ACoAs: PATIENCE vs Co-dependent Waiting (Part 2)

PREVIOUS: Co-dep vs Patience #3

SITE: How to cope with waiting for news

QUOTE: “Good character is not formed in a week or a month.  It is created little by little, day by day, by protracted patience” – Heraclitus of Ephesus


Co-dep also shows up as IMPATIENCE, annoyance, intolerance, worry, fear & distrust
• It’s demanding what we want, right now (instant gratification), because any delay in getting a need or a desire met is taken by the WIC as a definite “NO – you can’t ever have it, so shut up & go away!” from the PP (Negative Introject)

• It’s rushing relationships, to get that feeling of instant attachment, which is actually symbiosis. It’s an attempt to compensate for present-day fear of Abandonment pain, to make up for not having had that bond as an infant with mom, when it should have occurred

• It’s impulsively rushing into situations without considering whether they’re right for us, or what the consequences will be – to ourselves or others
• It’s pushing our way ahead of others (selfish entitlement) – the unconscious fear of being left behind – while consciously assuming it’s ‘our right’, but is actually childish narcissism
<ADD YOUR OWN kinds of unhealthy co-dep ‘patience’ & impatience>

Fortunately, Recovery gives us an out – a way to identify our damage so we can separate & strip it away from the Real us that’s hidden under all the defenses, separating the Toxic Rules from our Rights. As adults we have very real options, if we’re willing to risk leaving our attachment to the dysfunction.
REMEMBER: We’re damaged (wounded), not defective!

🦋 🐯 🦆 🐳 🦒 🐇

This kind is an ACTIVE response to reality (personal & environmental)
Just like ‘Acceptance‘ does NOT mean giving up or giving in, Patience does NOT mean letting the world trample us.
Nor does it mean ‘taking the moral high ground’ as some spiritual superiority, nor a punishment from the ‘universe’
• It does not imply the hopelessness of being forced to endure suffering & deprivation
• It does not mean being passive, of not taking appropriate actions when necessary to accomplish something, especially if it’s something only we can do. (Posts: Healthy Actions // What to do when confused // Why are you stuck?)

It DOES mean being emotionally mature. This allows us to tolerate delayed gratification, which can only come from lowering the WIC’s intense anxiety. Healthy patience is active in the sense that we choose to wait for a desired outcome, while at the same time actively continuing to live the best way we can – every day.

Real patience :
• requires knowing the difference between Rescuing & Helping, because it takes patience to sit with our own discomfort of not jumping in to someone else’s problems. Knowing the rules for Helping is important. But we can also tell by being physically stressed or relaxed, & our emotions:

— Rescuing / people-pleasing is driven by anxiety (before), a compulsion to compensate for something broken in us. The excitement of ‘doing’ comes from a false sense of connection, & temporary relief of abandonment fear. Afterward – we can feel drained – from overdoing, disappointed if we didn’t get what we wanted in return, & then angry. Here the actions are ALL about us, the WIC trying to cover up S.H.

— True Helping is done from an inner sense of calm & confidencebefore taking action a choice that comes from the Healthy Adult’s enjoyment of sharing our personal talents, knowledge & experience. And we feel pleased, satisfied & comfortable – afterward. We benefit, but it’s not so much about ourselves.

NEXT: Co-dep vs. Patience #3


OUTGROWING Co-Dep Niceness (Part 7b)

as many relationships 
as possible

PREVIOUS: Outgrow co-dep (#5b)

SITEs: Forgive Yourself to Heal   an abuse survivor’s journey
Healthy way to forgive yourself (and its dark side)

RECOVERY from “Too Nice Syndrome” (TNS)

Tool 5c. FORGIVING Ourselves as ADULTS (cont.)

SELF-FORGIVENESS is letting go of guilt & shame, which takes persistent time & effort, and in never complete. Letting go means accepting that we can’t change our past, but can learn from it.
At its heart, Acceptance is seeing everything as it really is, no matter how unpleasant, rather than what we want it to be. Acceptance eliminates illusions & CDs, & so makes letting go possible.

