My Year To Thrive

"My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style." ~Maya Angelou

How Do You Keep Living When You’re Broken Beyond Repair?


I am not well. I am broken inside. I am broken almost all-the-way deep, and I don’t know…I don’t know if I can ever be unbroken, let alone well again”. 
~Carrie Jones, Entice (Goodreads)

I'm tired... a list of reasons to finish that & ends with "But most of all, I'm just tired of being tired."

I began writing this post Friday night & finished it last night, so it follows my thought patterns from emotionally overwrought & hopeless to the rational mind that understands what happened in hindsight.  For those who might be triggered (I’m trying to be more sensitive & aware of triggers!)  I discuss issues with emotional abuse by my mother, emotional issues around men & dating, & suicidal thoughts (mentions, nothing detailed).

I made the mistake of hoping again. I thought maybe this time would be different. But it wasn’t. I haven’t dated in ten years. Not sure if I’ve mentioned that, but I haven’t dated since my ex left. There’s a story behind it I’ve just started processing since deciding to date again, but I won’t get into that now. Suffice it to say, I have decided I’ve wasted enough years of my life on him & it’s time to move on. Unfortunately, all I want is a guy who will be nice to me & it seems like none of those guys are interested in me. I feel like I only have value to men who can fuck me & when they don’t get that they lose interest. What is so wrong with me a man can see any other use for me? I keep hearing my mother’s words in my head:

You’re ugly. You’re lazy. You’re stupid. You’re worthless. No one could ever love you. I wish you would die.

When you raise a child putting that into their head every day, it never goes away.  It is a mark on their soul, a voice in their head, an ache in their heart that never goes away.  It is a wound that can’t be healed.  And life is nothing more than proof everything they were told is right.

It all feels so true. How could anyone ever love someone like me? Why would anyone decent even want someone like me? Every time I let myself have any hope, it’s crushed & every time I’m left feeling worse than before. I feel like it’s not even worth living anymore if this is all I have to look forward to. I feel so hopeless & miserable. I give up. I just can’t keep trying when all it does is leave me feeling more empty & alone than before. Yet again I find myself sitting here thinking about how much easier it would be if I could just die & get it over with. I’m tired of hurting. I’m tired of feeling weird & abnormal. I’m tired of feeling like anyone of substance would never be interested in me.


I had a major meltdown Friday, like I have not had in quite some time. I was at a friend’s birthday party when I was overwhelmed with the feeling of being unlovable, unable to ever be happy, so broken I can ever be fixed.

I had recently been introduced a guy who works with a friend of mine, & we had swapped a few texts. I had sent him a couple of texts the day before & not heard back, so Friday night my mind just went down the rabbit hole. Being ignored, not even given the courtesy of any reply, put me back as that little girl whose mother was telling her she is ugly, lazy, worthless, unlovable. As irrational as I knew it was, my brain was on autopilot.

I started crying & all I wanted to do was be alone. I left to go home, but my friend followed me out wanting to know why I was leaving. All I could tell her was I was irreparably broken & no one could ever love me, & I would rather die than have to spend my life alone. I left not knowing what I was going to do, but I spent the next two days in bed fighting with myself about wanting to kill myself. I considered going back to the hospital, but did not want to go back there so soon. Worst. Psych hospital. Ever. I pretty much stayed in bed from Friday night to Monday.

It’s hard feeling those things, knowing it’s irrational, & not being able to stop it. I did some research & read up on emotional dysregulation & emotional hyperreactivity. I was really feeling the hyperreactivity that night. My feelings were based on something real, but they were way out of proportion to the situation. OMG A BOY DIDN’T TEXT ME BACK BY THE NEXT DAY! IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD!! I have never been that strung out about a guy in my life, & especially not now for some flibbertigibbet who was way too young for me anyway.

