Conversations With Self-Loathing



Here are just a few of the conversations going on in my head this past week.

Self-Loathing: You are  a terrible person, you don’t even deserve to be alive. You are useless to anybody. You can’t manage to get yourself going;  you are just taking up space. 

Q: Ugh, yuck, that feels bad. I want to just stay in bed and pull the covers over my head.

Self-Loathing: Of course you do, because you are lazy. Just look at what a mess this house is. There is dog hair everywhere. And you have stuff to do for work this weekend because you can’t keep up. You are a mess. You should burn yourself. It’s the perfect thing, a bit of punishment but also a relief. You know you want to.

Q: I do want to, when you are around. But not now. Later, maybe.

*** * *** * ***

Self-Loathing: You are  a terrible person, you don’t even deserve to be alive. You are useless to anybody. You don’t matter at all.

Q (trying to rouse herself a bit): Right, okay, I feel bad. But you don’t have to be so mean. I don’t deserve that. I’m not really a terrible person. Are you really trying to tell me something else?

Self-Loathing: Just that you are a terrible person.

Q: But that isn’t true!

Self-Loathing: You can try to tell yourself that but you know I’m right. 

Q: No, you are just telling me the same old things, over and over. Your message hasn’t changed in 20 years.

Self-Loathing: Neither have you, so the same message is appropriate. How much have you spent on therapy, yoga, books? All that time navel-gazing, and you still can’t leave depression behind. You are just a miserable malingerer.

Q: Ugh, yuck, that feels bad. I want to just stay in bed and pull the covers over my head.

Self-Loathing: You should just burn yourself. 

Q: Hm, maybe I will… but later, not now.

*** * *** * ***

Self-Loathing: You are supposed to go to that party tonight, but there’s really no point. You are not going to be any fun. You will just sit there wishing you were back in bed, because that’s all you ever really want to do anyway. You are so boring and anti-social. There is something wrong with you that makes you unable to connect to other human beings.

Q: (trying hard): I don’t really want to go to this party, but it might be good for me. And even if tonight is not really my best time, I want to stay connected to these people.

Self-Loathing: Why bother? You know there’s no real connection there.

Q: The party was organized by my son’s friend as a goodbye party, and he invited all the friends’ parents. It’s a special thing for my son. I’m going, no matter how I feel.

Self-Loathing: Fine, you’ll be sorry.

*** * *** * ***

Self-Loathing: Not so good at the party, huh?

Q: It was a sweet thing, my son’s friends celebrating him and wishing him well.

Self-Loathing: But I know how bad you felt during the party, skin hurting, head floating away over the table.

Q: True. But they are good people.

Self-Loathing: I am sure you bored them all half to death. You hardly talked.

Q: That’s not true. You are exaggerating.

Self-Loathing: And when you did talk, you were also boring. And no one cares about you anyway. You should just burn yourself.

Q: Tomorrow, maybe. Would it make you shut up for a while?

Self-Loathing: You won’t know until you try.

*** * *** * ***

Self-Loathing: You are despicable. You are never going to get better.

Q: Shut up, shut up, shut up.

Self-Loathing: I’ll never shut up. You should burn yourself. Now is the perfect time; no one else is at home. Do it, do it, do it. Then I’ll give you a bit of a rest. Do it, do it, do it.


(Art by Princess Hanners)


  1. I’m proud of you for talking back to self loathing. This is maybe one of the hardest feelings to work with. I wondered if the wise women could help self loathing find a new job?

    —and, I want to add that you have a lot of interesting things to say, and you do have value. You are worth so much. I’m glad to call you a friend, Q. Xx

    Liked by 3 people

    • First, thank you for your comment. And likewise, I really value the connection with you.

      Second: a new job for Self-Loathing. Not a bad idea. Although honestly, I don’t know what job she has right now. I don’t understand what she is trying to accomplish.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I wonder if her job is to hold all the yucky feelings? Maybe she contains them and sometimes they get to be too much which is why her thoughts of hating you and wanting to self harm show up? I don’t know. Maybe she needs to find a better way to hold all the feelings? Or, I could be way off base. But if anyone can figure it out, it’s you. Xx

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I’m pretty irritated with Self-Loathing. I want her/him/it to leave you alone. I always think you have lots of interesting things to say. I love reading your blog. Thinking good thoughts about you. I hope today is better. Self-Loathing needs to be shackled in the dungeon for awhile.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I think alicewithptsd’s idea of finding Self-Loathing a new job is a much more productive idea than shacking her in the dungeon. @@. That’s rolling my eyes at myself.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I’ve been burning myself for years. Usually when the topic of self-harm arises, it’s centered around “cutting.” For some reason burning leaves me feeling more satisfied. I hate it, the scars are so ugly, and I’ve been trying to stop for so long.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I stopped for years. That went along with a period of time when I had no access to therapy and just forcibly repressed my past. Now I’m trying to deal with it, generally getting better but with lots of ups and downs.

      I have never had the urge to cut and don’t really know where the idea of burning even came from. But most of the time it has brought me relief faster than anything else.

      What helps you not do it? For me the best approach is usually just to say, “I won’t do it now, but I can always do it later if I need to.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve heard so many coping techniques. Taking a shower, snapping a rubber band across my wrist, holding an ice cube to the skin. Nothing worked until I started writing down all of the crap that was in my head. It helps me most on pen and paper so I can then rip it up. It’s the only thing that’s made any difference. I still slip up and burn at times, but it’s been less than before. The scars look different than cuts so I always wonder what ppl think when they see them on me. A lot of people don’t even know ppl burn. I told a couple of friends, and ppl at a group therapy session, the were all shocked.

        Liked by 1 person

      • The rubber band and ice – I heard that too, and they didn’t do anything. Only someone who has never experienced it could think these would be workable alternatives. Writing it down, yes, I think that is good.

        I know, I hear about cutting so much but burning seems to be much less common and less known about.

        Liked by 1 person

      • My therapist tells me to do ice under my eye. It’s not painful enough. And, i see know damage.


    • It can be a very powerful voice at times. The theory is that it is a an old strategy for keeping me away from painful realities. As I tell those stories to E., maybe the voices won’t have as much to protect. ????

      Liked by 1 person

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