My Fragile State

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My self-esteem has always been fragile. This fragile state developed during my early adolescence. Junior high was an extremely tough part of my life. Girls were mean, boys liked to humiliate people, and teachers didn’t understand. I hated going to school most days. Girls picked on me about my body, I was ridiculed by boys for my appearance and my teachers never took the time to notice what was actually going on.

I remember the locker room. Junior high was the first time when we started to change in front other girls. It was as if we had to put our developing bodies on display for other girls to judge. Although I hurriedly dressed, girls still managed to shame me about the body I was growing into it. I was developing hips and my body was beginning to develop the shape of womanly curves. I was sitting in the locker room waiting for the gym teacher to give us instructions. Another girl was sitting next to me. She looked over and gawked out the size of my thighs. She tried to measure the size of them with her hands as she hovered the size of mine over to hers. I turned my gaze to the door, trying  to hold back tears.

The boys were no better than the girls. If you were not pretty enough, they would let you know. They thought I wasn’t pretty enough and the let me know every single day. They would call me names, mainly ones that referred to an animal. I soon began to believe that I looked like one or that I was better off being an animal. It was to the point where they wouldn’t even call me by my real name anymore. They would ask me obscene questions to see what I would answer. Remember in Mean Girls, when a random guy asked Cady if her muffin was buttered? Sadly, kind of like that. I tried to ignore them, but that only pushed them to keep asking. They would follow me down the hall, wait outside a class I was exiting or try to sit at my table for lunch.

Teachers were extremely oblivious to the bullying I endured. Maybe it was because it was 2006 and bullying was not drilled into our vocabulary like it is today. I’m not sure what it was, but my cries went unnoticed. I hated going to school. I wanted junior high to be over.

High school was better in a sense, but the years of damage to my self-esteem I carried around like a burden. This self-hate attributed to my friendships and relationships. I was always seeking constant affirmation from friends and romantic relationships. I wanted my friends to reassure me that I, in fact, looked fine. I wanted guys to tell me I was pretty or beautiful. I confided in those close to me about my past and they were supportive. Junior high was rough for most of us.

I had a falling out with a best friend that I had with for years just a few months ago. Those who know me very well, know that my fragile self-esteem can be a target. She used that against me. She criticized my complicated relationship with B. She told me all the things that I didn’t want to hear. I had been trying so hard to pick up the pieces, while she swiftly tore down each one without thought. She knew that only way to shut me down was to hit me where I’m the weakest.

This fragile state has only regained it’s elasticity over time. I have learned that I can’t let the people who don’t respect me, define me. I still have some self-esteem issues to overcome, but it takes time undoing years of damage.

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About meetmeinnevada

A Kansas girl trying to navigate the changes of the big city of Las Vegas, Nevada by talking about life, thoughts, and relationships.
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30 Responses to My Fragile State

  1. Tantei M.Gin says:

    I am sorry you had to go through all of that. Adoloscence can be very hard especially with people who constantly judge you. I hope you do find “new set of friends” or “true friends” who would stick with you and love you for you. I, too, struggled with people like them. Your self-esteem may be a bit fragile now, but with the right people, I hope and think it can go places!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was especially hard. My friends in junior high were my friends in elementary school. I’m still friends with one of them today. I do have more true friends now because I was able to finally overcome some of the hurt from those years. Junior high kind of shaped me.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Really upsetting to hear all that, more because throughout my life I’ve also struggled with low self-esteem. It is really hard to drop all of it, it really is, but throughout the years I’ve slowly learned to shut some of those issues off.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Most girls self-esteem issues begin in junior high. I don’t know why all girls can’t support each other during this difficult time. Everyone is insecure it’s just some are better at hiding it than others. And like you said it is hard to drop it, but we are not letting it define us.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. True George says:

    The Teachers were probably aware what was going on. In my day all one needed to do is fight the ring leader of the bullying and the bullying would stop.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s the problem. They were aware but nothing was done. I did get into fight in junior that I regret because my feelings are unresolved. It escalated quickly. It happened so fast and I didn’t even know what it was about, when it started and why. The next thing I remember is sitting in the office with an ice pack on my eye. I was suspended for a day.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Teenage years are tough enough without having to deal with all of that. I admire the fact that you were brave enough to share your experience like that, and I hope that it released at least some of the pain you’ve been holding onto. You seem in a much better place now, and it will continue to get easier, day by day, as you work through this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was difficult to rehash because I rarely ever mention that junior high even happened for me. You won’t find any pictures or any memories from those years because of how it made me feel. It has gotten easier. Junior high was a mountain to climb but I got over it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I completely understand ! Some periods of our lives are better left blocked out, to be honest. I am very happy for you that you managed to get over the mountain – I can only imagine that so many don’t.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Accidentally Single says:

    I’m sorry you had to go through this but you aren’t alone. I developed in elementary school. I was the youngest in my class, yet developed first. Kids laughed and made jokes because of my thighs and big hips in 5th grade. Kids can be really cruel.

    You are right. You can’t let others define you. It takes time. They said those things because they were insecure. Look at yourself in the mirror and realize you’re perfectly made.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Developing early is what made it much harder. Your body is trying to figure out what you are going to look like and while that is happening, girls think it is an opportunity to poke fun at you. My self-esteem has gotten better, but it takes time. It only takes one cruel person to knock me back to my vulnerable junior high state, which is what my ex-friend did. I have had my fair share of fights with my friends, but I never use a secret I confided in with them as retaliation.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I am glad that you were able to overcome most of your inhibitions and you are absolutely right about not caring about what others think of you.I am in college now but I still sometimes feel conscious about changing clothes in front of my girlfriends although I know I have a decent figure.
    nice post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think as girls we all are little insecure about our bodies. Society made us feel this way. I hated changing in front of my friends in junior high but now I actually don’t mind in front of my friends now. The friends I have now are very supportive. As crazy as it sounds, I feel comfortable around them.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Horrible to hear these things but remember, once you’re at the bottom the only way you can go is up!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are most definitely right. The guys who used to pick on my occasionally message me on my different forms of social media. I never answer it back, but they continue to anyways. Most of the girls we used make fun of how looked aren’t doing so well either. How ironic is it that the girl who called me a lesbian for staring at her actually turned out to be a lesbian? The girls who made fun of me were the ones who actually had the most insecurities. They liked to cover them by making fun someone else.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s always the case. People can be horrible without realising the impact it can have on somebody.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I had a friend that tried to apologize to me. I couldn’t tell if she was being sincere because it was via Facebook messenger. She wrote out this long drawn out apology about why she was sorry for being so mean and asked if we could be friend. I simply replied no. And she went back to her mean ways. That’s how I know she didn’t change. If she did she would have accepted the fact that I didn’t want to be friends.

        Like

      • That’s a crappy way to apologise to someone. Maybe you had something that she didn’t and wanted to be your friend because of that. I think that being subjected to this nastiness makes you able to spot true friends straight away.

        Liked by 1 person

      • They say your parents can spot the fakes before you do. My mom always cold towards her and now I know why. The friends I have now she is much more like herself to them.

        Like

      • Yeah that’s true actually! People are very confusing at times aren’t they!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I know exactly how you feel. I was bullied all throughout grade school and most of junior high as well. I recall that by 7th grade, I feel like I had no purpose. No reason to live. I wasn’t suicidal but I felt so empty and meaningless. I tried to move past it but I began struggling again in 10th grade. My self-esteem was a joke, I had no real friends, and yet again I felt like I was waking up for no reason. So I decided I had to make amends. I wasn’t willing to drag the weight of my childhood everywhere I went for no reason. I’m happy to say I’m okay now, but I still have marked difficulty trusting and there are still rough days.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. But the first thing I learned during my recovery was what you learned: Do not let others define your self-worth. Only you can do that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m glad you were able to finally make amends. I’m still working on that. It only takes one cruel person to bring me back to my vulnerable junior high self. The bullying initially stopped when I got to high school but the damage was still prevalent. I remember those feelings of doubt, it was hard to continue getting up everyday and enduring, but glad we finally made it.

      Like

  10. mrsreckless says:

    So I’m not the only one who hated school. It’s horrible how much of an impact things like that can have on your life and how hard it is to get rid of them. It definitely takes time, but we’ll get there.

    Liked by 1 person

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