March 01, 2010

Monday, March 01, 2009

Loving Him Without Losing You, pg. 149: How much have you been willing to change?

Did I do it?

Things about myself that previous partner (KL) wanted me to change:

Almost Move to the East coast to be with him.
Be dependent on him (like a daughter/father relationship).
He wanted aggressive and dominating sex.
Wanted me to divorce Matt.
Almost Wanted me to get rid of my favorite painting (because Matt had painted it).
Kind of tried Wanted me to understand poker, and be more interested in poker.
Wanted him to cook the food and I to stop making meals.
I tried to change my beliefs to match his Tried to change my beliefs about people being equals and said that men were more intelligent than women, yet at the same time, he said that he values us being equal partners, like a team or like teammates.
I remember being very hesitant about giving him so much money, but I’m not sure whose idea it was in the first place. He wanted money and said that it would be like investing in our future, to help him get out of debt. He dumped me again, 1-2 weeks after he got the money.

I once suggested to KL that he was abusing me. He erupted in incredible anger and denied that he was. I think I was terrified of losing him, especially because I’d left my marriage for him. So I just assumed I was crazy in the head, and never brought it up again. But deep inside, I felt used and emotionally abused, as well as sexually abused. I put up with it for fear of abandonment and fear of being wrong for choosing him.


  • Dominating, especially sexually, but also subtly in day-to-day life. I felt like he wanted to control me, similar to how a dad might control a daughter.
  • I felt like he devalued all women, and that felt abusive, to me.


  • Domination (control freak)
  • Unreasonable expectations (From the self-help book: “When you are with someone who is never pleased, it is time to stop pleasing him/her.”)
  • Verbal abuse (sarcasm, threatening, belittling)
  • Blaming (blaming me for her choice to take over my work at the company)
  • Constant criticism (continuously finds fault; “eventually, you become convinced that nothing you do is worthwhile, and you may feel like giving up.” Pg. 156) [Note: Also see Learned Helplessness.]
  • Emotional Blackmail (use guilt trips)

At work, my boss’ emotional abuse is:

  • constant, as opposed to occasional
  • intent is to devalue, rather than simply state a complaint
  • intent is to control and dominate, rather than to provide constructive criticism
  • person has an overall attitude of disrespect toward you, rather than just not liking something specific you are doing

This sometimes goes both ways, though. I have done emotional abuse back at her, as well, I think. But it’s rarely to her; mostly it’s just thoughts in my head.

Bonsai wisdom: Be not afraid of growing slowly; be afraid of standing still.


Work on releasing my anger in constructive ways: Therapy, journalling about people I’m angry at, focusing on family of origin, focus on the self.


Needs I meet myself:

What do I need for my
emotional survival?

love and to be loved
sponsor to be heard
sponsor to be seen
✓ (I give myself hugs) touched
12-step groups/ Sponsor supported and trusted and trust others.

be myself (my authentic self).

know my life makes a difference and has a purpose.

Emotional Abuse example: from me to Matt. Emotional Blackmail—I threatened to end the relationship if he didn’t want to move from the midwest to the southwest with me. I didn’t want a long-distance relationship and I didn’t want to stay in the midwest…. Wait, is that emotional abuse? Or is it just me standing up for what I want to do, which is move out west?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s