dear sharideth: I Am the Crazy Girl

today’s “dear sharideth” required some help. i get a lot of questions about what to do in certain situations, but this one is a little different. it’s more. so i asked a friend who’s been there done that to respond to this one. it will be a two parter with my input happening tomorrow, because lord knows it will be a lot to take in with the letter and my friend’s thoughts today. but trust me, you’ll want to hang in for all of it.

p.s. my friend is a freaking rock star.

Dear Sharideth

If you seriously take the time to read this whole snapshot of my life, I can’t even begin to say thank you enough.

This is going to be a long one…

So I’ve noticed a common thing you speak about is the “crazy girls”. Well I am one of them. I’m writing out of part desperateness and part anger. Angry, mostly because you always make it to be a bad thing, which it is, but it’s not my fault. Desperate, because I’ve run out of options of people to go to. I may be crazy, but I have my reasons.

My dad died when I was 12. I am now 21. He was my best friend. He spoiled me, his only little girl. He picked me up every time I fell and never judged but was always there loving me every day of his life with me. I have never been the same since watching him take his last breath at 12 years old. I started dating this guy when I was 15. He was 19. It was the first and only guy who ever showed interest in me and I ran with it not knowing what it all meant. He verbally abused me. He always touched me inappropriately, sometimes when he thought I was sleeping when really I wasn’t. And throughout our 4 year relationship he never stopped pushing me to have sex. Oh. Did I mention we met at church??? I had major communication problems with him. We would have horrible fights break up then be back together in a week. I never ever opened up to him about anything personal. He never was there for me with my pain over the loss of my dad. There was one time he just told me I needed to just get over it. There is so much more to describe about that relationship. But through it, I lost my feelings for God.

And then I was 19, freshly broken up with him for good after much struggles and findings of him cheating on me with multiple girls. I was in a brand new career job that most people in my field would kill to have here at Disney World. I had been going to therapy for a while but had slowed down a lot because I thought I was better. However, I was very much angry and still on the rocks with God. Then came this guy (Todd) that I worked with. 22. Never been in a relationship. Obsessed with me and swept me off my feet. He said he was catholic and believed in God and I justified as that was good enough for me. I tried to be safe and careful. But within a month he was telling me he loved me. Within 3 months when I tried to end the relationship he told me he could see himself marrying me. I then gave everything to him. I told him I wasn’t an easy person. I had pain, I was in therapy, I had problems. He said he didn’t care that he would never leave me and could handle anything. Every thing that I had ever wanted to hear from him. So, needless to say, I gave him everything. I shared with him every single deepest darkest personal thing. And for a while he was always there for me. But his friends didn’t like me. They started calling me a piece of shit. Wouldn’t hang out with me. I started not liking the things he did. Drinking a lot. Hanging out with people I didn’t agree with. His friends would tell him to dump me. He broke up with me. 2 months later we got back together. He said this was for good this time. So I settled. I was like if he’s taking this so seriously then he must be telling the truth and this is it. But the same stuff started happening again. The same friends hated me. I would have anxiety attacks constantly. I would always be on his case. I was everything a crazy girl was. I was constantly afraid of cheating. Betrayal. Lies. Abandonment. I could hear my ex boyfriend in my head telling me I’m crazy, I can’t be loved, and that all I want is pity. I could hear my current boyfriend’s friends telling me I’m a piece of shit and worthless and a crazy bitch. But this guy treated me close to perfect. Except for things here and there. He went to a strip club for a bachelor party. I asked him not to go that it hurt me and that I didn’t think I could be with someone who did that. And he was just like “well then maybe we’re not supposed to be together” and from that point on it was never the same. I know there’s so much I’m leaving out. But the point is. I’m now that girl. Heartbroken. Because this guy treated me like a princess, but then a week later said he doesn’t love me anymore and can’t handle me. He was my safety. I miss my dad so terribly much. And everything that has ever happened to me is my fault. Because I’m crazy. I can’t be loved. I’m worthless. And God is never here for me. He never does anything to stop it. I want todd to take care of everything. When he holds me I feel like nothing can ever go wrong. He makes all pain go away. God isn’t here holding me.

