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How can I do what I wan’t to do with joy?

HomeForumsEmotional MasteryHow can I do what I wan’t to do with joy?

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  • #420290
    Tee
    Participant

    Hi Beni,

    you are very welcome, I am happy to be a part of your process.

    I feel alot when I answer you.

    I hope my remarks didn’t cause you too much distress? I hope some things resonated, but not to the point of being overwhelming?

    yes, and when I do it I often do it like a child. I say, I want this, I want that.

    You know, you actually have the right to express your needs clearly, without beating around the bush too much. I mean, you can say “I would like this” instead of “I want this”. And you can learn to say it in a calm but decisive manner (i.e. assertively). So you can learn to modify your request to sound more polite and mature, however, you have the right to express your needs. You’re not bad or faulty for having needs, or for expressing them.

    Yes, I just want to be accepted. I’m when I think of it even afraid of that when I give selfless/love that it might be received that way.

    Let me just check if I got it well: so you are afraid that even your selfless love would be rejected?

    I think my mom does have a similar pattern. I still do not trust her (do not open up) and make shure to keep her on distance. When there’s I problem I call my dad.

    Okay, so you’re saying that your mother is also very much stuck in the care-taker role and doesn’t want to ask anything for herself, right? But you don’t trust her, you want to keep her on a distance.

    When I put these 2 pieces of information together, one possibility occurs to me: that perhaps your mother was in a martyr role, where she served everybody, but was resentful about it, and yet she kept doing it? You wanted her to be happy, not to suffer, but no matter what you did and how much you helped her, it was never good enough?

    I am asking because my mother was like that. I could never help her, could never ease her “suffering”, although I tried and tried. And I too am in a better relationship with my father today.

    I’m actually working on finding a therapis/mentor. I was thinking of it for one year and finally it started changing.

    Good, I am glad you’re starting to consider it. Because it’s hard to pull ourselves by our own bootstraps. We do need external help. Another reason why I think it would be beneficial for you to work with someone is that you should learn to accept that you are worthy of help, and that you don’t need to do everything on your own.

    Yes it’s kinda risky doing it at work. It might work dough as the guy’s seem to take me as I am.

    That’s precious if you have such accepting colleagues. Working in such a positive, non-judgmental environment can also have a healing effect. So perhaps you can open up a little about your insecurities. Is there a specific situation in which you feel insecure, and then you freeze and don’t know what to do?

     

    #420297
    beni
    Participant

    Hi Tee,

    I hope my remarks didn’t cause you too much distress? I hope some things resonated, but not to the point of being overwhelming?

    Thanks for asking. It touched me. I didn’t get lost. You did hear what I said and put it in your words in a loving way. Like the two below. I still think about them.

    I see – you feel dishonest if you first give something (e.g. organize a garden party) in order to receive. You would like to receive love and attention, without having to do something for people first, right? You would like to receive without “bribing” them, so to speak?

    You know, you actually have the right to express your needs clearly, without beating around the bush too much. I mean, you can say “I would like this” instead of “I want this”. And you can learn to say it in a calm but decisive manner (i.e. assertively). So you can learn to modify your request to sound more polite and mature, however, you have the right to express your needs. You’re not bad or faulty for having needs, or for expressing them.

    I’m glad I mentioned it. I do it that way because it’s scary and in the moment I’m overwhelmed.  I’d like to express my needs in a gentle, assertively way so they can be received easy.

    Let me just check if I got it well: so you are afraid that even your selfless love would be rejected?

    Yes, it makes it more difficult to love. When I do, I can have thought patterns which tell me: “You do it to be liked”, “your manipulating people to like you”.

    When I put these 2 pieces of information together, one possibility occurs to me: that perhaps your mother was in a martyr role, where she served everybody, but was resentful about it, and yet she kept doing it? You wanted her to be happy, not to suffer, but no matter what you did and how much you helped her, it was never good enough?

    Yes, the word martyr fits in well. You know, I don’t really remember what I did and what she did I can’t find much in my memory. I see her now and in sometimes I see myself. She also struggles with connection, I don’t think she has a best friend besides my dad.
    I’m not sure if I tried to help her. I’m more prone to the freeze or self destructive behavior. I belief she couldn’t give me space, maybe I was part of meeting her needs. Like when you ask “how are you” but actually you create space to tell how you feel.
    I think the person which was emotional available the most, was my grandma. My dad was busy with his business.

    Another reason why I think it would be beneficial for you to work with someone is that you should learn to accept that you are worthy of help, and that you don’t need to do everything on your own.

    Everytime I do it, it gets a bit easier. Thanks for the kind words.

    Is there a specific situation in which you feel insecure, and then you freeze and don’t know what to do?

    I think there are a few factors. “Do I know the thing I do by heart?”, “How shure am I about myself now?”, “What is the mood in the group” and the main factor, “is there somebody seeing what I’m doing”.

    I had a massage workshop last year and we would be shown a sequence and then my memory would not work when I’d have to repeat. It was a very secure and loving environment.

    The good bad thing is in my new job is that I’m seen. I can’t hide well, they know when I’m in zombie mode. I think I’m afaid to loose the job and the people in the job. I lost my last job and it felt like a breakup.

    #420406
    Tee
    Participant

    Hi Beni, I can’t answer at the moment because I am at the ER, with a possible appendix inflammation. It might be a few days before I return to the computer.

