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58 signs you may be codependent

Codependent Relationships: 58 Signs You May Be Codependent

58 signs you may be codependent

 

Codependent relationships are a type of dysfunctional helping relationship where one person supports or enables another person’s addiction, abusive behavior, poor mental health, immaturity, irresponsibility, or under-achievement.

According to Melody Beattie, author of Codependent No More, “As professionals began to understand codependency better, more groups of people seem to have it. Adult children of alcoholics, people in relationships with emotionally disturbed people, people in relationships with irresponsible people and people in relationships with abusive people.”

Basically, a codependent is a person who gives more in a relationship than they get and holds onto the hope that their partner will change. Codependents enable, make excuses and make the relationship problems worse due to their inability to care more for themselves than they do their relationship partner or, the relationship.

Divorce court dockets are filled with people wondering what they could have done differently to save their marriages. If you are codependent, there is always something you can do to make things better, regardless of how darn bad a marriage gets. Are you codependent?

Below are 62 Signs You May Be a Codependent:

1. You know you are codependent when your therapists tell you to take back your life and you think, “I have to get a life first!”

2. You know you are codependent when you honestly think you can change your abuser and that someday your abuser will come through for you. All you have to do is hang in there!

3. You know you are codependent when things are going well but you are waiting for the other shoe to drop.

4. You know you are codependent when you jump through hoops and you aren’t even in the circus.

5. You know you are codependent when “I’m a Slave For You” is your favorite Britney Spears song.

6. You know you are codependent when you starve at an all-you-can-eat buffet because your partner can’t find anything they want to eat.

7. You know you are codependent when someone asks you, “What do you think?” and you are baffled because you haven’t given it much thought.

8. You know you are codependent when it is your birthday party and you go out of your way to see if everyone is enjoying themselves.

9. You know you are codependent when your motto is “whatever it takes”.

10. You know you are codependent when you get a sex change because your partner decides, suddenly, that they are gay. You go above and beyond to keep a lover happy!

11. You know you are codependent when your least favorite song is Mary J. Blige’s song, “No More Drama”.

12. You know you are codependent when you develop spondylitis because of the sack of guilt on your back.

13. You know you are codependent when your favorite childhood game was “SORRY”.

14. You know you are codependent when you love the cologne “Obsession”.

15. You know you are codependent when you have just come out of major surgery with the operation taking longer than expected and you feel guilty that your partner had to wait additional time.

16. You know you are codependent when you have 200 channels to pick from but you hand the remote to your partner.

17. You know you are codependent when you are told you are indecisive. You initially deny this then you say, “I am not indecisive…am I?”

18. You know you are codependent when you are from a warm climate yet you live in a place with a freezing weather 9 months out of the year because your partner has a weird fixation with sledding.

19. You know you are codependent when you apply for a job and the interviewer says, “Tell me a little about yourself” and you proceed to tell them about your partner’s love of hunting, skiing, and baseball.

20. You know you are codependent when you deny the first dance with your wife at your wedding reception because your mother is pouting in the corner because no one is paying her any attention.

21. You know you are codependent when you train intensely for a marathon and on the day of the event, you don’t run it because your partner is having a moment.

22. You know you are codependent when you apply for a “catering” job and your potential boss ask you if you have any experience and you reply, “Plenty”.

You know you are codependent when you hate country music but love the song, “Stand by Your Man”.

24. You know you are codependent when you think “Pleasant dreams” is an oxymoron.

25. You know you are codependent when your favorite Led Zeppelin song is “Ramble On”.

26. You know you are codependent when you could relate to the Secret Service for “taking a bullet” for protecting your guy. The only difference is they get paid for it.

27. You know you are codependent when you respect Paul Simon but don’t get it when he sings about “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover”.

28. You know you are codependent when your dad doesn’t give you any credit. He runs down your new fella saying he is not ambitious enough yet you are dating Pete Cashmore.

29. You know you are codependent when you apologize to your therapist for “talking too much” yet you are paying him/her for the privilege of talking.

30. You know you are codependent when you love the Beatles song, “We Can Work it Out”. It is your relationship anthem!

31. You know you are codependent when your therapist tells you to love yourself unconditionally and you come up with, “what else you got”?

32. You know you are codependent when you compare talking about yourself to The Wicked Witch in “The Wizard of Oz” losing the plot when Dorothy threw water on her.