So yes I am crazy. But I also don’t want to stay as the girl who is willing to kill herself because her boyfriend broke up with her. How can I become not crazy? How do I move on from this? How do I move on from a guy who said he would never leave me but now has left me in the darkest time that I have ever found myself in? How do I get out of this? Another year and half gone because of a guy. My father has been dead for 9 years now, and almost 6 of those years I have spent in 2 major relationships. So call me crazy. Yes. But please tell me how to get out of it.

Thank you,

The Crazy Girl

Dear Crazy Girl,

First, let me say it is A BAD THING to be a “crazy girl”. It’s bad for the people who are in a relationship with you, and WORSE FOR YOU. Everything I say is going to be based off of my life experience, and what I have witnessed from other people.

Secondly, your father sounds like he was an amazing man. I am envious that you got twelve great years with him. I got five with my father. My father was an alcoholic who was an amazing father when he was sober. He killed himself when I was 20, and I found him. While the situations are different, I can completely relate to your feeling of abandonment and loss. I still cry when I go to weddings, knowing my father will never walk me down the aisle. He will never have a chance to meet the men in my life, and tell me if I’m royally screwing up, or not. Your father will never have the chance to either…but I assure you that if he is looking down on you, he does not want you to feel the way you are feeling.

You have some abandonment issues. That is normal. That is also something you are going to need to fix before you can enter into a healthy relationship. I know that miracles happen, but we cannot depend on them. The majority of the time, there is not going to be someone who comes into your life, sweeps you off of your feet, and fixes all that ails you. I thought I had met my knight in shining armor in 2005. For the first time, I was in a healthy relationship, with a man who could stand up to me, diffuse me when I was being crazy, and help me become a better person. I married him because I loved him, because all of my friends said that I was making the best decision I could make in my life (they all loved him and seeing a new, healthier me), and most of all because of this undying, unending, beautiful, patient love he had for me.

We were married for five years. I never fully got better. I put forth the effort to fix myself, but he didn’t have faith in therapy, and didn’t see my need for it. He thought it was a conscious choice I made to not let things go with my father and my past relationships. He eventually got burnt out on trying to be strong for me, even though I never requested it. We were still friends when we made the decision to separate, but we are not now. He changed, and I changed. When I let him go, I realized that I had someone who loved me for who I was, and I was unwilling to get help for myself. I thought I had made the biggest mistake of my life. I lost my family. The family I built with him, and the relationships I had with his family. I don’t feel that way now…but the one thing I learned through all of this, throughout my whole life, is that you should never attempt to love someone else on such a deep level without loving yourself first.

Please read that one again. You should never attempt to love someone else on such a deep level without loving yourself first.

Whatever that looks like to you, is just that. It’s a personal love where you realize you are good enough. Different people obtain this in different ways. I met with a cognitive therapist three times and she taught me how to change the way I think. I spent some time by myself, not dating. (I have also been in serial relationships since I was young, without real time spent by myself.) I challenged my fears of developing a bond with a church again. I lived with a family that I consider an extension of my own, and surrounded myself with people who would do nothing but love on me. More than anything, I learned to reach out and ask for help. When I was heartbroken and felt like I needed someone to be there (where I would usually start a new relationship), I called my friends. I made them come over. When they needed me, I would go to them. I created healthy friendships, and used them as a test run for how to relate to people in a new and healthy way.

This may not be the way it works for you. You have to find what works for you, but you are starting out the right way. You are asking for help. You can’t be that crazy if you realize that you aren’t happy living the way you are living. If you realize that it can be better. So now make the right steps. Learn to love yourself. You’ll be surprised by the way your world opens up.

Sincerely,

Sharideth’s Most Awesome Friend Who Can Tell People Who She Is In The Comments If She Wants To Or Not Whatever

told you you’d want to read it all.

have you ever had to figure out how to stop being the crazy one? how did you do it?

still going through it? did my friends words make sense to you?

any other thoughts are welcome.

