If you are giving because your help is needed (in sickness or crisis) then simply accept the relationship for what it is. Your giving will add value to who you are but may not translate into a relationship with that person. And if your “generosity” has strings attached (like hoping you can subtly buy his/her affections) then it’s really not very generous. And don’t lie to yourself it’s not likely to work out. You will probably end up disappointed. One-sided relationships have a devastating effect on your self-esteem. No matter how good your self-esteem “GIVE and GIVE” relationships have their own constraints which make having productive and satisfying relationship impossible. My people have a saying: Who you are is related to how much you give of yourself without losing sight of who you are. Giving who you are to the extent that you empty yourself onto the laps of others only makes you insignificant and “invisible” in the relationship. And when there seems to be only one person in the relationship a disequilibrium in energy distribution happens and when that energy distribution exceeds certain limits, a state of instinctual emotional “distancing” begins to happen. It is best to minimize the possibility of regret by making sure that you choose people capable of “give and take” relationships. Yangki Christine Akiteng http://www.torontosnumber1datedoctor.com/NEWSLETTER%20ARTICLES/one_sided_relationships.html
I fall too fast,
crash too hard,
forgive too easily,
and care too much.
Every relationship needs give and take between two people to truly be a relationship. The term “give and take” is not new. It’s a simple idea that says that to have a productive and satisfying relationship you can’t just do all the taking or all the giving all the time. Unfortunately in reality many relationships are either: “You give and I’ll take” or “I’ll give and you take”. If you are doing all the planning of dates, paying all the expenses, sharing and repairing relationships you are giving too much. If a relationship feels like too much work on your part, you feel like you’re squeezing water from a stone, or the person requires a lot of nurturing to extract even a small amount of value, you’re not in a “love” relationship, you are giving too much. When your giving is taking too much out of you and threatens to destabilize your very person, then you are trying to give more than you are capable of. If you allow yourself to be drained of energy you will have less to give to a deserving man or woman and may find yourself passing up good men and women because of the experiences of your past. If you allow one or more experiences to make you cynical, then you have given more than you were capable of and it has made you less than who you were. This is giving more than you are capable of giving. To open yourself to others is often rewarding but is only as good as the value it adds to who you are. Yangki Christine Akiteng http://www.torontosnumber1datedoctor.com/NEWSLETTER%20ARTICLES/one_sided_relationships.html
It’s not anyone else’s job
to believe in you.
No one can do it better
Bishop T. D. Jakes
Some people act as though they believe that there is not enough love in the world to go around. They act as though they need to make sure that they are getting all your love and no one else is getting any of it as though if you love anyone else these controlling people will “miss out” on some of your love. In the past I put a lot of effort into trying to make these people feel like my love for them would never run out because I mistakenly believed that my love for them, could save them and if I could save them, they would love me back and that would save me. And at the same time it seems as though these controlling and manipulative people also believe and go to great length to communicate, that if you love yourself, you will be spending your love allowance on yourself instead of on them. Heaven forbid that happens! This “don’t love yourself” concept is taught in tons of ways always with the threat of becoming a horrible selfish person if you do anything to nurture or acknowledge your own value. They picked on the way that I dressed. They picked at the way I did my hair. They picked at me all the time to make sure that I was feeling bad about myself. To make sure that I was trying harder. To make sure that my self-esteem was kept low. To make sure that I was always questioning myself and not questioning them. And all of it was presented as thought their judgement was “for my own good”. That this “picking at me” and criticizing me was going to make me a better person. This grooming started young. I was ready to listen to all new controllers and manipulators that came into my life when I entered my adult years. Darlene Ouimet
Just because something isn’t a lie
does not mean that it isn’t deceptive.
A liar knows that he is a liar,
but one who speaks mere portions
of truth in order to deceive
is a craftsman of destruction.
DENIAL = a defense mechanism in which the existence of unpleasant internal or external realities is kept out of conscious awareness; refusal to acknowledge painful realities, thoughts, or feelings; an unconscious defense mechanism in which emotional conflict and anxiety are avoided by refusal to acknowledge those thoughts, feelings, desires, impulses, or facts that are consciously intolerable. Denial is one of the most difficult human conditions to deal with. The more old pain and feelings we have “stuffed”, the more difficult denial is to break through. It is important to look truthfully at our past and our parents to realize that everyone did the best they knew how. That way, we don’t get stuck in blaming. It is also important to develop skills in conflict resolution so that we can work through the conflicts that emerge from telling the truth and breaking the “happy family” illusion. With good tools and skills, these conflicts can become doorways to creating real intimacy in a family.