33. You know you are codependent when you are attracted to irresponsible, rude bad boys who put you in your place and 20 years later you are still taking it.

34. You know you are codependent when your therapist develops writer’s cramp when you start listing all the things you hate about yourself.

35. You know you are codependent when you are raised in a “no talk of feelings” type of family and you tell your partner that your parents did the “best they could”.

36. You know you are codependent when stalking laws were written with you in mind. Get out from behind that bush!

37. You know you are codependent when the school bully takes your lunch money every day for a year but you forgive him because he has had a tough time of it at home.

38. You know you are codependent when your partner gives you flowers every time he cheats on you and now you have enough flowers to open up your own garden center. And, he is still cheating.

39. You know you are codependent when your drill instructor calls you a “no good, walking the dog, lowlife scumbag who doesn’t have what it takes” and you are impressed with his insight.

40. You know you are codependent when you easily forgive your parents because let’s not forget they had it so bad when they were growing up BUT you can’t give yourself a break on anything.

41. You know you are codependent when your favorite CD is Janet Jackson’s “Control”.

42. You know you are codependent when you have more issues than DC Comics.

43. You know you are codependent when you give great advice but you don’t practice what you preach.

44. You know you are codependent when you want to see your favorite group Santana in concert. You choose not to go when you see the name of the concert is, “An Intimate Evening With Santana” because you don’t do intimacy.

45. You know you are codependent when you seek out people who are emotionally unavailable. The irony is they think you are too emotional.

46. You know you are codependent when you work out to “If I Can’t Have You I Don’t Want Nobody, Baby” by Yvonne Elliman.

47. You know you are codependent when you can relate to a puppet because someone is always pulling your strings.

48. You know you are codependent when the people you admire are looked down on by other people.

49. You know you are codependent when your mother talks shit about you, yet you go out of your way to get her something nice for Mother’s day because deep down she, “really cares.”

50. You know you are codependent when you always reward your abusers for bad behavior.

51. You know you are codependent when you live by the expression “he isn’t so bad once you get to know him.”

52. You know you are codependent when you receive praise and scratch it off like a dog with fleas.

53. You know you are codependent when your mom tells you that you are weak for needing help and you think she has a point.

54. You know you are codependent when you don’t realize you have the strength to rid yourself of your abuser.

55. You know you are codependent when the title of the song “Sacrifice” by Elton John describes you.

56. You know you are codependent when you hang out at bars and attract all the damaged women who need to be rescued and, you think you got lucky.

57. You know you are codependent when you don’t do yourself any favors.

58. You know you are codependent when, after reading this list, you still can’t acknowledge your codependency.

The post Codependent Relationships: 58 Signs You May Be Codependent appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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Stuck In The Cycle Of Toxic Relationships? Do This!

Stuck In The Cycle Of Toxic Relationships? Do This!

 

Toxic relationships are mind-bending. They go around and around in the same disastrous circles – without resolution.

Chances are you have experienced this – or are still suffering the anguish of trying to change, survive and fix these patterns that just don’t seem to stop.

How can you get clarity and direction and UP and OUT of toxic relationships for real?

When CAN a toxic relationship transform into a healthy one – and HOW can we make that happen?

Find out WHAT is necessary to end the patterns of toxic relationships in our lives, to a level where we know we will NEVER suffer another one.

Watch today’s Thriver TV episode to discover out all these answers and MORE!

 

 

Video Transcript

Are you stuck in the cycle of a toxic relationship?

Let me explain what one of those is. It is a relationship that doesn’t reach resolution. It goes around in the same painful, confusing and destructive circles.

In today’s Thriver TV episode, I’m going to explain why the usual means of trying to deal with a toxic relationship doesn’t work, and why many people after finally leaving a toxic relationship find themselves in another one again.

We are also going to discuss what it takes for a toxic relationship to transform into a healthy one, and when it can’t.

And today, we are going to go straight to the truths about how to get clear and leave the patterns of painful relationships behind, forever, regardless of the toxic relationship that you are dealing with.

Okay, so before we get started, I want to remind you that if you haven’t yet subscribed to my channel please do. And if you like this video, please make sure you hit the like button.

If you are still in a toxic relationship, maybe you are hoping or trying for things to be different…or putting up with the toxicity hoping that something will change so that you can get out … and it’s likely you are regularly questioning your sanity and if you are the problem.

Would you like it if this got cleared up today?

