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  • Writer's picturePenny Belle

My ADHD Brain – Symptoms : Low Self Esteem

Blog post written on february 15, 2018

Journal Entry from 27th July 2017

‘Lord, I can’t believe it. I’m actually sitting here in shock trying to look back on a few things with new eyes now that I know what’s wrong with me. Every ‘bad, annoying or frustrating’ thing about me that had been ruining my view on myself was NOT ME! it was NEVER me going backwards and becoming less of a person. I should have never been condemning myself and disliking myself like I was actually doing.

I wasn’t proud of myself

I felt fake

I felt like my integrity was in the bin! I want love but I run away from close connections – I doubt anything that feels like real love and I run from and shut out people I’m scared to lose – I would say and start things and never follow through with it!! My passion, focus and commitment were fading. Who was I?

I was praying to change. I was sorry for slipping but I was becoming increasingly worried and begun to lose faith because I felt like it was actually the REAL me poking through. It was never!

It was an attack on my mind and all of these things fell under one very easy to identify mind disorder: (Doctors call it that, I just say – ADHD)

Thank you sweet Heavenly Father!!! Thank you for revealing my ADHD to me and for answering my prayers that I have so desperately prayed over the past few years: ‘let me see everyone (including myself) how you see us all and Renew my mind. Refresh my mind, remove all stains made from pain and take me back to that loving and smiling ball of love that I was created to be.

In your eyes – I was always her!

I have always been her.

Earlier on I asked you:

‘Why did you have to, on top of everything, allow me to have something as frustrating and blocking as ADHD?’

You now have answered. I felt it in my spirit so strong!! Thank you my perfect father!!!

You allowed it because in your perfect timing, (now!) it would make me take all of the blame and condemnation away from myself and very soon you will remove the LOT of it in one go!!! One big healing session! But first, I need to share what I’ve learnt with all of your other children who have and still are suffering the same.

You are so beautiful Lord, I just LOVE you so much and the way that you operate! I’m gonna do it!! I’m gonna tell them Lord! I promise!!! And I won’t hold back! I release all fear and shame attached to the paralysing thought of opening up right now! I will be bold and love others through my healing. Thanks for using me. What an honour!’

When I found out that low self esteem or low self worth was a symptom of ADHD I was in shock. It took me ages to slowly moonwalk through my memories to figure out how early on in life I must have had this condition because as far back as i can remember, I never agreed with anyone’s compliments or understood their adoration towards me. I thought it started when my first proper boyfriend cheated on me constantly which at the time made me feel that I wasn’t beautiful, slim or good enough to be respected. I was with him for 6 years so this only got worse and worse as he carried on cheating (He was my first love and also very abusive so it was hard to get away) and so I ended up developing eating disorders and hatred for myself. I felt like he would stop if i was better but we all know now that this is never the case so I spent all of my youth (age 15-21) comparing myself to others and trying to improve my looks in any way that I could. Starving or throwing up felt most effective. I recently learnt that this mindset was not created by my ex though (We are friends now by the way – He was 17 when we met and was very insecure at the time so please refrain from negative comments) because now I have taken the time to ponder on it, I remember back in primary school, I played Pinocchio for the end of year play and i was wearing green corduroy shorts worrying and almost panicking that everyone was looking at my fat legs. This means I had this negative perception of myself from before the age of 10.

It has been hard for me to try to write about this symptom because a lot of other things happened to and around me as a youngster that I felt played a part too. I always knew that i would be free and healed by God’s grace but it wasn’t hard to put the pieces of my childhood together and understand what could have been the cause of my odd perception on myself. Being diagnosed with Severe adult ADHD and finding out that I was ‘prone’ confused me massively. I don’t know if I felt better or not. (I use past tense because im growing and I constantly feel different as i do so)

People with ADHD often grow up feeling like a failure because of our inability to complete things that would make us feel victorious or successful. The fact that we procrastinate, second guess everything and get distracted by sparkly or colourful things really easily means that things get started but not often finished so we never feel worthy of praise and often want to kick ourselves for not doing more to benefit our lives and progress.

Self esteem is so important. You need self esteem to get through life and to try new things. If a person believes that they will succeed, they will! But if they feel like they cant stick to anything they care about then they will avoid the feeling of failing by not even trying. Imagine walking around everyday feeling like you are not doing enough and that you are blocking yourself from living out your full potential but every time you tried to fix it, the same pattern occurred. Would you like yourself? I certainly didn’t. I felt like my own worst enemy all of the time. Even just writing this makes me sigh at the time wasted not knowing my truth. (time is never actually wasted when God has a plan for your life but you get my drift) I actually feel to hug and apologise to myself right now.

ADHD can effect your identity a lot. You feel like you don’t really know yourself because you never put 100% into things you are 100% passionate about and you feel like you are a different person all of the time depending on how manageable your tabs are so when someone says lovely or reassuring things that should really improve your self esteem, you think that they are disillusioned and can’t possibly know the real you either.

God has done a miraculous work In me when I think about my self esteem because I have overcome so many things in this area and love myself so much more than I ever have and have never received professional help. There is CBT (Cognitive behavioural therapy) available to help with low self esteem caused by mental or emotional issues but I’m not quite sure what that entails as my doctor said he would only offer me CBT if the medication didn’t work (very confusing method if you ask me) and I’m not taking that route so I’m relying on Prayer and will power to see me fully free. I now catch myself when I put myself beneath someone else or think I’m not good enough and I hold that thought captive and give it to God. I’m aware not all of you reading this know or have that relationship with God (message me if you want to be introduced lol) so I would advise you do what I also do and that is to deliberately force yourself to think amazing things about yourself so you are constantly reminded of how absolutely awesome you are. Celebrate your victories no matter how small you feel they are (even if it’s just that you finish your to do list, stick to a week of plans or remember something you thought you had forgotten) and write down some positive affirmations that you can speak over yourself daily because your words are powerful and change things. (I will do a short post after this one with some affirmations you can print off to carry around and a little explanation about how they have helped me and why they are so important)

A few years back, I remember so vividly, I was feeling really low and got invited to a big party but felt too unimportant, uninteresting and unattractive to go so I stayed in and began to write my feelings to God in hopes he would comfort me and He really showed up! This is what I wrote: (side note – I really didn’t have this kind of boldness back then so an angel must have led my hand lol – dunno why I did a nervous ‘lol’ when I’m being ever so serious) if you feel you don’t look nice one day, please don’t believe what you see. And when you feel confused as to why people are staring at you when you have no make up on… please remember they will always see me. In you! Not everything you criticise yourself for is true.

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