I am my own worst enemy when it comes to silencing myself. I have a “thing” about authority figures and when one speaks to me (or, God forbid, chastises or criticizes) I clam up….eyes lowered….afraid of the conflict…..certain I am to blame. Part of it is based on experience (like my first year of teaching when I was called into the principal’s office repeatedly because I sucked at classroom management…. at the beginning of the year, my “mentor” handed me a box full of decorations, but no real help….and for two or three years after that, even when I wasn’t “in trouble” I had butterflies [not the good kind] whenever my department head, or anyone higher on the food chain, wanted to speak to me). Some of it is based on old wounds because I didn’t understand the words at the time (like when I was about 10-ish and was whining about one thing or another at bedtime….my father told me to “quit my bitching”….my 10 year old reasoning was pretty sure he had called me a “bitch”….). Some of it is due to a general lack of self-worth (no one wants to hear what I have to say) or my inner critic (your writing SUCKS BALLS!).
Believe it or not, I’m better than I used to be……
Today, I have better boundaries. I stand up for myself more often than not. I ask for what I need. I voice my opinions. I write my truth.
I’m better than I used to be….with a row to hoe still ahead of me.
I’m a work in progress. I’ll be perfect when I’m dead.
Who silences you? What silences you? If you are feeling silenced, how can you get your voice back?
Have you been there?