GUILTY FRIEND

Dear Ella and Suse

Recently I've been feeling quite uneasy when I'm around a particular friend. (or two) And also large meetings like at a graduation where I get to associate with many many people at the same time.

I normally didn't have these feelings before. So, I've been confused as to why I am having such feelings now. I think the fault lies within me. My self-esteem has decreased. I am constantly thinking what would he or she think of me? and I feel isolated from the rest of the group when they're there. And when I'm with them I often realise that I am judging and comparing them to myself. I cannot truly congratulate them in a success, and I have trouble sympathising with them. I feel guilty and ashamed when I see myself doing this because I am supposed to be their friend.

At the same time, I came to dislike these large meetings, crowds, cameras and I feel so so tired emotionally that I just want to escape the place. I admit I didn't like them before, but I still had a positive attitude. Now, I find myself wanting to avoid it altogether.

I am sorry if what I wrote is confusing. It is reflecting my own confused emotions. So above all issues I have, I decided to build on my self-esteem by reading books and build sympathising skills and possibly find a solution to this.
Your recommendation will be where I start.

Thank you for listening.

Guilty Friend
Dear Guilty Friend,
Thankyou for writing to us with this issue - it sounds both painful and difficult to handle. We hope that our literary cures will bring solace and aid.
In the Novel Cure we have The Shipping News by E Annie Proulx as our cure for low self esteem, and it is indeed a brilliant book that will definitely help you with these issues. We also talk about Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier, which is a fascinating exploration of low self esteem, as well as being a gripping and thrilling read. We have also just discovered the fantastic “Eleanor and Park”, which is a wonderful book about teenagers in love, in which Eleanor suffers from terrible self esteem issues, as she feels herself to be overweight, as well as having an abusive stepfather who gives her ample cause for worry. She does overcome her difficultites in ways that we cannot reveal, but we strongly recommend you read this.
To help deal with your horror of large crowds and meetings, we suggest The City and The City by China Mieville. Reading this book will give you a whole new way of looking at cities, which may well give you the ability to cope with urban life much better. Crowds will suddenly seem so much more fascinating and even appealing in some respects, and you will find yourself observing friends and strangers in a totally different way.
Yours,
Ella and Suse
We prescribe - The Shipping News by E Annie Proulx
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
The City and the City by China Mieville

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A SLUG WITH VISIONS OF HUMANITYABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP ENDED, LEAVING SCARSADULT ACNEAFRAID OF FAILUREALCOHOLIC DAUGHTERALONE ON A WIDE, WIDE SEAAlways wanted to be a writerANOREXICANXIOUS ABOUT SINGLE FRIENDAT A FORK IN THE ROADAVID READER, LACKING BOOKBEREFT OF A CATBORED IN ALABAMABOTHERED AND BEWILDEREDBRAIN SHRINKING MOMMABROKENBROKEN HEARTBROKEN HEARTED - TORN BETWEEN MALE AND FEMALE BEST FRIENDSBROKEN UP WITH GIRLFRIEND; FEELING BURNT OUTCAN’T MOVE ONCANDIDA REVOLTAIRECan’t afford to go on holidayCAST ASIDECHEATEDCHRONIC PAINCOLD HANDS AND FEETCONCERNED ABOUT DAUGHTERCONFLICTED PARTNERSCRAVING FOOD CULTURECYNICAL STEPSONDAILY ABUSEDARK NIGHT OF THE SOULDEPRESSED AND UNABLE TO READDEPRESSED DURING CHRISTMAS, AND LONELY NOWDESPERATELY WANTON GIRLDIRECTIONLESSEASILY BORED WITH NOVELSEMOTIONALLY SABOTAGED BY MY MOTHEREMOTIONS IN EXTREMEEVER THE FRIEND AND NOT THE PARTNEREXTREME ANGER AND FRUSTRATIONFADING AWAYFALLEN OUT WITH MY FRIENDSFALLING IN LOVE WAY TOO FASTFAZED AND CONFLICTEDFEAR OF CONFRONTATIONFEAR OF GETTING OLDFERTILITY PROBLEMSFOMO (FEAR OF MISSING OUT)FORGING A BRIGHT NEW FUTUREFRIEND WHO HAS LOST A CHILD LATE IN PREGNANCYFRIENDS DAUGHTER LOST TO SUICIDEFrightened of lifeGAPING HOLEGetting over a break-upGIRL OF UNCERTAINTY, BOUND BY RULESGIRL WHO DOESN’T FIT INGRIPPED BY LOSSGUILTY FRIENDHOPELESSNESSHOUSE AND LIBRARY DESTROYED BY FIREI love music more than booksI no longer commute – and therefore I no longer readI PEEK AT THE END OF NOVELS BECAUSE I WORRY THE CHARACTER MIGHT NOT MAKE ITI wish I were famousIN MOURNING OVER LITERARY DEATHSINABILITY TO SIT STILL AND ANXIETYINCONSISTENT AND NON-STUDIOUS- BUT AMBITIOUS NONETHELESSINDECISIVEINSECUREINTERESTED IN EVERYTHING BUT ACHIEVING NOTHINGINVISIBLE WOMANITALIAN NOVEL CURESJILTED AND UNSUREJOB IN LIBRARY UNDER THREATKICKED IN THE HEADLEADENLIVING ON THE MARGINSLONE RANGERLONELY AND DEJECTEDLONELY IN LOVELONELY IN MONOTONOUS JOB, LOSING SANITYLOOKING FOR A SENSE OF PURPOSELOOKING FORWARDSLOSS OF A SISTERLOSTLOW WATTAGELOW-ENERGY PESSIMISMMAD SCIENTISTMARRIED TO A MAN, ATTRACTED TO WOMENMISSED THE BOATMISSING MY MOTHER-IN-LAWMUM GOING BACK TO WORKNEED TO LET GONEW CITY, NEW LIFE -BOOKS FOR 12 YEAR OLD BOY?NEW FRIENDSHIP WITH HOLOCAUST SURVIVORNIGHTMARISH COLLEAGUENOMADIC FLANEURPOST NATAL DEPRESSIONPREGNANT AND ALONE