    #420408
    beni
    Participant

    Oh Tee,

    I send you my breath and prayers. Gett well soon.

    #420440
    Tee
    Participant

    Hi Beni,

    I am back. It seems to have been a false alarm and I don’t have appendicitis. So they sent me home. I am relieved!

    I am so glad that my words touched you and resonated with you.

    I’m glad I mentioned it. I do it that way because it’s scary and in the moment I’m overwhelmed. I’d like to express my needs in a gentle, assertively way so they can be received easy.

    Right, you’re afraid to appear too demanding. Perhaps you believe that expressing needs is selfish – that you are selfish if you do that?

    Yes, it makes it more difficult to love. When I do, I can have thought patterns which tell me: “You do it to be liked”, “your manipulating people to like you”.

    Actually this seems that you do believe that expressing needs is selfish. You are reprimanding yourself for having needs. You believe that even your purest, selfless love could be interpreted as manipulation and dishonest.

    Yes, the word martyr fits in well.  … I belief she couldn’t give me space, maybe I was part of meeting her needs. Like when you ask “how are you” but actually you create space to tell how you feel.

    I see. Yes, a martyr mother doesn’t really meet our emotional needs. Perhaps she meets our physical needs (she cooks for us, works hard so we can have nice things, etc), but she does that not with sincere love, but with “oh poor me, I am sacrificing so much for you, and you’re so ungrateful” type of attitude. She makes us feel guilty for being a child and having needs. She makes herself a martyr and we’re almost the “villain” for wanting anything from her. Perhaps you experienced something like that?

     I belief she couldn’t give me space, maybe I was part of meeting her needs. Like when you ask “how are you” but actually you create space to tell how you feel.

    Right, she isn’t really interested in knowing how you are, but actually wants to talk about herself, and how hard her life is, right? She doesn’t have interest and cannot truly meet your emotional needs, because she is so needy herself.

    I can see how with such a mother, you felt that your needs are selfish. That everything you did to connect emotionally – even expressing the purest, the most selfless love – would be deemed selfish.

    When I was a child, my own mother would often reject my kisses and hugs (i.e. my sincere expression of love and affection), telling me that it’s stupidity, that it’s unnecessary, that such displays of affection are dishonest, or that it will spoil the child etc.

    I am mentioning this, because my mother conditioned me to believe that needing physical affection is stupid and weakness. That my legitimate needs as a child were somehow “illegitimate”.

    Perhaps your mother too conditioned you to believe that your basic emotional needs were illegitimate, and that needing love was selfish and manipulative?

    You know, I don’t really remember what I did and what she did I can’t find much in my memory. I see her now and in sometimes I see myself. She also struggles with connection, I don’t think she has a best friend besides my dad.
    I’m not sure if I tried to help her. I’m more prone to the freeze or self destructive behavior.

    I see. You were more prone to dissociation then. It’s a defense mechanism. It happens because when we are a child, it’s too painful to stay present with such an emotionally (or even physically) unresponsive mother. The pain of feeling unloved is too much. And so we freeze and dissociate. That’s how we escape that immense pain of not being soothed, of no one coming to our rescue when we are in distress.

    It could very easily be that your freeze and dissociation today is actually the same defense mechanism that you used as a child to escape the emotional deprivation you felt around your mother, and in your household in general (because you said your father was involved with his business, and the only emotionally available person was your grandmother.)

    It’s hard to grow up like that, Beni. I totally feel your pain and your terror, actually, of not having anyone to emotionally regulate you, to be there for you in distress. But what’s amazing is that you are very aware of your needs: you know that what you need when you freeze is that someone put a hand on your shoulder and tell you “it’s going to be okay”.

    That’s such a great observation, Beni. And so true. Because in fact, it’s your inner child who needs soothing and reassurance that everything’s going to be fine.

    Over time, as you heal and develop emotional strength, you the adult Beni will be able to soothe the little Beni. You’ll be able to soothe yourself by putting one hand on your shoulder, and telling yourself “don’t worry, it’s going to be fine”. Right now, you still might need others to tell you this, and it’s completely okay. But with time, you’ll be able to tell it to yourself.

    I had a massage workshop last year and we would be shown a sequence and then my memory would not work when I’d have to repeat. It was a very secure and loving environment.

    The good bad thing is in my new job is that I’m seen. I can’t hide well, they know when I’m in zombie mode.

    It’s wonderful you go to events where people are secure and loving. And also that you work at a safe, supportive place. If indeed you work in a more of a New Age field (e.g. massage therapy), there is a greater chance that your coworkers would be supportive and understand your needs. That they wouldn’t look at you strangely if you tell them you need a hug or a pat on the back when you’re in distress. So you can indeed ask them to be that safe person for you, while you are working on your healing.

    I think I’m afaid to loose the job and the people in the job. I lost my last job and it felt like a breakup.

    I can imagine you don’t want to lose this job, since the people are so supportive and they meet some of your emotional needs. Perhaps it will help you to see the situation with this new perspective: that it is your inner child who is probably freezing when you feel in distress, and that the goal is to heal enough so you can be a good, loving parent to your inner child.

    If you see things this way, you won’t feel so dependent on your coworkers to meet your needs (although it’s great that they are loving and supportive), and you’ll begin to rely more on yourself. So perhaps you’ll be able to feel more relaxed at your job and not so afraid to “mess up” and lose the people around you.

    Does this make sense?

