By our friend for life Lauren Flake…..
Recently, I found myself sitting across the dinner table from the Winder sisters talking about our relationships with our respective parents. The conversation brought up a lot of emotions within myself that neither sister, nor I were expecting to find. Amanda asked me to share my experience with dealing with feeling unloved and I immediately agreed. I thought that sharing this would be easy because this is something that I have dealt with my whole life; this is an emotional state that I am unfortunately on intimate terms with. When I agreed to write this it didn’t occur to me that in order to be vulnerable to lay my soul bare and to truly share what it means to feel fully, completely, one hundred percent, genuinely unloved or unlovable that I would have to go digging up all those emotions within myself. Instead, I realized I’d have to enter the dark abyss that is my emotional state when I was siting in front of my laptop watching the curser blink on an empty page on Microsoft Word and I thought to myself, “I immediately regret this decision.”
Trying to pen down what its like to feel unloved in a short little post is nearly impossible. However, I feel that this is really important so I am going to do my best to convey the emotions that someone who feels/believes they are truly alone in the world feels.
Imagine living a life in which you feel you are a constant inconvenience to every single person around you. That your mere existence serves no purpose to anyone and you are simply there as an annoyance. Welcome to the foundation of every thought that crosses the mind of a person who feels unloved just before they interact with anyone for any reason. That’s what I felt for years. We all have those days when you need your best friend to rant to, or to call for support or to just be a shoulder to cry on. Growing up I never had that friend. I felt that if I called anyone for help I was bothering them. As if I were this little fly that was constantly buzzing around that they’d swat at to get rid of. I felt my problems were insignificant and that I needed to learn to just deal with it, because I am not worthy of other’s time.
I truly completely believed that I was only tolerated by others because it was socially correct. I felt that I had to “buy” my friends. So I’d pay for meals, or gas or I do whatever it was that needed to be done in order to stay in their favor because I believed that if I stopped doing those things then they would leave me.
I used to have these thoughts that if I were to die today, would anyone care? Would anyone come to the funeral? Would anyone pay for a funeral? Would anyone cry? Would anyone even notice?
I used to cry myself to sleep almost every night because I truly felt all alone in the world. I didn’t feel worthy of having friends, or of having family or even having God in my life, much less having any of their love.
I say all that to say that when you believe the lie that Unloving places before you, you leave yourself vulnerable to more of its lies. It takes you to dark places that no heart should go. It tells you that you are hated, that you are not loved, that you are not worthy of the time of others, that you are not good enough, that you will never be good enough. That no matter what, you are forever alone. And when you get to that place when you reach the darkest pit of self hatred you begin to feel the life drain out of you. Literally. There were times in my solitude and the darkness of my room I would feel what I imagine an octopus tentacle would feel like wrapped around my waist. And I could feel the suckers pulsing on my stomach and with every pulse sucking the energy out of my body. I had no idea what that feeling was or what I was experiencing but then I would feel this cold tightness cross the front of my throat and it would begin to squeeze until I physically felt like I couldn’t breathe. Feeling like I was unloved was literally killing me.
This is what it feels like to feel unloved, but here is the deal. This is the honest to goodness truth: everyone is loved and is worthy of love. For the most part I have completely broken through Unloving and its power over me. There are still some lingering hurts that I am working through and I am trying to deal with them through forgiveness. But I have seen how far I have come and I know that I will get to the other side of all this as a better, stronger, wiser and most importantly happier and loved person.
Thank you for sharing Lauren!
-Amanda & Bridget