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Grand Magnate
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Member Since Apr 2012
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,257
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Default Oct 13, 2022 at 05:05 PM
Dear Scout 33,

I share a lot of the same kinds of emotions you describe. My parents were functional alcoholics, which are people who can carry on as if nothing's wrong (keep house, hold down a job, raise kids, theoretically speaking)---but who also are not really great at any of these things. The children suffer the most, I believe. They miss out on important life lessons and coping skills, they keenly feel the parents drink because of them; they grow up resenting themselves and everyone around them. And who could ever develop a healthy sense of self-worth in an atmosphere like this?

I'm relieved to hear you have a good counsellor. That's wonderful and enviable.

For me, being a shy, sensitive, creative type, I was doomed to a life of self-doubt and social discomfort. I constantly questioned everything I did, every choice I made. I chose my friends and love interests poorly, leading to a hundred bad decisions that followed.

It's taken me a long time to re-build my own sense of who I really am, and my self-worth. I still struggle with trust issues and a certain amount of social anxiety. But I'm better than I was. And I'll take any little positives I can find.

Do it in baby steps, as Yaowen suggested. I volunteered for a few summers at a nearby small art gallery. That helped me find like-minded people, and some lovely souls. I felt more confident after that.

You're in the right place to find people who can relate to how you feel. The best thing to do is engage with the forums where you feel most comfortable, and be patient. It's not as busy as it used to be around here, but people are almost all very kind and helpful.
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