I think you would, so let’s get started on the exact steps you need to apply to get relief and clarity and be able to start generating healthy relationships in your Life.

Please note this video is in a general sense about love relationships, but the principles absolutely relate to any narcissist in your life, as you will see. So regardless of who the narcissist is please watch until the end.

 

Releasing Blame

Toxic relationships are steeped in blame, with either one or both parties holding the other responsible for whatever they believe the relationship and they as an individual need.

This is a false premise that never works because in toxic relationships this essential ADULT, taking personal responsibility, is sadly missing: ‘I am the generative source of my own love, approval, survival and security, regardless of what anyone else is or isn’t doing.’

And this boils down to the way we all need to be willing to live if we want to be a free and actualised human being: ‘If you are incapable, unavailable or unwilling to meet me at healthy levels of my values and truths then I WILL do this without you for myself.’

The deeper meaning of this is: ‘I’d love you to come on this journey with me expressing what is important to me, but if you don’t wish to, then I free you to seek what works for you whilst I go forth creating with what and who is my truth.’

I totally understand that you may be suffering or have suffered someone who refuses to be a team member capable of being caring and considerate – or who can’t or didn’t speak to you without demeaning or abusing you. Or someone who did or does have horrible addictions that made them non-functional, unhealthy or unsafe to have a relationship with. You may be with or experienced someone who lies, steals and cheats and has done malicious conscienceless things to you.

Naturally, it is very easy to blame these people for the state of our outer life and how we feel on the inside.

If we are NOT clear about what our values and truths are regarding how we wish our life to go, and are holding someone else responsible for the levels of love, approval, survival and security we feel on the inside, regardless of how our outer life looks, we are going to hold other people responsible for granting us what we think we need to feel ‘whole’.

It’s Wrong Town, it doesn’t work, and it is a sure-fire recipe to get ourselves enmeshed in toxic relationships that grant us exactly what brings even more brokenness to our inner and outer lives.

 

Getting Clear On Your Values

Confusion will reign when you aren’t living in alignment with your values and are enmeshed in toxic relationships with people who are NOT a match for your values.

This confusion will come regardless of what you ‘want’ from this person – ranging all the way from small things to big things – reflecting where you are NOT yet whole within yourself.

Let me explain with these following examples.

Michelle was married to Geoffrey. They had very little in common. He wanted to stay home, she wanted to explore and experience life. When they went out to dinner, there were no discussions that stimulated her. He could only talk about limited things and forever went over and over the same old stories. She dreaded any time with him by themselves because she always felt like she wanted to scream.

The more Michelle pushed Geoffrey the more he resisted. He didn’t want to join her on expeditions and do things. He liked to relax at home. He didn’t want an expanded life – he liked to keep things simple. The arguing reached the point of becoming toxic, with both parties degenerating into blaming and shaming the other.

Each one of the couple were trying to get the other person to change to their values in order to make the relationship happy.

Now, let’s check out Ian who was in a relationship with Tina and was constantly trying to get her to stop drinking and not coming home. She admitted to having affairs, but he kept taking her back.

The fights were ripping them apart. Tina accused him of being jealous and stifling, pushing her to run away, and he accused her of having commitment issues because of the abuse she had suffered from her father.

Around and around and around they went, suffering from time to time the utter destruction of Tina’s blowouts.

Ian was seriously self-abandoning himself by allowing and accepting serious value compromises in his life. He was trying to change Tina into being monogamous, addiction free and emotionally available so that he could be happy and safe.

Tina didn’t need to change a thing since she could be all of these things in the relationship because Ian stayed with her.

It’s so important to understand, whether you are in a relationship with a ‘Geoffrey’ – someone who is not abusive, yet is not aligned with your values – or a ‘Tina’ who is a train wreck, that someone’s character is their character, you can’t change people – only they can change IF they want to.

Let’s now get REALLY real…

 

When It’s Toxic Through and Through

We may be in relationships that are never going to become healthy, which means either that person is trying to force us into being someone that our values and character cannot become or vice versa. Narcissists do this with us a lot. They are never happy and they demand more and more unreasonable commodities from us – excessive attention, unwholesome sex, money, resources, undying unhealthy devotion, loyalty, secrecy…whatever it is.

These unhealthy demands cause our Inner Beings to scream out ‘No’ and we baulk, try to resist or fight back. If we cave in, we just get emptied out more and more, heading all the way to our demise, and then become very sick.

