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Destroying yourself in This Incredibly Easy Step!

During the time that my last long-term relationship was crumbling under a mountain of inter-family bickering and a lack of communication, I was still trying to rescue things and please everyone that I could. Since this was my longest relationship to date and, when it was good, the safest and most secure I had felt in a while, I decided at some point that I needed to change my mindset.

For about a month straight, I wrote the following line in a spiral notebook:

I'm a terrible person and I don't deserve to be happy.

I filled pages upon pages with that sentence, nearly half the notebook with my new mantra. I figured that since a relationship is a two-way street, I had to take responsibility for the problems and stick around to solve them. And what better way to stick around than by convincing myself that I was already a horrible person and that any trouble that came my way was my fault? Plus, I wouldn't have the self-esteem to leave once I truly believed it.

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I began the pages around the time that one of my friends convinced me to give the relationship another try, after a two-day long fight nearly ended things. When I stopped feeling anything in my chest when I would say, "I love you," I decided the pages had done their job.

I eventually got out, thanks to the help of my family. New apartment, longer commute, the Gotye song "Somebody That I Used to Know" on repeat. I slept on an air mattress on blanket/jacket pillows for four months, and had restful sleep for the first time in a while. But the mindset never went away; I would still have the phrase going through my head:

I'm a terrible person and I don't deserve to be happy.

When the depression (which I call the fog) made its triumphant return, the mantra got louder. I had a minor crack-up one night and one of my friends noticed. I told her about the pages; she told me to start with new mantra:

I'm a good person, I deserve to be happy, and I have music to share with the world.

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I wrote it for two weeks, then it fell apart.

I'm a good person, I deserve to be happy, and I have music to share with the world

i'm a good person, I want to be happy, and who cares about my fucking music

Who deserves happiness? What makes you so goddamn special?

I'm a good person hahahahahaha try again

I want to be a good person, but I never change or learn from my mistakes

I gave up on that. The old habit was too much to shake. Every page would turn into pessimism and self-deprecation-turned-insult. When aiming for positivity leads to misery, I'm more than content to sink and be lost in the fog.

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