Lately things in my life have been getting out of hand & I feel that I have lost myself. I have lied to my brother, my mate, my friends, then I will try to cover it with another ... then I won't speak to my brothers for days because I know he is a busy person on top of health issues ... but I received an email from him saying that his therapist had laid a “test” out for me and that I failed it, that the times I do message him or call him its to ask for something. I do have a bad habit of asking people for things constantly but it stems back to when I lived with my abusive mother, all the hell she put me through, I would lie to get out of things with her, I would ask people for things to survive cause I had nothing with her and my mate can vouch for that cause she lived with me for a year and a half at my mothers.
But for him and his therapist to talk like that about me, and him saying that it takes certain people to “like him,” really hurts considering yes I do ask him for a lot, but there have been times we have laughed and shared memories, he was in a bad car accident awhile back, when I received the call from his roommate Chris and told me of the severity of it, I cried my eyes out, I hadn’t cried that hard since I almost lost my mate 2 years ago and since I lost my grandmother. My brother is someone that I cherish and would die for... but I am so torn that he feels this way about me and has little trust in me.
A lot of people don't trust me much and wash their hands of me at the first chance they get.
People have been choosing my mate over me, saying “She’s more mature & listens to reason,” which yes I am jealous of her, because she can handle friendships and handle life a lot better than I can... but it isn’t right that people rub that in my face... least I feel that it isn’t.
I have severe trust issues & depression. I am a transgender FtM. I get lippy and speak my mind and I get defensive, depressed a lot, especially during the Christmas season cause in 2000 I lost my grandmother which in turn my family fell apart, so in time I have built a family of my own from my closest friends... I have lost a lot of them due to the way I am, my actions.
This season has really stretched my mental stability thin, to the point that I have been acting out more, and when there is no one around suicide comes into my head and seems like a nice option to me cause I have dealt with this for 20 some years growing up.... It seems that everyone around me is better than me and that I am just this monster that people are around because they feel sorry for, and that when I act out, or have one too many depression fits, they leave me behind & make up some excuse...
For a lot of people, when they loose a friend, they move on. But to me, my friends are my life. Growing up, I was made fun of and had barely anyone, I was the kid in elementary school who played by themselves and when I felt adventurous I would try to play with the other kids, only to have them walk away leaving you alone... In high school I just had my mate ... so now when I have a close friend and they wash me away, it hurts very badly and I feel that there is a hole there.
Suicide for me has been haunting my head lately... I’d least be back with my grandmother whom I lost in 2000, the one person who would love me and be there for me no matter what.
I know the repercussions that it would leave behind for my mate and few friends I have, but it’s a thought that has been drifting in and out of my head lately...
My brother, My mate and 2 of my friends who are my neighbors and are furs as well, along with an adopted sister I have in southern WV... I would kill for them Papabear, they mean that much to me. But when people constantly want you to change, and to stop beating yourself up, so they try to “help” by pointing out your wrongs, so you go to fix them and yet you get no acknowledgement for it.... It makes you back peddle...
I don’t know what to do anymore... I'm at my whit’s end with this... I'm seriously becoming scared that I will do something drastic...
What should I do.... help me Papabear.
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Oh, my, I hope that is just a name you used for this letter and not, like, your fursona name. Anyway, Papabear finds your letter a bit self-contradictory. You begin by admitting that you lie to a lot of people and then you complain that people don’t trust you. You say you have trust issues and jealousy issues and can get “lippy” etc., but you don’t like it when people say your mate is more mature than you are and easier to deal with. You say that you have tried to fix “your wrongs” but your letter doesn’t explain anything you’ve done toward self-improvement. Then you get upset when people try to “help” you and “constantly want you to change,” yet you sound like you are acknowledging you do need to change. A perfect example of the disconnection you are experiencing is how you don’t call your brother just to say “hi” out of a supposed consideration for the fact that he is busy and dealing with health issues, yet you have no problem calling him to ask him for things, then you get upset when he and his therapist point this out to you. I am merely rephrasing this to make sure I understand the situation, not to berate you.
Probably, as you point out, some of your problems can be traced back to your abusive mother and your struggle to survive as a child (my sympathies). You don’t offer much detail there, but the emotional damage done to children of abusive parents has long been measured by psychologists and psychiatrists. Your brother is going through therapy; have you done so yourself? You could likely benefit from it. A good therapist could help you get over anger for your mother and help you deal better with others in social settings, learn how to accept help, and learn how to not be so easily offended by others. I can understand how you might get upset when others clumsily criticize you, perhaps without enough regard for your feelings. This is why a professional can help. They are trained to address such issues in ways that do not make the client withdraw even further into himself.
What you need to do, Cadaver, is not only recognize that you have issues, but take steps to try and alleviate them. You also need to learn how to take criticism. That is not easy, especially in your emotionally vulnerable state, but it is something that mature people do.
Papabear sympathizes with the loss of your grandmother, which led, apparently, to the dissolution of your family. I also applaud you for building your own family. That is a wonderful thing, and something I have always recommended to furries who have had little luck with blood relations. Family is not necessarily about whom you are related to; family are the people who stick by you and care about you no matter what.
But being part of a family requires your participation as well. It is not enough to cry for someone, nor is being willing to “kill” for someone very helpful or very appealing, especially since the likelihood of your coming into such a situation is rather slim, sort of like promising to rope the moon for someone you love, not to mention it would likely land you in prison or worse. No, what really matters are the small, everyday deeds. Being caring and considerate and helpful to your new family and friends; helping them with little tasks, especially those that aren’t so fun to do. When you endear people to you by being a kind and loving friend and family member, you will soon find that you don’t have to ask for their help. Instead, if they see you in need, they will offer that help before you even have a chance to ask for it. That is what real family does.
Now, Papabear is going to ask you to do something: take some deep breaths and calm down. Nothing in your letter is cause for drastic actions on your part. I can tell you from personal experience that suicide is an incredibly unpleasant and selfish act (my mother—a wonderful person—hated me for a long time after my attempt, which is how I learned a painful lesson on how not to treat loved ones in my life). Life is worth living, you just need to learn how to live it. If you truly feel suicidal, then you need to call a suicide hotline, such as (800) 273-8255. There are many many other sources on the Internet you can find easily.
Papabear suspects that many of your problems stem from a deprived childhood leading to stunted emotional growth. If you can, I strongly recommend therapy. Do not take this as a form of being stigmatized. Many people benefit from therapy, and it doesn’t mean you are “crazy,” just in need of a little professional counseling.
Furthermore, you need to refocus your life into one of giving, not taking. That doesn’t mean you have to donate a kidney or give all your money away. As Mother Theresa said, “It's not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”
Loving others is not about weeping for their troubles. Loving others is not about being willing to kill for them. These are not giving acts. Loving is about freely giving of your time, your friendship, your companionship, your sympathy and empathy. When you give of yourself, your life has value, and when your life has value, your spirit will soar, your depression fades to a dim memory, and your heart knows joy.
Be comforted. Love your life by loving others.
A note on comments: Comments on letters to Papabear are welcome, especially those that offer extra helpful advice and add something to the conversation that is of use to the letter writer and those reading this column. Also welcome are constructive criticisms and opposing views. What is NOT welcome are hateful, hurtful comments, flaming, and trolling. Such comments will be deleted from this site. Thank you.