Whitney, thy name is Insecurity

by , under personal, Pirate

(I swear, I spent 5 minutes debating which way it goes. Is it Insecurity, thy name is Whitney? I don’t even know anymore)

thynameisinsecurityMy brain is an exhausting space. Despite the fact that my therapist said I’m over my trauma and don’t need to go to therapy on a biweekly schedule… there’s a lot of little stuff that piles up and makes my head a messy place.

This is one of those weirdly personal posts, guys. So, if you were hoping for the latest on geeky stuff, go away and come back on Monday.

I’ve had a couple of really great weeks (about some awesome things that I’m writing posts about, I promise), but I’m at the tailend of a couple of rough weeks now. Things are great overall, but when little things stop going your way, they pile up and it feels like things are working against you.

An example? I could share the drama of a bike shop that was never open when I wanted it to be, but that isn’t really the story I want to share. I could talk about how frustrating it is to watch older relatives age… but this isn’t really the time nor place for that.

In the last couple weeks I’ve had a couple friends suddenly get quiet with me. Ignoring texts or responding in a way that made it clear I was intruding. Short answers, terse tone. And I’ve been agonizing about figuring out what happened. I admit, I’ve always had a hard time maintaining longer distance friendships. I lose track of time, and suddenly it’s been months since I’ve talked with someone.

Only now, basically all of my friends are long distance. I have friends scattered across the US and now New Zealand and Germany. And a sister in Japan. So I send off messages into the ether of the internet, and hope I get responses. Reminding myself that people are in different time zones.

I just don’t know what to do when I don’t hear back from someone, but can see that they’re online and talking to others. I try not to assume that it’s me, especially when I can’t think of anything I’ve done that was offensive. But inevitably, I fail as the days go on, and assume that the problem is me. I begin pouring over every comment/text/email I’ve sent, every other interaction to see if I can’t figure out what’s wrong with me. Was I too excited about the good stuff going on in my life? Have I befriended someone they don’t like? Did they think I was brushing them off when I just had to pick up my kids?

Rehashing everything isn’t healthy. It just made me a neurotic and distracted mess.

So, I’m trying to accept that there isn’t anything wrong with me, no matter what my brain keeps trying to tell me. In the last year I’ve made a lot of new friends online- and this past month I actually got out of my comfort zone and met people in person, talked, and came away with some new friends! I’m me, and I’m trying to be a good friend. If I’m failing to be what a couple people need, I’m not a mindreader and can’t spend all my week agonizing about trying to please someone who won’t tell me what they need from me.

Because there are a lot of people who do depend on me. The kidlets, my husband. And me, most importantly. I depend on me. And a scattered and distraught Whitney is never going to be a good thing.

Also- to those who’ve been there for me, thank you. It means so much that you listen to me whine and keep me from losing my perspective on things. (And if you’re a friend reading this and didn’t know what was going on, odds are I just figured you had a lot on your plate already. Or you missed the Tumblr post)

Am I alone in driving myself crazy like this? Do you overthink things, too? We should form a support group.

  • Eli

    You know Sexy Drake … there are plenty of things that I overthink … things that keep me up at night and completely unproductive during the day. My mind never stops moving in circles with what ifs and maybes and woulda, shoulda, couldas … but honestly it’s usually about my own shit – my own decisions. I never, ever overthink other people.

    Other people are just …….. not worth the effort. If there is someone I care about, I simply ask them. I communicate. If there is someone I can’t communicate with, I toss them. My rules are very simple in my life because I need my life to be stress free … I need it for my physical and mental health.

    If people don’t “get you” … if they don’t understand how you are, what you need, where your faults lie, where your strengths lie … then I wonder what you’re bothering with them for or how could they be friends? Friends don’t require or shouldn’t require *that* much maintenance … especially not the ones that really understand you and know you. They need to let you be you … That being said any relationship is about balance and you should do your best to give as much as you expect. But if you don’t expect as much as you give then where is the imbalance?

    Don’t drive yourself crazy. You can’t control other people – nor should you bother with doing so. You can only control yourself and you should be focusing on yourself … in that I mean working hard to be the best person you can be for others – which should be everyones goal. HOWEVER … you can’t be anything other than your best self – whatever that is – and your friends, if they truly are – will accept you … should accept you. Period. When I said I was leaving G+ you pretty much told me what to expect as far as contacting you / keeping in touch …. that to me was clear communication.

    Let people be themselves and expect the same treatment from them. If they don’t have anything to say to you then fine. If they are being passive aggressive and don’t want to communicate with you about feeling slighted or whatever? Toss them. You don’t need “friends” like that. You need people who can be honest and say hey whats up? Or haven’t heard from you in a while just checking in. Or whatever … you need F.R.I.E.N.D.S … real ones.

    … the ones that get you.

    TL;dr : It’s not you, it’s them.


  • Thanks for that.

    I keep trying to be a better friend – I’m trying to remember what I said when you announced you were leaving. I did admit how terrible I am at keeping in touch… I think I try to admit that to everyone, but people don’t always believe it. But mostly I’m trying to be a better and smarter me – and part of that is stopping myself when my brain is getting too overly involved.

    Like this. I wrote this as a way to get me to see that I am not what I was trying to convince myself I was – that if this is the case, I didn’t do anything. And it’s working…

    Now getting me to stop overthinking my own decisions is a completely different thing, and I think I could start an entire sideblog filled with posts about that.

  • Eli

    In my opinion, SD, people often confuse “overthinking” with “analysis” … but it also depends on the fruits of the process. Are you coming to any conclusions when you supposedly overthink things? Are you weighing things or keeping them in balance? Are you thinking about the future and changing how you come at situations or make choices? In short … are you analyzing data? Are you throwing things out in front of you, scrutinizing them, asking questions of them and yourself? Or are you just spinning and spinning and spinning on nothing, for nothing.

    I think spending time doing analysis is important – especially on the self and on your life. I think it’s necessary and I don’t think most mundanes spend enough time doing it. They thing it’s “dwelling” or “overthinking” or “obsessing” and for them maybe it is because they don’t know HOW to think or WHAT to do with the information they’re thinking about. Like morons who think activity and sleep trackers are useless because they don’t know what to do with the data or how to make any meaningful conclusions from it. I think if you ask stupid people to think, you’ll get nothing useful. If you ask a smart person to think, you’ll get something worthwhile.

    I don’t believe thinking is a bad thing. I think you just have to know what to do with all that data in the end and how to use it to better your life.

  • I’m referring to wheels spinning, definitely.

    Because the reflections I’ve made on my mistakes and successes – those are certainly invaluable and have helped me grow as a person. If I wasn’t able to do that, I definitely wouldn’t have gotten anything out of therapy (and that was absolutely necessary to help me get over last year’s trauma).

  • J’na

    Insecurities have such a power to break up down, but what works best to combat them is to fight back with confidence. You seem like you would fit right in with the Indie Chicks! Great read!

  • Tigger

    I admit that I have left tumblr for the most part, simply because it was eating my life. I am gone quite a bit from most social media because it was getting too overwhelming and I havent’ been able to make my way back to it. This unfortunately means that I am missing out on people’s lives and I HATE it. PLEASE know that you have my full permission to send me emails, texts, DMs, messages on FB, or even CALL me if you want and I will answer when I can. I know I never seem like I’m busy but I often am and I’m a scatterbrain.

    And no, you aren’t alone. I have lately been feeling like my core group of friends in several circles is falling away from me and I don’t know if it’s my imagination or not and if it’s not, what I can do about it. Because what if it IS my imagination and in trying to fix it, I really break it? Brain flail ahoy!!