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12 comments on “dear sharideth: I Am the Crazy Girl

  1. Jenn says:

    I don’t know if I had a moment where I realized that I was a large part of the reason I ended up in seriously messed up relationships. I knew I needed better, even wanted better but it kept getting worse, so I settled, that settling led to my imploded engagement. Needless to say, I absolutely agree with the idea of therapy. I have been in therapy both individual and group for the last 4 going on 5 years. It might sound terrifying but the only relationship you should go all in for is the one with yourself. Yes it will hurt, but it will change everything in healthy ways – your friendships, your romantic relationships and yes even how you see God. It’s not a miracle and it’s hard, but I completely agree with Sharideth’s friend.

    Further while it might be overly dramatic – but I would say, make the changes to honor the memory of your father, become the woman who embraces the fullness of life.

    • Jess says:

      I don’t think that’s overly dramatic, Jenn. Sometimes (and especially when you don’t feel worthy of having goodness in your life, or that somehow you deserve to be in pain) it’s hard to do the right thing for our own sakes. And then sometimes it helps to do it for someone else. I think honoring her father’s memory might be really good motivation for this woman to do the hard work of finding her self-worth.

  2. kp says:

    Man, your friend is a super genius or something.

    I bet she’s super humble about it, too.

  3. Laura says:

    I don’t want to get all preachy here, but it seems to me that she is projecting the relationship that she should be having with her heavely father on the guy she is dating. I think she would sort out some of her relationship issues if she would restore her relationship with God.

    • Heidi K says:

      I would like to respectfully disagree. Maybe that works in theory, but in my experience, being told that only caused me to feel more guilt and shame and made things worse. Sharideth’s friend is right. You can’t really have a relationship with anyone, including God, if you don’t think you can have/deserve a healthy relationship. And adding the blame of failing in your relationship with God only serves to make you feel like more of a failure.

      • Laura says:

        Perhaps I was not clear enough. I’m not negating what Sharideth’s friend said, I’m adding to it. I agree that this girl needs to love herself first, but when she said that when she’s with this guy she feels happy and safe, even though he treats her terribly, that’s where I feel like she should be getting those things from the Lord. My parents separated when I was a teenager and my dad chose to step away from my life in those years and. Found myself leaning on boyfriends for the male attention I craved, but after I went to college and reconnected myself with Christ, was able to see myself how God see’s me and was then able to love myself. Needless to say, after that happened I met and married a wonderful man (I think Sharideth would agree) and have a great and even better, a healthy relationship with him. So I digress. I am not saying I’m right and the fiend is wrong, I’m just adding to what she suggested.

        • Heidi K says:

          Ah! I agree. It’s just I can still remember the sting of feeling like I’m worthless and being told that what I needed to do was work on my relationship with God. It sounded a lot like ‘you’re a bad Christian and until you can pull that together, you’ll never be worth anything.’ I had to get those voices out of my life before I could hear the ones that said I was worth something.

          • Part of the secret to killing that feeling like you’re a bad Christian is realizing that we’re all bad Christians. I was the kid that was too Christian for the other Christians in a Christian school. I still am, really. Goody two shoes fit me. I can tell you, and mean it, that God can handle anything. And it’s true. Yet I still have trouble applying that to an inch-long insect that frightens me every time I see one 30 years after the last time one actually stung me. Realizing God neither topples off his throne nor disowns me when I have trouble trusting Him with one simple little insect is very freeing. Christ died for us before we were even born, knowing everything we’d ever do to displease Him. You can’t get worth more than that, and you don’t have to earn it, so you can never be worthless in God’s eyes.

  4. asoulwalker says:

    I always had trouble with the law. No, not the police. The real law. It was when Jesus summed it up in two sentences that He lost me for quite some time. The first bit made some sort of sense and seemed like something positive to meditate on. I did. It has always been great to meditate on loving God with all of myself…

    The second was what troubled me. I would think to myself, “love my neighbor as myself? That is a terrible idea. I hate myself. If I try and love other people the way I ‘love’ myself then I know that is going to be trouble.”

