Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Losing Yourself In Relationships

Do you ever lose site of who you are? Losing yourself involves the feeling of being swept-away. It's where sound mind leaves off and compulsion takes over. Years ago, I found myself wanting to disappear into a lover. I wanted to be married. I wanted to feel better. I wanted to escape, to no longer deal with the pain of my aloneness. I wanted someone to rescue me and make all the decisions for me. I was so out-of-touch with who I was, I wanted to hide in someone whom I felt was wiser than me. I willingly handed over the reigns to him, forgoing self-responsibility, self care, self respect and along with it my dignity. It was easier for a while, but eventually the repercussions were a disaster. 

When you lose yourself in a romantic relationship, you tend to wake up one day saying, "Where am I?" You can find yourself living the life of someone else. No matter how hard you try to disappear and melt away into romantic bliss, one day you will inevitably wake up to find that you want yourself back. You may be like me--I had no other choice but to get myself back because he fell off a deep end. Once there was no one to tell me what to do, I had to take the reigns once again.

Getting yourself back can be arduous, as I learned through my divorce. The key is learning to hold onto yourself from the very beginning, and to never again allow your identity to be usurped for anyone, anything or any reason. You've got to be TRUE TO YOU

If you don't love yourself, it will be easy to lose your identity in your relationships with others, including your romantic relationships, friendships, acquaintances and even strangers. I've learned to love myself little-by-little through soul searching, reading, counseling and loving support of others. I've realized that it's a never-ending healing journey to become your true self... and that learning to love yourself involves staying connected with your truth at all times. Loving yourself means standing up for who YOU are, how YOU feel and what YOU need rather than bending without boundaries and pleasing others to gain approval.

This article has been brewing in my heart for more than a year now. I can't believe I'm finally writing it! Inspiration to write it came from my recent soul-searching, and also this statement by one of my favorite authors, Dr. Margaret Paul of "Inner Bonding." 

"How often do you take good care of yourself until you are around another person with whom you are in a relationship? How often do you disconnect from yourself and then hope to get love from another? You will feel abandoned whenever you disconnect from yourself, and the other person will feel pulled on to fill you up. Today, practice staying inwardly connected all day."

 I study much of Dr. Paul's work, and have found it to be very insightful, especially her concept of inner bonding, because in order to stay connected to yourself, that's exactly what you have to do! BOND INSIDE. You have to stop allowing your valuable love, time, attention and energy flow out of your heart and onto something else in hopes of getting what you need, and instead direct your own life-force, your thoughts, feelings, attachments into your own self. You must tap into your own life-source, your own God-likeness, your own Higher Power as your source for delight and well being.

There is no other way to be happy in this world other than to be happy within yourself. You can't lose yourself in relationships and come out okay. When you lose yourself, there is always dire consequences. You may feel relief from pain and agony in the short run, but in the long run, baby you will pay for ignoring your pain, and you'll pay again for running away. There are no shortcuts to healing and being whole. You have to go the hard way--by facing yourself, facing the pain and embracing what you see. You must accept yourself 100%. You must do the work of healing and recovery from the desire to want to melt into others.

Part 2: 100 Ways You Can Lose Yourself in Relationship

Part 3: 100 Ways to Hold Onto Yourself in Relationship

[coming soon]

1 comment:

  1. Thank you. So much. This is exactly what I needed to hear: that change is possible and becoming aware of how I also lost myself in a relationship. I feel hope.