     

    #420441
    Tee
    Participant

    Oh and Beni,

    thank you for sending me prayers and good wishes yesterday. I do appreciate it!

    #420453
    beni
    Participant

    Hi Tee,

    I’m glad you’re better. I wanted to say is that I hear you’d had a difficult upbringing too and it was not easy to get your needs met with your mom struggle taking care of her own needs in a healthy way.  Thank you for letting me know the circumstances.

    Right, you’re afraid to appear too demanding. Perhaps you believe that expressing needs is selfish – that you are selfish if you do that?

    Maybe that’s the whole, I do not understand it. I now that I feel guilty after or afraid before. The way I do it makes it more difficult for some people to say no and in the long therm creates tension. It’s difficult to say no to me but I really need to fully trust on that so I can learn what’s nourishing in a relationship and what’s not.

    Actually this seems that you do believe that expressing needs is selfish. You are reprimanding yourself for having needs. You believe that even your purest, selfless love could be interpreted as manipulation and dishonest.

    Yes, I that’s true. That’s my conditioning.

    I see. Yes, a martyr mother doesn’t really meet our emotional needs. Perhaps she meets our physical needs (she cooks for us, works hard so we can have nice things, etc), but she does that not with sincere love, but with “oh poor me, I am sacrificing so much for you, and you’re so ungrateful” type of attitude. She makes us feel guilty for being a child and having needs. She makes herself a martyr and we’re almost the “villain” for wanting anything from her. Perhaps you experienced something like that?

    Yes, that resonates. I think this is a disconnected way to love or connect. I think this is why I do many things. There is this hole which cry’s out: “I’m soo poor”. I started addressing it in other people. I started rubbing their heads and saying “ooh, you so poor”. That’s propably why it’s harder to say no to someone like that. When someone has that look.

    Right, she isn’t really interested in knowing how you are, but actually wants to talk about herself, and how hard her life is, right? She doesn’t have interest and cannot truly meet your emotional needs, because she is so needy herself.

    Yes! It feels like she takes it and turns it against me.

    I can see how with such a mother, you felt that your needs are selfish. That everything you did to connect emotionally – even expressing the purest, the most selfless love – would be deemed selfish.

    Yes, I want to learn how I can give more effortless.

    When I was a child, my own mother would often reject my kisses and hugs (i.e. my sincere expression of love and affection), telling me that it’s stupidity, that it’s unnecessary, that such displays of affection are dishonest, or that it will spoil the child etc.

    I am mentioning this, because my mother conditioned me to believe that needing physical affection is stupid and weakness. That my legitimate needs as a child were somehow “illegitimate”.

    Perhaps your mother too conditioned you to believe that your basic emotional needs were illegitimate, and that needing love was selfish and manipulative?

    It must have been very painful to get rejected this way. We’re so vulnerable as childs. Did you learn to overcome this?
    I belief for me it was the other way around. I’d reject my mothers kisses and hugs. I think my dad wasn’t very available for her.

    I see. You were more prone to dissociation then. It’s a defense mechanism. It happens because when we are a child, it’s too painful to stay present with such an emotionally (or even physically) unresponsive mother. The pain of feeling unloved is too much. And so we freeze and dissociate. That’s how we escape that immense pain of not being soothed, of no one coming to our rescue when we are in distress.

    It could very easily be that your freeze and dissociation today is actually the same defense mechanism that you used as a child to escape the emotional deprivation you felt around your mother, and in your household in general (because you said your father was involved with his business, and the only emotionally available person was your grandmother.)

    I belief it is how you say and this is where it’s coming from.

    It’s hard to grow up like that, Beni. I totally feel your pain and your terror, actually, of not having anyone to emotionally regulate you, to be there for you in distress. But what’s amazing is that you are very aware of your needs: you know that what you need when you freeze is that someone put a hand on your shoulder and tell you “it’s going to be okay”.

    That’s such a great observation, Beni. And so true. Because in fact, it’s your inner child who needs soothing and reassurance that everything’s going to be fine.

    Over time, as you heal and develop emotional strength, you the adult Beni will be able to soothe the little Beni. You’ll be able to soothe yourself by putting one hand on your shoulder, and telling yourself “don’t worry, it’s going to be fine”. Right now, you still might need others to tell you this, and it’s completely okay. But with time, you’ll be able to tell it to yourself.

    Wow, Tee. It’s amazing how you put things together and your sence of timing. It’s so nourishing to read these lines. I read this and then I had to sleep for 2h and now I’m finishing the reply.
    I belief this is the struggle.. I’ve given up on telling little Beni what to do because he does not listen. Not doing seems to be harder than doing. It’s good to know for both of us that there is a way to be in harmony together.

     

     

    #420478
    Tee
    Participant

    Hi Beni,

    yes, I had a difficult upbringing, with an emotionally cold, strict and very criticizing mother. And it left many scars on me, which lasted for many years. But with the help of therapy and increasing self-awareness, I’ve managed to heal gradually, basically to heal my inner child. I swear by this method of healing, because it helped me the most, after some other modalities didn’t help.

    The way I do it makes it more difficult for some people to say no and in the long therm creates tension. It’s difficult to say no to me

    There is this hole which cry’s out: “I’m soo poor”. I started addressing it in other people. I started rubbing their heads and saying “ooh, you so poor”. That’s propably why it’s harder to say no to someone like that. When someone has that look.

