One of my big thoughts I have wanted to change about my past was related to social rejection that really started in childhood. I had one girl in particular who was not nice to me when I tried to befriend her. We had many mutual friends. There was one year in late elementary school that she had a huge birthday party and didn’t invite me. She invited my best friends, but not me, so obviously I found out about it. To make it all worse, she lived just a couple doors down from me and the dozens of girls from my school and my friends walked right past my house to get to her party. I remember when they started to arrive and I was outside playing. I ran inside to hide. I was so ashamed that I wasn’t invited. I made it mean that I wasn’t good enough. I continued to try and be nice to this girl and she continued to reject me for many more years. If I said hi to her in front of people, she would ignore me. I eventually stopped saying hi to her, but always wished I could be good enough to be her friend.
I did the work on this social rejection this past week, and got to the final thought in the model below, but I just really didn’t believe it deep down. I had a dream last night where I ended up going past an event where I saw a bunch of my current friends. When I looked inside, I saw this mean girl was the one running it. Everyone looked at me and asked why I wasn’t dressed up and at the event. I was so embarrassed and ashamed that I wasn’t invited. I ended up waking up from this dream and doing some journaling because obviously I was still stuck here in the place of shame.
After lots of reflecting, I realized that this mean girl was really just insecure herself and I was an easy person to use to make her feel better and more powerful because I didn’t stand up for myself socially. Her not inviting me meant nothing about who I was, but everything about her. In my mind now, at her 11th birthday party, when my friends started arriving at her party, I would have stayed outside having fun and said hi to them. When they asked if I was going, I would have told them, “Oh, I wasn’t invited! I hope you have fun!” When she ignored me in front of people and pretended she didn’t know me, I would have said, “Oh that’s funny. She knows me. We’re neighbors! She’s just pretending she doesn’t know me.” and I would have continued saying hi to her when I saw her (because you say hi to your neighbors). I wouldn’t have wanted to be her friend because she really wasn’t fun. I can’t believe how much power I’ve given this mean girl all of these years and how good it feels to have it back. These were starting and final models on it although I went through a lot of thoughts before I got to where I believed my thought in my final model … and I really really believe it and I don’t feel any shame anymore!
C: Neighbor girl
T: She doesn’t (didn’t) want to be my friend because I’m not good enough
A: Acting desperate to be her friend
R: She wants to be my friend even less
C: Neighbor girl
T: She didn’t want to be my friend and that’s okay. It doesn’t mean anything about me.
A: Having fun without neighbor girl
R: I’m just a fun person who people like to be around.