On top of that, I hadn’t slept well the night before, had spent the day running errands with a friend which had me tired out, & now I was at a surprise party surrounded by happy people & goings-on. Plus, my dinner was cake & ice cream, so I don’t think all that sugar on an empty stomach helped any. It was a very long day on top of the guy stuff on top of the “othered” feeling I get at busy, happy events like parties. All of the people & activity seems to trigger my depersonalization/derealization. It makes me feel like something that exists outside humanity. Something that will never feel that happiness & connectedness the people around me seem to be feeling. I will never be able to just take happiness for granted.

I hate that I ruined my friend’s birthday, but some things can’t be helped. I have problems with emotional regulation. I can be going along fine & then WHOOM! something comes over me – feelings, memories, hopelessness. It hits the hardest during happy times. I don’t know how to be happy, not really happy. I live with the constant fear of the other shoe dropping, so happiness is a double-edged sword. Growing up, we could only be happy when our mother was happy. When she was miserable, everyone had to be miserable so being happy was a punishable offense. I always feel fake when I’m happy, like it’s not the real me. It isn’t my natural state. I second guess everything. I don’t just look a gift horse in the mouth, I bring a laryngoscope & ask it to open up & say “ah”.

It is hard for me to put myself out there to meet new people. It’s not just about risking rejection, it’s that perceived rejection can take me back to feeling worthless & unlovable, & lead to catastrophizing & suicidal thoughts. Emotional dysregulation, or emotional hyperreactivity, makes everything so much more fun because my brain just spins out of control with this stuff.


This was odd to write starting it in an irrationally emotional place, & then finishing it when I felt rational & had pretty much moved passed the event.  But there it is!  I did still think it was worth finishing & putting out here.  I’m sure a lot of people can identify with these feelings, with or without mental health issues.  Who hasn’t freaked out about something they were embarrassed about later?

I would love to hear from people with similar experiences!

Emotional Dysregulation @ Wikipedia
Emotional Dysregulation @ PCH Treatment
Emotional Regulation in Bipolar Disorder

Author: despitemyself

A person in flux.

31 thoughts on “How Do You Keep Living When You’re Broken Beyond Repair?

  1. Omg this is me almost. Emotionally abusive mother not allowed to be happy and the living in fear of an explosion. It’s has eaten into my every core. I constantly fear rejection and maybe even seek it out as it has become a way of life. I can’t stand on my two feet in areas of my life like getting my own place as I fear loneliness . I meet men who are emotionally unavailable and none want to settle . It’s very sad it makes me so sad that no one wants me and yet I have so much love to give. Totally feel your pain

  2. You are not alone babe. I understand what you are going through. I also had an emotionally abusive mother and this has led to me attracting the same types of relationships. Not only love relationships but also work relationships and friends. Its crazy. All of this has left me scared, hurt, doubtful that I will ever have a happy/healthy family and thinking that something must be terribly wrong with me. The worst part is that when someone gets too close I feel like running for my life even though I am aware that this behavior might be pushing them away. I also hate to come off as someone who is needy so I try to control my emotions and sometimes apear detached just so I can hide my feelings and keep the other person from taking advantage.I also have terrible trust issues. Its pathetic. Ive broken all of my dates that seemed to be good after seeing small reminders of the way that my abusive relationship with my ex started out. On top of that I am falling for a gay guy who is also married. Talk about a fucked up mind. I dont know what to do and am terribly sorry that you too are feeling unloved and damaged.

  3. My whole life is like what you said my mother always told me I was useless piece of shit the reason for all their bills and their problems then after I left at 19 married to a man whom I didn’ my whole life is like what you said my mother always told me I was useless piece of shit the reason for all their bills and their problems

    At 6 I was molested by the neighbor and nothing was ever done about it

    I was raped at 16 and my mother found out and she told me that nobody would love me

    I left at 19 years old and married several times with several million man all have told me that I was a piece of shit a slut a whore nothing stupid ugly fat etc you get the idea

    I’m in my 60s now and I still believe that I’m a piece of shit I have no idea how to get over this I don’t want to take antidepressants I’ve taken those they don’t work and if I do take them I feel like a failure like I should be able to get over all this everybody else does Why can’t I

  4. Hi. This post and the replies were written long ago, and so I feel as if I am writing to an empty place. Which is fitting, I suppose.
    I have been feeling, for well over a year, that the only way I will have peace is if I stop trying to exist. The big ‘S’. Things have been tough for me, mentally, my whole life, and I’m just so tired of the never ending shit. Every day, my first thought upon waking is, ” omg not again, I can’t do this again “. But, I have children and so I feel it is too selfish to leave. But staying is so horrible – if they knew, would they want me to stay for their sake? It’s like the old divorce question, I guess. I don’t think I want to invest any more time in this reply, as I don’t think anyone is here.