    Oh I see… so you’re kind of pitying yourself, telling yourself and other people “I am so poor”. Or “poor me, nobody loves me”. And then people might feel guilty if they reject you, right? And they start resenting you and the tension starts building. Is that what’s happening?

    If so, that’s your inner child crying and whining, because he really feels unloved. He really didn’t receive the proper love and nurturance from his mother (or father), and he is lacking. He is still trying to receive it, only not from your mother or father, but from the people around you. So you feeling pity for yourself is actually your inner child feeling pity for himself, because he indeed didn’t have his basic emotional needs met.

    The way to heal is to heal your inner child, to give him the love and care he craves. To be a good parent to him. That’s how you’ll stop pitying yourself and “manipulating” people to give you love. Because you’ll have it in you, your heart will be full and nourished.

    Wow, Tee. It’s amazing how you put things together and your sence of timing. It’s so nourishing to read these lines. I read this and then I had to sleep for 2h and now I’m finishing the reply.

    I am so glad that the idea of the inner child resonated with you. And that hearing those words felt calming and nourishing to you.

    I belief this is the struggle.. I’ve given up on telling little Beni what to do because he does not listen. Not doing seems to be harder than doing. It’s good to know for both of us that there is a way to be in harmony together.

    Yes, there is a way to be in harmony with your inner child. You would need to first acknowledge and validate his needs. Tell him that he is lovable and precious and special. And that you’ll be there for him.

    I don’t know how it would feel if you would simply give yourself a hug (at the same time giving your inner child a hug)? Does it feel soothing or it perhaps brings up more sadness?

    Perhaps experiment with that a little bit and see if you can give yourself some self-soothing. If not, it’s not a big deal, there are therapists for that. They provide a safe environment and the unconditional positive regard, so that we can start feeling seen and accepted and appreciated. They give us the first “boost” of acceptance and validation, and from then on, we learn to love ourselves (and our inner child) more and more.

    It must have been very painful to get rejected this way. We’re so vulnerable as childs. Did you learn to overcome this?

    Yes, we are very vulnerable. We depend on our parents to meet all our needs. And if they don’t know how to do it, we get wounded and carry those scars into our adulthood. But luckily, there is help. And yes, I’ve managed to heal those wounds over time, and as I said, healing the inner child is what helped me most.

    I belief for me it was the other way around. I’d reject my mothers kisses and hugs. I think my dad wasn’t very available for her.

    Oh I see. So she maybe used you to meet her emotional needs, because her husband was emotionally unavailable? (Perhaps she complained to you about your father or other problems in her life?) That can put a big stress on the child, because the roles are reversed, and instead of meeting our emotional needs, the parent expects us to meet their emotional needs, which we as a child are totally unable to.

    #420479
    beni
    Participant

    HI Tee, I’m not shure I used the reply function before, I’m just making shure.

    #420482
    beni
    Participant

    Good afternoon Tee,

    yes, I had a difficult upbringing, with an emotionally cold, strict and very criticizing mother. And it left many scars on me, which lasted for many years. But with the help of therapy and increasing self-awareness, I’ve managed to heal gradually, basically to heal my inner child. I swear by this method of healing, because it helped me the most, after some other modalities didn’t help.

    Wow, I feel proud that you did/do this work with you Tee. It needs a lot of strength and courage. I also feel grateful that to meet someone who did overcome it and is able to share it in the way you do.

    Oh I see… so you’re kind of pitying yourself, telling yourself and other people “I am so poor”. Or “poor me, nobody loves me”. And then people might feel guilty if they reject you, right? And they start resenting you and the tension starts building. Is that what’s happening?

    I do feel that way and I would say it in an unconscious way. Like when someone gives me a compliment I’d say. Ah it’s not so good. I’d down rate it. Because I’d get reminded that I don’t feel good enough.
    This might be how tension builds up yes. I don’t see trough it yet.
    Right now I try to get some distance from that. I say. Oh, I feel so poor. I must be the poorest person on the planet. Like I try to not take it serious.

    If so, that’s your inner child crying and whining, because he really feels unloved. He really didn’t receive the proper love and nurturance from his mother (or father), and he is lacking. He is still trying to receive it, only not from your mother or father, but from the people around you. So you feeling pity for yourself is actually your inner child feeling pity for himself, because he indeed didn’t have his basic emotional needs met.

    Okay, I observed that treating little Beni in a pity way does strengthen the belief that he’s poor. I try to tell him in the way I mentioned above: “Don’t be silly my love, you know this is not true anymore”.  It feels like this can help.

    The way to heal is to heal your inner child, to give him the love and care he craves. To be a good parent to him. That’s how you’ll stop pitying yourself and “manipulating” people to give you love. Because you’ll have it in you, your heart will be full and nourished.

    It is really difficult to give it to myself. I met some people this year who could make me feel that I’m good enough. A very wholesome experience. I belief you also do it.

    Yes, there is a way to be in harmony with your inner child. You would need to first acknowledge and validate his needs. Tell him that he is lovable and precious and special. And that you’ll be there for him.

    I do that, it does resonate a little. I think the best I can do atm is to not put pressure on him. I think I need to give him space that he can trust me again.
    Also I work on making other people feeling good enough. I belief that the mind does not differentiate and by strengthening the trait, I’ll be able to give it to myself later on.

