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Lemanada. I'm thinking about shame. I've been thinking a lot about shame this week.




Press release for this podcast, Hard Feelings, came out. I was so excited for you guys to hear about this podcast. I was so excited. I knew you guys were going to be excited. It just was such a joyous experience. I have judgment around the word joyous, I'm realizing. As I say it, I felt like yikes. I felt my ass cheeks clench when I said joyous. Joyous. God, but I also mean it. I have self-judgment around it and I mean it. It was a joyous, celebratory, even celebratory, it's getting worse. It was a joyous, celebratory experience that I couldn't wait to... I couldn't wait for the announcement. And one of the things that's really important to me in press, if possible, is that I, Carly, or Sam and Kat are not mentioned. These show titles, you guys, my ears burn when I'm saying them. I have so much shame around having been a part of them. And anybody who's read my book, I know understands. To try and summarize it for those of you who haven't, it's like imagine, I started working on A Gloney when I was I think we taped the pilot when I was...


I was maybe 13 and the show... Then we started typing the show when I was 14. But to have been known for so long for something that I did when I was 13 was very shameful for me. Imagine, for example, whatever you were doing when you were 13, acting in your school play of Peter Pan, or playing clarinet just god-awfully. Imagine if you were known for that, everywhere you went for the rest of your life, if you can't board a plane without 15 people coming up to you on the plane and going, Oh, my God, your clarinet riffs were just… God, they made my childhood. And you're thinking like, My clarinet risks sucked. Like, God, I'm a person now. I'm a developed adult now and I'm still being defined by the same that I did when I was a kid. So that was where I thought all of that shame was coming from, right? For the shows that I was on. And so it's important to me that those shows are not mentioned in press releases, if at all possible. The publicity teams who draw up the press release, of course, don't mention it. But then we don't have any control over whether those shows are mentioned in the actual articles themselves or not.


In the article, it mentioned, I, Carly and Sam and Kat. I literally feel like my body tightens just saying them. Let me give another layer of context to this whole situation. My memoir, I'm glad my mom died, came out a year and a couple of months ago, and it did really well. It did crazy well. It's doing crazy. It's still on the New York Times bestseller list. A year and two months later, it's fucking crazy. It's so meaningful to me in such a deep way because I felt like finally, I don't have to carry that shame of my past. Finally, I can be known for something that I do as an adult. Finally, I can be known for writing, the thing that I wanted to do since I was a child and was not supported in wanting to do. Finally, I can be supported for me, not for a character, for me. And and it washed away that shame for me. So it's not only celebrating this, Celebratory, Joyce. It's not only celebrating the success, but it was also just completely covering up my shame. I didn't feel shame for weeks, maybe even months. I thought like, it's gone, baby.


We're good. No more shame. And then I did a college tour around a couple of months after the book came out. I went and spoke at like 30 something colleges, I want to say. It was a lot of colleges. At one of these events, I remember exactly where it was, it was at UCSD. The lovely audience, the moderator, like asked one wrap up question. I go to answer and somebody from the back shouts, Sam wears a buttersock, or We want the buttersock, or something like that. I don't even remember the exact words of it. But I remember feeling an instant surge of, if there's fight, flight or freeze, instantly I wanted to go to fight. I was like, Okay, how can I protect myself? What can I say? How can I defend myself? And then I took a couple of deep breaths and I said, Wow! I got to be honest, it really hurts me that you said that. I had this amazing feeling of connection based off of this conversation, and I was really trying to be vulnerable and hopefully ideally helpful with what I was saying up here. And now this just... This just makes me feel really bad.


And the person was like, I'm sorry, but they were literally sitting toward the back. So it's like shouted through an entire auditorium, right? And there's like thousands of people sitting around taking in this experience, and it just made for a very awkward end to the conversation. And then some members of the faculty were walking me back to the room and they had apologized. I was like, Oh, no, it's totally fine. They were all lovely. I didn't want that one little moment to affect what was a lovely evening. And then the next day I got an email from my publicist, and a group of college students from that event had emailed my publicist, Stephen, who's just absolutely a wizard at what he does. He's so talented. I just can't believe how good he is at what he does. Anyway, he sends me an email from a group of these college students who are just saying like, hey, we just want to let you know that we all took away so much from the night and we're grateful for who you are and we're sorry that that person said that thing about the buttersock. We couldn't care less about the buttersock.


