Love, Trust, Need, Desire, Codependent, Independent
All of those words are deeply weighted in our society and further in our own heads. God forbid you even try to sort out what those mean to you individually or even more complicated, within a relationship.
Previous entries have talked of my thoughts on love.
Trust, need, independent & codependent live prominently in my mind these days. I have, after many trials and challenges, find myself in what I would consider a significant relationship. Obvious elation comes to mind but in that same breath, I know I am no longer 22. I have fears. I have reservations. I feel vulnerable.
It is the feeling of being vulnerable that triggers the behavior that can be a death knoll for friendships and intimate relationships for me. But why? I have been asking myself this question for a while now. Wondering what drives this anxious and insecure compulsive behavior in myself.
I kept hearing myself come back to the issue of "needing" someone. Our modern psychoanalytical society has beat into many "enlightened" people's thought process that to say you need someone means that you are "codependent." Codependent=bad=fucked up. Duh. Didn't you know that? Now, don't get me wrong, there are lots of people in crappy relationships out there, and there are as many excuses as the day is long for them to stay in them. Yet, I see repeatedly that at the end of the day. pretty much all of us just want to find that person with whom we have a deep connection (a piece or possibly the whole of love?).
Who this person is a pretty individual thing (meaning we each desire different qualities that carry individual weight). Yet in that, there is this desire, this need to connect, talk, touch that person. Again, I speak in some generalities as it is different from person to person. Query: If there is a need does it there fore imply codependency? It may not seem like it in the scenario I just presented, but when faced with talking to yourself and you find yourself saying "I need to see this person." One starts to think, oh God, am I that fucked up that I need somebody? Am I heading to codependent land?
And this is was the eventual progression of thought that triggered the proverbial light bulb for me....To need somebody means that I must trust them. To trust means that I have in some manner laid myself bare to them. I have put all my cards on the table, even the ones I have held closest for my entire life. This is what makes me feel vulnerable...to trust someone enough to lean on them, to need them. It flies against all conventions I adopted around the time I was 15. Granted it evolved into something more severe over time but none the less it started there.
My Parents felt I was a bright, independent 15 year old. They started working to get me to understand how I could be full filled by being self sufficient. This really was an amazing concept to give to a young woman in the mid 80's. Unfortunately what started out as a phrase I told myself, "If you want something..it is up to you to get it and nobody else." in time evolved into "It is all up to you to achieve anything in your life. To ask for help or lean (need) on another is tantamount to ultimate weakness on your part."
Sadly, I realized that I never allowed myself to trust/need/lean on the man who was my partner for 16 years. By the time I figured out that I needed him (primarily emotionally), it was simply too late for a variety of reasons. What I can say is that it has taken 5 years for me to realize what that was and to be able to put words to it. That was 2009.
Now it is moving towards the end of 2013 and my life and head space has changed dramatically in these 5 years.
As I have already said, I have embarked on a new relationship of import and significance to me. It is with a man I have written much about that is published in my blog and in private. A denied dream that has with time, friendship and work has become a surreal reality of love and growing companionship (meant in its purest intent). I had let go of that love for him to the ethereal realm about a year and half ago. In all honesty, I feared for a long time that there could never be any real friendship much less a sense of mutual love that is growing with each week that passes.
I am scared. Other than my immediate family, I have never allowed myself to need anybody except for my best friend since I was 13. Five years ago, Melanie was incarcerated for 20-50 years. For years she was the person I wanted to talk to first thing in the morning and the last person I wanted to talk to at the end of the day. That was ripped away from me 5 years ago. My ability to trust diminished after that. Her incarceration and demise of my long term relationship reinforced the idea that needing somebody was bad. Was pain. Was loss.
Yet I have been so tired of being alone. Of carrying all of my life,burdens and fears alone. I have been crushing my own soul carrying these self imposed trials under the guise of independence and strength.
So I have found myself terrified not to love Chris, but to trust him. to need him. All of my anxieties are triggered in the face of this. My desire to complete every compulsion has been a daily battle I fight. I knew that I had to get to the root of the anxieties to be able to banish them (and the compulsions). I do not want to fuck this up. I want something different from what I have known over and over again in my relationships.
I am trying so hard to trust Chris. The man I never thought any of this would ever happen with. This man that I find myself wanting to be the first and last person I talk to/see each day. I am working to trust him with my emotions, my dreams, my day to day realities. I understand there are no guarantees to life or love, but I no longer want to be this person that so many can count on but I don't trust enough to be able to count on others, who in reality, are glad to be there for me when I need it.