Clarity of thought

Now I have a small window of Clarity, this is what I am thinking.

I have such shit self-esteem that I really struggle to make decisions that go against what anyone else thinks. I don’t trust MY judgement at all. Well deep inside I do , deep inside I think I have good instincts and a good gut reaction to things, but I’m very easily swayed by others opinions / advice and I find it hard to stand firm in the face of opposition.

I say I have shit self-esteem, but this is only at ‘home’. Professionally I’m pretty confident about my judgement and will defend my decision-making, no matter who would question it. Its logical, informed and balanced. Evidence supports this opinion. So why is it so difficult to make hard decisions in my private life ?

I think this was one of the attraction of my ExP; he was so decisive and rarely appeared to doubt his decision-making, no matter who disagreed or questioned it. I felt able to lean on that surety and confidence, because he also believed in a bolstered my decisions (as long as they didn’t clash with his of course)  In fact he was often les logical and reasoned that I am, but because he believed wholeheartedly and strongly in himself, somehow that never seemed to matter.

I envy him that self belief

now there is just me, making decisions about my children, for my children that they sometimes disagree with, just me making decisions about day-to-day stuff… and I’m finding it hard to carry through unpopular edicts. No phones at night, no going out till homework done, etc etc They fight against it, I try to be clear and firm but I exhausted and get battered down. This in turn makes me appear weak and gives the impression that I can be battered (verbally) into submission and withdrawal.

I know only I can change this.

I just need to summon up the energy, resolve and determination…


  1. Lily, You relay your feelings so well. Maybe that in our professionals lives we have rules and logic and we are taught that through our schools our universities. They are black and white. While our emotions and our personal lives don’t have road maps, or procedures, evidence based rules. And maybe that is why we struggle with our emotions our self esteem, no books, no degrees. We figure it out on our own. Our emotions, our feelings, they are grey and everyone is different all trying to find our ways. And in that lies our self esteem at our core. Our jobs can define us, but our emotions, we second case, we evaluate our actions but it is always subjective – to us.

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  2. I think we can only have so much discord.
    I don’t even begin to implement rules I won’t enforce. My kids use their phones at will, as long as they stay in their data limit. I make dinner they eat. They have a general bed time, but as long as they get up in the morning I leave it to them.
    I ask about homework, but if they say no, I don’t push. They deal with the consequences.

    My daughter is 11. I am willing to help her more when she puts things off and gets behind.

    Occasionally I need a rule and it’s taken seriously because it is not the norm. Our leniency is acknowledged, and treated as a privilege.

    I know I can only argue so much. Then I am done.

    Hug. You are doing great. Keep telling yourself that!

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  3. Kids are exhausting. Even really good kids test our resolve constantly. It’s so tiring. My daughter is 26 now and I was so scared when she was a teen that we would have no relationship in the end because we were always arguing it seemed. Now we are mostly friends (although I still have to get all mom on her from time to time). It seems endless but it will end sometime. Stay strong Lily 🙂

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  4. I learned early in my recovery that I liked rules. Rules to me signified a safe zone… even after 18years, I still like rules. I was going through some stuff recently and was sharing with my sponsor, who reminded me of my need to be more flexible.(Funny… because I am a yoga instructor) My comment to her was… but wait- my butt is really puckering! I really was uncomfortable… Bent right out of shape… I needed people to follow the damn rules… she smiled and said- yes, I understand… this is good for you.

    I loved what “ainsobriety” said about “leniency is acknowledged, and treated as a privilege”… Boom. That hit home. I think so often when we grow up in homes with major dysfunction, we fear messing our kids up. In my case, I had “rules” and by golly we followed those rules and that routine! It signified to me, I had my act together… haha. Or so I thought.

    Just for today. Give yourself a break. You’re doing just fine.

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  5. I *totally* understand what you said about people who are self-assured and such. I have written about that many times in the past. I never felt I had that formula of self-confidence to do that. Now, years into the job I got when 2 months sober, I have found a good balance of self-assuredness and humility. It’s taken me time to get there. And at home – well that’s a bit more challenging. I have kids, and they also don’t work for me…lol. So being firm with them is a challenge – I see at times my attempt to dominate fails, so I am learning to change my tactic. It’s a fine line between keeping strong boundaries and also letting them be, and to learn from their mistakes. We restrict screen and push them for homework, but there will be a time when I won’t push their homework. Let them suffer the consequences as needed. That is how we learn.

    Anyway, you’re not alone in this. Pretty much any parent who reads this would nod along with it.

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