Person In Hat And Denim Jacket Looks Into The Distance, Stands In Barren Field With Dead Grasses

Comparison is the thief of joy.”

And if you have been compared to an ever-shifting & unreasonable standard of perfection that you of course failed to “live up to”...

Shame is the thief of joy.

Shame is often weaponized by people so overwhelmed by their deep-seated own, that their only way to cope is to front narcissistic traits of grandiosity or bask in reflected / associated gradiosity (such as belonging to "the one true church", cheering the winning sports team, volunteering with a noble organization, etc.) to the point of delusion.

Couple their self-appointed god-like “authority”, “expertise”, “perfection”, and refusal to take ownership of their own emotional weather with your vulnerability, inexperience, impressionability, and need to please...

and you have the perfect recipe for brainwashing, where this weaponized shame becomes your neural pathway that keeps you self-regulating your behavior to become the compliant, blame-taking automaton they always wanted / needed.

Over time, the murderer that is shame kills your sense of self, your peace, your autonomy, your self-worth, and your hope for a future you can’t imagine not “screwing up” (again).

Shame is a co-dependency-creating, spine-snipping, despair-inducing self-fulfilling prophecy.

So how can you recover when you don’t even know who you are, how to trust yourself, how to forgive yourself, or how to break out of a toxic chain reaction that is to self-love what chlorine tri-fluoride is to matter?


1.) Remember That Your ”Mistakes” Are An Integral Part of The Universe’s Evolution:

Not to get all “higher purpose” on you, but if you think of all-that-is as one enormously complex organism that is ever-evolving...then whatever you did or didn’t do is really just part of the cosmic evolution.

"Everything big is just a big version of something small." So if you feel as if you are literally dying of shame...just remember that the Universe--and therefore it’s microcosmic echo, you--changes one past-version-of-you at a time.

With the contrast of shame comes the clarity of desire for it’s opposite; the obsessive, miserable rehashings can become reflection that gives rise to new beliefs and how to choose / act differently when a new but similar situation is born.

Don't forget to choose YOU.

2.) Point To Where It Is

To this day, there are things I’ve done that still haunt me: that hurt others; previous versions of myself that disappoint and embarrass me SO.MUCH. Bad choices and situations and inadequacies that ruin my sleep and bubble up (at worst possible moments, OF COURSE) to prickle, shock, & condemn.

At those moments, as I’m about to spiral downwards, convinced of my own uselessness, failure, and "secret" "real" monstrosity…

I have to ask, “Where is [this event]?”

The only resolve I have is that all these issues are imaginary. Completely in my own head. They don’t exist and (unless you invent a time machine) never will.

*ALOT* of shame falls into this category.

It is okay to acknowledge gone events will stay impossibly gone instead of resurrecting them with your attention, re-animating them with relevance they don’t deserve, and then, for all your pain and trouble, becoming an eaten-alive emotional zombie. (click here to watch TheraminTrees's excellent video about rumination on YouTube)

3.) Is It Something To Be Ashamed Of...And Why? Who Says?

If there is no victim, there is no crime.

I can’t tell you how many victimless “crimes” I framed myself for:

***Whether it was trying to believe and slavishly obey ancient stories and customs appropriated as religion by my parent who gravitated towards intellectually-insulting, mythically nonsensical, consistently inconsistent, hyperbolic, openly and proudly vengeful all-powerful hyper-authoritarian deities...

(my parent did this because:

*they derived a sense of legitimacy and normalcy for their own consistently-inconsistent emotional instability + their illegitimate, histrionic, desperately-desired, all-encompassing need for control and authority

*provided a perpetual competition to "win" their 1st place superiority--in this case, who could follow and obey the loathsome, capricious, backwards rules and rituals the best)...

***Or my own sense of worthlessness, convinced I burdened and wronged others by fact of my very existence and presence (that I did my best to conceal)...

I actively sought out ways to reinforce and punish my belief that I was inherently, awkwardly, a problem.

This made me MORE weird and awkward, which further confirmed that I was right about how wrong I was, and appealed only to those with an emotional intelligence level at or below “predatorial abuser” because like attracts like and my vibration was definitely “toxic--please use me so I feel not-worthless for one second--PLEASE”.

It's pretty heartbreaking and it makes me pretty emotional to remember and write, but this blog post is the hug I wish I could give Younger Me, who was (undeservedly) emotionally beaten to a pulp.

It's my hug to you and Younger You too.

I couldn't make, much less keep, a deep, lasting, wholesome friendship because (see above) I drove those people far. far away. And the few people who tried to give me a chance? I couldn't respect because deep down, you can't respect someone you think is a fool (a fool for liking and respecting the unlikable and the un-respectable).

Maybe, just maybe, the shame you feel is less about anything any rational person with a clue could attribute to you personally, and more about the fact that you have been conditioned relentlessly to:

*Silently accept without question your alleged unworthiness, incapability, and "evil-from-birth-ness" (religions love to base themselves on this premise because this is the only way to manipulate otherwise capable and mentally competent people into surrendering and even denying their worth, capability, inherent goodness, competency, autonomy, sense of fairness, and justice.

With that out of the way, people will "believe", follow, and obey the most fantastical and illogical stories & rules to try to rebuild their decimated sense of self by trying to out-do everyone else for an impossible, unnatural, hypocritical, contradictory, and ridiculously-premised standard of perfection)

*Be the family's emotional vacuum cleaner. You find your face pushed into dramatic messes you didn’t make, but somehow are still responsible for cleaning up and internalizing. You emotionally become the literal filth-bag-holder for any and all “disasters”, real, imagined, exaggerated, fabricated, and victimless.

Because you are man and not a machine, you MUST try to make sense and some kind of fairness out of it. You agree to a “justice” system that is anything but: the judge, jury, and executioner is YOU, conditioned to take the fall when blamed for anything and everything by emotionally-crippled people who can't self-soothe.

After a lifetime of manipulated “facts”, manufactured "evidence", interrogated with loaded questions, emotional torture, and confident pronouncements of guilt…

few with even an iron will wouldn’t succumb, much less a completely impressionable child.

This is one reason oversharing is a sign of emotional trauma: constant drama / oversharing modelled as "normal" + constant need to "explain" for vindication / validation / attention.

4.) It All Comes Out In The Wash

Long-reaching or immediate, the effects of something you feel you did (or didn’t do) eventually becomes old news thanks to the gift of time.