    I knew that my culture placed a weird emphasis on what they called self-esteem. And so, because of a disdain for my culture, I was reluctant to consider a very direct teaching from Jesus. He seemed to assume that I was supposed to love myself in some way. I didn’t.

    While this didn’t manifest itself (in me as a male) as crazy, it did ruin every single one of my relationships. Sure, there were other more immediate causes for me to blame. These other causes made it easy for me to not think about how I hated myself… actually, they fueled that fire quite a bit.

    If you do not love yourself I would imagine it would always remain extremely difficult to love another person in a long-term committed relationship of any kind. What loving yourself actually looks like is another question entirely…

  5. JB says:

    To the girl who wrote this letter. I’m so sorry that you had to experience all that hurt and rejection. I’m sorry that those who call themselves Christians did not honor and respect you as the Lord commands brothers to treat sisters.

    I hope that you can see that Jesus weeps over your pain. Only He can fill the void in your life, not husbands, boyfriends or even fathers. A good father should be a reflection of the love of the Heavenly Father towards theirs daughters (and sons). I don’t know if your father had a relationship with Jesus (you didn’t say that specifically), but sounds like it was a good possibility.

    Bring your hurt to Jesus; only He can “fix” you. You need a new identity – to see your worth and value through His eyes. You can’t be defined by the love of any man, but only by his love for you which went to the cross for your sin and the sin done against you. All of us struggle with the temptation to make idols of relationships, looking for completion from someone else, but we will only be able to have a healthy God glorifying relationship when we find our completeness in Him, and out of our relationship with Jesus, seek to serve the other person and mirror Him to that person.

    I encourage to seek out Godly, biblical counsel, and find a solid community of people who love Jesus and demonstrate the Gospel in their lives, walking out grace and repentance. I go to Mars Hill in Seattle which is part of the Acts 29 network. You mentioned working at Disney World so if you are in the Orlando area it seems there is a multi-location Acts 29 church called CrossPointe (xpointe dot com).

    You have great value and worth. Don’t forget that.

  6. Dirk says:

    OK, so I can come at this from the other perspective, to a point. I recently broke up with a girl who had a milder version of your life. Her dad died, she felt worthless, dated a jerk, then broke up with him. Then, after years of depression, loneliness, and self-loathing, she met me.

    I realized she was emotionally battered, and tried helping as a friend, encouraging her, praying with her, listening to her, challenging her to deal with her issues, etc. She started making progress, and we began dating. She still had a lack of self-worth and self-love… and it resulted in a lot of issues. She became very clingy (emotionally, physically, time-wise) because she thought she was worthless and unless she lived up to some standard, I’d toss her aside. Any time I told her that there was some issue in our relationship that needed to be dealt with, she’d go into panic and prepare for a break up and at the same time, ask me numerous times to promise that it wasn’t the end. Every time I told her that it wasn’t, but for lack of self-worth, she couldn’t believe that. Eventually, I did have to end it…

    I’ve talked with multiple girls with similar issues, and my advice is to not date (for now). Fact of the matter is, I don’t know anything about you, but I can tell you some things for sure. You are lovable. You are not beyond help. You are beautiful. You are trying your best. The same hands that made the stars made you. God doesn’t make worthless people. He sees you as perfect, and in the same instant, wants to help you become all that He created you to be. He made you WORTH IT.

    Yet this cannot be found in a relationship with a guy. If a guy is the reason why you feel worth it, then the guy is what defines your self-worth. Everything comes to hinge on the guy, so if he degrades you in some way (like the strip club incident), all your sense of worth is destroyed.

    This self worth is only found in Christ. He already decided that you are worth it and died for you to prove it and to save you. Nothing can take this fact or His love away. Embrace this, and hang out with people who reinforce your faith. Once you have a self-worth that is independent of the world and solely between you and God, then dating starts to work much better. Then Christ defines your worth and no guy can tell you otherwise (verbally or by his actions) without being a blatant liar.

    God is the only one who will always tell you the truth and the only one who can get you through your problems. He’ll “fix” you, He’ll always love you, and He will prepare you to enter a relationship with a man.

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