Even though one can have the need to be in a relationship with someone who is available, it doesn’t mean that this takes place. Instead, they can end up attracting people who unable to be there for them.
If this was something that they could overlook it wouldn’t matter, but as this is not going to be the case, it is going to cause them to suffer. And while this may be something that they experience from time to time, it may be a way of life.
When it is a way of life, it might not matter where they go or who they end up with; as it’s going to be the same old story. This is not to say that they will realise that the other person is unavailable in the beginning of the relationship.
Based on how the other person comes across, one may believe that they have finally met the one. What has happened in their past could then be put to one side and they can look towards the future.
Up and Down
However, this experience is soon going to over and it won’t be long until they start to think about what has happened in the past. There is then going to be the pain that they experience through what happens with this person, and then there is going to be the additional pain of attracting someone else who is the same as the others.
And while they might walk away from this person, they could end up doing the complete opposite. One has then come to see that the other person is unable to meet their needs, but this is not enough to push them away.
The more the other person moves away, the more effort one may put in to bring them closer. If an outsider was to look at what is taking place, they may come to conclude that they had a close relationship at one point in time.
Their need to hold onto the other person is then not a reflection of the kind of connection they had, it is a consequence of how they feel. And while their emotional experience may relate to what has happened, it is more likely to be a reflection of the experiences they had many year ago.
Holding onto the other person is then a way for them to keep their feelings at bay, and this shows is that they are not thinking about what happened with the other person. What they are focused on is doing everything they can to avoid having to face how they feel.
However, unless one is able to see that their emotional experience is also being defined by what has happened in the past, it is going to be harder for them to let go. What they may do is find someone else, and then this same pattern may be played out all over again.
There is also the chance that they will meet people who are available and instead of being drawn to these people, they may end up being repelled by them. And while the people they attract may lack boundaries and come on too strong, this might not be the case.
If the other person does come on too strong, they will have a legitimate reason for not wanting to be with the other person. Yet, when the other person has boundaries and doesn’t come on too strong, they might end up coming up with a set of reasons why the other person wasn’t a good match.
There is then the pain that they go through when they end up with people who are unavailable, and then there is the pain they go through when they are available. The feeling of being abandoned will arise when they attract people who are unavailable and the feeling of being trapped will arise when someone is available.
Getting close to another person is not going to be something that they can do while maintaining their sense of self; it is going to be something that causes them to lose themselves. What this means is that they only feel safe when they keep other people at a certain distance.
So because of what is taking place within them, it is not possible for them to experience intimacy. In order for them to experience life differently, it will be important for them to change how they feel.
They may have come to believe that there is nothing they can do about how they feel, and the reason they have this outlook could be because they have felt the same way for so long. While one may wonder why they feel this way, this might soon change if they were to take the time to think about what happened during their childhood years.
During these years, there is a strong chance that their caregivers were out of touch with their needs, and this would have caused them to be smothered and abandoned. Their boundaries would have been violated and this would have set them up to have boundary problems as an adult.
To be abandoned during these early years would have felt like the end of the world, and this is because one wouldn’t have had the ability to regulate their emotions. And to be smothered during his time would have caused one to feel as though they were being annihilated, and this is because they had no way of protecting themselves.
The Years Pass
And because the pain is still within them, it won’t matter how many years pass. Their adult life is going to be defined by what happened during these early years, and this is why it will be important for them to face their pain.
In order for someone to develop boundaries and to let go of the feeling of being smothered and abandoned, it will be important for them to heal the trauma that is within them and for them to grieve their unmet childhood needs. This is something that can take place through the assistance of a therapist and/or a support group.
The positive regard that they receive through this support will allow them to develop a strong sense of self. And through being around people who accept them as they are, one will begin to realise their own value.
These early experiences may have set one up to develop a shame based identity, and this can cause them to believe that they are unlovable. It will be important for them to release the toxic shame that is trapped within them, and this can take place through facing the charge until it begins to discharge and through sharing their story with the right people.
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Oliver J R Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author, 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.
Child Abuse And Neglect - How To Heal From Child Abuse And Neglect