    Perhaps experiment with that a little bit and see if you can give yourself some self-soothing. If not, it’s not a big deal, there are therapists for that. They provide a safe environment and the unconditional positive regard, so that we can start feeling seen and accepted and appreciated. They give us the first “boost” of acceptance and validation, and from then on, we learn to love ourselves (and our inner child) more and more.

    I will. Thanks for the input.

    Oh I see. So she maybe used you to meet her emotional needs, because her husband was emotionally unavailable? (Perhaps she complained to you about your father or other problems in her life?) That can put a big stress on the child, because the roles are reversed, and instead of meeting our emotional needs, the parent expects us to meet their emotional needs, which we as a child are totally unable to.

    Yes, I belief this is it. I met her a week ago and I saw it in her eyes.

     

    #420504
    Tee
    Participant

    Hey Beni,

    Wow, I feel proud that you did/do this work with you Tee. It needs a lot of strength and courage. I also feel grateful that to meet someone who did overcome it and is able to share it in the way you do.

    I am happy if my experience with healing can help you too, so I am happy to share whatever you might find useful.

    I do feel that way and I would say it in an unconscious way. Like when someone gives me a compliment I’d say. Ah it’s not so good. I’d down rate it. Because I’d get reminded that I don’t feel good enough.

    Okay, that’s a bit different than saying “oh poor me” and sort of pitying yourself in order to get people’s empathy. That’s not the same. If you can’t accept compliment, and you downgrade it, it shows you don’t feel good enough. So you’re like overly shy and meek and lack confidence. But you’re not trying to “manipulate” people to give you love by complaining how hard it is for you, right?

    Because I thought, based on what you said 2 posts ago, that you tend to pity yourself in front to others, and sort of try to extract their sympathy. And that it results in tension, because people don’t like to be around people who complain a lot. But that’s probably not what’s happening? You’re not really complaining too much, are you? In fact, earlier you said that you have trouble asking for help and that you feel you need to first give something to people (e.g. organize a garden party), so they would want to hang out with you. You believe you need to first deserve to receive love, right?

    This might be how tension builds up yes. I don’t see trough it yet.

    So if you’re not complaining and pitying yourself, what’s the tension you feel with people? What are the situations in which you feel tension?

    Okay, I observed that treating little Beni in a pity way does strengthen the belief that he’s poor. I try to tell him in the way I mentioned above: “Don’t be silly my love, you know this is not true anymore”. It feels like this can help.

    Yeah, if you treat little Beni with a sense of sympathy, i.e. feel pity for him, it only makes things worse. What he needs is empathy. You know the difference between empathy and sympathy, right? There is a great animation about that, with the words of Brene Brown. Perhaps you’ve seen it. It’s on youtube, titled Brene Brown on Empathy vs Sympathy.

    What little Beni needs is empathy: he needs you to understand him and see how hurt he was. Don’t tell him “don’t be silly, my love.” Rather tell him “I hear you, my love. I know how hard it is for you. But don’t worry, I am here for you. I won’t leave you. Everything’s going to be fine.”

    Something like that… You’re already doing great by addressing him with love. You’re not reprimanding him. You just need more of that love, compassion and understanding. And as little judgment as possible.

    So yeah, you’re on the right track with that, just be even more aware of your words. Try not to feel impatient with the little Beni, only give him support and understanding. That’s how you’ll give him real soothing.

    How does this sound?

    It is really difficult to give it to myself. I met some people this year who could make me feel that I’m good enough. A very wholesome experience. I belief you also do it.

    Thank you, Beni. I know it’s hard to love ourselves, if we are made to believe that we are unlovable and unworthy. That we’re not good enough. I know because it was the same for me. I actually received that first “jolt” of love by meditating on Jesus. Yeah. I didn’t receive it from any person around me (although I did and still do have a good and loving husband). But somehow I always felt a hole in my heart, I felt unlovable for a long time. And then in a meditation on Jesus (whom I imagined as unconditionally loving and non-judgmental), I asked him to fill my heart with love. And it happened. That’s the first time I really felt lovable.

    Well, that was my experience. You don’t have to do it like that, of course. But sometimes, when there is no one to give us that first jolt of love, we can call for a higher power, if we believe in one. Alternatively, surrounding yourself with loving, compassionate people, and seeking support in therapy are the best ways to feel that love. To accept that we are lovable and worthy.

    I think the best I can do atm is to not put pressure on him. I think I need to give him space that he can trust me again.

    Yes, you’re seeing it correctly. Putting a pressure on him is the opposite of showing him empathy. He needs soothing and empathy right now, and no expectations. So you’re completely right: what you need right now is self-compassion, meaning compassion for both yourself as a child and yourself now. Self-compassion is like a magic potion, with which true healing begins.

    Also I work on making other people feeling good enough. I belief that the mind does not differentiate and by strengthening the trait, I’ll be able to give it to myself later on.

    Hmmm… it doesn’t necessarily mean that if we have love and compassion for others, we also have it for ourselves. There are a lot of people who give and give to others (people pleasers for example), but harm themselves in the process. You said earlier that you “naturally take care of everyone around you”:

    I naturaly take care of everyone around me. Boundaries and my business, not my business are things I reflect upon a lot. I have to be very careful to only give with harmony to myself.

    This tells me that you’re actually very good at giving, and making people feel good enough. Or am I misunderstanding that?

    Yes, I belief this is it. I met her a week ago and I saw it in her eyes.

