I have a confession to make. I don’t want to hug you. It’s not that I don’t like you. I do, probably. I just really don’t enjoy hugging in any form. I know this probably makes me sound cold or like I suffer from some Monk level OCD contamination fears. Neither is true. Nor did I spend my formative years in a creepy Soviet orphanage where I had no physical contact. Hugging to me just doesn’t feel natural. It is never my instinct to hug someone. The worst is when I run into some random acquaintance I haven’t seen in a while and the first thing they do is try to hug me. In a way though, I’m jealous of these natural huggers. They certainly come off as much warmer and friendlier than me even if it might not be wholly genuine. Since I don’t want to come off as unapproachable or snobby, I’ve gotten pretty good at faking enjoying hugs over the years. I am now able to hug someone without doing the creepy straight armed Dr. Evil style hug. Progress. So I normally let other people dictate the terms of first contact. If they go in for a hug, I will return it warmly. But I will never be the “hug initiator.” Maybe someday I’ll be able to proudly own my non-hugging status and have t-shirts made that say “You seem like an awesome person and I’d like to get to know you better, but please don’t touch me.” From a post by Amanda Fox http://hellogiggles.com/confessions-of-a-non-hugger
We were not a hugging people.
In terms of emotional comfort
it was our belief that no amount
of physical contact could match
the healing powers of a well made cocktail.
From “Naked” by David Sedaris
If we find ourselves… feeling trapped or clung to by our partner, we may want to consider how much we were intruded on as kids. Did we have a parent or caretaker who was overbearing and imposed on us for attention or reassurance? Are we now reacting (or overreacting) to our partner, because he or she is looking to us for similar qualities? While we aim to find partners who complement us in a positive way, we often wind up finding people whose opposing traits can rouse negative dynamics between us. For example, how many couples do we know, where one person does the talking, and the other stays quiet? While one person tells the stories and attracts attention, the other acts as a listener and falls into the background. We frequently choose people who fill out our personalities, then resent them for the very traits that make them our “other half.” Even when we choose partners who complement us positively, we run the risk of eventually distorting them or provoking them to become someone who we are less compatible with. This is often not the case when we first get involved with someone. In the beginning of a relationship, we naturally step out of our comfort zones, forcing ourselves outside our own heads and into an interaction with someone unfamiliar. The scenario of getting to know a stranger forces us to push ourselves, to be our best selves, and to treat the other person with respect and interest. As we get closer, our defenses start to arise. We start to feel more vulnerable, and influences from our past start to seep in. We must be wary in this stage of how we can distort our partners. We may start to insert hidden meaning into their words that suit a way we feel about ourselves. We may start to project qualities onto them or exaggerate characteristics they possess. Dr. Lisa Firestone http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-firestone/relationship-advice_b_824879.html
What you see is only half of what I am.
I have a hundred different faces,
a million different personalities.
Only a part of me is what I show you.
I display a fraction of my true self.
Everything is just a façade.
It’s not the truth of me.
You don’t know me.
You never will.
When a Codependent starts a romantic relationship they tend to put too many eggs in that one basket. They invest their whole lives in a guy/girl who ultimately turns out to be an addict, a betrayer, a little boy/girl, a rager, a controller, weak, lost, little, and otherwise not coming as originally advertised. Early on the Codependent is way too emotionally dependent way too quickly. Before too many years go by Codependents learn that the relationship they have arranged for themselves does not include a whole lot of goodies for them. Prince charming who put the full court press on to secure her generally is only interested in her these days to try to extract some sex from her. He is too busy and important to take the time and energy to really get to know her on an intimate and daily basis. That simply isn’t who he is. Codependents also tend to arrange their worlds so that they are financially dependent on a man. Mom is taking care of the kids so that Superman can go out and take over the world. In the mean time each year that passes by is another year that she is out of her career field, not developing her earning power and many times feeling not good enough because they aren’t earning their own money directly. Codependents have big hearts – too big. They rescue men, children, puppies, strangers, neighbors and friends. Their first thought is ‘what does my spouse or my kids need, what will work best for them’. They do not think about their own needs enough. A huge part of their Recovery process is learning to take good care of their own needs. Codependents get lost for decades in the meeting of others needs while ignoring what their own hearts were trying to say to them. Codependents many times don’t have much going on in the hobby department. They have no time devoted to what makes themselves happy. Their lives aren’t really about them. They are rest starved, fun starved and inspiration starved. They need to learn to be selfish in a healthy way. They are parched ground lacking in color and joy. http://www.familytreecounseling.com/marksblog/?s=When+a+Codependent+starts+a+romantic+relationship+
… it’s a lot easier to be lost than found.
