Let’s be real!
We all have our kinks, flaws, hang-ups, fears and ways in which we close down to avoid intimacy.
For some other, avoidance, disconnection, distraction and pretending to ignore the other is their safe-zone when faced with someone’s interest, needs or expressions of love.
Most humans oscillate between the two:
Chasing love, trying to earn it, being a “nice guy” or a “good girl”, working hard to have something to “prove” to the world (and to ourselves) in terms of our worthiness..
While simultaneously cringing when someone else expresses love a little too deep, too open, too fast, too unfiltered.
Because it’s a lot easier to hide and diagnose all that is wrong with the other… (Too intense, too clingy, too needy, too interested, too “______”).. Than it is to realize that it is not about the other at all.
It’s about YOU..
And your unintegrated relationship with having needs and expressing them.
It often goes hand in hand:
If you take pride on being hyper-independent, perhaps you fail to recognize that you grew up in spaces where your needs were not validated.
It was therefore RISKY to have needs.
A volatile mother or an unstable, violent father..
Absent, distracted, emotionally closed off caretakers..
As a child you were left feeling on your own since every time you had a need it was met with denial, punishment or avoidance.
Perhaps there was so much chaos at home between your parents that you wouldn’t even bother.
So the safest way to operate became to have no needs!
To not need mom or dad (or anyone for that matter).
To do whatever it took to be your own person so you would never have to depend on others, for it seemed like a losing proposition.
So you closed off, hardened and grew older pretending you didn’t need anyone, when you know deep inside that a large part of you craves feeling held and fully seen by others.
And yet, you cringe when others give room to their needs in connection with you.
Because it isn’t them you’re judging or avoiding..
It is YOU.
The part of you that feels you’re not allowed to have needs. (And resents those who do)
The part of you that deep inside grieves the absence of vulnerable connection in his/her life..
Yet it’s a lot easier to silence these feelings with vices, distractions, overworking to burnout, sports to the point of exhaustion/injury, being a “good human”, always productive and there for others.
It’s so easy to be the one that’s often there when anyone needs them…
And so hard to need others.
So what to do?
You notice when you tense up in relationship with others.
You see when you disconnect, avoid or deflect.
And you re-connect.
You make room for others to express their needs and their love,
And you allow yourself to -bit by bit- express yours.
You find people with whom it is safe for you to open up and lean on..
You take breaks from being the nourisher.
And you allow yourself to be nourished.
You learn to lean forward when you want to lean back..
And you keep your heart open when you want to close down.
Sure, you could do it on your own..
But do you really want to?
Let this be a reminder that you don’t have to.
We’re in this together
So soften your grip
And let yours fears go.
Come back to love.