++ Accept that we are wounded – not defective. Letting go means stopping the cruel inner rant – a choice we can implement every day. Given the very hard times we’ve been thru, it means that we need to be extra kind to ourselves. (Purpose of healthy parental mirroring – when they’re kinder to everyone but their own children)

++Accept Al-Anon’s 3 As: “I didn’t cause it, I can’t control it, I can’t cure it.” We can then let go of self-recrimination for anythingbecause it’s not the same as taking responsibility (scroll down) – which is acknowledging something about ourselves without adding “…..and therefore I’m bad.”  Now we can correct distorted thinking, & stop blaming or attacking ourselves for what may or may not be inadequacies & deficiencies

 ++ Accept our human limitations, which will allow us to let go of judging ourselves so harshly —
• for having depression & the need for medication
• for not knowing things everyone else seems to be ‘in on’
• for not being perfect // not knowing everything // making mistakes
• for being so scared inside // being controlling // nit-picking
• for procrastinating or never finishing anything…. all opposites of RIGHTS list

++ Accept that every child is programmed to follow their upbringing.  If it was alcoholic, dangerous, neglectful…. we drowned in too many rigid, harmful laws – or were completely left to our own devices. Now we can slowly form a new set of rules, loving & flexible – which will eliminate much of the need for fake niceness, so we’re free to be genuinely kind  (“ACoAs – Healthy Rules“)

++ Accept that along the way we’ll have to deal with the guilt that churns in our gut whenever we disobey any Toxic Family Rule, but it doesn’t last.
This is ‘good guilt’ because it signals that we’re doing something healthy for ourselves, by going against all our crazy training.

• facing & dealing with our anger at our family, as well as all of our other T.E.As.
• releasing any & all accusations or blame of God / the Divine for painful experiences caused by humans
• being kind to ourselves, no matter what, & staying present for whatever Es come up
• accepting all our emotions, without reservation or judgment
• remembering, without S-H, painful & embarrassing situations we put ourselves in because of our anxiety, FoA & dissociation (out-to-lunchness)
• forgiving the things we didn’t do, which caused us or others harm.

EXP: In her 20’s Jenny had a little grey cat she loved a lot. As Greyling was getting older, he was getting thinner, but Jenny was too busy studying & writing papers for her college classes to pay much attention.

• One night Greyling flopped over on the bed, not able to stand. Jenny was worried, but just thought he was old. The next day she saw he was very weak – not moving, not eating – so she finally took him to the vet. The vet took one look at the little cat & turned angrily to Jenny.”You let this cat deteriorate to the point that he’s so dehydrated he had a stroke! There’s nothing I can do – he needs to be put down”.

• Jenny was devastated at the loss, & deeply ashamed of her neglect. She had caused this sweet creature severe suffering because of her obliviousness. Working it thru in therapy & ACoA meetings, she understood that ignoring the signs of illness in Greyling came from her grammar school time. She spent many years seeing her father in terrible pain from a long illness, often lying in a dark room but never complaining, while mother kept telling her to be very quiet & not bother him.
Jenny loved her dad & hurt deeply for him, but was totally helpless. To protect against her overwhelming frustration & powerlessness, she became numb to physical suffering.

• Accepting the connection between past & present, & continued to grieve Greyling, Jenny sincerely forgave herself for her inaction, without S-H, knowing where it came from. Even years later she sometimes feels sad for her dad & the cat, but has made sure to not make that mistake again.

NEXT: BEING Forgiven (#4e)

Letting GO of ACTING Controlling (Part 3)


the more power I have!

PREVIOUS: Letting Go of Controlling -#2

Review: “Let Go of Control…Art of Surrender

MAKING CHANGES“What we disown – we can’t change”.
Reminder: You are not responsible to make changes or correct problems which are beyond your competency, power, authority or responsibility – and that ARE the responsibility of another!

Inventory: Consider the following points & write out as much as you can. Do a little for each point, then go back every few days & add more.
• If needed, get trusted healers & friends, mates & your adult-children to make suggestions from their experiences with you. Try not to be defensive. Just write them down & look at them later.
NOTE the situations that crop up over & over, especially if mentioned by several people.testing, testing

STAY AWAKE for ways you act Controlling:
— When it happens    — What sets it off
— How it shows up in your actions
— Who it effected         — How does that make you feel
—  How do they react to you     — How does it affect them

Acknowledge that you are controlling, & identify the causes – that ‘made’ you controlling – (see ‘Controlling & Abandonment posts). Consider which causes:  • you’ve already been working on
• you are willing to tackle, & what you can do to change how you act
• you have to put on the shelf until you’re more healed
Make a list of:list of needs
• all your unmet needs & work toward filling them
• develop &/or hone your talents & get recognized for them
• gradually feel the backlog of old pain that causes your anxiety
learn the difference between assertiveness & aggression, rage vs anger, humility vs humiliation, controlling vs in control, rescuing vs helping, possible vs impossible, connection vs symbiosis ….

