Always upset. I am too nice to people.

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Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 108
   Posted 7/25/2010 10:54 AM (GMT -6)   
I stayed up all night crying just because I had an awful day at work. But it only starts here...

I know that I am way too nice to people, even strangers. Which is good to be polite but people constantly take advantage of me. I cannot say 'no' to people even if I want to. It's really not good.

I'm very depressed about this because I'm in my 20s already and I'm so weak of a person. I need to learn to stand up for myself and not be afraid to speak up. I always just keep my mouth shut for fear of upsetting someone. Even when strangers talk down to me, I still do nothing. And its really really starting to bother me.

I guess I just dont want people to think I'm a mean person, but I don't care anymore. The people that matter should know that I'm not a mean person, and everyone else..whatever.
So I'm asking you all, how can I build some confidence to speak up? (Besides talking about it in therapy...)

getting by
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 42612
   Posted 7/25/2010 11:15 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Taryn,
I have the same problem, but since I got fibromyalgia, I have had an easier time saying "NO" than I use to.  When somebody asks you to do something, really take the time to think about their question.  Think about how it is going to effect YOU.  Be a little selfish in this area.  I still have a hard time with it, it doesn't mean that you are a wishy washy person or anything, you are just nice.  But you do have to think of yourself first and foremost.  So try that.  Make sure you really think about the request, no quick answers.  Take your time.  It is your life after all. 
I hope that this helps some.  I did have to go to therapy over this.  I was such a doormat that it wasn't funny.  But I have learned now.  I still have trouble when friends ask me over, I will say maybe, knowing all along that I am not going to go.  I want to, I just don't have the energy I guess. 
Best wishes,
Hugs, Karen
  Moderator-Depression and fibromyalgia
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1257
   Posted 7/25/2010 4:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Taryn, just a thought that may work for you. When someone asks you to do something you don't want to, tell them you will have to think about it as your schedule is busy and you will have to check your calendar to see if you
have time. You can get back to them and say you are sorry but you already
have a commitment for that day or period of time. I think if a stranger or someone you don't know well says something to you that is unkind, you can
simply say "excuse me, I am running late, or I need to leave or I need to
find the restroom." People who can't treat you in a respectful manner don't deserve your attention. I know it takes time to work on this. The people who do know you know what kind of a person you are. There are those in this world who are impolite or impatient with others. I always think there must be something that is wrong with them. It is certainly no reflection on you. I have developed a backbone as I have gotten older and I do use that excuse that I can't do something because it just doesn't fit in with my commitments. I hope you can use what I have done to help yourself. You deserve respect from others in any situation.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 7/25/2010 8:42 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Taryn

That is great advice from Karen and Aurora. I think all you have to do is just say politely "I don't think I can manage that right now", that isn't being rude but polite and honest. You have to start thinking of you now, not everyone else's feelings and besides you sound like you would be a very well mannered person at the best of times so I don't think you would offend anyone.

It surely isn't worth getting depressed over, but I do know what you mean about being frightened to speak up, it is something that once you do it once it will become second nature to you, if the request is something that you don't want to do.

Why don't you just try saying "No" once when its something you don't want to do. Good luck, I hope you will try it.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2317
   Posted 7/26/2010 6:35 PM (GMT -6)   
I think one piece of advice that helped me was when my counselor confronted me & asked if I would be really upset if someone said they couldn't help me with something. He then asked why I thought my friends were less understanding that I was. It was shocking to hear, but it was true. I realized I wasn't giving other people enough credit. So many times we think are friends are so fragile & can't handle hearing no, can't handle the truth, can't handle much of anything.

Some people can't -- and they aren't true friends -- but most can. I found when I started being honest that I kept 90% of my friends, lost a few who apparently were just using me, and gained even more. I ended up with stronger friendship & being happier myself [which meant I enjoyed things a lot more, including doing things I actually had the time & energy to do for my real friends].

I don't know if that applies in your case, but I hope it helps.

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