Tag Archives: acceptance

Smile More Everyday

I was thinking today about the many ways in which we frustrate ourselves as human beings.  I wondered if there was a common cause of the hell we put ourselves through. So, I asked the question and waited for my mind to speak up.

Hours later…..

It came to me that much of our frustration can be traced to trying to change things or people that are not ready to change or feel no need to. Without realizing it many times, I think we expect others to consider our way of doing things or our way of thinking as obvious brilliance.  If they don’t comply we call them names or distance ourselves or worse gather other people together to “hate” them too.  Sometimes that anger turns inward and becomes depression, especially when we take their behavior as a sign of our failure or inadequacy.

wpid-20131213_104651.jpgSometimes, in fact I think more often than we realize, we have to accept things as they are in the present. We cannot force our way or change someone else.  Trust me, just like you I wish I could too. That annoying, undermining co-worker, the self-centered family member, the careless friend, and so on and so forth.  Trust me. I get it.  Why do you think I spend so much time trying to noodle my way into alternative pathways of thinking?? I struggle with these issues and I want you to know you’re not alone because we all do.  Heck sometimes WE are these people for others.

What I’m beginning to learn is that while we are on the path to accepting others “as is”, we are going to have a lot of stress and frustration to manage.  Acceptance is waaaaaay harder than hate.  Acceptance asks us to let go of our own egos for the chance to be a great leader.  Acceptance isn’t being passive. It is an active process and the greatest opportunity to eventually create real lasting change.

Most people don’t change or collaborate or compromise, because they feel threatened and defend their ego or their position. If you play into this, which most of us do, you end up with a stalemate. Everybody is positive they are right and each one digs in their heels.

In order to become the change you want to see in this world, you must release the obsessive thoughts that have become your focus in order to make room for more constructive energy to enter.

Exercise is Good for Your BrainPersonally, I do this by engaging in some form of physical activity during which I push myself past my own mind and out of my thoughts.  Then, I keep going until I find myself laughing or smiling. Let me give you an example, yesterday I went for a long bike ride with a lot of changes in elevation. My lungs and my legs were really feeling it. To keep going I had to stay completely focused on believing that I could get up that next hill.  So, that meant I had to get rid of thoughts that weren’t helping me achieve that goal. That means those obsessive thoughts had to take a hike while I was on the bike 🙂 When I made it up the hill, I was feeling like my lungs and legs would explode but it also felt good to show myself I could do it.

blond girl swingAt my half way point, I saw a park with swings.  A mother and child were swinging together and they looked so happy.  Next to them was another empty swing.  I stared at it for awhile remembering the joy I felt swinging as a child.  I wondered if it would be foolish to do it again at my age and whether my hips would even fit!  I said the heck with it and got on the swing and began to push myself higher and higher just like I did when I was a kid. I found myself spontaneously screaming Weeeeeeeeee!!! and smiling and laughing with such joy that I forgot all the negativity I started out with at the beginning of my ride. I was playing with the child inside that was always there waiting for me.

The point is this: Find a way to smile more everyday. Let go of the tension everyday.  Don’t let it build up. If it takes an intense walk, run, bike ride, etc. to reset, then DO THAT. Everyday grant yourself peace of heart and mind by choosing to find your smile. Choose to play with that child inside. Reconnect. Remember who you are – you are not a reflection of other people’s behavior. You don’t need to change anyone or anything to feel good about yourself and your life right now.  Just be.

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Be Nice, dammit!

Being honest with yourself can be one of the hardest things you can do. The ability to see who you are and sit with it in peace is something I believe few of us acheive in our lifetimes. Most of us who do not sit on mountain tops, get glimpses now and then generally try to avoid the less than ideal stuff that comes up.wpid-img_991120245608510.jpeg

Recently, I was thinking about how difficult I find people. I really want to play well with others, but sometimes I am so completely overwhelmed by how toxic people can be. How much they are willing to hurt others for some perceived gain. It disheartens me. It is not as though we can walk away from every person like this. We have to work with them, live with them if they are family, associate with them if they are in an organization we volunteer.

