Just Suzy

Hello. My name is Suzy and I’m a people pleaser.

I try very hard to be true to myself. To be authentic…just like Wise Oprah told me too many years ago. But old habits die hard. Dang it if I don’t always want to make people like me! Even at my own expense. It’s not like my life is some sad case where I’m forced to be a clown for others’ enjoyment. Although at times, I’ve come close to that. It’s more this unyielding need to make the world feel better. Be brighter. Bring comfort. I carry that responsibility on my shoulders…. like everywhere I go! I don’t know why. I don’t who gave it to me. Was it my mom? Was I born so self righteous that I thought only I was capable of bringing happiness to others. Yes. No, just kidding. I really don’t know. What I do know is that it’s a weight that is getting too heavy to bear.

I’m a full grown adult. If the wrinkles don’t clue me in, then the endless list of things to do does. Funny how it sneaks up on you. I didn’t feel like an adult for a long time. I was still same old Suzy. Trying to please her parents. Her husband. Her kids. Her inlaws, her sister, her friends, the teachers, the neighbors, the grocery store clerk, the stranger in the car in front of me. Really? Yes. Sick I tell you.

But this story has a happy ending. I think. See, there came a day when life got so full. So big and heavy and full that it took all of me to hold it together. Not just my spare parts, but every bit of me. That’s today! Well…all of 2013 and part of 2012 to be completely honest. And I am now! Today I relinquish my title. I don’t want to, nor can I be a full time people pleaser. What does this mean?!!! Well, it means the world gets the Suzy that is usually forbidden to leave the house. My family knows her well. She’s a crazy mess of moods and attitude and love. And now she is free! Maybe nobody was fooled but me anyway…but still. I’ve said my peace. And you’ve been warned.

So that’s it. No pleasing ending. I told you, I’m done with that!

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Suzy Higley

Suzy Higley

Wife to my childhood sweetheart. Stay-at-home mom of 3 awesome boys, ages 14, 12, and 5. My youngest is non-verbal and has Autism. Currently starting a community with other Autism Moms called Better Together. More social learning opportunities for our kids on the spectrum are needed...and because I couldn't find them, I'm creating them. I also draw and paint on both paper and walls...and furniture. And speaking of furniture, I have a chronic furniture rearranging condition that I'm seeking help for. Not really...it's my favorite.

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  • Lou Galindo

    I used to be that way and I would drive myself nuts. But I realized that I was doing it to make people like me and, at the end of the day, everyone else would have gotten the best of me and all I had left for myself was the scraps. It’s hard to know when to say no, but the most important relationship you have is the one with yourself and that’s who you need to please first and above everyone else.

  • Good for you Suzy! And by the way, you’ve got a mighty fine knack for linking letters together. So glad you’re a part of the Pot-luck. 🙂

  • Becca Lingley

    Ugh I know how you feel/have felt (it seems more past tense by the way you wrote the article). I really struggle with being a people pleaser also, and putting everyone else’s needs before my own. And just in general trying to live my life to make others happier. I think to some extent it was the way that I was raised (conservative, “no” was not an appropriate answer for anything, etc.) and to some extent the way I interpreted the direction given to me in my life. But if you give everything all the time to make others happy and don’t take care of you and your needs, you just end up empty, exhausted, and no use to anyone anyway – including (especially) yourself. How can you truly support others if you have nothing to give? So, I love your post. And your decision to be you and I have been tryin to join you in that pursuit for myself. Thank you for sharing!

  • Suzy Garza Higley

    Thank you Keith! what a compliment coming from you! 🙂

  • Suzy Garza Higley

    Thanks Lou. If you see me slip, remind me ok!! Lol…

  • Suzy Garza Higley

    Thanks Becca. Well I tend to write as who I want to be. And then try to make it real. So I still struggle. My first try at writing this sounded more like what you just said. But again, I worried it would hit too close to home for people who might read it. So I technically am still ‘people pleasing’. But I really have let the big stuff go in the last year. Putting personal needs and wants first for a change. It’s been hard, but really good! …for me. I feel grown up now. Making hard choices. 😉 lol…

  • Cari McGann McGee

    I used to get panic attacks. I went to a psychologist to figure out why. Eventually I discovered that it was because I was afraid of measuring up to other people’s standards of me. I had them because I was scared of being judged and found wanting. I don’t have them any more because here’s what I learned – NO ONE CARES. We put so much pressure on ourselves, and NO ONE IS LOOKING AT US LIKE WE THINK THEY ARE! You,Suzy, are a bright and beautiful woman, and everyone loves what you bring to the table simply because YOU brought it. You don’t need to please anyone, Suzy. They’re already pleased with you. Embrace the fact that no one is a more harsh judge than you, and you’ll be free for the rest of your life. 🙂

  • Suzy Garza Higley

    Cari! So many of us struggle with this. It’s sad. What a waste of energy. Although it does give motivation to do a great amount if things! Lol.. Thanks for sharing. I agree! I’m working on it.

  • Sara Taylor

    Yes! I loved reading this post and the comments below. I also worry way too much about what people think, making sure everyone feels happy and included, and on and on. I’m not sure how, but wouldn’t it be nice if we could support each other in this?
    I’m not evolved enough to be a true “ex-people-pleaser”, but I’m working on it.