I HAVE TO BE VERY CAREFUL – to not let out my damage on others!
PREVIOUS: Victimizing Ourselves (Part 3)
SEE: ACRONYM Page for abbrevs.
TOWARDS OTHERS – From us
a. Abandoning (5 posts : “How ACoAs Abandon Others” )
• CONTROLLING : An outward manifestation of our disowned fear that has accumulated from childhood into the present
• IGNORING : Not hearing what someone is telling us about themself, their needs, their tastes, their point of view, their current availability
• REPRESSING Others’ Emotions: To the extent we are still repressing our own Es, we try to suppress that of others
• IDEALIZING: Putting anyone on a pedestal – not being able or willing to acknowledge someone’s real personality, including their human limitations & their damage
• UNDERVALUING: At the other extreme are the ACoAs who find fault with everyone, all the time, OR when someone gets too close, emotionally (Posts “How ACoAs Abandon Others” )
b. Jumping (projecting our issues / pushing our opinions onto others)
✶ What does it mean to “Keep the focus on yourself”? Many people misuse this phrase. They think it gives them license to say mean, insensitive, invasive things, as long as they start with “Well, it’s just my opinion, but I …”. Expressing Emotions does NOT mean saying or doing what ever we want, because it can too easily become a form of violence.
WRONG WAY – If we are emotionally dishonest or unaware, we may say:
• “I think you should….” – negating who they are, what they need or what they know how to do for themselves
• “I know I said I’d help you, but I can’t do it” – AT the last-minute, when they were counting on your promise!
• “It’s just my opinion, but your problem is….” – & then tell them what’s wrong with them, unsolicited, of course, AND not helpful or even accurate!🔅
• “I don’t t h i n k so!” – when someone tells us an emotional truth or personal insight about themselves
AND if they object, we repeat “Well I have a right to my opinion…”
This is not an opinion, it’s negating our reality in favor of their own
• “I don’t understand how you could…..” – implying that since their action / opinion /emotion is different than yours, it’s not legitimate
RIGHT WAY – while you can refer to what someone has said or done, you own your reaction to the other person BY :
🔅 taking responsibility for your own feelings, thoughts & actions – “I’m sorry for what I said – a button of mine got pushed & I reacted!”
🔅knowing yourself well enough to identify what motivates you then be willing to say it, in an appropriate situation:
• “I didn’t do ____ because I wanted to be numb for a while / I fell into an old pattern / I’m not allowed to say what I really want
🔅 dealing with your own anger, disappointment or hurt, without blaming or attacking the other person:
• “I’m really angry that you lied to me – I trusted you!”
• “When you said _____, what I heard was ______, & it really it upset me!”
• “I don’t talk like that way (harshly) to myself!
🔅making ‘I’ statements about yourself in an uncomfortable situation:
• “Even if you 2 are OK with this, it so painful for me to hear you insult each other that I need to leave…..”
• “I feel abandoned / hurt / angry / sad that you’re so rarely available to see me, but I know you’re genuinely busy & it’s not personal”
• “I’m getting tickets for —– & I’d love your company. NO? Well, I’m disappointed but understand if you don’t like it, & don’t want to go
🔅 knowing what you need and asking for it, BUT not trying to force the outcome. Al-Anon suggests: ‘Take the action & let go of the result’
• “I stay in that bad job / marriage / friendship… because I’m too afraid of being alone / not having an identity without them / of the abandonment pain I’d have to feel….”
• “That ___ doesn’t work for me because it hurts me too much / it’s not who I am / it goes against my principles….”
NEXT : Victimizing others #2