I find myself often very depressed and anxious around these people. They suck the life out of everything and seriously decrease my creativity and joy. To make matters worse, they aren’t responsive to communicating about the problem and often try to blame it on you. It’s a real cespool of our worst human traits.

Personally, I have a hard time letting go of the feelings that arise from this because I feel trapped and uncomfortable. I don’t trust them and feel treated during our interactions. It plain sucks. To make a bad situation worse, it takes a hit on my self-esteem because I feel like a failure for not being able to handle the situation and create peace and harmony. I feel like the other person is saying, I don’t think you’re worth it to make things work. I feel resentful and angry then on top of helpless to advocate for change. A recipe for depression.

I’m curious to know if others have had similar experiences and at what they did.

For me, this one of the most challenging aspects of myself. I feel deeply, my skin is far thinner than people realize, and I have a hard time finding a way to positively interact with those who are unkind in this way. It eats me alive and I obsess over the “why!?!”

So I wondered if there are fellow empaths out there who have advice for me on not having it consume me.frustration

I suppose because it is considered unfashionable to “need” anyone nowadays, I have even tried to divorce myself from my own needs inside in romantic relationships. Fact is I’d like to have someone to take care of me. Sometimes, I feel like I’m the only one looking out for myself. I have tried to make due with unloving men telling myself I can give that to myself and I don’t need that. That’s bullshit! You need to have both if you’re in a relationship. I miss feeling the safety of another person I can count on besides myself.

Nowadays it seems like everyone considers the other disposable. It is as if people try to pretend they need less connection than they really do. We all try to act like we’re ok when we’re lonely as hell and desperate for connection. Fewer and fewer people want to risk their own vulnerability. They keep people at arms length with texting and chatting electronically, but won’t expect themselves to act with courage towards one another.

Once upon a time, before technology became our life line to others, people actually faced challenges and people head on. Yeah it was tough, but it built character. You learned, by doing, what you could handle and as time went on you actually grew as a person. We talked things out and took for granted we’d be together, so the only two options were to be miserable together or work it out together.

The problem now is that now people don’t make that assumption and so their relationship is always on the line. You CANNOT build a relationship with someone when you are always willing walk away during challenges. No one could relax in this situation. With the constant threat of it ending, both people are not all in or committed. It is like being in a relationship that doesn’t exist.

Maybe it is nostalgia clouding my memories, but I remember it being easier to be in a relationship and to work things out with people. Now I just find myself digusted most of the time with how people treat one another.

Thoughts? Advice?

Soul Food

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Ok. First things first! I’m bragging on this slapped together recipe. It’s sooooo good. My Jamaican neighbor keeps me supplied with “Jamaican Kale” throughout the summer and I constantly try to find new things to do with it.

So, what’s in it?:
Bunch of Jamaican Kale
A few roasted red peppers
Can of Atrichoke Hearts
1/4 c. Feta cheese
Sauteed in olive oil with crushed garlic, pepper & salt
Put on top of a whole wheat pita and enjoy!

I was in a funk still today. This getting over my ex thing is harder than I thought it would be. I mean could I jump into another relationship?  Sure. I could distract myself with casual flings. I could pretend that I never felt anything for him. I could drink heavily to dull the hurt. There are a lot of not so great things I could do that would only make things worse.

Or….

I could take care of my soul. I could eat well and enjoy the scents of cooking a meal with fresh ingredients. I could play music and compose again, I could reconnect with people I’ve lost contact with. I could exercise and pamper myself. And frankly, I can take care of myself intimately until someone who really lights my soul on fire takes over other duties as assigned 🙂

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Me "playing" my dad's guitar

I know everyone is different when it comes to coping with things. I personally take awhile to get over the end of serious relationships. I am a very sensitive person in that I am very emapthetic so I really feel things. I’m not the type that can turn that off. Its just part of my make up. I always want things to end well. Often, I struggle to understand why people wouldn’t do everything they can to bring about peaceful endings.

I am a mess of a person like we all are in some way, I guess. I’ve got quirks and dysfunctions and sometimes I wonder how to make it through this world a prisioner inside my own head.

