Self-Hatred Is So Damaging

What's The Answer? What Was My Answer?

Steve Arrowsmith MA
5 min readAug 10, 2022


Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Do You matter? I spent many years thinking that was not the case for me. So much so that I could not get off the downward escalator where the basement floor was suicide. I am writing a memoir discussing that period of my life in much more detail. However, as you can see, I made it. Many of you will also have made it. Sadly, some did not.

So why write this short article? You, like me, no doubt have reminders now and again of those pitch black days and nights. But, for me, not so often anymore. A long and challenging journey making changes and choices along the way has taken me to a beautiful spot. But, occasionally, a sudden reminder can attempt to knock you off the path you are on. Usually, when you least expect it, a challenge and your reaction to that challenge can bring back that 'going under experience.' As a non-swimmer, drowning is the way I feel on those days. Has it a name? What's the cause? How do I cope now?


Self-hatred is so damaging. In my case, the myth of perfection fed this inner turmoil. And the result is always the same, the sense of drowning. I was going under and not being able to recover. This process creates doubt; self-doubt. Self-doubt in such adverse and dangerous circumstances then makes self-hatred. Self-hatred is unbelievably damaging.

What Is The Answer?

In my case, I learned three life-saving ideas. I want to say I understood immediately, but that's not what happened. Many, many years and many ups and downs until such a time when life became a joy. My friend, Nancy Stoddard from Salt Lake City, Utah, gave me many hours over the years to share her expertise. I am sure the journey would not have ended the way it did without her.

1 — My Signs and Symptoms.

2 — My Understanding of Causes and Triggers.

3 — My Coping Skills.

My Signs and Symptoms

For me, my main signs were twofold. One was significant black-and-white thinking. And the other, confusing feelings as facts. In other words, when I made a mistake, all I saw was ruination; therefore, I was a failure. I believed the way I felt and what…



Steve Arrowsmith MA

I live &write on two continents ⚽🏈 teacher, coach, and writer. Religious cults/Mormonism are my main interests. Contact me at