Blogs


Notices

Love?

Old 08-06-2015, 11:01 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Guest
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 112
Love?

I have said many times but I love him. I have read it here often as well. It really got me thinking.

See, the dysfunction of my family really distorted my idea of what healthy love truly is! Love was more about presents then presence. Love meant forgiving and forgetting the unacceptable. Love was putting others before myself, no matter how harmful it was to me. Love was taught to me to only remember the good which really fueled my denial and fantasy thinking. If I loved someone, I always projected how I felt or would feel, believing their value system was the same as mine.

I don't think I have ever said this out loud but I have carried the shame for far too long. A shame that was never mine to begin with. My father, a well loved and respected man by many, used to hit my mother. They later divorced, he remarried, became a good husband (she would never tolerate any kind abuse) and we all pretend that it never happened. He has rewritten history and I think he really believes his own version of events. I know his wife and her family do! Thankfully, I no longer need my feelings or memories to be validated. I know the truth and that's all that matters. Not that I would dare ever try discuss it with him,

I remember being so traumatized as a kid with many holidays being ruined. Of course, then everything would be ***** dory and we just carry on as if it never happened. It was then that my fantasy thinking took hold. I would fantasize about having a different family. I was the youngest, was often picked on, teased, and bullied by my siblings because in like many abusive homes, it trickled down. My poor self esteem was masked by acting like nothing got to me and I became a target for more bullying,

I am just now learning to love myself, heal the old wounds, and realizing what love really is. It's not a noun, it's a verb. Love does not hurt. Sounds simple but those 2 simple concepts have eluded me over the years.

Sometimes, I wonder if I truly know how to have a healthy loving relationship. I read how so many of you have already entered into new relationships and I feel like I may never get there, although I am no rush either. But I still at times wonder what's wrong with me?
FindingMe2 is offline  
The Following 15 Users Say Thank You to FindingMe2 For This Useful Post:
biminiblue (08-07-2015), CodeJob (08-07-2015), happybeingme (08-07-2015), honeypig (08-07-2015), involved (08-06-2015), LemonGirl (08-08-2015), LifeRecovery (08-07-2015), Liveitwell (08-07-2015), lizatola (08-07-2015), maia1234 (08-08-2015), Mango blast (08-06-2015), marie1960 (08-11-2015), NYCDoglvr (08-08-2015), Sotiredofitall (08-07-2015), wellington1 (08-06-2015)
Old 08-07-2015, 07:00 AM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Member
 
CodeJob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Mmmmmm
Posts: 3,179
Blog Entries: 6
This is a powerful post. Hugs! It is hard to dig into Family of Origin stuff. But for me it held a lot of truth and explanation about why I do what I do...

Peace and e-hugs!
CodeJob is offline  
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to CodeJob For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-07-2015), honeypig (08-07-2015), LemonGirl (08-08-2015), Liveitwell (08-07-2015), lizatola (08-07-2015)
Old 08-07-2015, 08:04 AM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
 
lizatola's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,349
While I was contemplating divorcing my XAH I remember reading a TON of books about what love really is and that I had to learn to love myself first before I could ever love anyone else. I also had to start loving the God who created me and I had to find peace in my heart. I stayed in my marriage for 3 years even though I knew, in my heart that it was over, that I didn't love him anymore and that I was beyond ever wanting to be with him in the marriage physically, emotionally, spiritually, or mentally.

Like Codejob said, I had to address my FOO stuff and figure out what the basis for my issues were and it all came right down to fear and low self worth. I was never good enough, I carried around so much shame and guilt. I truly feel that Al Anon and my therapist helped me work through these things, albeit, slowly, and that I am free from those demons in my heart. Unfortunately, old habits of relating die hard and I've noticed patterns that I had with my XAH that I have started to bring into my new relationship. The good news is: I am dating a man who isn't an addict or emotionally unstable and he calls me out on my crap before it gets out of hand and it gives me a chance to look at myself through someone else's eyes. I don't have to be a martyr anymore. I don't have to be the victim and project it onto others (I did this subconsciously obviously and had no idea I played victim through most of my marriage).
What love looks like today is totally different for me than what it was before. I can take gentle criticism and see someone else's perspective but I can also choose to still do things my way. I have learned to say, "You may be right" and yet still think for myself. I have learned that self-respect and self-worth and loving myself is the most important thing for me to protect, and if that means I lose someone from my life because they don't like it....then so be it. It really meant letting go of a lot of fear and anxiety over how someone else saw me and how I didn't think I measured up, because I never thought I was 'good enough'. My alcoholic father pounded that one into me for years and I bought it, every last word of it.