I think most of us are just trying to move through life and sqeeze as much pleasure out if it as we can. We hope to know our greatest pleasure in our own lifetime. We assume it will reveal itself as another person who looks deeply into our soul and says, “I accept you” and sticks around forever loving you for being that person.

In the meanwhile, I think the greatest thing we can do for our single selves is love the hell out of ourselves; getting to know and accepting every nook and cranny until we’re completely irresistible.

I’m starting to think it’s not about being perfect or figuring out what’s wrong with you. The road to fulfilling life cannot possibly be among the pages of self-help books aimed to fix you. I have done this my whole life and I’ve really just managed to feel worse about myself. I mean what if the only thing wrong with me is that I don’t accept myself fully? What if instead of focusing on what needs to be fixed, I focused on accepting the person who is there and loving her to pieces? What if I fell in love with her “as is”? I wonder what would happen if we all did that?

If you’re like me and haven’t found a partner that loves (aka fully accepts) the person you are and finds you irresistible enough to want to spend forever by your side, let’s make a pact.

We will give ourselves the love we want from someone else. We will treat ourselves right. We will do for ourselves what we want from them. We will go alone to places we want to go together with them.

This way when he/she comes along we will recognize them as the right fit because s/he treats us that good.

With love from aneternaltraveler 😉

The Power of Yes

My life is becomming more interesting the more I say yes. It is surprising who you meet or what you might do when you open yourself up to new experiences. 

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For example, tonight I was asked on a date with someone who turned out to be a concert pianist for the Navy (yup that is him in concert above) We went to my favorite steakhouse and talked for hours about a full range of topics. When we initially met I had no idea this was his field, just that music was his passion .  It was cool because I also play piano. Initially we bonded for the fact that we both did the camino de santiago and share Spanish as a second language since he is half Spanish and half Argentine.  We also held a lot of interesting views on life. I literally spent hours just talking,  eating and drinking wine together.  Then we crashed a gala…my idea 🙂 Fun!

My point is that you never know how something will turn out so it is best to be open. This is the idea of the “Power of Yes”. It is all about acceptance and knowing you’re going to be ok. In fact, the more you can open yourself up, the more you discover about who you are.

For example, having to come to terms that my ex is never coming back and I will never know why he left,  I have gone on a lot of dates since the breakup. I have reached out to friends and made into the city for festivals. I’ve renovated things in my house.  I’m going for a girly pedicure day tomorrow with another friend. Yes. Yes. Yes.

You have to take care of yourself in general, but especially after someone you love emotionally kicks your ass. Staying in is great and very therapeutic, but at some point you have to see people again not just the bottom of a pint of ben & jerry’s (not that I’ve ever done that). Getting to yes from within is tough. Sometimes you have to say it and trust thst the motivation or genuine interest will come later.

So here I am on to the next phase. It’s kind of like saying, yup he left, but now i know more about myself and I realize it is definitely his loss because I’m awesome and everybody gets to enjoy the best of me but him.

The most important person you can say YES to is yourself. Because YES = Acceptance = Love.

One of the most interesting discoveries I’ve made in life is that the people who love you stay in your life or always find their way back if they were meant to be there. So just keep on living and don’t worry, the ones who love you find a way to get to you. Nothing will stand in their way. The ones who don’t, never did in the first place.

You don’t have to make excuses for people. They are exactly where they’ve chosen to be. Otherwise,  they’d be somewhere else.

With love from aneternaltraveler 😉

The Hardest Thing

Sometimes you don’t get closure in the way that works best for you.  Sometimes other people withhold it because their bitterness is their last connection to you.  In the end, all heartbreaks are really personal journeys aren’t they? Even when you have your answers, you’re on your own to sort it out.

Blue Footed Boobies. Isla de Plata.
Blue Footed Boobies. Isla de Plata.                     “He sent you a text breakup and he’s still creepin’ on you?”   “Guuuurl…that’s cold.”

