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Built for guilt

“I am built for guilt, and if a person in my life doesn’t try to guilt me to get their way, I will unconsciously train them to use guilt to manipulate me. Everything about how my family worked was based on guilt. From going to the mall with my elderly grandmother – if I had to run in and grab something, she would say, ‘It’s okay, you can just leave me in the car.’ There were a lot of discussions that started like this: ‘Nobody said life was a fair.’ That was a cornerstone concept. I remember as a kid my mom used to tell us who she liked best out of me and my brother and sister. We were just totally wired to please and if we didn’t please we’d feel terrible. It’s a horrible thing. There’s a book called Surviving Toxic Guilt. I always feel responsible for everyone’s happiness around me and I’ve had therapists say, ‘Has it ever worked? Have you ever been able to make anyone happy?’ And I always say, ‘No.’ But weirdly all these things support me in my work.”

-Judd Apatow from an interview between Miranda July and himself for huck magazine