Of course, these are toxic relationships that have no hope of repair.

When we are with someone who doesn’t want to change, and it means we can’t be happy with WHO they are and WHAT they do as they ARE, then this is a toxic relationship that has no hope of reform.

I’ve done it like most of us have – chosen partners, friends and business associates and continued on with them, even when it’s clear they don’t have values of integrity or empathy for others, are incapable of remorse and taking personal responsibility, and display awful narcissistic self-absorbed, conscienceless and destructive behaviours to the detriment of others.

Truly – WHAT was I thinking?! Any excuse I made to hang on and try to make this unmakeable deal work just ended up making matters worse and worse. Whatever I thought I could salvage or gain got stripped away, and then some.

And the results of my choices betraying my own values; were always painful. If you sleep with mangy dogs, you get fleas! (Please animal lovers out there – this is an expression – no disrespect to dogs!)

As I’ve said before, you can’t make a crocodile roll over while you scratch its tummy and expect it to play fetch with you. People without integrity and a good character can’t just ‘become’ good people. They are who they are.

Just like, if you want a healthy partner with great values about nutrition, stop trying to force someone to give up the couch, TV and ice-cream. Can you accept who they are? If not move on.

In the extreme cases, such as it is with narcissists, in no shape or form should we continue to accept people whose actions show a distinct lack of healthy values and character. There are no happy endings to that choice.

 

When You Are Hooked In

I hope by now you are understanding how futile it is to try to change someone into being who you want them to be so that you can feel ‘whole’.

There are several deep Quantum (absolute) outcomes regarding this tactic.

• When you try to change others, they won’t grant you the change you seek. But they will grant you more of your own lack of wholeness, which is fuelling your toxic dance with them.

• They will blame you for why they behave the way they do.

• They will bring up any ‘dirt’ they have on you about what you are or aren’t doing, which will take the argument down any number of rabbit holes which lead to more non-resolution.

• You are enabling their bad behaviour because they still have you connected, and you are feeding this behaviour with your attention on it. Their life carries on – there is no reason for them to have to change.

This is the very truth about toxic relationships!

 

Toxic Relationships That Can Change

I really want you to be very clear about this, so you don’t live in false hope. If this person has a flawed character, such as in the case of a narcissistic – capable of pathological lying, malicious acts, and the inability to be remorseful or accountable or make amends genuinely, you are wasting your time.

You aren’t going to have any choice other than let go, heal and be very clear about the calibre and character of person you align yourself with in the future.

Let’s go back to the story of Michelle and Geoffrey. Michelle did the inner work on herself to define and align with her true values, and she got really clear about the life that she needed to live to gratify the truth of her soul – this required a partner to join her in her adventures, expansion and personal growth.

Lovingly and truthfully, she shared with Geoffrey her truth and asked him if this was something he would like to work towards and live as well.

His honest answer to her was that it was not what he wanted for his life. It was sad but they agreed to split up and do so amicably.

Another example is Peter who wanted his partner Joy to be more open and honest with him, rather than shutting him out. She was unreliable and would break plans at the last minute, including holidays and time spent together. He felt like he was always second best in her life.

After fighting about this for some time, and then detaching from her and doing work on himself with NARP to heal his toxic relationship pattern within that allowed him to connect to unavailable women without honouring himself, Peter got clear and solid and asked Joy for what he needed to continue a relationship with her – consistency, communication, sticking to plans and making him a priority in her life.

He was totally at peace with whichever way it would go, because he knew whatever the outcome – he would be free of the toxic pattern and living his truth.

Joy realised he would end the relationship if she didn’t step up, so she agreed to. However, her actions did not match her words and shortly after Peter ended the relationship with her. Within months he was dating a new woman who, before committing to her, he had ascertained by her actions that she was reliable and available.

And then there is Patricia and Grant. Grant gambled a little too heavily and then when money was needed for added expenses Patricia found she was carrying the load. For years they had argued about this, with Grant insisting he was entitled to downtime with his mates and Patricia being resentful and overwhelmed because she seemed to be the only responsible adult in the relationship.

Patricia committed to NARP healings to clear the pattern of relationships with addicts in her life and got very clear that she no longer wanted to include building security and creating goals with a gambler. She told Grant her truth – that if he wished to continue gambling that was fine, he could, but she wasn’t going to have it in her life and she would leave him.
Grant didn’t believe her.