After my boyfriend broke up our 1 year relationship via text message, I couldn’t bring myself to even respond for about 1 month. There are no words to describe the range of emotions I was feeling. As a result of a misunderstanding, I reached out to him to thank him for something I, mistakenly, thought he sent to me as an apology. That is when I realized I was blocked — from everything.

I was in shock and disbelief.  Did he send me the text and go balls against the wall total def-con 5 NO CONTACT? Did he really want to even keep me from responding?  And still after a whole month?

I’m not going to lie.  I kind of lost it.  I tried every form of communication I knew of to reach him. Multiple times. I couldn’t believe it was for real.  I thought surely he would return a call or a message. Nope. Instead he found new places to block me. Nice. Who is this man?  Then I find out he’s creepin’ my Facebook page and even tried to hack into it.  Yet he refuses direct contact. Again I ask, Who is this man?

So there I was making a fool out of myself. All. By. Myself.

I’m a “why” person. Curious. Investigative. There is no surprise I became a scientist 🙂 I like to know answers to questions. I like to unravel cognitive dissonances.  With this I got nothin’.  Sure I have my theories, but ultimately I couldn’t figure out why he couldn’t bring himself to have even a conversation with me.

Basically, I have been making myself crazy with constant – Why? Why? Why?

It had to stop.  So today I did the hardest thing.  I left my last voicemail with the ball in his court to call. I walked away without answers.  This is my personal living hell. But I had to do it for me.

Even if a relationship needs to end, do yourself and your lover a favor, end it while preserving one another’s dignity.

Still seeking everlasting love
– aneternaltraveler

You Turned Away

You Turned Away

by: aneternaltraveler

You turned away

What can I say?

It was so long

And now it’s gone

*****

You broke my heart

It’s been hard

You’ve shut me out

Left me with the just the shards

*****

You turned away

What can I say?

It was so long

And now it’s gone

*****

I wonder if you remember

To the moon and beyond

Laughing in September

Your brown-eyed girl

*****

You turned away

What can I say?

It was so long

And now it’s gone

*****

Now that I’m gone,

Your heart searches for me longingly behind my back

You’re still in love with me,

But listen too much to others about what I lack

While I’m reaching out to you in front

You keep it up – telling other people I’m a cunt

*****

You turned away

What can I say?

It was so long

And now it’s gone

*****

Your pride keeps you hidden stubbornly from view

Without advisors you don’t know what to do

Your whole life, the love of it, slips away

Because “I’m sorry” is something you can’t bring yourself to say

*****

You turned away

What can I say?

It was so long

And now it’s gone

Good Character is Sexy in a Man

We ladies all know the stereotypical a**hole.

He’s hot, arrogant, has a certain kind of swagger.  He makes you crazy in your head and between your legs. We don’t know why we stick around because he’s such a jerk.  But something keeps us stuck on him like white on rice.

Unfortunately, these drop dead gorgeous heart throbs are the only easy on the eye.  They are hard everywhere else (damn it, that’s not what I meant – deep breath..focus). They pick you up and drop you down. When you need them most they’re not around.  You stick with it wanting to turn it into something more, but sooner or later you end up crying on the floor. Not pretty. Not worth it.

Have you ever run into a guy that is average looking or maybe a little above and thought “eh, he’s ok”.  Then, he opens his mouth to speak and is magically transformed into the most amazing man you’ve ever seen?  Here again you can’t quite figure out what keeps you so attracted, but in this case it’s a good thing.

He’s like a breath of fresh air – a real good guy – so beautiful inside – a perfect combination of character traits. He’s funny, humble, intelligent, compassionate, selfless.  These guys are really uncommon.  When you think about it that way – stud muffins are a dime a dozen.

Too often we are trained to equate good looks with good character, but looks aren’t gonna let you go the distance with someone.  Character counts in a very big way.  The older I get the more I realize that truly good-hearted people are few and far between.

I have never met a really good-looking guy who doesn’t have a ginormous ego – a sense of entitlement.  It’s as if they don’t think they have to be a decent person or treat people decently because their looks give them a free pass.  Keep in mind these guys are easy to find – they are the one’s with their heads so far up their own asses they can’t see you.  As far as I’m concerned, these are some of the most unattractive people I’ve ever known.

