Self-respect III

Always we begin again…

There is a human being. I know it.

The way I have chosen to live with myself, to bear

I feel surrounded by threats of Death.

How to start this? The self-concept and the organismic self. Human beings have the bit of ourselves we deem acceptable, and we imagine we are that person. This means we deny real bits of ourselves, and imagine we are a particular way without being that way.

There is no “Low functioning me”. There is I, responding emotionally to what I perceive, and the emotion motivates action. Fear, anger, sadness, happiness, disgust, surprise, desire; attraction and aversion. Ideally, I am aware of all my emotions in a situation, which may appear to be in conflict.

Ideally I can visualise goals in the future, and have motivating feelings about those. Ideally I can contain disappointment, balanced with a sense of achievement. It feels as if I could have a rational part of me encouraging the emotional being, pointing out all the good in a situation-

managing this with Love

considering the animal, the emotional being, as a partner, friend, a pack-horse which does all the carrying so should be cared for.

It feels as if what should be the Encourager has been filled with resentment: yes, I know, no part of me is without emotion: my old unconscious emotions, anger resentment frustration and fear. Or Rage and Terror, at the world but principally at me for never being good enough.

I reprogramme myself. Bring it to consciousness, think it through, see all the positives, find my motivation and if my motivation is to stay inside watching TV and not come out that is OK too. That is a way I self-care. Self-care is important. I might find better ways of self-caring, but mine is better than alcohol. If I can value myself as I am, then I can self-care well.


That psychiatrist pointed out my coping strategy- “You compartmentalise”- and I went to work on it, thinking, “How I am Wrong?” And now I have an answer: it enables me to block off and judge particular emotions which disturb me, and stay with the ones which make me comfortable; and a way forward beyond reflexively compartmentalising: to sit with uncomfortable feelings, permitting them. For I cannot block them out completely.

But that “high functioning me” feeling good about myself, still gets self-respect from what I achieve, mainly, what I feel others will value, whether I am right about their judgment or not. I want self-respect from who I am. I want to respect that pack-horse, the emotional being feeling fear and sadness and wanting to Hide. It wants to survive in the best way it knows, and I can respect that: the survival instinct in animals is Strong.

The need for self-respect for what I achieve prevents me from achieving.


I feel surrounded by threats of Death.

The reason I presented male so long is that I thought I would die. I thought the monster would get me. Dr McGrath found me struggling to preserve a fragile sense of self and I still am, now by compartmentalising, by denying the parts of myself I fear or despise. Only the desire for survival is strong enough to make anyone cut off parts of ourselves.

If I can love myself I can love others, and if I could Love others and the institution I could do that job.

Monet, still life with apples and grapes

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