We love you, Janette, and we support you and we're grateful for you or something like that. And a bunch of these college students signed it. It was so meaningful. It brought tears to my eyes. That's the context of what it was in real time in that two days. And then I still continued to get triggered by it. In weeks to come, I would get little flashes of it. Not a big deal, just like a little flash. And when I would feel the flash of the person shouting Buttersook, my body would twitch. I was having a literal trauma response. My body's just twitch. You know what twitch is? My whole body is doing it. And I'm thinking, God, there's something to this. I've got to work on this. But I didn't do much therapy over... I was maybe doing a session a month, if that, for the past for a while, for maybe like a year. Honestly, I was prioritizing work. I'll just say it like it is. I was prioritizing work, and I don't think I was making enough time for therapy and personal growth and development, which I definitely consider therapy to be. Cut two.


This press release comes outand I, Carly and Sam and Kat are mentioned, and I see the article on my body does the twitch again. It does the twitch. I booked a therapy session with my therapist, Aaron, to discuss that reaction and what's coming up for me, why is this still coming up for me? I said, I'm so frustrated because I felt like the shame was gone because of the success of the book. And I'm realizing the shame from my past, from what I was known for in the past because I felt like, well, now I'm known for something else. Great, we're done. My work here is done. Guess what? My work here was not done. It was a Band-Aid on a bullet hole. I go to my therapist and I say, I thought I was done with the shame, and I'm realizing it was triggered again this week. To me, it feels like reverting. I'm like, I'm past this. Why is this happening? This article comes out and I don't understand, and I'm talking about this in therapy. I'm like, I don't understand why they still are mentioning I, Carly and Sam and Kat. I thought this would be enough.


I thought the success of the book would be enough. When is it going to be enough for them to forget Sam? When is it going to be enough for them to stop associating me with the fucking shows I did when I was 13? When is it going to be enough? I'm talking like this, right? It was like a mix of anger and confusion and desperation. I said, When is it going to be enough for them to get past Sam? And my therapist goes, When is it going to be enough for you to get past Sam? Quince creates timeless, elevated classics, which makes putting together your outfit way easier. They've got all the capsule wardrobe must haves. That's cool for me because I'm a big capsule wardrobe person. It's how I create my entire wardrobe. I'm very methodical in particular about the things that I keep in my closet. I've got my primary and my secondary colors. I'm obsessive about it. I love capsule wardrobes. So if that's also your thing, maybe go give Quince a brows. They've got some 100 % Mongolia cashmere sweaters starting at $50. But they also have affordable suede and leather jackets, silk blouses, and dresses too.


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Earthbreeze. Com/hardfeelings. Wow, it hit me so hard. I wrote it down. I'm one of those... I take notes during therapy, like rigorously. I don't want to forget any single thing. And I wrote it down in big, bold letters. When is it going to be enough for me to get past Sam? Because I'm thinking, you know what I'd love? I'd love for it to not matter. I'd love to not care. Who cares, right? I do. Why do I care? Why am I still caring about this? I would love for it to just be like, Oh, even more so than I would love to be able to say, Oh, they mentioned I call you Sam and Kat, who cares? I'd love to be able to not even really notice it because I just am just not affected by it. That is my goal. My goal would be to not be affected by having been a part of those shows. In therapy also, I don't even call them by name, I say those shows. I say, Having been a part of that show, having done that show, it's really hard for me to say the names of the shows.