They are empty vessels. Belly-button gazers.

There is nothing sexier than a man who is comfortable with himself and doesn’t think he’s the shit.  He knows his shit stinks (uh..because everyone’s does). They are simple and so loyal to you that each encounter with them leaves you wanting more. You know they love you and they are there for you when you need them most. He sticks to his word and is loyal through adversity.  Image result for good character man

The difference here is that when you are looking at a good man, you’re seeing him from the inside out.  An asshole looks good outside, but there’s nothing to see when you go deeper.

Recently, I had to let go of someone who was no good for me. We’d been on a yo-yo together for so long. I am so glad I finally did because it opened the door for that good man to walk through. Sticking around and hoping someone will change for you is a waste of time. We’ve all heard it before and I can tell you from my experience, it is true.  You are literally keeping the good guy away while you make room (and excuses) for someone who doesn’t give a shit about you.

I don’t know about you, but I want someone who is compassionate, caring, humorous, not just a charmer. I want to be able to rely on him and know he’s got my back, who brings love and positivity into my life.

Looks come and go, but good character lasts a lifetime. And I want to go the distance with someone who can hack it.

-with love from aneternaltraveler 🙂

What’s Your Type?

There was this awesome line in an ok movie I just saw called “Brightest Star”.  During a conversation between these two guys; one who was stuck on this one girl and didn’t want anyone else and another who couldn’t take any one woman seriously. It went something like this,

Guy 1: Are you still stuck on the girl?

Guy 2: Yeah man, isn’t it ever hard for you to get over a girl?

Guy 3: No, not really.  I see it this way. It’s not so much THE GIRL. It’s more like each girl is just another one on the path to the next one.

I thought, BAM that’s it!  There ARE two kinds of guys and it’s NOT how we typically categorize the types.

It’s not just: Type 1: the monogomous Type 2: the whore.  

It’s more like: Type 1: The guy who really put his heart into the woman he was with, so he grieves when she’s gone.  Type 2: They guy who moves on quickly because he was never invested that much anyway.

I guess I want a guy who really invests his heart, and soul too, not just a monogamous paycheck.

The more I think about it, a lot of people are monogamous for a lot of reasons. It doesn’t mean they’re really into you. They can be comfortable, have kids with you, financially dependent, etc. So, while being a one-woman-man is super important, that’s really only half the equation.

If man’s history is such that they move on so quickly to” the next girl on the path”, where does that leave you right now?  Not very stable or very special at all. How likely is it that he will stick around when times are tough? Very unlikely. Ya can’t build much on a quicksand foundation.

So here’s the rub — if you want to be with someone who will be there “through good times AND bad, sickness and health”, then pick the guy that is already built to last. Date the guy that actually WANTS things to work and would do all it takes to make it work.

Cause there’s no way you’ll turn Type 2 into Type 1.  You can’t make a man decent, he has to show up that way.

-with love from aneternaltraveler 😉

“I never stopped believing it’s gotta be you, it’s just gotta be me too.”

Waiting for Closure: Don’t Put Your Life on Hold

When things end differently than we expect, especially when we’ve invested a lot, it can be really hard to move past the outcome.  The phrase most often heard to describe this is “needing closure”.  In some situations I believe closure can be achieved, in others not so much. Hanging on to getting it in these situations can put your whole life on hold.  And you deserve better than that, don’t you think?  I think you do 🙂

I’ve recently extricategood intentions vs characterd myself out of a really bad relationship that I’ve been hanging onto for about 1 year. It was one of those situations where you keep thinking it will get better because it is “not so hard to fix”. You believe that he will move beyond making promises and finally take action. You think the meanness will stop. I began to hold on to the few moments of happiness in between the pain thinking that the 10% could become 90% if we talked enough. You start asking yourself what you’re doing to cause it or if you’re imagining things because it seems so unreal. I’ve never done such mental gymnastics to be in a relationship in all my life.

it's not personalHe claimed he was here for me, but sabotaged every important moment in my life. He badmouthed me to his family to the point that they hated me and then invited me to drive 6 hrs. to spend Thanksgiving with them. He caused drama in an attempt to come between my best friend. Then, he’d buy me expensive”I’m sorry” gifts as if that should make it all better. He’d tell me how much he wanted to spend his life with me, but could never manage to get past his selfishness to actually include someone else.  As he often reminded me – “I just don’t think about you when you’re not around”. Nice. So, yeah he was here for me, but not in any way that you’d want to have someone around.

