We’ve all been there. Done something that we maybe shouldn’t have. Or maybe we should’ve done something and didn’t. Maybe even done something we had to, but the aftermath was less than ideal. It could have been something as little as stealing your sibling’s dessert when you were ten. Or something more serious like lying about something to someone you love. Whatever the case, afterwards you feel that pit in your stomach as you struggle to come to terms with “it”.
Guilt is kind of a tricky emotion because sometimes it’s completely unwarranted. Let me explain.
If you’re like me–someone who deals with anxiety–your mind (or at least my mind) goes into overdrive and you can’t help but think about things that make you nervous. You constantly think about things you could have done or at least done better, and not in a constructive way.
Click. Boom. Then it happens.
The guilt just engulfs you.
And for me, I can feel guilty about almost anything. From asking for help to being a burden.
Something I struggled with for the longest time (and even now) is the guilt of being a burden on my parents.
Now I think it’s a pretty universal fact that raising a kid is expensive. From medical bills to school trips to miscellaneous stuff, kids cost a lot.
I was a kid who was very conscious of just how expensive I was. And my parents would comment on it. Thinking back on it, I realize they were only joking and they didn’t really mean anything by it. But it really stuck with me so that by the time I was in middle school, I didn’t want to ask them for anything. Or more accurately, I couldn’t ask them because I felt guilty.
And unfortunately, I’ve carried that mindset with me to this day.
Don’t get me wrong, I think guilt is a necessary emotion that teaches important lessons. But there is a point where the guilt no longer serves a purpose.
I’ve also seen the way that guilt has shaped others, like the time my brother asked me for money instead of our mom. Because we both knew money was/is tight.
I know guilt is something that people deal with in different ways but I think it’s something we all understand.
But that’s all I have to say for now.
Until next time x
P.S. Bonus points to anyone who caught my Hamilton reference.