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March 5, 2012

Zilch self-esteem

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 11:25 am

Finding yourself on September 21, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I just moved from Florida to Virginia. And, even though I have moved before, it was never before I hit puberty. I have zilch self esteem. I don’t know how to get over it. I know, be yourself, be nice, be friendly, etc., but I don’t want to be the cookie cutter girl. I want to be myself, even though I have no clue what that is. I am so shy. I don’t hold conversations very well, my mind goes blank like I am meditating or something. I don’t know what I want to do. I want to travel, but whenever I bring up something, my parents give me some discouraging remark or a lame excuse. You probably get tons of letters, so I’ll get to the point, I need to know how to get over myself. This letter is probably just plain silly, but any advice would be greatly appreciated.

— Nicole

Dear Nicole,

My two cents: Anyone who tells me she has zilch self-esteem — and then apologizes for a “silly” letter — is right. Yes, Nicole, you’re definitely having a tough time. But there is a light buried somewhere in the U-Haul, you’ll see …

Belleruth’s two bucks: “It’s normal for even an adult with tons of self-esteem to completely gork out into feelings of non-entity-hood with a move. You lose all that social support and suddenly you feel like you’ve been disappeared. And adolescents, who have an identity crisis every five minutes — cause that’s how they figure out who they are — can really sink into existential despair and bigtime identity confusion when they leave their friends, familiar surroundings, etc.

So all I can say is: this too shall pass. It’s very likely that you will repeat whatever social successes and focuses for your talents in your new place; and the good news is, in this new environment you get to reinvent yourself and tweak the places in your personality that needed work. Moving is really really hard, but the good news is: it’s a new start.”

BG and BR

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