2 articles Tag worth

Being Mum – The Self-Worth Special

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about my ‘worth’ as a person lately and how that ties in with me being a mother. It’s been an eventful year, this 12 past the 2000, kicking off with me losing my job in April and Sausage starting school in September, two things which have contributed massively to my introspection. When I was working, I was a ‘working mum’ – I did a job and kept home and life ran to a schedule, Tuesday to Thursday at least. Then I lost my job and I became a ‘stay-at-home mum’, using my days to spend time with Sausage and do things together. But now she’s at school, am I still a stay-at-home mum, considering that between the hours of 8.55am and 3.20pm, I have no one to mother?

On a totally base level, since losing my job my contribution towards family life has been much less. Sure, I’ve been available for more housekeeping, but I’m not actually adding to the family coffers and I’m acutely aware that every time I spend money it’s usually been earned by someone else. I do have a small amount of income but that tends to get swallowed up as soon as it comes in on car insurance and my phone bill. I was able to do so much more before and it made me feel good.

My self-worth is obviously closely related to what I perceive as my use  to other people. I’m always offering to do things for people which are of no benefit to me, just to be the one who’s helped someone out, like I rack up ‘person points’ every time I offer help. I need to be needed. But I think I was like that before I ever became a parent.

As a mother, though, I know for a fact that I tend to put myself last in a lot of situations. Like mealtimes, for instance. If I’m cooking, Sausage gets her dinner first, then Husband and I tend to sit down rank last, after fetching drinks, condiments and all of the other mealtime accoutrements, with my meal being lukewarm more often than not. Don’t get me wrong, Husband often offers to do things, but I tend to insist he sits and eats while his food is hot and do the running around myself. So, does this mean that I put my worth at less than that of my family? Well, yes, I think I do. They deserve a nice meal, a hot meal, and if my is ruined well then so be it. It’s only me. 

My Nan does something similar, bowing and scraping even when there’s no need for her to do so, and I don’t know if it’s always been this way but with her, her martyrdom seems to be something that’s done so that she has a reason to moan. Her and my Grandad have a highly toxic relationship and it’s hard to know what came first; the bitterness or the hatred. Does she hate him and it’s made her bitter or has her bitterness morphed into a ball of hatred? Who knows, but either way, she’ll act like a timid servant (or did before she got too blind and disabled to do it all) and then loudly slag my Grandad off for not moving out of his chair.

I certainly don’t feel bitterness or hatred about my self-imposed lower worth, but then to be fair, I’m 28, not 78 so what’s to say I won’t be a walking hate-factory in 50 years time? Fortunately, the difference is that I have Husband who is NOTHING like my Grandad and I feel appreciated by him and Sausage on a daily basis, and I also have a modicum of reflection in my soul, which means I can see that way my life could go if I allow it. I’m not saying I’ll serve my dinner first or stop being ketchup-wallah, but I will try to consider myself a bit more at times when I feel like I don’t deserve any consideration.

Am I making even the slightest bit of sense? TELL ME YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT I MEAN!

MISSING: One Sense of Self-Worth

It’s a funny thing, self-worth. Despite the fact that the point of self-worth is ‘what you think of yourself’, it can be intrinsically linked to what others think of you. I think anyone who reads my blog regularly will know that it’s not been the best year for me. I don’t mean to be all ‘boo-hoo’, I know people out there who’ve had it a lot worse than me, but I’m really struggling to remember what the point of me is.

I know it’s depression and hormones and goodness-knows what else talking, but I feel like I’m treading water with a big weight tied to my foot, trying to drag me down. I can’t remember any ways in which I’m of any use to anyone anymore.

Yesterday was particularly black for me. I spent a  lot of it crying, sometimes because of how I feel, sometimes because of stupid things like Mo Farah’s wife being pregnant with twins. No, I don’t know why that made me cry either. I spent all day thinking about the fact that Husband and Sausage would be better off without me. I tend to just mess things up, like forgetting to pay bills and stupid things that should be second nature to me by now. I’m 28, for fuck’s sake, I’ve been married for 6 years and a mother for four of them. I look at my life and I can’t think of a single thing that I’m needed for. Everything could function just as well without me, probably to a much better degree of efficiency. It’s not like I even have a job where I’m able to contribute any decent amount to the family coffers.

I don’t feel like a very good mother. And what makes it worse is that it’s self-perpetuating, I feel like a shit mum, I get depressed, the depression turns me into a self-loathing waste of space and I behave like a shit mum. How do I ever win?

I’ve suffered with depression and low self-esteem for a long time, but I don’t think it’s ever been this bad.

I don’t really know what to do.

I don’t want to take pills.

No, that’s not true, I do want to take pills, I want to swallow a little magic tablet once a day and feel numb to it all, but I won’t. That’s not a judgement of others, it’s more to do with the fact that I’ve tried them once before and they made me feel worse and if I’m honest, I’m quite scared of them. My Nan has taken Prozac for about 15 years and she’s probably the most miserable person I’ve ever met.

Husband’s answer was exercise. He said that releasing endorphins will make me feel better and have the added bonus of making my disgusting carcass (MY words, not his) get a bit less fat, which will have a knock-on effect with improving my self-esteem. He’s completely right, but for some reason that I’ve not even worked out for myself yet, this made me want to murder him. Or at least hit him quite hard.

I have to try something. I feel like my soul has been put into a sack and beaten repeatedly with a bat.