From the book “Breaking Free of the Codependency Trap” by Weinhold and Weinhold
That’s pretty much how we get through
our own lives. Watching television.
Smoking crap. Self-medicating.
Redirecting our attention.
by Chuck Palahniuk
Two codependents were out walking one morning when they came to a shallow river. “I’m scared of getting wet.” said one. “If you really love me you will carry me across the river.” The first codependent naturally agreed to this but, as codependents do, added a condition to the agreement. “I am so scared of walking in the dark woods on the other side” said the first one. “If you love me, you will walk in front of me as we go through the woods to scare away the bad spirits. After all I am doing for you, carrying you over the river, that’s not much to ask.” The second codependent agreed to this condition, as codependents do, so they set off across the river. But before they could reach the other side, the first one started to make comparisons as codependents do: “This isn’t fair. All you have to do is walk ahead of me in the woods. Carrying you is much harder. You make me so angry!” The more anger she felt, the more exhausted she became from the strain of carrying her partner (as codependents do) until she couldn’t go any further. “I’m too tired.” she said “You’ll have to walk the last bit to the river bank yourself.” And with that, she let him down (gently but firmly) into the river. This hurt the second codependent very deeply because it meant she no longer felt any love for him. So, naturally, as codependents do he hid his sadness by getting angry, hoping this would bring the love back again. After complaining bitterly about getting wet he stormed off, forgetting about his half of the bargain. The first codependent was even more hurt by this because she now knew that there was no love between them any more. She walked sadly through the woods, feeling alone and lost and scared but naturally hiding this behind a mask of anger. However, she built up courage by working out what to say that would hurt her partner the most, when she got home. Unfortunately neither of them ever discovered that had they looked a little further along the river bank they would have seen a pretty little bridge where two lovers could hold hands and look at the view. Nor did they ever discover that the bridge led over the river to a path that went safely round the dark woods and on through a meadow full of green grass and flowers, just meant for lovers who wanted to stroll together, side by side, instead of taking turns to carry each other or walk in front of, or behind, one another (as codependents do). http://www.growingaware.com.au/FABLECODEPND.HTM
But rarely do they act.
No one makes you feel; instead, people’s actions trigger the cascade of internal reactions resulting in emotions that trigger your accustomed behavioral response. When you accept this truth, you accept responsibility for yourself: for your emotional state and your behavior. What is so amazing about this fact is that the same is true for falling in love. When you are ‘in love,’ the emotional state that occurs when you are together or when you think of your mate is what feels so good. YOU are responsible for this emotional state; not your partner! So whether you experience anger, jealousy, love, sadness, joy or happiness, the emotion comes from within. It’s all about you, honey. What this means is that YOU are in control. YOU are in the driver’s seat. What’s the key to success? Stop blaming other people or circumstances for your emotional state and start taking charge.
Whenever you experience some emotion,
Breathe to regain control.
Soak it in, then follow these three steps:
- Identify the emotion. What are you feeling?
- Behind the emotion is a need. What do you need in this moment? What will be of greatest value to you right now?
- Take action to meet your need.
Julie Donley, RN http://nurturingyoursuccessblog.com/your-emotions-are-your-responsibility/
Our thoughts dictate how we feel;
so it is important to recognize
that we are as we think we are
“You made me feel…” “I feel angry when you do…” Is it possible that I have that much power over you to cause your body to react to what I do or say? What you feel is about you. When you are with someone, you may think they make you feel a certain way. When you say that others make you feel a certain way, you give away your power to some outside force. You blame another for what you feel and how you think. The reality is that no one can make you feel anything. YOU are responsible for your emotions – and for what you DO with those emotions. Your thoughts (about an event, what someone does, etc.) trigger a neurological response that sends chemicals through your brain which then causes an emotional response. And it is this emotional response that we act upon. These are often called “emotional buttons”. Often our emotional responses are so intense and have been repeated so often that they have become ‘habits’ which means that every time that trigger occurs – someone raises their voice, uses a certain tone, behaves in a particular way – this neurological reaction occurs automatically and without your conscious awareness. And your behavioral response occurs automatically too, which means you may behave in ways you’re not proud of but feel as though you cannot control it. The emotional response occurs, triggering the behavioral response, and you play out this dynamic that becomes a ‘way of being’. You think this is just who you are. But it’s not; it’s how you behave. Julie Donley, RN http://nurturingyoursuccessblog.com/your-emotions-are-your-responsibility/
No one makes you feel anything.
