One of the things I always hear about treating #Depression is to learn to recognize and start to change your negative self-talk. To be honest, I have had a difficult time with this. I know that I don't have the most positive self image and that I carry a lot of #Shame , but I rarely seem to catch myself saying nasty things even in my head. I thought that maybe I was just unaware or paying attention to my thoughts in the wrong way or something.
Today, I was getting ready for work. I'm in my 30s, but I'm having trouble with breaking out on my forehead lately for some reason, so when I saw a large red zit on my face, I turned away from the mirror and said aloud, "Lovely. That's so nice." And I suddenly heard it. I suddenly recognized it. I suddenly understood.
When I was growing up, my parents policed our word choice quite strictly. We weren't allowed to say anything that even sounded a bit like a curse word or like taking the Lord's name in vain. I remember my siblings and I making up some of our own words to insult each other. At one point, "plum" was the worst insult in our home - no clue how that developed! Anyway, what I think happened is that we just started using positive words sarcastically to express judgment, scorn, and anger since we weren't allowed to say the negative ones. And I think we were imitating my mom when we did this.
So I've grown up with this self-talk that is more like, "well, that was clever!" or "nice try," or "looking good," all expressed sarcastically to mean the opposite of the words themselves. It's no wonder I haven't been able to identify words like stupid, ugly, or useless in my self-talk. And maybe it's no wonder why I have such a difficult time accepting a compliment at face value if it includes words like smart, beautiful, or amazing. I just thought I was self-conscious when I actually learned to distrust anyone who used these words since they were used as insults when I was growing up.
Has anyone else discovered this kind of self-talk in themselves? How did you overcome it?
#Selftalk #Epiphany #sarcasm #Selfimage #MentalHealth #Depression #Anxiety #CPTSD