It’s the reason we’re always searching,
and rarely discovered…
so many locks, not enough keys.
You feel that you’re responsible for her, and it’s your job to make her happy and solve her problems. You suppress your emotions and avoid confrontation. You have the sense of sacrificing the life you want so that you can be with her and take care of her. You feel trapped at times, and have the sense that you are planning an eventual escape. You feel tremendous guilt at the thought of abandoning her She is extremely jealous and makes it difficult for you to interact with other females or have female friends. She has an intense fear of rejection and abandonment. She lives her life in way that depends on you for many of her needs, as opposed to being independent and having a variety of fulfilling relationships. She has expressed that she wouldn’t be able to live her life if you betrayed or abandoned her. She depends almost exclusively on you as her source of happiness and validation. She dominates and manipulates you through her emotional response, which is often too extreme. Being in a codependent relationship makes for a stressful and unhappy lifestyle. And yet, your avoidant tendencies may keep you from following through with a break up or separation. You may be planning to break up for a long time, but you just keep holding off — many men wait years, or even a lifetime, remaining in such a relationship. It’s important that you don’t dwell on planning, and you take certain actions, fast. If you feel ready to begin the separation process, DO NOT hesitate: The longer you wait, and the more time you both invest, the more difficult it becomes. http://www.codependencyfreedom.com/codependency/for-men-11-signs-youre-in-a-codependent-relationship-and-how-to-get-out.html
We are not trapped by our thoughts.
What we generally do, however,
is create thoughts that trap us.
Joshua David Stone
In order to avoid her fears of being alone the woman may make efforts to keep her man close. It might be a criticism for going out with the boys for an evening. By discouraging him to do other things she is increasing their time together. If a woman engages in such efforts and is successful in controlling her man she will have influenced his behavior by her emotional reactions. With influence over his emotions she will have influence over what he does with his time. He will learn to avoid the activities that bring emotional reactions and criticism and do the things that she approves of. They will spend more time together which will help her to feel solid in the relationship. It also distracts herself from the fear of being alone. In one part of her mind she has helped their relationship, but she has unknowingly created a separate feeling of not being safe. When a woman sees that she can modify her man’s behavior she might perceive him as not being as strong. She will see him as someone that gives up his interests, runs around trying to make her happy. He has stopped being his authentic self and started being what she wants him to be. At some level she perceives him as no longer being his own man. She could perceive him as having weak character and could lose respect for him. More importantly she will not feel safe with a man she sees as having a weak character. Some women will conclude that if they can influence or control their man then other women will also be able to control and influence him as well. All of this adds up to losing respect and trust in the man. One assumption sometimes deep in the mind is that the stronger person controls the weaker person. If she can direct him then he must be weaker than her. This image of weakness is amplified if the woman already considers her self as weak to begin with. The loss of trust in her man’s strength may not be conscious to her, but at some level it affects her feeling of safety with him. From “Emotional Security” http://www.pathwaytohappiness.com/relationship_safety.htm
Consider how hard it is to change yourself
and you’ll understand what little chance
you have in trying to change others.
