achieved despite the terrible life I have otherwise lived.

You said that you have a list of things that you'd like to do, right? Give me a hint of what you've got on it. Why do you sem to be turning a blind eye to them? You at least know what you'd like to be doing, because many others do not. What you need now is a plan as to how you can make one of those ideas become real-to-life. it's about getting on with your life despite the problems you've had in the past, and those you have in the present. It would be better to make changes now instead of waiting, don't you think? I was the one who'd always put things off too, but now I just get on with them and i'm always first. If I fail, I have no fear of the consequences. At least I'd know that I tried something that others would have shyed away from.

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Re: I always think I'm going to fail

Postby gwilly » Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:15 am

What is the consequence of failure which you are trying to avoid?

Is it the feeling of having failed?

Not all failure is bad. Not all success is good.
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Re: I always think I'm going to fail

Postby Laserwolf » Mon Aug 02, 2010 7:30 am

Thanks for the replies guys.

Kevin - What I got most from you response was the totally irrational worry that I would be angry at you for trying to help me. I can imagine myself fearing something like that in the back of mind, that rationally I know wouldn't be true. Something I've long been trying to overcome, and is either the main cause or symptom of my insecurity (chicken/egg), are irrational concerns, worries that make so little sense I often wonder if they're a side effect of being raised by schizophrenic. I've improved on this problem greatly over the last few years by just constantly trying to remind myself what is reality, and see the positive in things. Still though, it is a HUGE factor in the areas of my life I am disappointed in. Its comforting to see someone else doing it, as with the way I grew up, and only being 18 when I fully realized how many problems I had, my biggest fear in life has always been that I am abnormal, and there is something wrong with me and me alone.

Gwilly - I think one of the consequences of failure I'm trying to avoid, is a fear that I'm not as capable as I think I am. I tried to be modest, but I take a lot of pride in the good qualities I believe I possess, that I stated in my last post. I'm arrogant, perhaps irrationally narcissistic. So one possibility I think, is that I would be devastated if I truly tried at something and found myself to not be good enough. Another thing I think that factors in, is as I stated above in my reply to Kevin, I've long been trying to overcome a belief that something is wrong with me by comparison to everyone else, and general fears that are based on no kinds of evidence or logic. So whenever I start a new job for example, even though rationally I believe I should be able to do well, and I always do really well in interviews, implying that someone who knew what to look for, also saw that I have what it takes to do well, I immediately get a fear in the back of my head that I'm going to fail, because there's something wrong with me, something that i don't understand.
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Re: I always think I'm going to fail

Postby gwilly » Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:13 am

Laserwolf wrote:Thanks for the replies guys.

Kevin - What I got most from you response was the totally irrational worry that I would be angry at you for trying to help me. I can imagine myself fearing something like that in the back of mind, that rationally I know wouldn't be true. Something I've long been trying to overcome, and is either the main cause or symptom of my insecurity (chicken/egg), are irrational concerns, worries that make so little sense I often wonder if they're a side effect of being raised by schizophrenic. I've improved on this problem greatly over the last few years by just constantly trying to remind myself what is reality, and see the positive in things. Still though, it is a HUGE factor in the areas of my life I am disappointed in. Its comforting to see someone else doing it, as with the way I grew up, and only being 18 when I fully realized how many problems I had, my biggest fear in life has always been that I am abnormal, and there is something wrong with me and me alone.

Gwilly - I think one of the consequences of failure I'm trying to avoid, is a fear that I'm not as capable as I think I am. I tried to be modest, but I take a lot of pride in the good qualities I believe I possess, that I stated in my last post. I'm arrogant, perhaps irrationally narcissistic. So one possibility I think, is that I would be devastated if I truly tried at something and found myself to not be good enough. Another thing I think that factors in, is as I stated above in my reply to Kevin, I've long been trying to overcome a belief that something is wrong with me by comparison to everyone else, and general fears that are based on no kinds of evidence or logic. So whenever I start a new job for example, even though rationally I believe I should be able to do well, and I always do really well in interviews, implying that someone who knew what to look for, also saw that I have what it takes to do well, I immediately get a fear in the back of my head that I'm going to fail, because there's something wrong with me, something that i don't understand.


This sounds very familiar to me... I get what you are feeling too.

If it is any consolation at all: at least you recognize that you can fail. A little narcissism is not always a bad thing, lots of people have it to some extent, and if you were overly arrogant, wouldn't this seem like a problem with other people, instead of a problem with you?

So you at least recognize that there could be problems with you and that you are in fact not perfect. That means there is hope and recognizing it might be a big step in the right direction. :D

I'm sorry that I don't have many helpful things to say but at least you know a little about yourself even if you don't know why you are doing these things. I think that is at least a beginning.
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Re: I always think I'm going to fail

Postby Chucky » Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:50 pm

Laserwolf wrote: my biggest fear in life has always been that I am abnormal, and there is something wrong with me and me alone.

Surely your time here has shown to you that there are others out there like you, no? I arrived here 5+ years ago thinking that I was the only one who suffered as I do. I soon learned that there are many others like me though (Asperger's Syndrome).
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