Practice asking for your legitimate needs & desired from others, without demanding or having unrealistic expectations. Know who can meet specific needs & who cannot – or to what degree!

The 3 As & T.E.A.
AWARENESS: Identify your unhealthy attitudes (Ts) towards situations, unrealistic expectations of others & beliefs about how life should be.
Also, life areas that are affected (work, home…) & which are more intense than others (more with spouse, less with friends…)

ACCEPTANCE: Then – write about the experiences growing up that fostered the need to Control, especially the emotions underlying that need (Es).  Consider alternative & opposite attitudes & beliefs (Ts) you can use when life-stressors set off the impulse to C.
✶ Allow as much time as needed to make internal shifts. Acceptance is about staying in the process & not always trying to jump into Action

ACTION: List better ways (As) to behave when feeling the compulsion to be C. & try them out a little at a time. Learn how to communicate with your IC & do it consistently, to comfort & protect (Ts & Es)

Keep these new thoughts & action handy, & in a variety of locations so you can remind yourself (home, car, office, fridge, wallet or purse …)

Practice: Pick one thing you feel a definite need to control, and then DON’T make any effort what-so-ever to exert peacefulyour will over the situation the next time around. Allow yourself to just watch the external experience unfold completely on its own, without any help from you. As you observe, notice you thoughts & emotions.
• You’ll feel shaky at first, as this will most likely bring up fear and anxiety from past trauma. HOLD onto to your WIC, & let it know it’s not in danger.
• Use Bookending with the kid, to prove that most things turn out much better that we anticipate. In this case – observe how things turn out whenever you don’t C. & have little talks with the kid about it each time, so he/she learns that ‘the war is over & we can get out of the bunker’!

From “Losing Control, Finding Serenity” book by Daniel A. Miller
Daily Exercise:
• With respect to your children, listen attentively to them without offering advice. Recognize that they are different from you in the way they think and process things, and accept that your way may not be the right way—for them.
• In your love relationship, lower your expectations of your mate—and of yourself. Focus on what steps you can take to improve your love bond.
• With respect to your creative endeavors, focus on just enjoying the process. Don’t plan or think too much about the outcome. Don’t fret about making “mistakes.” Start a piece with the intention of not completing it, and see what unfolds.
>>Even if you are only partially successful in doing these things, first you may feel disoriented & fearful, but if you persist you’ll find that letting go of control brings you freedom & contentment! (Read more….)

NEXT: Types of Self-Control – #1

Letting GO of ACTING Controlling (Part 1)


without arranging everything!

PREVIOUS: Acting Controlling (Part 3)

SITE: Freedom & Control

REMINDER: Use Acronyms Page for abbrev.

STOP Controlling
To change this dysfunctional pattern takes Willingness, Perseverance & Courage!  We have to be ready to look at ourselves without intense judgement & S-H, or we’re not going to own the C. behaviors.
The OLD Way: Being C. is to function on the assumption that feeling safe in the world is totally up to us by arranging everything OUR way, all the time.
But, the very act of Controlling is a betrayal the True Self, so we keep shutting ourselves off from healing our wounds & loving connections with others, because of the fear & rage we carry from the WIC & PP.

Ironically, being a control freak never seems to include changing oneself! And, the Negative Introject will keep trying to deceive us, saying that the only way to proceed is to completely control every tiny detail of how and when things should happen, and/or others should act.  It will continually torture our thoughts, making us believe we’re not good enough or doing it right, so the IT doesn’t lose its power over us

• Being Controlling is NOT the same as having strong opinions. Rather,  it’s a way to ‘force solutions’ by imposing our will on others
• C. (vs. to Being in Control) can be labeled a character defect, but it’s imperative we don’t berate ourselves for it
• It’s a form of grandiosity, a defense mechanism – defending against re-experiencing early vulnerability, powerlessness & daily neglect
• Being C. provides a temporary feeling of being powerful (not at the mercy of anyone!) but like all addictions, has to be constantly repeated, since it doesn’t heal the fear that’s underneathprogress not perfection

• We likely learned our style of controlling from someone in our family
• Letting go of being C. can only be done in stages, & never perfectly!
• As the WIC heals & we strengthen our ‘Unit’, the need for it will diminish in intensity, but may never completely go away. This has to be accepted – with healthy humility & self-respect (opposite of grandiosity)
• Lessening it requires self-esteem, boundaries, making better choices & letting love in – wherever it may come from!

