Navigating Neediness

2020 has been a real shit show. Not just for myself, but for the entire world. It’s made me do a lot of self-reflection, especially during the times of planetary retrogrades, to see where I can personally improve, rather than blaming all of my hardships on someone else.  In the supernatural realm, this is called “Shadow work.” It’s supposed to allow you to face the darker aspects of your personality that you don’t like letting anyone else to see. It’s not a “bad side” per say, but everyone has some skeletons in their closet and the sooner we deal with them, the quicker we can move on to a happier, healthier life.

The first aspect that I personally want to work on is my neediness / abandonment issues. Example: I try to be happy when the fella has activities he can do with his friends that don’t always include me, however, sometimes I’m left feeling hurt, alone, and unwanted. I know that is not his intention. He should be allowed to have a life outside of me and be able to have fun because let’s face it, I can be a psycho.

The mentally rational side of my brain knows that this is normal and acceptable and absolutely should be. I want him to have hobbies and interests. I want him to be able to tell me about the cool new thing he just did. My emotionally irrational side thinks he’s leaving, never coming back, and definitely having more fun without me. Probably even bitching to his friends about what a crazy person I am.  Maybe he’s even meeting super cute, tattooed skinny chicks that are more his type.

Let’s get one thing straight. I know my emotional side is being ridiculous. I know this. I can tell myself over and over and over again that it’s not true, he’s just out enjoying some freedom and to calm my tits down, but sometimes that irrational voice is louder than anything else. Sometimes experience can certainly outweigh intelligence.

So to dive into this…

  • Why do I feel this way?
    • Daddy issues! Kidding. Kind of. Perhaps more like abandonment issues. My sperm-donor of a biological father was never around much. When he was, I certainly wasn’t the apple of his eye. My brothers got to participate in fishing, hunting, and other “boy” activities. If I did get attention, it was the kind no child would ever want from a grown adult, but that’s what happens when you’re born female, right? I must have wanted it, right? I must have deserved it, right? I think I let it happen because it was the only form of “positive” interaction I really had with him. It’s not something that happened all of the time because let’s face it, he was never around for my family. It’s not something I ever discussed with anyone else either because 1. It happened when I was like 5 so we’re talking almost 30 years ago and 2. I wouldn’t want to be responsible for someone’s murder because that’s exactly what would have happened had my family found out.  I can only hope that his two new biological daughters from his 2nd family never have to find out what a piece of shit he is. Judging by their social media profiles and posts, sounds like they had a normal upbringing with an involved dad so fucking kudos to them! *On another note, the sperm-donor can probably be held accountable for a few other fucked up things in my life, however, I made those decisions myself. So as much as I’d like to place blame on him, it’s up to me to forgive and move on.
  • How can I work to overcome this?
    • In reading every psych article I could get my hands on for abandonment / neediness issues in a relationship, I’ve discovered my attachment style is that of an “anxious love addict.” Even if I felt independent at the start, I somehow became co-dependent on my partner because, and here is the kicker, he is a “love avoider” and we somehow further push and compliment those styles of one another. They’re often attracted to one another as one seeks love, the other avoids it but enjoys the chase.
      • Step 1 – accept that I am enough. I am whole. I am worthy. Just because he wants to spend time elsewhere doesn’t mean his time with you isn’t valued or appreciated. I know it is, but all too often I get caught in the negative pattern of “Well if he loved me that much, why wasn’t I invited?” or “Why does he feel the need to get away?” Girl, he’s still coming home to you at the end of the night. CALM YOUR TITS. Easier said than done, but I will be working towards constantly reminding myself that I am enough and can do this and he is not responsible for my happiness or how I react to something. I am. I am solely responsible for how I feel about something and I need to own it.
      • Step 2 – be open about my feelings. I’ve tried this and perhaps it’s because I’m an emotional hot mess who can cry at the drop of a hat that it hasn’t been successful. He’s very much a macho man when it comes to emotions so perhaps he feels manipulated when I cry, but that is not my intention. I feel things so fully and to my core that it almost feels like it manifests itself with physical symptoms at times. Try explaining that to someone who hides their emotions in fear of looking weak. It also doesn’t help that I get “excited” or “loud” when I’m feeling passionate or even cornered on a subject. I’m not yelling, but perhaps no longer using my indoor voice as I should. I can’t help that, but I can work on it. I make no promises for my Irish temper though. I can hope for the best, but always pray for the worst!
      • Step 3 – forgive myself for my shortcomings and perceived flaws. I’m not perfect and would like to say I never tried to be, but that’s a giant lie. I’ve always tried to be the perfect daughter, student, girlfriend, friend, whatever anyone needed me to be, I would try it. I never felt attractive growing up. I was bullied for being bigger, bullied for having acne, bullied for being a nerdy smart kid, but never pursued for romantic interests. Now that I have someone that loves me for me, I need to show more appreciation for that and forgive myself for past learned lessons or bad experiences. That’s not me anymore. I’m fierce, I’m formidable, and I’m unstoppable.

