Feeling sorry for ourselves and the infamous “self-pity” is really self-compassion. And it’s very very rare. Our culture shuns and shames anyone who pities or feels sorry for themselves as we have all heard our parents and elders saying “Stop feeling sorry for yourself!”. We have heard our culture saying “You’re stuck in self-pity; get over it”. And if I had a dime for every time I heard people apologizing for or shaming themselves for having a “pity party”, I’d be rich.
We have learned to disown our inner children who need our attention, our care, our support and validation. This prevents healing.
I remember since being a child how I felt sorry for myself. I find it one of my greatest gifts. I had to support and nurture those parts of myself that got traumatized because I knew nobody else would. So I had to (out of necessity) become my own mother. And any good mother feels sorry, pity or compassion for her hurt child.
What do you feel when you see a hurt child? It’s that very compassion/sorryness/pity we need to learn to cultivate and express toward ourselves if we ever expect to heal and move through the traumas of our past.