“Am I Being Annoying? Do They Hate Me?” | No, It’s a Trauma Response

I gave this pep talk to my kid this morning, and it just occurred to me that you might need to hear it, too.

(I’ve tweaked it some, since you’re probably not an almost-17yo dude. But I watched as enlightenment crossed his face, and I hope it reaches you, too.)

When you worry others are irritated with you,

that others are blaming you for <insert here>,

that you annoy them and they don’t want to be your friend/coworker/companion anymore,

that’s a trauma response.

And it’s because you’ve been conditioned, by someone in your life, to believe you’re an irritation and annoyance, that you’re the responsible one when things go wrong (and especially if it’s not done their way), and that you have to circumnavigate and/or avoid and/or counter every possible negative emotion they (or anyone else) may experience, at your own expense.

When this anxiety tries to consume you, pause. Remember this. It’s a trauma response.

The chance that your friends and cohorts and loved ones are ready to discard you is so far from likely. You’re not annoying. You’re not bothering them. They’re not prepared to un-choose you.

(So stop feeling so awful, for one, and for two, quit apologizing just for taking up space and being an individual.)

And in the off-chance someone is irritated or triggered by you?

That’s on them. It’s not your fault, your responsibility, your issue to fix.

Head up.

Shoulders back.

Find your center.

Let calm find your spirit.

You are worthy. You are loved. You are human.

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