A series of issues

I have been dealing with low self esteem issues since I was a child. Although my parents did not verbalise this, I felt ignored and constantly compared with an older sibling who is performing academically exceptionally well. When I did something incorrect, I get responses from my parents in a harsh and critical tone. To add salt to the wound, One of my parent is also having mental issues (insecure, tend to say things that doesn’t exist in reality) And for few years, the other parent and I was at the receiving end of accusations (Like we are having affair) when in fact I was molested in a public area and I couldn’t get the help and support needed back then.

Somehow I managed to surpress my emotions back then and did well academically to get into the course I wanted to study because I wanted to prove to my parents I can do it. This is despite the fact I have problems with reading and comprehending key points in messages and discussions as I have tendency to drift away during conversations. And relying on pure memorization to clear academic exams. I thought I have overcome these issues when I got married, had a family of my own and had a career which I was contented and happy with.

These issues of low self esteem, lack of confidence and self worth resurfaced when I left my job to focus on taking care of my child who has been diagnosed with special needs (highly functional). At the same period of time, one of my parent was diagnosed with cancer so I ended up managing both issues. And to add on, my spouse confessed infidelity through a series of one night stands happening over a period of 8 years, went through depression because of guilt and fear of contracting STDs. Given such circumstances, I was forced to go back to workforce earlier than expected. My spouse expected me to show sympathy, understanding and forgiveness towards him. When this didnt happened the way expected, a lawyer was engaged to start divorce proceedings. Eventually this fell through as we didn’t agree with terms and conditions.

As an result, my child who had taken PSLE was affected. For myself, I took on a job which had steep learning curve. Coupled with the work environment and culture, I find myself struggling to deal with fear and anxiety to the extent of unable to sleep well at night, blanking out at work, taking longer time than expected to deal with task on hands because lack of mentoring (expected to read, research to find solutions).

I’m not sure if this would be the time to throw in the towel. And appreciate some advice to deal with fear and anxiety issues.


Hi @RuniG

Thank you for sharing your worries and concerns, I hear you and it sounds like you’ve been through an incredibly challenging journey, one that has tested your resilience in more ways than one. The emotional weight of your past experiences, coupled with the present responsibilities of caring for your child with special needs and supporting a parent with cancer, is undoubtedly overwhelming.

Your story reflects immense strength and determination, especially in your efforts to pursue your academic and professional goals despite the obstacles you faced growing up. However, it’s completely understandable that these unresolved issues from your past have resurfaced in the face of current stressors.

The betrayal and subsequent turmoil in your marriage must have been devastating, particularly when you were already stretched thin emotionally and logistically. I can see that you’ve been carrying a heavy burden for quite some time, and it’s completely valid to feel overwhelmed, fearful, and anxious given all that’s on your plate.

In times like these, I would like to suggest 3 things that may be helpful for you:

  1. Please consider reaching out to a therapist or counselor who specializes in areas such as trauma, anxiety, and family dynamics. A trained professional can provide you with a safe and supportive environment to process your emotions, develop coping strategies, and work through past traumas. Therapy can offer you support so that you can make the right decisions for yourself and your child. You can try reaching out to a therapist from a nearby family service centre for extra support too.

  2. Continue to surround yourself with understanding and empathetic people who can offer emotional support and practical assistance. This could include friends, family members, support groups, or online communities for caregivers. When you connect with others who can relate to your experiences, it can help alleviate feelings of isolation and provide validation and encouragement during difficult times.

  3. Make self-care a priority in your daily routine, even if it’s just small acts of kindness towards yourself :slight_smile: This could involve setting aside time for activities that bring you joy and relaxation, such as reading, listening to music, or practicing mindfulness and meditation. Prioritizing adequate rest, nutrition, and exercise can also have a huge impact on your overall well-being and resilience in managing stress and anxiety! You could try out activities like mindfulness, deep breathing, declutter your mind, and more importantly be kind to yourself :slight_smile:

Remember to be gentle with yourself during this process. You’ve been shouldering a tremendous amount of responsibility and emotional weight for far too long. It’s okay to prioritize your own well-being and seek the help and support you need to work through this difficult chapter in your life. I also want to affirm you again that you’ve already shown incredible resilience and strength, and I believe that you’ll find the courage and clarity to seek the support you need.

Please let me know how you’re coping so far and if you’ve reached out to any therapist for help. Keep us updated here! Hear from you soon.

Hi @RuniG I’m truly sorry to hear about all the challenges you’re facing. It’s a lot to manage, but you are a very strong person. In addition to seeking professional help, consider taking small steps towards self-care. Establish a routine that includes activities you enjoy, engage in mindfulness practices to manage anxiety, and surround yourself with supportive friends or family. Remember that it’s okay to ask for help and prioritize your well-being. Focus on rebuilding your self-esteem by acknowledging your strengths and accomplishments. Taking one step at a time can lead to positive changes in your life. Take care, :yellow_heart: