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EMOTIONAL ABUSE (E.A.) to Ourselves (cont.)
3. Going to the wrong people
4. Confusion” (Posts)
♟ HARMING others
• Sometimes we don’t even recognize we said / did something hurtful. So we don’t understand why someone blew us off – we lose a friend, a job, a lover, even a child…. without a clue how we contributed to the loss. OR…
• …. we’re angry, controlling, manipulative…. with someone close to us because they aren’t who or what we want them to be. We’re so desperate to get what we need from them – even though it’s impossible!
▫️ If it’s to an external child, we have to accept the reality of their age & personality
▫️ If it’s toward another adult, we have to accept them too, BUT can also distance ourselves, or leave
🔅 NOT HARMING = At the other extreme –
• many of us agonize about hurting someone, when we were not abusive – just taking care of ourselves, being assertive, protecting our WIC, or legitimately stopping someone from stepping on us. The other person :
🔸 may get hurt or angry that we set a boundary – which is theirs to deal with
🔸 OR they may not have been affected at all, so we’re just mind-reading, projecting our own WIC on to them. Either way we’re confused
BTW, feeling angry is not at all abusive. How it’s expressed is the issue. As long as what we say is truthful, and we use ‘I’ statements (‘That’s not what I meant”, “I will not be talked to like that!!”….).
Reminder : “Say what you mean, but don’t say it mean”.
E.As: agonized, anxious, ashamed, guilty, obsessed, S-H, worried
5. Staying Ignorant
• It’s both being in Denial (don’t know you don’t know something) – but also not willing to ‘go inside’ to find out what’s keeping you stuck, by digging up the mental & emotional garbage we accumulated from childhood on
• AND deliberately choosing Suppression / Distraction – to ignore unpleasant truths about ourselves we do know but don’t want to face or correct (our wounds)
While it may seem safer either way, it’s guaranteed to slowly starve our heart, mind & soul – never finding out who our True Self is. Ignorance is NOT bliss!
E.As: frustration, stubbornness, powerlessness
6. Letting others Use us
Whether we’re new to Recovery, & have self-hate, or have been working on ourselves a long time (& still have low self-esteem), family patterns show up in our life from time to time, but especially in intimate relationships. It happens even when our self-confidence has improved in other areas.
We let people take advantage of us – even offer to be used – with our body, our time, money, talents…. feeling ‘happy’ that someone wants to be with us!
• It’s the sneaky ways we get sucked in to being used by others (co-dep, people-pleasing, passivity….) whether they mean to or not. Before we know it we’re in deep & may spend years in disadvantaged positions, giving our power away – anything to not face FoA!
Because our parents were incompetent in so many ways, we were forced to or felt obligated to take care of them (run the household, not have needs, act as therapist…)
They took advantage of our intelligence, creativity, love, generosity – and desperation – so they wouldn’t have to grow up & be responsible for themselves – never mind for us!
• We choose people to be with (or let them pick us) who are as immature & dysfunctional as our family, & then proceed to fill the role we know, as caretaker-victim. OR….
• ….we project our parent’s immaturity & craziness onto everyone we deal with, assuming they ‘neeeed’ us the way our family did, even people who are obviously functioning well – because we don’t know how to relate to someone who doesn’t actually need us in a twisted way
• We clearly got the message at home that our needs don’t count – only those of other people. So we can do miraculous things for them, getting to use our intelligence, ingenuity & drive – as long as it’s not for ourself!
E.A.: disappointed, betrayed, enraged, exhausted, frustrated, S-H
NEXT: Victimizing ourselves #3