It is how you react and respond
that determines your emotions.
A parent who is controlling their child’s actions and is constantly concerned with what their child is always doing could be considered a codependent parent. Codependent parents may view themselves as being caring and helpful. However their codependent behavior is damaging the overall well-being of their child. To help understand what are some signs of a codependent parent and how someone can stop being a codependent parent, I have interviewed therapist Nicolle Zapien LMFT. (She said) “Codependence is a complex pattern of excessive selflessness and preoccupation with another person that does not serve both people optimally Codependence is a well-meaning attempt to be kind but really tends to stem from difficulties with anger, boundaries and strong self-structure. The impact of codependency on a child can be great. He or she may have difficulty with boundaries (addressing others’ needs more readily than considering one’s own), may end up as easy prey for people to manipulate, may more easily fall victim to self-harm, rape, date rape or abuse. There is some research to indicate that codependency is related to lack of assertiveness and as a result many codependents end up unhappy because they are less likely to ask for what they need or many changes to get what they want. But it is difficult to say how it will impact anyone in particular, because there are many variables that go into defining us, protecting us and prodding us toward particular emotional, cognitive or behavioral experiences. Codependency is never a positive experience, however, and is not to be misunderstood as altruism or caring. It does not allow the codependent to have full access to his self or feelings and instead is more like a parasitic relationship.” Jaleh http://voices.yahoo.com/how-stop-being-codependent-parent-7503416.html?cat=25
I took a piece of living clay,
And gently pressed it day by day,
And molded with my power and art
A young child’s soft and yielding heart.
I came again when years were gone;
It was a man I looked upon.
He still that early impress bore,
And I could fashion him no more.
Gifts are a far more common cause of personal discomfort and interpersonal conflict than most people realize. Why the Conflict? There are many potential sources for discordant attitudes toward gifts. Cultural and family differences are certainly important. Gifts may have been a big deal in some families and all but ignored in others. Psychologists maintain that issues of power and vulnerability underlie many gift-related problems. Consciously or otherwise, some people try to use gifts to buy love or friendship, assert dominance or instill a sense of obligation. Others — men in particular — have difficulty accepting gifts because it makes them feel weak and vulnerable; in effect, in someone else’s power. They seem to fear the feelings of tenderness that are awakened by receiving a thoughtful gift. Among couples having interpersonal difficulties, underlying relationship problems can also show up as a conflict over gifts. One person may always be the giver and the other the receiver, with the receiver feeling helpless and dependent and the giver feeling resentful and unappreciated. Those who neither give nor receive may be too self-occupied to nurture their relationship. And those who continually give to one another may be locked in a power struggle that has many other dimensions. Jane E. Brody http://www.nytimes.com/1990/12/06/health/personal-health-look-some-strains-well-delights-giving-receiving-gifts.html
Even in social life,
you will never make
a good impression
on other people
until you stop thinking
about what sort of impression
Esteem most be generated from within and can then radiate outward. When we focus outwardly for approval, we are seeking it in the wrong place. And in so doing, we subordinate our authentic being in a vain attempt at happiness. Such fulfillment must be dependent and superficial and undermines our personal evolution. This process of external gratification is other-esteem. Self-esteem is not contingent upon others. When we set up this drama around approval, we create issues in regard to notions of rejection. The issue of rejection can be misleading. With a healthy self-esteem one doesn’t consider rejection. It is actually the rejecting of one’s self that inclines people to seek approval from others. In such cases, we’re not content with ourselves and so we solicit that acceptance from others. If that approval isn’t granted, we have a habit of claiming that we were rejected. In truth, we have rejected ourselves when we set others up as judge. The degree to which we are reactive to others opinions of us in likely inversely correlated to our level of self-esteem. Mel Schwartz L.C.S.W. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/shift-mind/201002/self-esteem-or-other-esteem
That’s what real love amounts to – letting a person be what he really is.
Most people love you for who you pretend to be. To keep their love,
you keep pretending – performing. You get to love your pretence.
It’s true, we’re locked in an image, an act - and the sad thing is,
people get so used to their image, they grow attached to their masks.
They love their chains. They forget all about who they really are.
And if you try to remind them, they hate you for it, they feel like
you’re trying to steal their most precious possession.