    You mean, her neediness and the lack of ability to listen to you and empathize with you?

     

    #420576
    beni
    Participant

    Hi Tee,

    Thanks for your reply.

    I took some time to reply because It feels like it’s a two way street. There are the situations when I feel like I describe, also there are many situation where I feel confident and joyful. It can be kind of confusing. I’m working on finding balance between feeling poor and not attaching to it. Also what I really wanna strengthen is the opposite of the poor boy story. I’m alright and I know that and I struggle and I know that too.

    Okay, that’s a bit different than saying “oh poor me” and sort of pitying yourself in order to get people’s empathy. That’s not the same. If you can’t accept compliment, and you downgrade it, it shows you don’t feel good enough. So you’re like overly shy and meek and lack confidence. But you’re not trying to “manipulate” people to give you love by complaining how hard it is for you, right?

    I think you mean, this one:

    Yes, that resonates. I think this is a disconnected way to love or connect. I think this is why I do many things. There is this hole which cry’s out: “I’m soo poor”. I started addressing it in other people. I started rubbing their heads and saying “ooh, you so poor”. That’s propably why it’s harder to say no to someone like that. When someone has that look.

    Aha, these are different. The feeling of, I’m poor and not good enough and the insecurity which I feel when I get complimented. I learned last year to say that I’m poor. Usually I would project it onto something else. I’ve have the always smile poker face. It’s hard to know how I feel for others and also for myself. It’s difficult to cry. It feels safe to hide and not to get attention. When I do get that kind of attention I’m overwhelmed. Like many people giving me advice.

    Because I thought, based on what you said 2 posts ago, that you tend to pity yourself in front to others, and sort of try to extract their sympathy. And that it results in tension, because people don’t like to be around people who complain a lot. But that’s probably not what’s happening? You’re not really complaining too much, are you? In fact, earlier you said that you have trouble asking for help and that you feel you need to first give something to people (e.g. organize a garden party), so they would want to hang out with you. You believe you need to first deserve to receive love, right?

    What I wanted to say above was that my mom started crying and she was like that’s not fair and so and so. And I rubbed her head and told her “oh you poor beeing”. In a loving way. And I think I could tell her child that it’s alright. And I want to do that with me too.
    I don’t complain in front of other people because I’m afraid they don’t like me. I want to complain more in front of other people. I think when I do it in a:” I’m not giving away my responsibility to you” or in a: ” I’m not trying to prove to you that I’m poor”. More in a : ” oh, look I feel really poor and it’s real but you don’t need to worry. I’m glad you listen to me” way. It can be wholesome.

    So if you’re not complaining and pitying yourself, what’s the tension you feel with people? What are the situations in which you feel tension?

    I belief as soon as I say something which could trigger people or create disconnection. I panik. What I used to do is, adding and adding words in a quick way. What would help but I can’t always do is. Asking, what did you understand or did you understand so and so.

    Yeah, if you treat little Beni with a sense of sympathy, i.e. feel pity for him, it only makes things worse. What he needs is empathy. You know the difference between empathy and sympathy, right? There is a great animation about that, with the words of Brene Brown. Perhaps you’ve seen it. It’s on youtube, titled Brene Brown on Empathy vs Sympathy.

    What little Beni needs is empathy: he needs you to understand him and see how hurt he was. Don’t tell him “don’t be silly, my love.” Rather tell him “I hear you, my love. I know how hard it is for you. But don’t worry, I am here for you. I won’t leave you. Everything’s going to be fine.”

    Something like that… You’re already doing great by addressing him with love. You’re not reprimanding him. You just need more of that love, compassion and understanding. And as little judgment as possible.

    So yeah, you’re on the right track with that, just be even more aware of your words. Try not to feel impatient with the little Beni, only give him support and understanding. That’s how you’ll give him real soothing.

    How does this sound?

    Thank’s for asking. I look at this video which is new to me. I’d say when I talk to people I’m actually afraid that they might get it as sympathy. I think because I don’t want it at all. And it’s easy to say empathic things out of sympathy. It’s when you do it like in the textbook. It feels disconnected.
    Yeah, I think I am still impatient. I tell him. Okay, I already gave you a month, how much more time do you need? And I’m like ah okay you want this okay have it. Now be happy. But I see now that’s not what he actually needs.

    Yes, you’re seeing it correctly. Putting a pressure on him is the opposite of showing him empathy. He needs soothing and empathy right now, and no expectations. So you’re completely right: what you need right now is self-compassion, meaning compassion for both yourself as a child and yourself now. Self-compassion is like a magic potion, with which true healing begins.

    magic potion <3

    Hmmm… it doesn’t necessarily mean that if we have love and compassion for others, we also have it for ourselves. There are a lot of people who give and give to others (people pleasers for example), but harm themselves in the process. You said earlier that you “naturally take care of everyone around you”:

    I’d say I’d fit in that people pleaser concept. I’d say it’s not love then, because you don’t give for free. When I do that I give out of desire and I suffer afterwards. I struggle with the metta meditation practice. I think it does resonate a little and it would help. Also I don’t do it by myself. I try to practice it in real live but it’s kinda better than nothing. Maybe not good enough anymore.

    This tells me that you’re actually very good at giving, and making people feel good enough. Or am I misunderstanding that?

    I can be very good at giving when I have enough myself. I think I need more self metta practice. I could do a retreat whit this topic.

