I think that self esteem plays such a huge part. When you have no self worth, have never had real love modeled for you? Where do you go?
It's not as simple as pulling your socks up or a light bulb turning on.
I can understand feeling helpless and hopeless and I feel fortunate that my self loathing never took over the love I have for my kids - I got better for them, rather than for myself if that makes sense.
This is such a hard subject to reflect on and to imagine. It makes me feel so emotional.