“Like everything in life, any time you take anything to an extreme—either you say “yes” to everything or “no” to everything—you’re going to be in a position that’s often untenable and often unhealthy,” says Dr. Nancy Elder, an assistant professor at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Medicine. We can get stressed out by nearly everything on the planet: money, women, money, personal problems, money, etc. The largest, however, may be the actual drive to become successful. A work hard and ye shall be rewarded kind of thing. It’s tough to work hard when you have extraneous obligations getting in the way of your main goal, though. “The most important thing that people who [say yes or no] well is to temporize,” Elder says. “It’s important to acknowledge the request. ‘Yes I hear you asking this. Yes I hear you asking to put this on my plate,’ then saying, ‘Give me twenty-four hours to think about this.’” There’s an old Zen saying that goes like this: “If you chase two rabbits, both will escape.” Keeping focus is one of the hardest things to do, but it’s a necessity to get where you want to be, and the ability to say “no” when you need to is an overlooked, under-appreciated tool able to help us get to that place. What it comes down to—well, what everything seems to come down to—is attaining balance. It’s about being ever-conscious about your decisions and never letting your ideal endgame get out of sight…and keeping the path up there as straight as possible. By Gin A. Ando http://www.primermagazine.com/2012/live/the-importance-of-learning-to-say-no-the-power-of-learning-to-say-yes
Learn to say ‘no’ to the good
so you can say ‘yes’ to the best.
John C. Maxwell
We find ourselves in a funny situation these days: We say “yes” to all the annoying schedule stretching requests, but say “no” to all the things that will help us grow as individuals. At its purist, basest form, learning to say “no” is about attaining goals. Even if a person is eternally pledged to help others, it’s still a goal. While the Internet is brimming with advice about how to become a go-getter, become a goal-oriented person, or a success story, what these lists actually do—aside from normalizing words like “achievement” to the point that even blinking is considered a monumental occasion—is glaze over what happens between creating the list of goals and hopefully, just hopefully, checking off the box next to the final item. Achievement necessitates a graceful marriage of assertiveness and fearlessness. It just so happens learning to say both yes and no at the right moment embodies these things. At its very core, though, saying no is a refusal. Indeed, “no” has begun to possess a connotation attached to it that makes its very usage seem insulting. …we’re adults, and adults are expected to take responsibility for ourselves. Besides, saying “no” puts everything to rest. We aren’t forced to make excuses… we’ll be stand-up guys and it cuts down on stress. By Gin A. Ando http://www.primermagazine.com/2012/live/the-importance-of-learning-to-say-no-the-power-of-learning-to-say-yes
A ‘No’ uttered from the deepest conviction
is better than a ‘Yes’ merely uttered
to please, or worse, to avoid trouble.
Most people want to help people, to be seen as helpful, and to do good things. Good intentions are not enough. We need to understand our reasons why we are helping someone and we need to understand the effect of our actions. When we help others, we need to ask ourselves—are our “helping” actions truly helping the other person? We may realize we have a Helping Addiction when despite the evidence that our “helping” is not truly helping the other person, we are compelled to continue to try to help them. Signs we have a helping addiction:
- You realize your efforts to help someone are not changing the other person’s life for the better and you continue to attempt to help.
- You feel compelled to repeated pick up the pieces for someone who calls you when they are in an emergency.
- You notice people you are attempting to help consistently are unable to manage their time, resources and energy
- You notice a person or the people you are attempting to help become increasingly demanding of your help.
- You feel guilty when you are not the person to help someone—even if they receive help from someone else who is more qualified to help.
If we are addicted to helping others, we need help ourselves. We aren’t helping anyone and we are hurting ourselves if we are “helping” someone too much. Helping ourselves is a matter of getting in touch with our thoughts and feelings associated with helping others. http://sueb.hubpages.com/hub/Helping-Too-Much
Give a man a fish
and he eats for a day
Teach a man to fish
and he eats for a life time
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