  5. That’s how I feel, and I feel guilty for these emotions because I have children to raise So I hide it. There is that little voice in the back of my mind whispering to me when I feel happy. “It’s not going to last, you’re disgusting, you don’t deserve anything good, you will always be less than, you’re not smart enough, you don’t try hard enough ect.”

  6. This hits so close to home.all my life i felt like this due to severe sexual abuse as a child. Guys always cheated on me. I often asked myself what it is about me why nobody loves me for me but i have given up hope after so many years. Maybe this is supposed to be my life. But thanks so much for such a raw insight in your life

  7. Im not sure what to say but I hear you.
    I discovered this page because I did a google search for “why do I feel broken”. Thats says it all really. Im 48 years old and have felt this way most of my life. I have moments when I feel better but I seem to end up back in this place of self loathing. I look around and see people getting on with life but I just can’t seem to get it together and I feel like Im slowly getting worse.

    I have taken anti depressants several times and although the feelings of anxiety were a little bit alleviated, the underlying beliefs that its all pointless, that Ill never make anything of myself, that Im worthless, that people will never give me a chance etc etc are still there and so nothing changes.

    When on meds I just feel a bit numb emotionally but still I continue doing the same things and so get the same shitty results. For example I am unemployed and have been this way so long that I am now terrified to even make a phone call to a contact an acquaintance gave me the number of because I have such low self esteem and my fear of rejection is greater than my desire to create some financial independence. I dont believe in myself at all so why would anyone else. I look at where I want to be in a career and I see the people who are there already and have no idea how to get there. I don’t even believe its possible, then I give up.

    I have been to 5 or 6 different psychologists and even that doesn’t help. I end up quitting therapy because I feel like its a waste of money. I just sit there talking and they talk back and give me some strategies which I dont do and that I can find for free online or a book anyway. I feel like a massive burden on my partner because they pay for everything and all I do is sit around feeling like a useless lump and hating my self for not measuring up to societies standards of success.

    All I can think is that the bullying and ostracism received during most of my schooling coupled with the mental, verbal, emotional abuse and physical violence I received from my parents is the cause for the way I am. I know that its no longer happening and its up to me in the present moment to change my life and take responsibility but its like the abuse I received in my formative years programmed me to fail. Its all so tedious. My family won’t even discuss the way they treated me and so I dont talk to them anymore.

    Im seeing a new psych again this week. Im really feeling at my last straw at the moment. I dont want to go through my entire life just trying to work this shit out. Its not living. Its painful.

  8. i felt so connected after reading your post. I know this post is almost 2 years old and i dont even know you will read my comment but it really helped me to go through your post and relate it with my current mental state.. I have been having this emotional breakdowns quite a lot lately that i have started to feel i need to see a therapist or something. I know feeling when you get when you know deep down you are being ignored by someone you truely love and you so dont want to believe it or accept it…its a feeling i am fighting every night and i am hoping hope against hope that this feeling will pass and i will be done with this feeling of despair. And move on without ever looking back.

  9. Reading this really made me see that I’m not alone with these feelings. It was like reading my own thoughts. People just don’t understand how an aweful childhood can effect you the rest of your life. I have been fighting to break out of the prison which holds my tattered soul. Some days I do ok but when the shit hits the fan I’m totally alone and that hurts even more than the situation I’m in. I can totally relate to what you are going through. I’m sorry that you are dealing with this but you’re not alone. People like us just have to keep pushing through the mucky situations and try our best to keep faith that someday things will be okay.