I know it's something that maybe I genuinely believe that anybody who's read my book understands. But some people might think, What's so hard about being young and famous? What's so hard about... I don't know. Maybe you should listen to a different podcast, man. If that's where you're at, we're just never going to be on the same page or on the same path, and that's totally fine. There's a reboot of I-Carl-E. Maybe you should go watch that. Anyway. I did some journaling on it. My therapist suggested that I do some journaling on what's been triggering to me lately and how those triggers might be traced back to or connected to unresolved shame. I think that's a great exercise. I don't know, I hadn't really thought of it that way and I thought that was really an ingenious way of exploring it because I think that's, for me at least, that's really resonating and feeling very true. I'm thinking that a lot of these things that I've been triggered by are associated with unresolved shame and shame that I need to work through and work on. And all of this to say and loop back to the beginning of I feel like the success of the book was a bandaid on a bullet hole where I felt like, well, great, I don't have any shame anymore about my past.


And it's actually something that I still have shame around because I'm still capable of being triggered around it. And so it's something that I still need to work on. This is what's come up for me in my journaling and my processing since that session with Aaron. I think there's another layer than what I mentioned about feeling known for the thing that you do when you're 13 and feeling like, well, I've grown past that, so why has nobody else? Why can nobody pick up on who I am now? That feels like one layer, but the deeper layer to me feels like... And honestly, guys, unfortunately, I wish... It sometimes feels like an easy answer like, Oh, it's traced back to the family of origin. Again, you don't say, but it is. Most of the time it fucking is. And I'm feeling that again here where it's like my mom was so quick to see and witness and support any character I played, but never capable of seeing me that then that resentment became a thing that I took out on the audience of the show. On the people who would scream at me, Sam, I Carly fried chicken, when I was walking down the street.


Everybody said fried chicken. Where's your fried chicken? I got so fucking sick of people saying, Where's the fried chicken? That my God. Also, it's like I was suffering from bulemia. So when I was really at the height of my anger, when somebody would be like, Sam, my Carly fried chicken, I want to be like... Or they'd go, Where's the fried chicken? I want to be like, It's in the fucking toilet because I have bulemia. And I threw it right up. So feeling like my mom couldn't see me but could see really only the characters that I was playing, I think I felt that resentment and feeling that resentment was too difficult for me to face. I didn't want to face the in quotes, ugly emotions that I felt. No emotions are ugly, right? They're all just part of the human condition, human experience. It's all part of the cocktail, baby. But that's not what I grew up believing. And so I grew up believing certain emotions were okay and certain emotions were not okay. And so I was fucking terrified of the ones that were, quote-unquote, not okay. Resentment being one of them, and certainly resentment toward my mother, who I idolized and idealized and had on this pedestal.


So I was not accepting that I was feeling resentment, but I was feeling both toward my mom for not seeing me and toward the audience for not seeing me, you guys. I think there was this... The more popular that character... See, notice, I didn't even say the name. The more popular that Sam, my heart starts raising faster, got. The more I just felt unseen as Janette. Fundamentally, I think that was coming from not being able to see myself, not being able to be with myself, sit with myself, tolerate myself, know myself. I think a lot of that is modeled by your relationship with your primary caregiver, which was, of course, my mom, who, of course, couldn't see me either. That's where I'm at with it. That's the best I got right now. I'll keep processing it, and I'm going to try and figure out what is it going to take for me to get past Sam. Because I would like for if somebody puts the title of a show that I was on when I was a kid in an article for it to not affect me, that sounds fucking great. I want to be past this, you guys.


I want to be past this. I'll do whatever work it takes to grow past it. I really will. But in the meantime, Steven, my publicist, is flying in to be the superhero that he is, where he reached out and he asked them to remove it and he actually got them to remove iCarly from the article. God bless Steven. I'll be working on my shame. But in the meantime, I'll be thanking Steven.


There's more hard feelings with Lemonata Premium. Subscribers get exclusive access to bonus content and you can subscribe now in Apple podcasts. I'm Janette McCurdy, the creator, executive producer, and host of Hard Feelings. It's produced by Lemonata Media in coordination with Happy Rage Productions. Our production team is Keegan Zemma, Ariya Brochi, and Brian Castillo. Music is by Hannah Brown. Steve Nelson is Lemonata's Vice President of Weekly Content. Rachel Neel is Lemonata's Senior Director of New Content. Executive producers are Stefani Widdles-Wax, Jessica Cordova-Kramer, and me. Listen ad-free on Amazon Music with your Prime membership.