Patricia moved out straight away and started making plans to divorce.

He then knew she meant it.

Grant told her he was quitting, but she didn’t move back in until she saw the clear evidence. He went to Gamblers Anonymous, took up playing squash on that night he normally gambled, and kept showing her how serious he was. They reunited and Grant never gambled again, and started to love his new physique, levels of fitness and having more available money to enjoy holidays and special occasions with Patricia.

 

The Formula to End ALL Toxic Relationship Patterns

This is regardless of who this person is – which includes friends, family, ANY one at all.

• Stop holding this person responsible for your happiness, wholeness of security – as an adult that is YOUR job.

• Let go of your focus on them and do the inner work to get very clear on your values and what you require in your Life to live your True Life.

• Heal within yourself the traumas you have that cause you to attach, stay in and make excuses for staying in toxic relationships (NARP assists you to achieve this).

• If this person has an indecent character, stop wanting or expecting any requirement from them, go No Contact or Modified Contact, do what you need to legally, and heal and move on (NARP also assists with this incredibly).

• If this person has a decent character, STOP arguing with them and tell them lovingly and truthfully what you require from them to continue a relationship with them.

• If they don’t wish to be this person, bless them and lovingly release them so that you both can be free to live a life that is aligned with your separate truths.

• If they do agree to step up into the life values you have, see if their actions match the words – words alone are cheap.

• If they are trying to become your values, be honest. Is this something that they are enjoying and benefiting from? Are they doing this only because of their neediness and fear of losing you, but really resent having to be different?

And finally, ALWAYS, ALWAYS work on your Inner Being enough to be able to be your alignment to your True Self and Life no matter what anyone else is or isn’t doing.

Then you will be whole within, meaning you can say ‘No’ to who and what is not your truth and hang out to connect with and co-generate ‘more of WHO you are’ with the real deal people and things…and, by calmly and clearly using the formula above, leave if things become toxic.

Can you see that this Is not just the most loving gift you can grant to yourself; it also LOVES and honours everyone else as well?

We have no right to change people to be who we want them to be. That’s not love, its control, regardless of who they are or what they are or aren’t doing.

You will find, when you give this up, how people who do have healthy inner commodities come into your life easily because that is WHO you are now Being authentically inside you.

Are you ready for this? Is this what you really want – a Life and relationships that work?

If so, write below ‘I free myself and those who are not a match for me NOW’… and really mean it.

Do you have any idea how once you address this pattern inside you, that everything in your life can start falling into place?

Hold my hand and I’ll show you how! This process begins by clicking this link which takes you straight to my free inner transformational course.

And if you want to see more of my videos, please subscribe so that you will be notified as soon as each new one is released. And if you liked this – click like. Also, please share with your communities so that we can help people awaken to these truths.

And as always, I’d love to answer your comments and questions below.

 

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women who lost themselves in relationships

6 Tips For Women Who Lost Themselves In Relationships

women who lost themselves in relationships

I dedicated myself wholeheartedly to his happiness because THAT would be the key to everlasting love.

 

The sunlight fell through the dirty kitchen window and painted a soothing pattern on the wall that we’d just painted turquoise a few months ago. It looked beautiful from the floor where I was sitting, leaning against the cupboard my legs pulled against my belly.

Happy memories flashed in my mind when another wave of pain rushed through my body. It felt like an iron fist was squeezing my heart and a heavy burden pushing against my chest.

Uncontrollable sobbing commenced.

How could he end this now? How could this love be over?

All my dreams and hopes lay shattered in front of me on that kitchen floor.

It was most definitely not love at first sight. Life had to play a few tricks to bring us together. But when I finally opened my heart, I gave it to him completely.

Around a year into our relationship, my body was exhausted from all the hard work I was doing. As an actress, I was constantly traveling from one (side) job and audition to another, trying to survive somehow. I was headed straight for a burnout.

Once I got sick, I was forced to slow down and look for an “ordinary job”.

I felt defeated, sad and lost.

All that was left in my life was him, and I did everything to be the best girlfriend possible.

There was NO way that I would lose him too.

I started cooking and cleaning. I learned Italian to understand the lively conversation at his family table. I baked cakes, wore the type of clothes he liked and gave him all the freedom he wanted and needed.

I dedicated myself wholeheartedly to his happiness because THAT would be the key to everlasting love.