Condensed from ‘Chakra Healing’: The THIRD CHAKRA
• The Solar Plexus or Personal Power Chakra (energy vortex #3) is located above the navel and below the sternum. It’s ruled by the Sun & emits a yellow light of optimism, renewal & happiness – when free-flowing. The seat of personal power & the will, it generates the mental strength to learn and use gathered information. It forms our sense of True Self, so when this Chakra is open and clear we feel good about ourselves & have the ability to accomplish whatever we set out to do.

shame• When the Chakra is blocked we’re not genuine & we mistrust others. The enemy of this chakra is shame & overbearing authority figures.  It will quickly shut down when children grow up in an abusive, unsafe environment, with constant fear of punishment and age-INappropriate responsibilities. Children are stripped of their personal strength by a parent who is over-controlling, too fearful & full of shame. OR the chakra can be over-energized to the point of making a person too rigid, controlling and fearful. (more…..)  ALSO: “Symptoms & Solutions…”

LETTING GO of Acting Controlling
There are many wise things to be said about ‘Letting Go’, but here are 2 main ones for ACoAs. To grow we need to —

1. Let go of trying to win our parents’ love – if they didn’t /don’t have the capacity, at all. OR not chasing them (or substitutes) for the KIND of nurturing every child needs but was simply not available to us because of their damage, even if they meant well & said they loved us.

2. Let go of the illusion that doing things perfectly will get us that love & approval. All it does is increase our self-hate & fear, because perfection is unattainable AND our family’s mental or emotional health is not – and was never was – in our power to create. People either can love us or not. We can not earn it!

A NEW Way: To be free of the compulsion to Control is to give up on the internal fight, to stop trying to manage everything, to stop trying to please the PP, & stay out of whatever is none of our business!
self-fight✶ This does NOT mean being lazy, withholding or paralyzed.
• Rather – it comes from knowing that even in times of discomfort our inner foundation is built on solid ground – a support system made up of our Loving Inner Parent, the Higher Power & respectful / kind people.
• Being comfortable in our skin means to allow OTHERS to be themselves, & letting many circumstances be – just as they are.  There’s a time to act & a time to be still. This is what the Serenity Prayer is referring to: Change what we can right now, & Accept what we can’t change at all, what’s not yet possible, or is not yet the right time.

NEXT: Letting Go of C. –  Part 2

CDs & the Unconscious (Part 4)

cds & emotions

without having to act on them!

PREVIOUS: CDs & the Unconscious (#3)


1. THINKING (Part 2 & 3)

In general, emotions are stored as physical memories from our experiences & can be recalled by present events. These emotions may be comforting, pleasurable, relieving, exciting… OR scary, rageful, lonely…. We can’t directly choose what we feel, only what we think.

• Researchers tell us that anxiety* responses such as “fight or flight” originally had adaptive value in the development of the human species, & are still legitimate forms of protection. Active defensive measures such as over-sensitivity to sound, the startle response, shallow breathing & increased heart rate help people in their effort to escape real hazards. However we rarely face the external dangers our ancestors did, so now we are flooded with those same stressful chemicals from internal pressures (CDs), & without enough physical outlets to burn them off.

*Anxiety is the response of our nervous system to internal or external stimuli (self-hate, a painful loss, a fight with someone….) increasing the intensity of how we feel & then act, worriedbut needs to be triggered by negative thinking. This has been shown on brain imaging scans. Since CDs are conditioned over time & become habit, we simply don’t recognize the source of our fear.

NOTE the difference between an adult’s emotional response to the death of a parent:
— a symbiotically attached ACoA will be devastated, at least partly from the loss of hope, partly from the depth of abandonment, perhaps feeling guilt & anger at being left behind
— a healthy person who has sufficient S & I will mourn the loss & be aware of a permanent piece of their life is gone, but has a sound emotional & spiritual foundation so is ok.

