Suddenly I became aware that my well-being and peace of mind depended upon my boyfriend’s behavior. I was terrified to experience negative emotions about what he was doing or saying. I hated myself if I didn’t like the way he behaved or displayed certain habits. I dreaded that he would do something I wouldn’t be able to deal with. I even dreaded the fear that something of the sort would happen and went out of my way to control the situation so he wouldn’t cause that feeling in me.
I used to strongly wish that I always would like the way he was so I didn’t have to confront him and cause drama. All I wanted was to feel peaceful inside and so I thought: “if only I can make him not do this or be that way, then I won’t be forced to be angry and hate myself for it.” Being scared of my own negative feelings kept me in the position of being a control-freak.
Why was I scared? Because of an earlier chosen Survival Strategy. As a young girl I learned that I benefited from not standing up for my opinion. I learned to avoid conflict in exchange for getting my needs met of being accepted and acknowledged, instead of being rejected and humiliated. That is why I made the holy decision never to be angry again, and avoid disagreement.
But Politicians do it all the time…they agree to disagree. They bicker, they fight with words and after that they go for a drink.
Disagreeing with someone, with your best friend or your spouse, your parent or child is in fact part of life. It is supposed to happen! We are different people, with different and individual opinions. But many of us experience that the other person doesn’t allow us to have our own opinion and express it. And when we do they give us the feeling of being at fault, guilty of the upheaval, of destroying the good atmosphere .If the other person makes us feel bad about ourselves or threatens to abandon us or to ignore us we are in a co-dependent relationship with that person. We are blaming ourselves when we feel negative emotions. What a shame! Because we are not allowed to be ourselves!
If such used to be your position in the past chances are you are acting it out in the present. Now there are two things to do. One: it is of the highest importance to identify the person who keeps us dependent so we can actively undertake steps to break free from it.
But what is also true is that often times the person who, in the present, is our friend or spouse who loves us, is unaware of this fear of our own negative emotions that we carry from the past. He or she doesn’t understand all the control issues we have because he or she doesn’t have access to what happens in us on a subconscious level.
So the second thing to do is identify that ‘feeling-bad-about-ourselves’ for having negative emotions or for fearing to be unable to deal with something is a heritage from the past that doesn’t serve us in the present. Recognize that we have to work on this issue of control and draw its cause to the surface so we can see what is keeping us hostage. So we enable ourselves to actually stop the harm it does to us and to our environment. By getting to know ourselves we can understand where we are coming from, face the issue and work our way through it.
We do not have to be perfect of course but having a clear concept of what motivates us is part of working our way up to a healthy Sense of Self. Studying why we do what we do and what is perceived to be at stake creates a clean mental and emotional slate and allows us to agree to disagree and be fine with or accepting of our own choice and opinions and feel free to express them.