What someone may find, if they were to step back and reflect on their life, is that they typically need to be by themselves in order to feel settled and at ease. Along with this, this can be when they generally experience a sense of freedom and are able to be themselves.
On the other hand, when they are around others, they can often experience a lot of pressure and feel as though they have no control over themselves. By being this way, it is likely to mean that they will often say yes when they would rather say no and do things that they won’t want to do.
As opposed to experiencing a sense of self-ownership around another or others, then, it will be as if they belong to them. How they feel and their own needs could end up being a mystery to them too.
Thanks to this, they may experience tension when they are around others but that could be about as far as it will go. Once they are by themselves, however, they could soon come into contact with a lot of frustration.
Now, if they were to imagine being around another person and in tune with their needs, they could find that there is resistance when it comes to them asserting themselves. What is likely to feel comfortable to a big part of them is to simply go along with what the other person wants.
The part of them that doesn’t want to behave in this way is going to end up being outmuscled by a part that does. If they were to go against this and assert themselves, they could end up experiencing a fair amount of anxiety.
Based on this, a big part of them is going to believe that the only way for them to survive, when they are in the company of another, is for them to do what they want. If they want to freely express themselves, they will need to be by themselves.
Yet, although they will be able to be themselves when they are alone, this is going to cause them to have a very lonely existence. For this to change and for them to be able to fully show up around others, they will need to know that it is safe enough for them to freely express themselves around others.
Way of Life
If they were to think about how they behave, they may find that they have been this way for as long as they can remember. Over the years, they might have even been labelled as being ‘strange’ due to how much time they spend by themselves.
But, even if this has happened, it will now be clear that they haven’t consciously chosen to do this; it has been a way for them to maintain their sense of self. If it was possible for them to typically do this around others, there would be no need for them to spend so much time by themselves.
Assuming that their life has more or less always been this way, it could show that they were brought up in an environment where their boundaries were rarely if ever respected. In the eyes of one or both of their parents, they would have been nothing more than an object that was there to be used as and when they wanted to use it, not a human being that had needs and feelings.
Therefore, if one of their parents wanted them to do something, it would have mattered whether or not they wanted to do it. They would have had to do as they were told or face the consequences.
If they didn’t do what they wanted, they might have ended up being harmed and/or rejected and left. The message they would have sent them, both directly and indirectly, then, was that they had no control.
Moreover, their sole purpose was to do what another person or people wanted and if they resisted this, they would suffer. To handle what was going on, the pain that they experienced and their developmental needs would have been repressed.
Living up Top
Being in their body and a feeling human being would have been too much for them to handle. Living upstairs and estranged from themselves would have made this stage of their life more bearable.
As their boundaries were not respected and they were not treated as a human being that was valuable and lovable, they wouldn’t have developed a felt sense of safety, security, worth or lovability. This is why they won’t feel safe being in their body and when they are, they are likely to feel deeply vulnerable and hopeless and helpless.
Drawing the Line
For them to gradually change how they experience life, they are likely to have a lot of pain to work through and unmet developmental needs to experience. This is something that will take courage and patience and persistence.
If someone can relate to this and they are ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.