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Unable to Ask for Help

My Fear of Getting Help from Others

I could easily let go of my past. But I can't. I have issues as to why I couldn't let go. The past hurts to hold on. It does not want to let go. It kept on haunting me ever since. Haunting me for days, weeks, months, even years.

And it has been over a decade since I left elementary.

I was five years old when this all began. The teasing, the bullying, the torment that haunted my soul ever since I began elementary school. I was very shy back then and I felt neglected because I was getting negative attention from not only the school but my family as well. It hurt my self-esteem. I felt nothing but sadness, and I was a troublemaker back then. I may have some good days here and there, but nothing would lift my spirits up.

I have a poor reputation for other students, the majority of them are female. I do have some male bullies, but none of them did serious bullying or teasing to me. When it comes to females bullying me, I always end up in tears because of their hurtful language and judgement. I have a hard time making friends because of trust issues from the torment, and I ended up mentally hurting myself if I made a small mistake to a friendship. It ends up being a nightmare to me.

But the worst thing about the whole torment for me is the inability to ask for help.

Because I have a poor reputation in the school, some teachers didn't take me or my situations seriously. I didn't ask my family for help because of the same reason. Nobody helped me out with my problems and I felt isolated with mental scars slashing on my back multiple times. It was hard. I couldn't get a single word out from the teachers saying that I've been bullied or asking them for help on anything. In fact, I was so scared of coming to school that I tried to fake sick so that I could stay home, but I couldn't because I failed every time.

I couldn't get my grades up because of this madness. My parents expected me to be successful and they disciplined me for not doing so well or doing the wrong things. I felt hurt, both mentally and emotionally. I didn't get a chance to say anything to them about my problems. They didn't listen to me for everything that's happening in school because they thought that I was lying, which labelled me as the "lying" kid.

During third grade, I was taught not to ask for help. "Asking for help is wrong," they said. "You should do it yourself, no one shall answer your dumb questions," they also said. I felt discouraged. If I can't ask for help, how can I learn anything? I was unable to finish my EQAO test with the necessary amount of time I had, and I had to miss out a bunch of opportunities and activities because of the test. I couldn't even ask for help during that time, either.

But the worse is yet to come.

In fourth grade, there was a substitute teacher that was always mean to the students every time he substituted for the core teacher. I don't think there was anything positive about him. He wass mean and verbally abusive. In fact, when he was substituting for my homeroom teacher in fourth grade, he insulted me by saying my name "Mi-car," which meant "my car." It was humiliating. It sounds like he hated me for no reason. When I do something wrong, I get yelled at. When I do something right, I get yelled at. And when I do nothing, I get yelled at. It's so frustrating and I can't get through the day when he was there without crying. Not only that, he said that I was a crybaby if I asked for help, which is why my self-esteem is very low. 

I felt lonely because no one would understand me. I felt pain every time I asked for help because of the anxiety about asking someone for help, even if it's a problem that I have no control of. I always get this nagging feeling in my mind and stomach because of asking, and I mentally feel pain because asking for help makes me feel weak. I didn't know what to do. I've been silent most of the time, thinking that staying silent is the solution to life. But, how is staying silent the solution to all problems? It doesn't work most of the time.

That's because it's not the answer to every solution.

Everyone has problems. Those problems have solutions. Staying silent does work out most of the time, but it does not work in every scenario. What if there is a problem that involves you saying something? Being silent won't get you very far into life. I've learned that the hard way. I forced myself to ask for help. Each time I did it, my guilt of asking for help gets worse. As I grew wiser, I've learned that asking for help is OK. In fact, it is a good thing. People ask for help all the time, even intelligent people ask for help. Since then, I've been asking for a lot more help than what I originally did, but I still have this lingering feeling of constant nagging going on in my mind, saying: "Why are you asking for help when you're going to give up, anyway?" or "You can do this without asking for people's help. You can lose that independence of yours that you've earned." I learned that being independent cannot get you far in life, and being with other people who you trust would help you overcome your fears and worries.

I noticed that asking for help is not a bad thing. Everyone asks for help occasionally, whether it is for academics, social issues, mental health, and the environment. There's nothing wrong with asking for help from time to time. I still have those issues because of miscommunication, which impacted both my self-esteem and confidence. I was afraid of judgment as well. I couldn't be open-minded to criticism. I'm only open-minded to diversity and people's opinions.

I have no idea how people are confident with their communication. I don't know their communication as much as they know mine. My language processor and cognitive thinking are poor, and it was severe back in elementary. I think that I could never learn my lesson anytime soon, and if I did, I will go back to my roots. I couldn't grow out of my learning habits, and I ended up thinking more and more about my past mistakes. I wanted to break this habit, but the only thing that's pushing me back is the inability to ask for help.

And the only person that can break my habits is me.

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