  10. My mother too was emotionally abusive to my family. And when it happened, the status quo was to just let it happen and pretend everything was ok because hey, she couldn’t help it. It left emotional scars on me. I’m afraid of happiness. Afraid of emotional attachment. Because my childhood taught me that when you get close to someone, they abuse you. But I need to be able to forgive her. I MUST. for my own sake. I MUST let go of this emotional weight around my neck. I’m done intellectualizing my feelings. I want to HEAL.

    • I’m sorry to hear about your mother & your family situation in general. I know how damaging it can be. Worse is, if you’re anything like me, that abuse is normalized & you gravitate toward people who act the same way. You deserve to heal, & forgiving her, & forgiving yourself for any guilt, is important. I wish you best on your journey.❤

  11. Hey there. I’m sorry you feel this way. I’m sort of feeling the same thing too right now. This girl I really liked sort of just cut off all contacts with me.

    I guess the feelings are still there for her…

    This was the first time I really got to know a girl and be by her side. We both talked regularly on the phone and through text a while back. I was helping her with her college essays since I’m a college student. We grew fond of each other’s presence and I really liked her. I knew she liked me too since she always called first. It was a really good feeling. But things slipped when I introduced her to my friends. I started overthinking and overanalyzing everything, so much to the point that I lost her. It hurts so much knowing that I lost something that could’ve been because of my own selfishness and carelessness. Side note: I never dated anyone before, so when I got to go on a date with her, I was so thrilled and happy.

    She turned into someone different and made me think about my real self, calling me fake and not expecting any of this from me because I was known as a nice guy in school. I wasn’t sure if I was doing the right thing anymore and I wanted to apologize so bad. I did and we started talking again, but I tried to hide the feelings as best as I could. I knew she had already moved on because she deleted me off her social media profiles. She only kept my number. When I saw her photos with another guy, I just couldn’t help but feel broken inside. I imagined myself to be the guy holding her.

    Almost every day, I can’t stop thinking about her. It’s so difficult to move on because I still care for her. Even though we never formally entered the relationship status, I can’t stop the feelings. Maybe because it’s my first time really loving someone that much because of her affections towards me back then. Now… It’s all gone. I wish I hadn’t been so stupid with the overthinking and overanalyzing.. I would’ve been able to be the person who made her days happy, but in the end, I crushed her and myself, which is so hurtful. I just want a second chance, but it seems she’s already going out with another guy…

    I’m sorry; I just had to let this all out.. I’m emotional, as she pointed out. She also pointed all the flaws in me and I’m trying ridiculously hard to fix them.

    I’m trying to look forward and keep my chin up, but it’s still hard.

    • It’s been a couple of weeks since you posted this, so I hope you’re feeling a little better about things now. It’s hard to lose someone we care about, & then to watch them moving on, especially when we feel stuck in the pain. Hopefully you’ll be able to move on yourself soon.

      Remember there’s nothing wrong with being emotional, as long as you don’t let those emotions take over & cause you to act out in hurtful ways. Also, I don’t know what sort of flaws she pointed out, but make sure you are making those changes for you. What other people perceive as flaws aren’t necessarily so. Be true to who you are, as long as those parts of yourself aren’t hurting yourself or others.

    • If she is pointing out all the flaws in you, then she has yet to look inside herself. People usually do this because there is something inside themselVes that they can’t come to grips with, and instead of facing it, they blame others for things that go wrong. in your failed relationship for example, she’s placing blame on you, and not looking at her own actions. At the same time though, you cannot tell her this. unless she asks you to help her, All you can do is look inside yourself and try to fix your own problems.

  12. Wow. You sound like a twin of me. Hell, its like we’re the same two people. I have bipolar with severe anxiety and depression and probably borderline personality as well. I’ve never dated and never had luck with it. So, I’m always in the same state. I feel sad, unloved, unwanted and forget what happiness ever felt like. I haven’t been happy in years. I feel like suicide is my only option and have thought that for years. I don’t know why I was put on this earth? I was hospitalized, but that only goes so far. Anyway, sorry for rambling but it feels good to know that there is some exactly like me out there. I thought I was all alone. But back to your question about embarrassment, I’ve had plenty and one was recently crying at work infront of the who’s staff. I was tired of working there and told them it was because of something else. I left and never went back to work there again. Thanks for the post!

