I feel like I have to be perfect all the time. The problem is, I’m far from perfect and I know that’s alright but everyone in my life makes me feel like that’s not okay. My family has the highest unrealistic expectations from me. Even my cousin who I used to be happy with has a toxic relationship with me now, and she’s going to be moving to my school soon. She always makes me feel like I suck if I’m not always “better” than her even with the tiniest details.
I know my mental health has not been in the best condition for the past year. My parents got me a puppy, who feels like my guardian angel and he’s the only one I can count on. I also love my mom so much but she gets irritated so quick and doesn’t understand how I feel a lot. I know my friends are always there for me but I feel like I have failed them because I can’t bring myself to answer their calls. I have lost so much motivation to do anything in life anymore and I feel like I have no one who can understand me. My family doesn’t understand how I feel and I can’t get the help I want like a therapist because they would be embarrassed of me.
I really feel like such a disgrace to everyone I know but it’s impossible for me to always be the perfect person. I get yelled at even for being “too skinny” and my relatives gossip as if I have some kind of disease or something. I always get compared to my friends and my cousins. I don’t know what to do with myself anymore. The only one who has gave me some kind of comfort and motivation is my dog and my family always tells me they’re going to sell him if I can’t fulfill their expectations. I’m so sick and tired of this. I feel so helpless. I have unknowingly drifted from my friends and now I truly feel like I am a failure.
FIRST THINGS FIRST
- Thank you for writing to TeenCentral and sharing this story. I want to recognize that being vulnerable and sharing such sensitive emotions and experiences can be very difficult. We appreciate you sharing your experiences with us. Many of our writers have had similar feelings. We would highly recommend looking at some other stories in this community only because it can really help reduce your feelings of isolation. You are not alone. We are here.
- Also, there is a number I’d recommend punching into your cellphone as a contact – that’s 741741. This number is to the Crisis Textline. It’s a fantastic resource for when you need more than a website that might get back to you a day or so later with suggestions and ideas. Sometimes you need immediate feedback. All you need to do is text HELLO to that number to start a conversation. I invite you to visit our HELP page to investigate other numbers and websites which may be a more specific fit to any given situation you find yourself in. Feel free to add those to your contacts as well so that you have resources in your back pocket 24/7.
- I can tell by your story that there is not a lot of support for you in your immediate family. I was wondering if you have anyone in your extended family who may be available to talk to you in person – a favorite aunt or uncle? An older cousin? What about a trusted coach or youth group leader, or other religious figure with whom you feel comfortable talking? Sometimes there is just no substitute for face to face conversation for support. We just want to encourage you to keep an open mind to someone who may be able to fill that role for you.
THINKING MORE ABOUT THE PROBLEM
- “Listening” to your writing sounds so much like someone who is teetering on the edge of depression. We are making no diagnoses here, but we WILL encourage you to learn more about depression by reading HERE. Then you may want to have a conversation with your doctor the next time you see him/her/they.
- If you haven’t started already, we would highly recommend starting the use of a journal to write down your feelings and experiences. Writing about your emotions is very helpful for self expression. It also assists you in being able to look back and remember some of the things you’ve been through and how you’ve overcome those trials. Here is a What’s New Blog we would recommend you read on the topic of journaling.
- It’s important to unpack the ideal you have in your mind of being “perfect“. Do you really believe that any person can be “perfect“. If so, what would that person be like? Consider writing or drawing that out and thinking through the concept.