• Cognitive (T) psychologists believe that some people are more biologically predisposed than others to ‘threat-sensitivity’ & the distress it causes. In such people, once anxiety (E) is aroused, it is maintained or even increased IF cognitive distortions are added into the mix.  Extreme physical responses caused by our CDs can spread to and contaminate other parts of our lives that are not realistically dangerous, or only mildly uncomfortable.  For example, obsessive worry (T) caused by projecting the end of a relationship  – which is not actually imminent – can provoke a panic attack (E), the same bodily reactions as if being held up at gunpoint!

• As adults, ACoAs too often make the mistake of ‘Emotional Reasoning’, believing that if we feel a certain way, it must be true:  “I’m really, really scared today, so it’s not safe to leave the house”!  The WIC is having an intense feeling about something going on in our life (an exam, a new job, a break-up…) & wants to hide. But the sense of impending doom is way out of proportion to the actual situation. “If it’s hysterical, it’s historical”. And staying home, alone,  may make it worse!

EXP: Your father may have beaten you only once when you were a kid, for stealing some change – but the pain, fear & humiliation will always be associated with thoughts like “Dad doesn’t love me”, or “Parents are so unfair!”…. So now, anytime the boss (parent figure) is annoyed with you for making a mistake, you’re convinced he / she has it in for you & you’ll get fired any minute!

safe feelingsACCEPTANCE: We always need to remember that thoughts & emotions are 2 separate forms of energy, not to be rolled together, even though they are related sometimes as cause-&-effect. SO:
— we can feel (E) hopeless but know (T) that many things in the present are not hopeless
— we can feel self-hate but know that we are not bad, worthless….
— we can feel suicidal but know that we have a right to live!….. because WE ARE SAFE!

• When we have thoughts such as: ”Oh no, what if I fail this test… I’ll never remember everything I read…. I’m such a flake….” — we will feel FEAR. This causes various physiological arousals (tight stomach, heart pounding, headache….), which then cause more fear

• BUT if we identify & own the thoughts as cognitive distortions, & immediately replace them with positive statements, like “I’ve studied as much as I can & I’m really not stupid. I’ve done well in the past, so I expect to do well this time too, but no matter what the outcome, I’ll be OK”, we can expect :
— to feel uncomfortable, because the statements don’t fit the emotion we’re experiencing at this time (fear)
— to have the PP tell us we’re ridiculous “Who do you think you are?”
— the WIC absolutely not believe you (only the PP’s voice carries weight) – until the UNIT takes over

This is to be expected!  Remember from CDs & the Brain: introducing new facts contrary to stored info on a subject will automatically be discounted. The unconscious is very good at maintaining the status quo.  As a built-in attribute of the brain, this is not a bad thing, as it allows it to retain consistency
• We have an example of how important the need is for our minds to be stable & predictable if we consider how crazy-making double-messages are! ACoAs got so many conflicting & confusing messages growing up that we wind up thinking we are crazy!

• This function of the brain obviously makes it hard for us to ignore the unhealthy things new thoughtswe’ve learned. So when we first correct distorted self- reinforced thought patterns, it FEELS like the new info is a lie OR dangerous (which it is – to the family system)!  It’s so uncomfortable, we feel embarrassed by how sappy the statements are, & no way is the WIC going to believe them …. we just won’t want to accept the changes. However, we have to ‘act as if’. To not totally revert, we need a lot of support, the presence of the Adult & Good Parent ego states and ‘faith in the process’. Progress, not perfection!

RECOVERY: Correcting our thinking leads to a more peaceful inner world. It’s helpful to remember that this state is something we have to get used to – most of us find it boring at first. Eventually we come to appreciate & cherish the internal quiet. This is not boredom – which is an aspect of thinking, not feeling. It’s rather a sense of well-being!

NEXT: CDs – Consequences #1

POSITIVE Responses to Painful Events (Part 2)

flowers 2 

this has little or nothing to do with ME!

