"I wrote an essay about my mother. I decided she put a destructive algorithm in my head when I was a child. I call it a ‘mal-gorithm.’ My mother always had very low self-esteem, so she never wanted me to have any confidence. She felt threatened by confident people, so her way of keeping control was to never give me any encouragement or approval. I remember one time I spent all day wrapping a gift for my grandmother. I decorated it with all sorts of designs, and glued cotton balls on the package. My mother took one look at it and said: ‘What did you do that for? Grandma isn’t going to care about that.’ I think I realized then that I was never going to get her approval."
"How does this affect you as an adult?"
"It’s very difficult for me to have the confidence to do things. I’m always anticipating the negative feelings of others But I’m working on it."