It’s not going to be easy. In fact it’ll probably be downright messy dealing with this. I accept that I’ll fuck up and cause headaches for the both of us, but I’m trying. I’m working my way back to a better, mentally healthier me. I took that first leap last year with finally seeking help for depression and anxiety. The meds have been helping the mood swings and bouts of depression, but the self-doubt, the questioning, the negative thinking… it’s still all there. Not as loud always, but still there on occasion when I let myself go there.  I wish I could make D see that it’s not him that causes these issues. It’s not his fault, his friend’s fault, no one but mine. I let my past influence my reaction and that’s not fair to him because he’s never done anything like that to me. I just hope that he can continue to be understanding as I work out this shit in my head and finally learn to let go.  I think an added Step 4 will be to find more to occupy my time when he’s busy doing things with friends so I don’t have time to even start thinking about how I’m feeling left out.  I’ve said this before and now I need to put words to action and do something. 

I really think another part of feeling left out is usually he goes for a motorcycle ride on his 1-seater chopper. It’s a beautiful bike that he hand-built and painted.  He should absolutely be proud of his work and enjoy the ride. But my selfish side says “I like to ride too!”  It’s something that we used to enjoy together and now that both of us have gained weight, the other bike we would ride together doesn’t seem to be as comfortable. I’m even embarrassed to ask him to take me on it anymore for fear he’ll be embarrassed to be seen out with both of us on this smaller bike. And we just don’t seem to have the time anymore for simple pleasures like that and it really sucks because even the Corvette is out of commission until God knows when.  I don’t know where I’m going with this. I feel selfish because I want to do these things too and start to feel left out, but then again he works outside in the heat all day and perhaps just wants to come home and relax or work in the shop for a bit. In the off chance we do get to have dinner at a normal time or sit down to watch something on TV, he’s generally sleeping within 15 minutes because of exhaustion. And remember, I said the rational side of me understands these things to be normal, it happens, he works hard and provides for our family and deserves this. Maybe my problem is keeping tally? When he wants to go for a ride or get away for a bit, sometimes I think “But when was the last time WE did that?” Again… not fair to him because we do all sorts of wonderful things together like antique shopping or just going on a road trip, but again I’m feeling left out because I’m a fucking psycho.

It could also be because our “Love Languages” are different. We haven’t taken the quiz together, but I’m willing to bet his language is “acts of service” and “physical touch” and mine is “quality time” and “words of affirmation.”  He shows love by doing things around the house and cuddling, whereas I want to do something fun together while you express your feelings to me.  I don’t know, could be completely off base, but that’s my guess. Either way, I certainly appreciate the acts of service and cuddling, but perhaps not as much as I should and I will work on that.

Now if only there was a cure for attitude and a smart mouth…


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