I fear emotion so suppress it. I fear others, and hide away. Anger and fear overwhelm me: I cannot show them. Then they become like the toddler, who will not be ignored, who shouts louder and louder until I acknowledge them. I am paralysed: the fear shouts, the suppression gets more panicked, I fight myself, like an isometric exercise working without movement.
I know this. I have worked it out. All that intellectual analysis brings this into consciousness; and still I fear my feelings and suppress them. Sometimes suppression is appropriate, keep going, ignore the fear that would make you run away, the anger that would make you attack, act as you see you must. But, only in emergencies, not all the time, not so feelings are never conscious.
I had not known this. You create stories to explain the world: my stories were different, a self-concept divorced from the organismic self; yet this was I, underneath.
A commenter froze in anxiety on entering a church, being with people she did not know- though people in church tend to be welcoming. That is old anxiety, a response to old situations, not the current situation. If I am conscious of anxiety like that, I can pacify myself like a frightened animal- see, it is alright, I will be alright, there is no threat here, that was there, then, this is different. If I suppress it, I cannot deal with it.
I will- be seen. I will make a fool of myself. I will stand out, and be mocked, derided, humiliated. It is worse than death!
That anxiety. This is not that situation. That situation was long ago. I hide in response to something which is no longer.
That pain, lying curled in a foetal position, weeping, “I am not a man. I am not a man.” These demands, to be other than I am. I am not that ideal man, so I am less, so I hide away. It has prevented me from valuing who I am: I see my responses as wrong and inadequate.
This creature is beautiful.
The pain, anxiety, fear, anger, are not proof of my uselessness and meretriciousness, but a reasonable response to the world as I see it. And, rather than suppressing, I can continue the work of reassurance- see, it is not as bad as it was then, I am adult now. These are my gifts. I am held in respect even as that surprises me.
Going over in my mind old distress- she did not trust me!- Unable to assuage my distress, I thought-
I deserve better.
I am not this useless fool, who only deserves a kick, who sometimes can be valued for what I achieve, who if treated well it is kindness rather than appropriate response.
I love your way of being, always, always, seeing what is possible. Seeing what is. So much better than cowering, anticipating a kick, trying not to stand out (so always desperate to stand out).
A route to freedom- I deserve better. “You create your own reality” say the law of attraction bods, and there may be a kernel of truth amid misinterpretation. It can be a way of victim blaming, or claiming responsibility for ones own success- No, it was not luck, it was ME! Yet, if I act as if I deserve better, I do not anticipate a kick, I know there will be possibilities, and I know what must be done to achieve my desire- not looking out and fearing impossible things which might go wrong-
get what I need
I keep saying this. It makes sense to me. Practise, practise, forgive, forgive, forgive-
I read that alpha male primates, displaced by a younger rival, become depressed, and in hypothesis this is adaptive- you decide you are better not fighting back, actually, you will not win, so the anger turns inwards to depression.
A woman was insulted in a restaurant, and responded weakly. After, she was shocked that she could be treated so badly, and upset by the experience. And- most people do not behave in such a way. If you are in confrontation mode, always alive to the possibility of slight, so that you can respond cuttingly and repel the aggression, you will not see the openings that co-operation can bring. If you expect well of others, you may respond weakly in such a confrontation, because it surprises you- yet that way of being is still better.