    You mean, her neediness and the lack of ability to listen to you and empathize with you?

    Yes, I told her then: “I don’t want to answer to you if you look at me like this”.

     

     

     

     

    #420581
    Tee
    Participant

    Hi Beni,

    Also what I really wanna strengthen is the opposite of the poor boy story.

    I learned last year to say that I’m poor. Usually I would project it onto something else. I’ve have the always smile poker face. It’s hard to know how I feel for others and also for myself. It’s difficult to cry. It feels safe to hide and not to get attention.

    I don’t complain in front of other people because I’m afraid they don’t like me. I want to complain more in front of other people. I think when I do it in a:” I’m not giving away my responsibility to you” or in a: ” I’m not trying to prove to you that I’m poor”. More in a : ” oh, look I feel really poor and it’s real but you don’t need to worry. I’m glad you listen to me” way. It can be wholesome.

    Alright, I think I get it: you used to hide your sadness, you didn’t want people to know that you’re in pain (I’ve have the always smile poker face. It’s hard to know how I feel for others and also for myself.)

    But last year you started opening a little and admitting when you’re sad (I learned last year to say that I’m poor). You don’t do that to get people’s sympathy and “extract” love from them, but simply to share your feelings, to not hide your feelings any more, right? (More in a : ”oh, look I feel really poor and it’s real but you don’t need to worry. I’m glad you listen to me” way)

    It can be wholesome.

    Definitely, that can be wholesome. I am glad you’re opening more, even if it’s still hard for you to show vulnerability. For example, it’s still hard for you to ask people for help when you have physical injury.

    You say you don’t want to complain to people because you’re afraid they won’t like you (I don’t complain in front of other people because I’m afraid they don’t like me). But you want to change that attitude and be more open about your feelings. You don’t want to pretend that you’re fine when you’re not necessarily.

    That’s all great, Beni. You’re trying to be more authentic and not be afraid to show weakness or vulnerability. You are not less lovable because sometimes you need help or you are sad or frightened. You mother might have taught you you shouldn’t have needs, or that you are selfish if you have needs. But that’s not true.

    So it’s okay to show vulnerability. In fact, vulnerability is our secret strength, because it enables us to be authentic, to be ourselves. And being authentic is I think super powerful.

    I belief as soon as I say something which could trigger people or create disconnection. I panik.

    Perhaps when you share that you’re sad and show some vulnerability, you start feeling uncomfortable and you panic? Maybe you fear that people with reject you, and then you quickly try to downplay what you said, like “oh but it’s not such a big deal, I am not that bad actually, I am fine”?

    What I wanted to say above was that my mom started crying and she was like that’s not fair and so and so. And I rubbed her head and told her “oh you poor beeing”. In a loving way. And I think I could tell her child that it’s alright. And I want to do that with me too.

    That’s nice of you. I think you showed empathy for her. Not pity in a negative sense.

    I look at this video which is new to me. I’d say when I talk to people I’m actually afraid that they might get it as sympathy. I think because I don’t want it at all. And it’s easy to say empathic things out of sympathy. It’s when you do it like in the textbook. It feels disconnected.

    I think I know what you mean. When you express concern or care for someone, you don’t want it to sound like pity (or sympathy, as defined in that video). And yes, some people say nice things but don’t really mean it. They don’t really empathize with the person. But I guess you do mean it. So the intention is important. Don’t worry that you’ll sound insincere. If your intention is to show sincere concern, that’s what matters the most.

    I’d say I’d fit in that people pleaser concept. I’d say it’s not love then, because you don’t give for free. When I do that I give out of desire and I suffer afterwards.

    Do you say to people what you believe they want to hear? Do you do favors for them because you’re afraid they’ll reject you if you set boundaries? I am just curious: how do you think you people please?

    Yeah, I think I am still impatient. I tell him. Okay, I already gave you a month, how much more time do you need? And I’m like ah okay you want this okay have it. Now be happy. But I see now that’s not what he actually needs.

    Yeah, that’s not really compassion if you’re impatient and rushing him to feel better. It’s like having expectations on your inner child. Whereas what he needs is unconditional acceptance. I am glad you’re starting to realize that.

    Yes, I told her then: “I don’t want to answer to you if you look at me like this”.

    Oh so she is looking at you with self-pity, but then asks you how you are, right? And so you refused to answer, because you know her intention. Good for you! Yeah, it’s good you don’t allow yourself to be manipulated but could actually see through her and refuse to take part in her little game. What did she tell you in response? Did she get offended?

     

    #420615
    beni
    Participant

    I noticed that I did not reply to this part.

    Thank you, Beni. I know it’s hard to love ourselves, if we are made to believe that we are unlovable and unworthy. That we’re not good enough. I know because it was the same for me. I actually received that first “jolt” of love by meditating on Jesus. Yeah. I didn’t receive it from any person around me (although I did and still do have a good and loving husband). But somehow I always felt a hole in my heart, I felt unlovable for a long time. And then in a meditation on Jesus (whom I imagined as unconditionally loving and non-judgmental), I asked him to fill my heart with love. And it happened. That’s the first time I really felt lovable.

    Well, that was my experience. You don’t have to do it like that, of course. But sometimes, when there is no one to give us that first jolt of love, we can call for a higher power, if we believe in one. Alternatively, surrounding yourself with loving, compassionate people, and seeking support in therapy are the best ways to feel that love. To accept that we are lovable and worthy.

