My Paranoia Is Getting Pretty Bad
I wouldn’t define myself as a nervous person, but I would definitely include it in my list of personality traits. I love asking people to define themselves in 3 words. I usually describe myself as sensitive, funny (I hope, at least), and creative/curious.
But ‘nervous’ would probably make the list of Top 5.
I self-doubt, I overthink, and I’m constantly second guessing my actions and thoughts. There are exactly eighteen blog posts that I’ve written on here, and then archived because I’m afraid someone might take it the wrong way, or I might come off badly, or maybe someone, somewhere might be offended, and I’m racked with guilt and have a crisis about it. I’m paranoid.
When I was in high school, I went to Delia’s and bought my first ever thong. I hid it when I came home, and rushed to my room and stuffed it inside a piggy bank on my top shelf. The next day, it was gone from the piggy bank. Senior year of high school, I told my parents I was going to Bridget’s house, but instead I went to see my boyfriend. I drove in Bridget’s direction both to and from, but when I got home my parents knew I hadn’t been with her. I once dated an ex-boyfriend who somehow knew about every time I hung out with a guy he didn’t like and lied about it.
All of these experiences (and much more) have led me to believe that I’m either a horrible liar, or everyone in life has the ability to constantly monitor me and know, just know what I’m doing.
The truth is that maybe my parents just happened upon the underwear, maybe Bridget’s parents called them randomly so they knew where they were. It turned out my ex boyfriend had gone through my computer and looked at my iPhone’s messages and that was how he knew.
But now it’s becoming a bit of a problem and seeping into a lot of aspects of my life.
I’m lying to my therapist, which is never a good sign.
I’ll be venting to her about, for example, a boyfriend.
“I hate him!,” I might wail to her, “He’s a horrible person, he’s been horrible for years and he just keeps pretending like he hasn’t done all of these awful things. He’s not taking any responsibility.”
And then I’ll glance over at my phone. Once a boyfriend was able to go through there. Maybe my phone is being tapped, it’s not impossible. I’ll look at my therapist. There’s a chance she knows my boyfriend, or his family, and she’s telling him everything I’m saying.
“But I mean…” I’ll continue, “He’s not all bad. And I still do really like him, I swear. He does a lot of things well.”
I don’t trust her fully. I don’t trust my phone. I’m saying things in therapy that I don’t mean because I’m trying to prepare myself for a fallout that probably doesn’t even exist.
Sometimes I think that people can literally hear my thoughts.
I’ll be heading into my office after a rough commute and think something nasty about the person standing in the elevator next to me.
Fuck, I think, they know I said that. And then I apologize to them in my mind and say nice things about them in my mind.
Honestly, typing all of this out sounds crazy, I really do sound like a crazy person. Not only is my therapist not safe, but my mind is also a place to be on high-alert.
So, to try and figure out if I was in fact fucked up, like I do in most cases, I turned to Google.
“I'm paranoid that people can hear my thoughts” I typed into Google.
The first result was from a Schizophrenia forum. Cool…cool.
Then the second link, to a Reddit post, said the user with a similar problem might be on the autistic scale. Others agreed, it was definitely a form of mental illness.
Yeah, but I’m different. I thought as I read the responses. I don’t think everyone in the world can hear my thoughts! I’m just paranoid that they can. And besides…my thong disappeared from my piggy bank I mean it’s a completely different story, that was a moment of trauma, okay?
Then I came upon this Reddit link that seemed more up my alley, especially the comment at the bottom:
When I was much younger, I spent a lot of time telling people things in my head so that I could keep them distracted from my personal thoughts. If I couldn't think of anything to say, I'd sing really loudly (in my head still) at them, or tell them to go away. Even when my personal thoughts weren't anything to be ashamed or embarrassed about. I would often think "I know you can hear me" at people to try and catch a reaction. It doesn't happen any more though.
I’ve done the exact same thing. I’ve been nervous that someone could hear my thoughts so I would loudly sing (in my head) lyrics to song, to try and ‘throw them off’ so they couldn’t tell what I was thinking.
Phew. Other people have this. Google once again talks me down from the ledge.
The subreddit it was on was for ‘anxiety’ so I just figured, that makes sense, maybe anxious people do this. I clicked around a bit more and found people with anxiety saying the same thing.
So what I want to know…has this ever happened to you? I’m curious about the amount of people out there with anxiety who have had this crazy thing happen. Maybe it’s a product of having boundaries violated at a young age, maybe it’s from having a boyfriend that violated my privacy, or maybe it’s just from being a bad liar, and having my lies be easily found out.
At any rate, I’m at a weird place where I’m now almost envious of sociopaths. I once dated someone who was able to tell massive lies at the drop of a hat, lie to your face without so much as a blink in the wrong direction, and who could mislead every single person in his life (and did). There wasn’t a single person he was honest with.
Meanwhile, I have to pop half a Xanax just because I’m so nervous that the security guard in the elevator heard me think that he smelled bad. It sucks. I wish I could trade that, I’d prefer to not feel guilt every time I lie. Or not feel guilty for just feeling anything at all. That security guard smelled horrible, why do I feel bad for acknowledging that silently?
At any rate, it’s something to think about. In the meantime, I’m going to continue browsing Reddit for the solution and keep singing songs in my mind. Talking to my therapist about it is out of the question. I’ve convinced myself that she somehow knows everyone in my life and is colluding against me. I know…I know…this blog is so relatable, right?