Posted by: Judy | June 23, 2015

Schema rethink 4

4. DEFECTIVENESS / SHAME – The feeling that one is defective, bad, unwanted, inferior, or invalid in important respects; or that one would be unlovable to significant others if exposed. Yes. As much as I know this isn’t true, I battle it in my head every single day.

How does one move beyond this? It truly is a struggle, every single day.

Practice. I know, but sometimes it feels so useless.

I also endeavor to accept compliments from others…

This reminds me of a line from the musical 1776. John Adams is complaining to his wife Abigail about how useless he is, not to mentioned disliked. He goes through a litany of negative descriptions of himself. Abigail chastises:

“Do you think so little of me that you could believe I would love the man you described?”

There is no loving spouse to assure me that someone chose me above all others.

I know, without doubt, God loves me. I hate to say that sometimes it simply isn’t enough. When He feels far away I know who moved, and it wasn’t Him.

And I’m back at practice. I have to practice, every day, ignoring the negative tape. Sometimes, I need to actively dispute the negative tape in my head.

I have to remind myself that this change only comes from the inside.

People can tell you how wonderful you are, but if you don’t believe it, within yourself, it doesn’t matter what anyone says. You have within you the ability to confirm or deny what anyone says, including the voice in your head.

This is a choice: Truth or Lie.

First, I have to acknowledge that I AM defective. I am human. It’s part and parcel of the human condition. Everyone dies. One can’t be much more defective than that.

It is nothing of which one needs to be ashamed.

Okay. I’m defective. Rolling it around in my head to see how it feels. At first, I don’t like it. It’s uncomfortable. I want to shout and yell and fight back. Why? It’s a simple fact, not a judgment…


Shame is about judgment, about not only not being good enough but being bad, worthless, horrible, evil.

Side note: One should be ashamed of bad behavior. However, beating yourself up about it doesn’t change the bad behavior. Recognize the error/mistake/sin and change it.

I’m defective, imperfect, human. I’m okay with that.

Second, I have to accept that some people will reject me because of my defects/flaws/weaknesses. It is their choice; their choice is not mine to approve or disapprove. My acceptance isn’t even whether they are right or wrong. My acceptance is about allowing them to make their choice. Allowing them to make a choice does not diminish me. Their choice is not about me. Their choice is about them, what they will accept into their life. I don’t know their reasoning. It is, in truth, arrogant to believe that I can somehow control them, i.e., change their mind.

Third, I need to accept and acknowledge that I am flawed/defective/weak. As mentioned above, doing so does not release me from needing to do what is within my power to become a better person. Beating myself up is not helpful. In fact, it is counterproductive; it keeps me stuck in the muck and the mire.

Hmmm… when I first tackled this one I didn’t think I’d be able to add anything more than practice. I was wrong. I’m okay with that. I will work at improving. I am working at improving. I am improving.


The heat “burnt” the large rose a bit about the edges. I don’t know why, but I like it all the more for the imperfection of it. It’s still beautiful.



  1. This post reminded me of the book Will I Ever Be Good Enough by Dr Karen McBride. Have you read it? I found it really helpful in beginning to understand being the daughter of a narcissistic mother.

    • I’ve heard of it. Added it to my wish list. Thanks ((Judith))

  2. I love that pic of the roses. The rose is maybe burnt from the sun, from the heat, but it’s still alive and in all imperfections it’s beautiful and precious.
    Exactly like you are.
    I don’t know you except from your writings, but you are precious.
    Thanks for writing this post. It’s so similar with the thoughts I’m living with right now.

    • Thank you ((Lyckliga Lisa))

  3. You are amazing. The photograph is beautiful. I call those type of pictures “Imperfect Beauty.” Their imperfection enhances the beauty of the rose.

    • Thanks. 🙂

  4. (((Judy))) I hear you. “I battle it in my head every single day.” I feel it sneaks up on me on some days, you? I am not aware that the tape is even playing and then I have to ‘catch’ myself in the act in order to practice it. I believe that the fact that you have acknowledged all this is a big step in that battle. Here’s to improving every single day. 🙂

    • Yes, I’m also not always aware of when the tape kicks in. It’s become more subtle. Not giving up. Thanks (((TR)))

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