Until I realized after 3 years of giving my all, that our relationship was lost.

He wanted to move out of our apartment — and my life.

Back there, on that kitchen floor, I made myself a promise. I swore to myself to go for that effing holy grail—LOVE—on my own. I wanted to learn about self-love, true happiness, and my safe place within.

I dedicated myself to learning everything about relationships and what made them successful.

It took me five more years and many lessons until I met the man that I call the big love of my life.

But now I am here. Nine years after the tears on the kitchen floor, I have become the woman I swore to become, and I’m sharing the top secrets to healthy relationships, especially for women who have easily lost themselves in the past as I did.

6 Tips For Women Who Lost Themselves In Relationships

1. Build your own happiness outside of the relationship

No one and nothing but you are responsible for your happiness.

When I had to temporarily give up my acting career, I felt so empty, that I clung with all might to the last thing that gave me joy. My relationship.

It’s okay to lean into your relationship when you’re feeling down, but you cannot make your relationship the number one reason for your happiness.

A relationship is a construct of two people coming together. And it’s being nurtured through the two people in it. Their actions, decisions, and emotions.

So when you are empty and are constantly sucking energy from the relationship, what do you think happens with it?

Right! There’s no way that this will work long term.

That’s why it’s crucial that you are taking good care of yourself and that there’s an equal flow of happiness from the relationship towards you and from you back into the relationship. That way the energy of the relationship doesn’t get depleted.

2. Stay your own person, don’t become enmeshed in the relationship

My love and business partner, Bas, and I have spoken to many single women to learn about their situations.

The one thing that EVERY SINGLE WOMAN shared with us was: “I lost myself in the relationship”.

Nine years ago on that kitchen floor, I had no idea who Priska even was. What made her happy. What she wanted or needed.

I literally became my relationship and lost myself in the needs of my partner.

This was the death of the liveliness and connection in our relationship.

Who else was there left for my partner to love?

Whatever happens, make sure that you don’t forget that you yourself are the most important person in your life. And that your values and standards, needs and wants, are equally important as your partner’s.

3. Stop being “the good woman”

Even after many years of hard work on myself, I still have the tendency to please my partner. Fortunately, Bas, my fiancé, is more than aware of my pattern and supports me in stepping consciously out of it.

We women have learned very early in our lives that “being the good girl” will bring us praise. Our parents, teachers and other important people we look up to will more likely give us loving attention and validation when we’re doing all things right.

But this behavior is a trap that will never bring us true success.

Women who are constantly trying to be “good” are often lacking healthy boundaries and are on a hamster wheel of pleasing others, instead of being who they are and living their best lives.

Believe me, there will always be people who won’t like you — even if you do your best.

So let all the masks drop, don’t play small, and be ALL of yourself.

4. Establish clear and healthy boundaries

I cannot stress this one enough.

My lack of boundaries not only led to massive pain in my past relationship but also threatened the one I’m in.

As I suffered severely from “the good woman syndrome”, I let everyone step over my boundaries, which resulted in a big, fat, ugly emotional explosion.

Because in the end. this people-pleasing-method just doesn’t work.

Be clear about your boundaries and communicate them transparently. Period.

5. Vulnerability is your strength

My ex-partner loved to dance tango Argentino, and he was GOOD.

Me on the other hand, I had just started out and often stood at the periphery of the dancefloor, as the 3 males out of the 30 dancers would certainly not choose me to glide over the parquet.

At one point I stopped going to tango because it broke my heart seeing my beloved dancing with all these other beautiful women — literally becoming one in front of my eyes.

It took me a long time to admit this because I didn’t want to be seen as the “jealous girlfriend”.

For the same reason, I also never said a word when he met up with some of his ex-girlfriends or would flirt with other women in front of me.

While I would have never asked him to stop dancing, it still would have helped me to actually have a conversation with him about my fear and pain.

Don’t be afraid to speak your truth.

Your vulnerable parts are your gifts.

They show, what really matters to you.

It’s okay to be open about ALL your feelings and to share them with your partner.

They will most likely also share their vulnerabilities with you, which will create a new sense of togetherness.

And it also brings the possibility for you to find solutions as a team.

6. Don’t take any bullshit

I know how it feels to bend like a pretzel out of the fear of losing a partner. And I also know how much bullshit I took exactly for that reason.

But you know what — if you let your partner’s bullshit slip through, you rob them of their opportunity for growth.

