You have a self esteem problem

It sounds like you have a self esteem problem.

Apparently I don’t like myself.

The clues were all there. I should have been able to add them up myself.

The truth is, I’m scared no one likes me. I’m scared that no one would give a damn if I just faded away from their life. That I am of so little significance, that I contribute so little to people’s lives, that they would barely notice I was gone.

I’m so scared that I get worked up into tears just thinking about it. I’m so scared that I hold onto the friends that I do have for dear life, until they feel suffocated and drift away.

I’m so scared that I’ve built up this paranoia. I am so paranoid that the smallest act of thoughtlessness can send me spiraling into a cycle of negativity that only sleep will stop.

I don’t post on social media anymore. The last time I wrote a facebook status was four months ago. It isn’t because I no longer feel the need to share my thoughts with the world. It’s because I feel like the world no longer cares.

Social media is a wonderful, multifaceted thing. It’s great for staying connected and informed. It’s also a unique platform to express your thoughts and be heard. But this ugly cycle of validation was born from the advent of the “like” button. Suddenly, it’s not enough to express your thoughts and feelings. Suddenly, your thoughts and feelings only matter if there are 10 people to validate them. The feeling of sharing a thought or desire without this external validation breeds anxiety. You see other people’s thoughts, feelings, lives being validated, and you wonder: What is WRONG with me? Why doesn’t anyone notice me? Why doesn’t anyone see the intense pain I’m in?

Fear dominates my life. I am a slave to my own fear; when it wants to, it paralyzes me, or it causes me to scramble get things in order. I have normal fears, that everyone has at my age: Will I ever meet my soulmate? Will I be successful in my career? Will I be able to sustain a lifestyle? None of these come close to the hold my fear of being alone has on me.

I try to pretend it doesn’t exist, or overcompensate for it. I come off as abrasive, bitchy, ornery, contrary, but I’m just scared and I don’t know how to deal with it. I don’t know how to ask for help, and it feels like I am beating my fists against a door until they bruise and screaming until I am hoarse, but no one ever hears me. I sleep so I don’t have to feel the absolute hopelessness that is constantly looming over my shoulder. Because if there is one thing that is worse than fear, it is hopelessness.

You may have read this far and thought to yourself, “It sucks that she’s going through this right now, she’ll be fine in a couple of weeks, things’ll turn around.” I envy your optimism. This isn’t some new thing. I’ve felt this way for almost 10 years, but only recently have my fears begun to come alive.

The fact is, why should it matter? Why should it matter if I haven’t a friend in the world? Why is being alone the worst possible thing I can think of to happen to me?

I guess it’s because I don’t really like myself.