PREVIOUS: Positive Responses – re events

REVIEW: Part 1: Events + Large Chart


2. EMOTIONS ‘Square’
Healthy ACoAs are not afraid to feel, own & deal with our emotions. Es are a vital part of our self-protection & self-correcting mechanism, built-in to our brain (the limbic system).  It doesn’t matter which ego state the emotions come from – they’re all part of us. As we learn to identify ‘who’s’ saying and feeling what – we can respond to our internal cues more accurately.

a. From the WIC (adapted child)
• these emotions will be left-over from our difficult childhood – terror, self-hate, rage, hopelessness, profound existential loneliness, abandonment, even feeling positive reactionssuicidal, all of which are based on actual  experiences, PLUS internalizing those of our parents

b. From the Negative Introject
• all of the above, from their background, as well as their feelings towards us, including indifference, impatience, disgust, neediness, desperation, fear of abandonment……  emotions which we have internalized & continue to carry – until we ‘clean them out’.  We have to face our pain, but the thoughts & feelings of our parents MUST be given back to them! via repeated visualizations & statements

• “Dad, I love you but I can’t save you from mom’s cruelty. I tried to ease your pain, even taking on your covert suicidal feelings, but never could fix you. You chose her & stayed with her – it’s your marriage. You’re not my mate, so I give you back to her!”
• “Mom, I’ve been carrying your fear, helplessness & unfelt rage all these years, thinking it would help lift your burden. I feel bad that you’ve been suffering, but I know now it was an impossible task & not mine to deal with anyway. I’ve rolled up all your pain in a big black ball & now I give it back to you. I have enough of my own to be healed!”

c. From the Healthy Child Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 9.34.34 PM.png 
• Our natural self, whether we were born an Introvert or Extrovert, a combination of – joy, love, curiosity, amazement, amusement, trust, excitement, shyness, disappointment … and greed, need, naiveté, stubbornness, fear, anger, selfishness, envy….  (PAC characteristics)

d. From the Loving Parent
• This is the missing ego state in all wounded ACoAs & so is the most important to develop, replacing the PP (pig parent / bad voice): love, patience, consistency, tolerance, sense of humor, persistence, faith…..

PS – the Healthy Adult is basically emotion-free – it’s primarily our computer mode, practical, rational & objective

i. I didn’t Cause it
Other people’s reactions to us tells us about who they are
✶✶ Getting this truth in our cells is a core / basic / fundamental / imperative !!! 🙂 requirement for peace of mind!  ONLY our co-dependence & narcissism says otherwise.

ii. I can’t Control it
Being controlling is driven by anxiety – the fear of loss (abandonment) & represents the grandiose belief that we have power in powerless situations. (see the Serenity Prayer). We can’t make others do or be what we want, but we can continue working on ourselves.

iii. I can’t Cure it
While some spiritual practices teach that we have all power, over everything – ultimately there are things in this lifetime we cannot cure, whether in ourselves or in others.  Focusing on the impossible is a waste of time & takes energy away from the many wonderful things we can accomplish – NOW!

Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 9.35.19 PMOTHER PEOPLE: HOW others react to us is on them. However, their T.E.A.’s can have something to do with us, directly OR indirectly IF:
i. from Them:
— we accidentally bump up against some longstanding emotional ‘hot button’ in them (we ONLY create buttons in our own physical children)
— we inadvertently remind them of someone in their damaged past
— we don’t go along with their narcissistic needs or expectations

ii. from Us:
— when our unhealed rage &/or neediness pushes others away
— we keep asking unavailable people to be there for us when they can’t
— we generally expect too much of others, including healthy ones
— we say or do something hurtful, disloyal, selfish…. from our damageScreen Shot 2016-06-22 at 9.38.02 PM

• The things WE ARE responsible for need to be worked on in Recovery, especially when we know what hurts someone & use that to ‘get them‘. We have to own all of it – objectively, without self-hate – & be willing to make changes.  Any reason people are uncomfortable with us (our repressed rage, our neediness, our unavailability…) will diminish over time as we develop our Healthy Adult & interact with others more & more from that ego state. It’s an ongoing process which definitely works

NEXT: Positive Responses (Thinking)

SELF-HATE & ACoAs (Part 3)


there has to be a better way!