    • Sorry it’s taken my a couple of months to get back over here. I moved & have been busy with a lot of changes here. Things are really looking up for me. I hope you can say the same. If not, keep working on it. I know all too well the feeling dying is the only, or the best, option we have. But it’s not. It can be hard, requiring a lot of difficult work, but you can get back to happy. It was that long ago I couldn’t even remember what being happy felt like, & didn’t think I would ever feel it again, but now I have. I was sure killing myself had gone from being an “if” to a “when”. Now I’m really looking forward to life.

      And, how many jobs have I left the same way? Can’t even count. Anyone who has never felt that way doesn’t get it, but depression & anxiety are evil & disruptive. Here’s to a new, better job, either now or right around the corner!

  13. Oh! i just found much things mutual. but for me it is really hard to move on. Being alone just rottens up a person. i am too much sensitive. Unfortunately.:) Dunno till when to survive.

  14. my God – it’s like you cut & pasted from my journal. So much of what you wrote is true from my life – growing up happiness was offensive, we never knew when the explosion would come. Most of the time now everything feels worthless, I feel worthless, stupid, ugly – I’m the yellow traffic signal that people speed past to get somewhere else as long as it’s away from me. (I had a longer time between dates however – my first boyfriend was over the summer of 1980. My next and last date was in 2010.)

    I hope your life is better; I’m currently in the emotional meat grinder – because I got lousy customer service at a Sunoco station. (sigh).

    • I’m sorry you’ve had similar troubles.:-/ I guess we just have to keep moving forward. I know what you mean about the meat grinder coming up over things that logically we know are insignificant, but when the come up at the right time it’s like somebody dropped a bomb on us.

      Thanks for stopping by.:)

  15. Thank you for so thoroughly and eloquently expressing the way I feel. I feel like I’m a lab animal in a horrible experiment called life. The purpose of the experiment is to see how much pain I can take before the break is complete and I’m broken beyond recognition. Thanks for letting me know I’m not alone.

    • I know this is more than a year old, & I can’t believe I’m just seeing it. But I do like to respond to all of my comments, since I don’t get too many of them:-) , so thank you for stopping by & commenting, & I’m glad I was able to share something that resonated with you. However, I’m sorry any of us have to feel this way.

  16. Pingback: We Are All Broken | Bipolar Lessons

  17. Pingback: Family: When They Can’t (Or Won’t) Forgive « Bipolar Lessons

  18. I can definately identify with what you described. It takes a lot of work for me to get back to rationality.

    • I must have been really slacking when your comment came in! I’m sorry it’s been about a year & a half, & I’m just now seeing this. Thank you for stopping by & for commenting. It’s always nice to know something I’ve said meant something to someone.

  19. Pingback: My Experience with Emotional Abuse | Sometimes I hear my voice

  20. I have SO been there! I’m sure I’ve mentioned Music Night. Sometimes it triggers me. I feel like I’m on the outside sometimes because most of the people are coupled up. There are friendships that exist outside that one night and none of them include me. I still like to go and I enjoy it mostly, but without my meds, those feelings would most likely crush me. When I have been out of my meds or been in a more emotionally unstable place, they HAVE crushed me. I have had a couple of breakdowns there and your writing about the party just helped me realize why.

    I love you. You ARE worthy you know. It’s the bama losers who aren’t worthy.

    • *hugs* We are too awesome for the men! Or for depression, etc.

      Interestingly, said boy texted me out of the blue today apologizing. We’ve been talking, & it’s been nice. Honest talk, not small talk chit-chat trying to be clever like before. But who knows. He may disappear again. C’est la vie.

  21. Ugh! Been there. I wound up on the psych unit after being dumped. That’s where I met my husband of 40 plus years. It hasn’t been easy but we are still together. Good luck.

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