How Do I Get Self Esteem?

How do I get self esteem and how important is it for sobriety? All my life I have felt that I wasn’t good enough for anyone or anything. It may have started when I was very young and our neighbor was putting up a fence between his house and ours. Even at that age I knew it had something to do with the way my parents fought all the time or the way we lived our lives. It didn’t help that there was always some kid in the neighborhood whose parents wouldn’t let them play with me. I always felt as though adults would look at me as if they disapproved of whatever I was doing.

When drinking I would always feel more attractive and I had self confidence. If I went to a party sober I didn’t feel attractive and I had a hard time talking to people. If I had a buzz on I could laugh, dance and talk to anyone and I felt as though I was the life of the party. In early sobriety I still felt less than everyone else except now I was angry about it and put on a tough front that intimidated others. There was a woman who was the wife of my husbands boss. When I first met her she would make fun of me in front of other woman. It was subtle but I knew what she was doing. After I was sober for awhile I started treating her like she was less than me and she backed off and actually started to treat me better. My anger was masquerading as self esteem and it worked for me. Unfortunately for a woman who wanted to be attractive my anger was very ugly.

I do have self esteem today, not as much as I’d like to have but it is there. I have had to work at understanding that I am okay the way I am. I have let the anger go and I have learned how to have an interest in others which makes talking to someone much easier. I went to a high school reunion a few years back and I was talking to a woman whom I had always been jealous of. I though she had it all but it turns out that she grew up in an alcoholic home and all that pretty self confidence I thought she had was a cover to hide her miserable home life. I realized that not everything is as it appears to be and that everyone has something that they would like to change about themselves.

I don’t have to drink today to get false self esteem and I found out that the reason my neighbor was putting up a fence was because the houses were so close together it was his way of giving both of us privacy.

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