Post by Susan Peabody on Sept 7, 2015 10:14:14 GMT -8
From a member . . . I need to learn to ask more. People offered, but I said "no" as I didn't want to ruin their weekend ...why do I do that?
Why do alcoholics drink? Because they are alcoholics. This fear of disturbing others is a symptom of codependency. I discuss it quite a lot in my first book. It is similar to trying to buy love, but not with money: kindness.
Part of the problem is that we were born really nice people. We enjoy being generous and kind. Soon it becomes a coping skill and a substitute for healthy self esteem. We can become addicted to being kind and unable to ask for help or stand up for ourselves or inconvenience others.
Sometimes we get our codependency from one of our parents.
Part of it is to try to buy gratitude.
A big part of it is low self-esteem. We don't feel worthy of having someone inconvenience ourselves.
I have been working on this for 32 years. My fear of inconveniencing others has cost me a lot of benevolence that my inner child deserves. Right now I am asking for donations for my trip to Switzerland, but only people on this board can really know how hard it is to do this. I am frightened of how people will respond. I don't want to bother anyone. When my fist donor said, "You deserve this," I only partially felt worthy.
My mother used to refuse to let us buy presents. One year we went ahead and did it anyway. I think it made her happy. In my mom's case it was partly her addiction to being a martyr. She got attention this way. She had a monopoly on giving no matter how much we told her that we wanted to experience the joy of giving.
Beattie is the best one to discuss codependency. She and I both think it is partly a controlling device.
I need to learn to ask more. People offered, but I said "no" as I didn't want to ruin their weekend ...why do I do that?
I think it's kind and respectful to accept offers of help with the understanding that people are free to say yes or no based on whether they want or don't want to do something. To doubt their sincerity is not respectful. Unless they have a history of being dishonest, of course.
I notice some of my more codependent friends tend to try to give me permission to say no. For example, I'm asked for a favor, and the friend qualifies it with "you can say no if you want" (gee, thanks for giving me permission) or after I say yes, the friend keeps questioning it "really?" I feel disrespected that this person doubts my ability to manage my own commitments and obligations and doubts my sincerity when I agree or offer to help.
With this in mind, I tend to accept help with a sincere thank you. And for me this is a spiritual issue. My HP is the universe itself. It's everything and everyone. So when I need help or accept help I'm connecting to my HP. I feel I'm deserving of it just as others are.
I'm mainly self sufficient but I have times of need. I bond more closely to my friends when I put enough trust in them to see my vulnerabilities. Never allowing them to see or respond to that deprives us all of *intimacy* and by my beliefs, spirituality.