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I’ve been trying to put my finger on the sentiment I’ve been feeling. Since I found out I was pregnant, and probably well before even that, I’ve had this underlying resentment running beneath the rest of the emotions I’ve been going through. It’s difficult to describe, but it is directed at my parents mostly. I also feel it towards others, like my in-laws and some of my colleagues at work.

Essentially, it’s like a variation of schadenfreude. I feel angry when people who have hurt me are able to be privy to or benefit in some way from the good things that I have going on in my life. I felt it most strongly when I found out I was pregnant, but I also feel it when even small things that are good happen to me.

As a result, I end up becoming more and more private with my life. I tend to shut down more and more. I used to be a very chatty and welcoming person, but I’ve become more prone to silence and not wanting to reach out at all. In a way, I’m trying to protect myself, since those people who have done so much damage can take away the small joy I would normally enjoy from good things.

In a way, I feel like those people don’t deserve to know about the good things. It’s part of the reason I kept myself in such isolation during my pregnancy, and also didn’t share any of the good news with my estranged mother. The few times I interacted with my father, my need to protect myself was reinforced because he does and says things that are either deliberately intended to antagonize me or do so just out his chaotic human nature.

I’m not even sure there’s a word to describe how I’m feeling. I wish there was, because it would be so helpful to explain to people why I am the way I am these days. Part of me chalks it up to the feelings that one goes through when becoming a mother, like a momma bear mentality. But there’s more to it than just protectiveness.

Beyond the need for self preservation, there’s this resentment that people who don’t deserve to bask in my happy moments somehow still get to, and that takes away from my enjoyment of it. Typically, it’s because they will make it so much more about them than me or the happiness of the event itself, but also there’s the feeling of karma denied.