They will have no mirror that shows them where their boundaries are, and you will have to live with all the consequences.

Don’t shy away from calling your partner out on their B.S. And also be prepared to be called out on yours. If we can do this in a respectful way, while still owning our own responsibility in the situation, this will lead to a massive expansion in the relationship.

Be who you truly are

So many women try to be somebody they think their partner wants them to be.

But think about it.

Your partner fell in love with YOU.

So don’t ever let any story take over your freedom and put you into the cage of someone else’s ideal.

It will assassinate your appreciation of life, your authentic, savage nature, and it will definitely asphyxiate the genuine dynamics of your relationship. Period!

Some last thoughts

What I have learned from my own journey and from the stories of many other women from all kinds of cultural backgrounds, is that the world needs all of us in our most vulnerable, original, trustworthy, and liberated version.

Then, and only then, can we share our unique gifts with the world as empowered individuals and as thriving partners in the blooming magic of real, deep love.

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do you express or suppress your feelings

Relationships: Do You Express Or, Suppress Your Feelings?

do you express or suppress your feelings

 

Do you express or, suppress your feelings? How one feels about their feelings and what they do with them can have either a positive or negative effect on their marriage.

I had a conversation over the weekend with a friend and this subject came up. We talked about how our exes were convinced we were, “crazy.” Both husbands had been taught, as children, to suppress their feelings whereas she and I had been taught to express our feelings reasonably. I can clearly see how someone who suppresses feelings would view someone who expresses them as looney tunes. I can see it but, I can’t condone it.

Do You Express or Suppress Your Feelings?

It is far healthier to express feelings that to suppress feelings. When you marry someone who was taught, as a child, those bad feelings are a sign of weakness, that anger is scary and expressing feelings is harmful and can lead to them losing control of their feelings, it’s easy to understand them labeling someone who deals with feelings differently as “crazy.”

Below are ways people who have learned to suppress their feelings protect themselves.

  1. They don’t put a lot of thought into their own emotional state. They go through life on autopilot!
  2. They view people who express feelings as being “out of control.” This could be the reason so many men label an ex as “Borderline Personality Disordered.”
  3. They ignore negative feelings and “move on.” In other words, they don’t deal with or attempt to solve the issue that is causing negative feelings.
  4. They view people who express their feelings as “acting out.” People who are trying to get their way and not people who are simply talking about their feelings and trying to solve a problem.
  5. They ignore or pay little attention to people who are sad or angry. Doing so can cause a spouse to feel rejected, dismissed or disliked.
  6. They do whatever they have to do to keep from feeling negative feelings. This can be giving in to a spouse or, completely ignoring their emotional needs to keep from having to deal with an upset or angry spouse.

Suppressing Feelings Affect Marriage?

Suppressing feelings can cause a spouse to feel rejected and their feelings dismissed. Suppressing feelings interferes in a couple working through daily life stresses and even worse, major issues and problems that come up in a marriage.

If you are married to someone who suppresses their feelings and ignores your feelings it only makes sense that you won’t feel like your spouse is an ally that is as invested in the marriage as you are. This leaves the spouse who is open and honest about their feelings, feeling alone and lonely.

I’ll give you an example from my own marriage. There was an aspect of the marriage that caused me tremendous pain. My ex spent years ignoring me when I expressed the pain his actions caused. I eventually told him we needed to seek therapy. We made an appointment, he showed up and lasted about 10 minutes in the therapy session before walking out.

The moment the therapist said, “Can you try to listen to her and see the problem from her perspective” my ex walked out of the session. Marital therapy would have only worked in our situation if the experience had been similar to a fun day at the beach or, a trip to Disney World. Since it wasn’t there was eventually a divorce because my emotions suppressing ex didn’t feel that saving the marriage was worth him facing and working through his fear of negative emotions.

How Do Expressing Feelings Affect Marriage?

Expressing negative feelings, within reason, is good for a marriage. Getting feelings out on the table gives both spouses the opportunity to address the issues and find solutions. It goes without saying that those who feel comfortable expressing their feelings are more likely to succeed in marriage.

But, when is it a bad thing to express negative feelings?