So, today love looks different but not perfect. I am constantly stumbling over my past, over my shame, and over my dysfunctional ways of relating. But, I can see a light at the end of the tunnel and I'm really grateful that I have a guy in my life who helps me see it. Even if we break up next week, I will be grateful because I've learned how to put myself first and how to practice loving attitudes and behaviors that don't come with a price tag, for myself or for others.
lizatola is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to lizatola For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-07-2015), honeypig (08-07-2015), LemonGirl (08-08-2015), maia1234 (08-08-2015)
Old 08-08-2015, 01:10 PM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
 
LemonGirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: West Coast
Posts: 768
Blog Entries: 10
this is a great post! thank you!

I agree that FOO is a great place to start! I have been working on this. For the first time I was able to see why I kept choosing my partners the way I have... I had always just blamed my alcoholic and emotionally/mentally abusive father. But after getting into my own muck, I discovered that it was also the beautiful relationship I thought my mother and step father had for 22 years before he passed away from liver cancer just over two years ago. I idolized their relationship. But now I realize how dysfunctional it actually was because both of them lived in a fantasy world filled with drinking and smoking and partying... and meanwhile, their children were floundering trying to get through school and become adults... and then of course, his death.

I finally found this type of relationship with my recent xabf. It had ALL the wonderful love and fun and moments, plus all the horrid drinking and reality-denying behavior that my mother and step father had.
Now when my mom says "what he and I had was magic and no-one else has ever had that", I cringe! She simultaneously knocks down my own experience while staying in her denial of the truth! Which is, they are (were) both alcoholics and it has wreaked havoc on our lives!

That clarity had me angry at first. Now I am just grateful to have delved into that muck and I truly feel freed from it. A little lost still.... and yes, I am still in contact and thinking of a relationship with my xabf (he is currently working sobriety, however). But I know a lot of what NOT to look for, and a little bit of what I should be looking for....
LemonGirl is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to LemonGirl For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-09-2015)
Old 08-08-2015, 04:59 PM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
 
NYCDoglvr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 6,247
Thank you for the wonderful post! I too realized I couldn't possibly know what love is since I didn't experience a healthy relationship in my parents. We start to grow when we stop pointing the finger at an alcoholic and start questioning ourselves. I picked a very dysfunctional person and proceeded to get resentful because my needs weren't getting met. It's like walking into a hardware store and asking for a loaf of bread.
NYCDoglvr is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to NYCDoglvr For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-09-2015), LemonGirl (08-09-2015), Timetoheal12 (08-21-2015)
Old 08-08-2015, 05:18 PM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 171
We learn healthy life skills in one of two places: our homes or in therapy.

The therapy route is much more challenging, because it involves breaking old habits and developing new habits. It sucks, because it wasn't our fault that we were raised with dysfunctional life skills. However, in adulthood, it's our problem.

Finger-pointing does nothing positive for anyone, and only serves to hold us back. Ironically, the same thing we ask an alcoholic to do, we sometimes have to embrace ourselves.
minime13 is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to minime13 For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-09-2015), LemonGirl (08-09-2015)
Old 08-08-2015, 06:18 PM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Member
 
DesertEyes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Starting over all over again
Posts: 4,427
Blog Entries: 1
FindingMe; What a powerful post, thank you for sharing with us.

Originally Posted by FindingMe2 View Post
... the dysfunction of my family really distorted my idea of what healthy love truly is! ...
I can _so_ relate, that is exactly what happened to me.

Originally Posted by FindingMe2 View Post
...I would fantasize about having a different family. ...
uh-huh, me too. In grammar school I would sign my school papers with different names, never my own. I was trying hard to make my fantasy of having a different family become real. My poor teachers must have been going nuts dealing with me.

Originally Posted by FindingMe2 View Post
... My poor self esteem was masked by acting like nothing got to me ...
I am _very_ good at that. I have to consciously remind myself that it is ok to be human, to have feelings, to hurt and need compassion.

Originally Posted by FindingMe2 View Post
... I wonder if I truly know how to have a healthy loving relationship. I feel like I may never get there,...
We all get there eventually. A "healthy loving relationship" is a learned skill, it does not matter _where_ you learn it from.

Originally Posted by FindingMe2 View Post
... But I still at times wonder what's wrong with me?...
That thought held me back for a very long time. There is _nothing_ wrong with me. What I have is an "emotional injury" caused by my biological parents. Like any injury, if I follow doctors orders the injury will heal. Until it does heal I need to make adjustments in my life to protect the injured area.

Mike
DesertEyes is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to DesertEyes For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-09-2015), LemonGirl (08-09-2015)
Old 08-08-2015, 06:44 PM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 151
Great post. Ive been thinking about this topic for months. I worry often that I'll never be in a normal relationship. I felt my ex was the first person to unconditionally love me but then I realized it was as long as I never tried to stop his lifestyle. He loved that I allowed him to do whatever he wanted because that's what I've experienced.
I've had to look at all of the relationships in my life and really evaluate them. I've never seen a healthy romantic relationship....but then again I've seen so few healthy people. Right now my therapist is having me redefine my life to establish a healthy self love. I feel it's helping.
Ap052183 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Ap052183 For This Useful Post:
FindingMe2 (08-09-2015)

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 03:33 AM.