    Thank you for sharing your experience and I’m glad there are several way’s to have this experience.

    Alright, I think I get it: you used to hide your sadness, you didn’t want people to know that you’re in pain (I’ve have the always smile poker face. It’s hard to know how I feel for others and also for myself.)

    But last year you started opening a little and admitting when you’re sad (I learned last year to say that I’m poor). You don’t do that to get people’s sympathy and “extract” love from them, but simply to share your feelings, to not hide your feelings any more, right? (More in a : ”oh, look I feel really poor and it’s real but you don’t need to worry. I’m glad you listen to me” way)

    Yes, that’s exactly why I do it. Thanks for helping me making it present.

    Definitely, that can be wholesome. I am glad you’re opening more, even if it’s still hard for you to show vulnerability. For example, it’s still hard for you to ask people for help when you have physical injury.

    You say you don’t want to complain to people because you’re afraid they won’t like you (I don’t complain in front of other people because I’m afraid they don’t like me). But you want to change that attitude and be more open about your feelings. You don’t want to pretend that you’re fine when you’re not necessarily.

    That’s all great, Beni. You’re trying to be more authentic and not be afraid to show weakness or vulnerability. You are not less lovable because sometimes you need help or you are sad or frightened. You mother might have taught you you shouldn’t have needs, or that you are selfish if you have needs. But that’s not true.

    So it’s okay to show vulnerability. In fact, vulnerability is our secret strength, because it enables us to be authentic, to be ourselves. And being authentic is I think super powerful.

    Yeah, that’s where I’m at.

    Perhaps when you share that you’re sad and show some vulnerability, you start feeling uncomfortable and you panic? Maybe you fear that people with reject you, and then you quickly try to downplay what you said, like “oh but it’s not such a big deal, I am not that bad actually, I am fine”?

    Hmm, yes. I’d like to have control on how I’m perceived because I don’t know what I’m doing is happening. I mostly don’t downplay anymore because it creates more confusion.

    That’s nice of you. I think you showed empathy for her. Not pity in a negative sense.

    Yes, I felt the same.

    Do you say to people what you believe they want to hear? Do you do favors for them because you’re afraid they’ll reject you if you set boundaries? I am just curious: how do you think you people please?

    I observed the following. When I’m with people with different dialect I adopt it. I can easily be with a group and agree to every activity. I might loose my autonomy with time.
    Yes, I tend to tell people what they want to hear. I feel disconnected when I set boundaries. It’s like one or the other extreme only you or only me.

    Oh so she is looking at you with self-pity, but then asks you how you are, right? And so you refused to answer, because you know her intention. Good for you! Yeah, it’s good you don’t allow yourself to be manipulated but could actually see through her and refuse to take part in her little game. What did she tell you in response? Did she get offended?

    I think she felt rejected. I do not have space for her pain in this situations because of my own pain.

     

     

     

    #420650
    Tee
    Participant

    Hi Beni,

    Thank you for sharing your experience and I’m glad there are several way’s to have this experience.

    you are welcome. That experience was a key to my healing at the time. But I had some other healing work done before that, and I was in therapy too, so it wasn’t the only thing that helped me. But it was the most powerful, I feel.

    Yes, that’s exactly why I do it. Thanks for helping me making it present.

    I am glad you’re slowly but surely learning to open up and express your needs and your vulnerability. I am happy for you!

    Hmm, yes. I’d like to have control on how I’m perceived because I don’t know what I’m doing is happening. I mostly don’t downplay anymore because it creates more confusion.

    Right, you didn’t want to appear needy, so the moment you shared something vulnerable, you would backtrack, because you felt people would judge you, or reject you. But now, you don’t downplay it so much anymore, because it created tension and confusion. And I guess as you’re realizing that you don’t need to hide your vulnerability – that you are not less lovable if you show it – you’ll be able to stay with it more and more, even if might feel uncomfortable at first.

    I observed the following. When I’m with people with different dialect I adopt it. I can easily be with a group and agree to every activity. I might loose my autonomy with time.
    Yes, I tend to tell people what they want to hear. I feel disconnected when I set boundaries. It’s like one or the other extreme only you or only me.

    I see. Well, picking up someone’s dialect isn’t such a big problem, but if you find yourself doing something you’d rather not do, that’s already a problem. I guess start paying more attention to how you feel – because if we’re forcing ourselves into something we’d rather not do, we usually feel it in form of frustration and tension in our body (e.g. a pit in your stomach). So perhaps you can take it as a signal for yourself to politely excuse yourself and not participate in the activity they’re inviting you to.

     I feel disconnected when I set boundaries.

    Actually, the ability to set boundaries is a precondition for healthy relationships. There cannot be true connection if you’re not honest about what you are and aren’t willing to tolerate. If you have no boundaries, you’ll sooner or later start feeling resentment, and that ruins the relationship.

    It’s like one or the other extreme only you or only me.

    Perhaps that’s what’s happening to you: you tolerate something for too long (you don’t set any boundaries), and then you snap and suddenly you can’t take it anymore, and you overreact? And you go into the opposite extreme of “only me”?

    I think she felt rejected. I do not have space for her pain in this situations because of my own pain.

    Fair enough. What if you told her the truth and said something like “mom, I don’t feel that great at the moment.” Do you think she would understand it, or she would downplay your pain and blame you for not being there for her?

     

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