I used to suffer from anxiety.
I was suffering so much from stress that I used to blush every time I had to express my opinion. I had to keep quiet in order to survive at some point, I think.
I have always been the nicest girl, I checked every little box in order to become the most relatable and nice girl in this fucking continent, I suppose. I refused to leave the country for an Erasmus Program to please my mother, I studied law and administration to please my dad, and I even quit a prestigious internship in a fashion company to please my then boyfriend. I was exactly what people wanted me to be.
I had a rebellious phase, during my teenage years: in order to avoid my father to read my diary (yes,he used to do that), I learned English so he couldn’t understand a thing (he speaks Italian, German and French, but thank God, no English). That’s how edgy I was. (I also dyed my hair blonde, and got pierced three times on the same ear, yeah, I know that’s too much info to handle)
You have no idea how bad I felt most of the time.
I guess I didn’t open my eyes all of the sudden, it took some years to realize, and to improve my situation. I took baby steps, I am still taking them actually. You cannot change your life out of the blue, you have to be coherent. It took me three years to become myself, and I am still working on it, to be honest.
I still get Facebook messages from my high school friends saying that I changed way too much: no,I am just true to myself for a change. Even an ex colleague told me, quite recently, that she despised the new “me”, I just replied that her opinion of me just didn’t mattered.
I used to pretend so many things that now,admitting and expressing what I truly feel is relieving. What was I suppose to do? Playing the good, nice and quiet girl for the rest of my life? Being played all the time? Killing myself at some point?
Being exactly what people wanted me to be almost ate me alive, so here’s a little piece of advice for every struggling person: these people you want so badly to please, they won’t do the same to please you. They don’t give a crap about you. They are living their lives without wondering if you are okay with it.
That’s not being selfish, that is surviving.