Relationships: Working with yourself
Friend one: "Have you thought about doing something about that?"
Friend two: "Sort of, but I’m not sure… What if, well what if it changes everything?"
In my last two pieces, I touched on the thorny issue of vulnerability around needs in relationships. Whether that is in allowing someone else to be ‘strong’ for us or whether we have a ‘wounded’ part of us where unmet needs remain. Often when we think about what is troubling us in our relationships we become apprehensive; what exactly does it mean or foretell? ‘What if’ it really does change ‘everything’. It can sometimes feel easier to continue doing what we have always done. It is familiar, it is safe. Even if it there is a nagging doubt of dissatisfaction, that we feel safe enough to share with our friend, but then what?
However, even if the root of the cause is from childhood and is very painful, the ‘solutions’ may be simple tweaks that make all the difference. It can be a matter of adjusting your perspective about how you see yourself, and how you want to and choose to communicate with others, in the here and now. That’s not to say there isn’t some hard work involved! But the hard work often comes from the commitment to change, not that your whole life with but turned upside down. But wait – there is a caveat!
In some circumstances, it might be that fundamental ways of your ‘being in the world’ and how you ‘relate to others’ take people by surprise. You are not the same person they knew before, you do not just go along with everything, and it all feels drastically different, for them, and to some extent for you. But this just shows things are working, and people will adjust to the new, confident, communicative, assertive you.
If you need support with the changes, contact a counsellor or psychotherapist who can offer you a nonjudgemental space to talk confidentially.