  1. If nothing makes a person happy, they are a chronic complainer who constantly whines they will soon find their spouse withdrawing out of self-preservation.
  2. Finding something wrong with EVERYTHING a spouse does, being hyper-vigilant and defensive is an unattractive trait. That isn’t “expressing feelings” in an attempt to be heard, this is being downright mean. Mean destroys marriages!
  3. Expressing your feelings by using offensive language or in a loud voice is verbal abuse. You may have a negative feeling about an issue in the marriage, you also have a responsibility to voice that feeling in a respectful manner.

Suppressing feelings may cause a spouse to feel detached emotionally, dismissed and unimportant in the marriage. Expressing feelings can cause a spouse to feel flooded or overwhelmed by negativity if their spouse expresses their feelings inappropriately. Yes, suppression is more detrimental to marriage but, obsessive expression of negative feelings can be just as damaging.

The trick is to find a healthy balance, one in which both spouses are heard and all feelings are validated.

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mastering relationships

The Secret To Mastering Relationships

mastering relationships

 

Our lives are an ongoing chain of relationships. From our life partners, children, friends, co-workers, companions, neighbors, bosses, and employees.

Some are warm and wonderful while others can cause a constant rub. The key to mastering all our relationships is to see them as a mirror reflection of our issues.

Let’s take a look at some relationship dynamics:

My boss doesn’t appreciate me

My partner doesn’t trust me

My child is disobedient and disrespectful

My co-worker is hurtful, bordering on abusive

My adult son is distant and judgmental

My neighbor is obnoxious and inconsiderate

My colleague is unprofessional and rude

How can any of these be a reflection of me? How can looking at my part in them help to change my relationships?

“If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.” Gandhi

Mastering Relationships

The most powerful thing we can do in each of our relationships is to see our reflection in the problems that arise.  In doing so, we can expose our thoughts, patterns, and tender buttons, those things that we are responsible for.  Instead of focusing on the other person’s shortcomings, we can begin to work on our own.

Here is the logic:

I cannot change another person

Nothing changes until something changes

I choose to be the change I wish to see in the world.

The result: 

Sometimes the relationship will grow stronger and healthier.  Other times it will end, and I will have grown wiser and become more authentic.

The Abusive Partner

A young man was so angry with his abusive spouse.  His focus was entirely on how hurtful and nasty her behavior was (and it was terrible).  Upon looking at his actions, he began to see that he chose to accept her unacceptable behavior and then get mad at her for acting that way. If she truly loved him, she should change!

He seemed to have no power to make that happen.  He began to slowly set healthier boundaries and overcome his fears of what might happen if he took care of himself.  He could walk away, leave the situation, and choose not to accept such behavior.

She may or may not decide to change, but his experience transformed as he was able to remove himself from the abuse.  Knowing whether the relationship lasted or not, he had found his way to a healthier way of being. He noticed he had similar patterns at work as well. His new perspective and consequent behavior had a significantly positive effect on him and all his relationships.

The Disrespectful Adult Son

Raised by a somewhat controlling mother who often judged everyone’s strengths and weaknesses, Julie never saw herself as being judgmental. Upon struggling with her relationship with her adult son, who was distant and disrespectful, she tried to figure out how to change him.

Once she realized that the bond was weakened by her choice to focus only on those traits she disliked in Robert; she was able to see the role her judgment played in their struggles. Instead of strengthening the relationship by acknowledging Robert’s strengths, her perspective of him pushed him away.

She could not be the supportive parent she wanted to be until she let go of her judgment (forgave him for his shortcomings), providing a stronger foundation for him to trust her and for their relationship to grow.

Where are you struggling in your relationships? 

How can you see that person as a reflection, revealing an attitude, perspective or behavior in you that would benefit from your love and attention? Our reality is limited by the way we choose to perceive our world.  Often by changing our perception, we can change our reality.

Is someone pushing your buttons? 

If so, consider that you are being given a gift.  They are putting a spotlight on your tender underbelly…that which upsets you.  It may be touching on abuse, insecurity, unforgiveness, judgment or fear.

Whatever it is, the gift is for you to see your reflection, the part of you that would benefit from refinement.  Then put your attention there rather than on them.  The benefits you experience will be dramatic.

By keeping the focus on yourself, the relationships you choose to sustain and grow will fulfill both you and them.  The ones you let go of will make way for new healthier relationships.  Those (family) that you cannot completely let go of will give you an opportunity to set healthy boundaries that serve your needs and desires.

How we do something is how we do everything.

How you choose to be in your relationships will determine if they fill your life with vitality and love or stress and upset.  What choices are you making?

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