Whew, damn! Over a month since my last post. I did not mean for that to happen lol. You’d think with shelter-in-place going on, I’d have knocked out several posts, but my mood has been all over the place during this time (more on that later). The last thing I wanted to mention in the Nature and Nurture series is anxiety. I touched on how portions of my upbringing affected (wait is it effected?) my communication skills and my confidence, now let’s get into the anxiousness.
When I tell you both of my parents have undiagnosed anxiety disorders, I kid you not! Of course, I did not get it at the time, but in reflecting on things in therapy, I’m like damn… that’s why they did some of the things they did, when I was growing up. Coming up, some of things I wanted to try/participate in, were met with fear, worry, and sometimes anger. I know parents worry about their kids, my mom chalks it up to “a mother’s love”, but there is a difference between worry and concern.
In my mind, and correct me if I’m wrong, concern is “okay, you want do that… have you considered this, that, and the third? Oh, you did? Well good, go do it and be the best at it”… Worry and fear is “why do you want to do that?? You don’t know anything about that. It’s always something. You’re never satisfied. I don’t know about that”… You see the difference? The latter was usually my experience. It was so overwhelming. It got to a point where I didn’t even want to mention my ideas or plans, because of the negativity it was met with. Even in my adult years, I have trouble telling them (and friends and family) about what’s going on, because I’m pretty much conditioned to expect a negative reaction. It’s terrible!
I will say, things have changed a bit as they’ve gotten older. I still have a hard time telling them things, but when I do, they are more receptive, listen, and don’t try to trigger fear. Toward the beginning of the year, I told my dad I was seeing a therapist for anxiety. Surprisingly, we had a little dialogue about it, with him acknowledging that I got that from him, and encouraged me to keep going if it was helping. I was surprised. I also find them making small comments about things, wanting me to open up and share what’s going on with me. Now, I’m the one still struggling with releasing those things from the past and progressing to having a more open relationship with them. This is a lot.
Any-who, those are my big three areas that need the most work. Communication. Confidence. Overcoming fear and anxiety. All a result of nature and nurture. Progress has been made, but the road is long, with many obstacles and detours. I’m ready for the journey though!