February 4, 2010

Thursday, February 4, 2010

I think Batman is codependent. Or addicted to helping others, as a way to avoid dealing with his own pain—the pain of his parents’ death, in his childhood.

I wonder if I’ve also been “helping” others. Rescuing them. Saving them—to avoid dealing with my own pain and childhood memories.

MARRYING BECAUSE THE GUY IS CUTE?

Every time I asked my mom why she married my dad, she responded that she married him because she thought he’d make cute/attractive/good kids. She thought he was cute. I remember that I always thought that was a strange reason to marry someone, and I’m not sure if I ever believed her.

When I meet people (friends, potential dating partners), I need to keep in mind to check and see if they have anything to offer me, other than the opportunity to help them. “What’s in this for me?” is NOT a bad/selfish question. It is a good selfishness that can protect me from further dysfunctional relationships. The kind of relationships I need to pursue are caring, comforting and have companionship.

QUESTIONING MY ATTRACTION TO EX-HUSBAND

Matt, ex-husband, had a dim view of women. Because of his alcoholic mother, he thought that all women were crazy. I wanted to prove to him that women can be kind and gentle and loving. I wanted to make up for the nurturing he lacked in his childhood. Matt and his dad would often make fun of women, when talking together (in person or on the phone). Did my dad also make fun of women? Sometimes his humor was harsh. He made fun of me often, but not necessarily because I was female.

So… how does this tie into how I related to, or viewed, my own parents?

Why was I attracted to Matt? Why did I have an uncontrollable urge to: be with him, help him, love him, and marry him?

I wanted to change Matt’s views on women, through my love… to… prove that… I’m deserving of love from men, and from my father?

Yes… maybe. Growing up, I always felt like I had to earn love. Love from parents was not unconditional. It was conditional. Love had to be deserved. I want to prove that I deserve love.

Is that what drew me to Matt?

Is this what draws me to feminism? As another outlet to prove that I, as a woman, am worthy?

I’m often attracted to a guy’s potential, instead of attracted to who he is, currently. If I saw who they were currently, for real, I probably would never have dated them. I just wanted to make them reach full potential.

pg. 104, “Women Who Love Too Much,” by Robin Norwood.

“A more healthy, loving man cannot play an important part in our life until we learn to let go of the need to relive the old struggle again and again.”

So that means that I’m not going to have a healthy relationship with a guy and not going to attract healthy guys, until I resolve the pain from my childhood. So I think writing about my mom’s funeral was a great step for me and I was courageous for doing it.

The “Old Struggle” to which the author refers means the childhood issues that are left unresolved—buried until we gather the courage to face the pain.

It’s hard to remember that it’s temporary pain and that healing the old wounds will eventually, slowly, result in a healthier life.

But like the saying goes, “if you’re going through Hell, keep going.” Don’t stick around. Keep going. Soon you’ll be out of Hell.

pg. 118: “Because [women who love too much] are incapable of any degree of intimacy with a man, they choose instead to live with a fantasy, a dream of how much they will love and be loved some day when their partner changes and becomes available to them.”
…like when KL stops his addictions and becomes a better person. KL and I could be intimate only in fantasy.

What did my exes see in me? What attracted them to me?

pg. 106: “…the appeal of the strong woman who somehow promises to make up for what each man is lacking in himself or his life.”
-indeed, that is what I’ve always been trying to do, with guys, although I didn’t realize until recently that it was an unhealthy thing for me to be doing.

Heehee… I’m really putting my past relationships under the microscope. Keep going, keep going! Woo-hoo! This is like solving a mystery and it makes me feel so good to finally start understanding the WHY.

Is my desire to write to prisoners (through SAA) merely a desire to be in a care-taking role? Is it just another desire to be able to change a man or person into a loving, caring individual?

“The longest and hardest distance anyone will ever travel is from the mind to the heart.”

MORE WORK DRAMA

Jack just put in his 2-week notice to quit. I don’t blame him. This is a shit department. That position must be shit, too, because we’ve had 4 people in and out of that position in the four years I’ve been here.

A POWER GREATER THAN OURSELVES

Power greater than myself [see Step 2], in the past, was often my father. I was left feeling helpless, and like a victim. Like I didn’t and wasn’t allowed to have my own voice. I was overpowered by a power greater than me—my dad.

FEELING HELPLESS (ON PURPOSE?) AROUND GUYS

A car accident happened. His fault (rear-ended me), yet I was apologizing! lol! wtf?

Automatically fell into a “helpless role” where I acted like I couldn’t quite figure out what to do, even though I’m very intelligent enough to figure out exactly what I need to do.

COMPARING SELF TO OTHERS

Careful not to compare ourselves to others, when it comes to the amount of time we spend on a step, or dating, or having sex. I expect to spend about 3 to 11 months on each step, because I like to take my time and make sure I’m doing it right. Others might go faster or slower.

KEEP PRACTICING THE THINGS YOU WANT TO DO

For me, I’ve really been practicing being honest with myself. I’m a pro, now! In the car, Jenn asked how I feel and I was immediately able to identify pain in neck, anxiety and nervousness and fear.

WORRIED ABOUT CONTROLLING FRIENDS

I think I’ve been trying to control my friend Jenn’s behavior. I know she is hurting herself by remaining in dysfunctional relationships. How can I tell if I’m trying to control her? I’m so worried that I am, because she is the type of person who is easily controlled—she almost unconsciously looks for it, maybe.

Why are we attracted to each other as friends? Is it dysfunctional? Am I worrying too much?

THERAPY HOMEWORK

How did my parents treat each other? Behave towards each other? Feel about each other?

What did I observe? What did I feel when I watched them interact?

  • Mom used dad as a weapon and a threat against us, when she didn’t like our behavior or actions. [She’d threaten to call him on the phone if we weren’t doing what she wanted us to do. Then, sometimes, he’d come home and spank my sister and me.]
  • Dad read the newspaper every time he ate. We never wanted him to talk, though—it seemed like the only things he’d say were some sort of criticism.

Yeah, but how did they treat each other?

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