PREVIOUS: S-H – Essence, Source (Part 2)

BOOK:  Compassion & Self-Hate
— Theodore Rubin  (highly recommended)

• protect our fantasy of having good, loving, safe parents
• protect us from feeling the reservoir of old abandonment pain
• keep from risking any change via S & I (letting go means we’ll die)
• keep us attached to the family (stave off deep loneliness)
• prevent us from dealing with ‘ugly emotions’ like our rage, envy, longing, hopelessness…
• protects us from Growing up, taking care of ourselves (we want to be taken care of! no matter what the cost is)

RESULTS of Self-Hate
Keeps us :
• trapped in a constant state of FoA (fear of abandonment) – neediness, vulnerability, fear of being hurt or left alone
• a victim – believing we deserve whatever abuse or neglect we receive, any time, any placeimages-2
• ‘anorexic’: under-earning, little or not affection, sex, love, attention, connections….
• afraid to know our ‘true self’ – which we’re sure is awful, maybe even evil
• depressed,  paranoid, hopeless, suicidal
• in an impotent rage (overt or hidden) because we still want things we think we can’t have or get
• perfectionistic – expect too much of ourselves: we’re bad if we don’t have the American dream, higher education, lots of money, the right job / car / house / spouse ….
• taking everything personally!!! The wrong look, being ignored, a selfish remark… from others can send us into a tailspin

• the ‘need’ for addictions & any other forms of self-destructiveness
• the compulsion to stay symbiotically attached – to family & everyone else – because we don’t know we have a “True Self” to rely on
• letting others abuse us (we may even invite it) without stopping them or holding them accountable….
• staying in a rage that no one is willing to take care of us, fix, us, magically make it all better
• the belief that we have no rights, while thinking we can / must control everything & everyone (opposite of the Serenity Prayer)!

Prevents us from:
• knowing there’s goodness, kindness & love – in the world and for US
trusting our intuition & accumulated knowledge / experiences
421743_3090782943986_1096368395_33253906_1089468599_n• knowing & valuing our good qualities & natural tendencies (being sensitive, artistic, emotional, intelligent, talented in some way, talkative, having a strong personality…)
• having dreams, wishes & hopes, & so can’t pursue them
• having boundaries (who do you think you are?)
• letting people get too close to us – S-H prevents genuine intimacy
• developing a Loving Inner Parent to nurture ourselves
• being relaxed, having fun, being light
• being able to grow, heal & enjoy life (believe we’re too messed up to ever get well, find love, leave ‘them’, have our dreams…)

RECOVERY from Self-Hate
a. INFO: S-H is a false belief & painful emotion – it is NOT who we are. We were not born hating ourselves. We had to learn it!
THEREFORE – it does not have to be permanent. We can outgrow it.

b. Awareness  – of what exactly S-H is & what it’s for
• that all our ‘failures’ & character defects are the result of our S-H (see  “Negative Benefits of Self-destructive Patterns”)
• the origin of S-H: it’s the direct, inevitable result of the myriad ways we were abandoned as kids on all 4 levels: P.M.E.S.
✶ 3 Cs of Al-Anon: I didn’t Cause it, I can’t Control it, I can’t Cure it!

c. Acceptance – of all our emotions, even S-H: Don’t hate yourself for hating yourself! We just don’t have to act on them (Es) all the time
• need to ‘sit with feelings’, go into them, don’t try to suppress them – they will pass
• we learned toxic rules from our family, but we can be free of it
• expect some backlash (from ourselves & others) when we start disobeying our ‘stinkin’ thinkin’ & 12065669231219144528Anonymous_work_in_progress.svg.medthe way we respond to people
• that we’re responsible for our own emotions & how we deal with them
• that WE were NOT the cause of our early suffering. We simple did not have the power to make our parents mistreat us!
• being loved cannot be earned.  The other person must already have the ability to love! We can not create that ability in another

d. Action – Change the thoughts / messages we’ve been believing.  Make new statements & repeat them every day. (See Why are you stuck? – & use the chart).
• Change how we behave – not let ourselves be bullied, disrespected, not considered (it’s OUR job to say how we want to be treated)
STOP trying to fix / change other people. It’s arrogant & futile
• Actively work at correcting our understanding of life & others – not everyone is safe, nor is everyone dangerous
• Choose winners: kind, balanced, functional people to associate with.  They don’t have to be ‘flawless’ or without damage. They mainly have to be willing to take responsibility for their own Ts, Es & As
Repeat to yourself every day: No matter what I do – I don’t deserve abuse for it!

NEXT: Rescuing #1