I just couldn’t understand how someone could be so consistently hurtful.  It is, after all, so easy to be nice and kind.  The benefits far outweigh the drawbacks.  Particularly if you really want to spend your life with someone. I took so much crap from this man.  I didn’t like who I was around him.   He put on a good show in front of friends and family, but in private, I rarely smiled, cried a lot,  didn’t want to be intimate with him in any way.  I was completely unclear why I stayed or invited him back again and again.  Somehow he would always find a way back and it would always be worse the next time.

Finally he had done something so horrible to me while I was heavily turn the page or close the bookmedicated and sleeping, that I was done with giving out chances. But my mind still wanted answers for how someone could behave in such horrific ways. Why, why, why?

So, I wanted to share some thoughts with you that have been helping me move forward even though I have not gotten any answers or asked him to make sense of it for me.

First Lesson: Who Cares?wpid-20140625_161727.jpg
If a person cares about you they would never disrespect and humiliate you – EVER. If they do and you tell them and they don’t do better or feel remorse, this is a reflection of their shitty character.  It is not a judgement of who you are. People who care take care of you especially when you’re weak.

Second Lesson:  Invest Wisely
Sometimes we invest so heavily in someone that we feel we are owed a return on investment. But in fact, it is a lot like the stock market, there is NO guarantee.  Also, there are some “stocks”, like men, that are simply better performers.  They have shown what they’re made of over time. If I had taken his “portfolio” to heart, I’d have walked away from a man who was a serial cheater during his entire marriage, who blamed his ex-wife for his unhappiness, and also bad-mouthed her to his family while never revealing his misdeeds at any time.  After all he started to do the same things to me.  Every time we’d have a fight he was out on the online dating websites trolling for new women to stroke his ego, he’d bad mouth me to his family, and told me that if he ever killed himself, it would be my fault because I make him so unhappy.  Yeah.  Sometimes, you have to cut your losses ladies and admit that you put your trust, time and energy in an undeserving man. Just walk away and learn something that will make you invest more wisely next time.

Third Lesson:  Where’s the Apology…the Explanation?
Waiting for the apology that never comes can be infuriating. It is kind of a waste how much faith and belief I put into a man who has shown no integrity in his thoughts or deeds.  Even though he’s let you down more times than you have fingers and toes to count on, frustrationyou hold out hope that he will care enough about you to suddenly realize how “worth it” you are and rush in like a knight to prevent losing you. I assure you that you ARE worth it. He just is lacking the integrity present in decent human beings. Think of yourself like a placeholder more than a significant person to him and it will make a lot more sense. Anyone who stands in that spot gets that treatment. Trust me, I wanted an explanation for his despicable behavior towards me. An account of how he could bring himself to commit a crime against me. An apology. I didn’t get any of that. Not for days after. Not now. Nothing except complete denial as he walked out and slammed the door at me crying in a heap on the floor. Used and discarded like trash. Good men just don’t do this. Period.  


mean what you promiseIt takes time to get past all this sludge  because we want our hurt, our experience to matter to the one who does the hurting. We want them to feel bad about making us feel bad. We want them to make good on their promises. It is normal and healthy for people to interact in a caring way about people they care about and most people are decent.  For example, I hurt you. I apologize sincerely. I don’t do it again.  You accept.  We move on stronger and deeper. But some people really don’t give a shit about you or your needs or the fact that you are a person with feelings, let alone that you were in a relationship with them.

The thing is that the longer we hold on to our desire for “admission of wrongdoing” from the one who hurt us, the longer they are left in charge of our personal power.  And nobody should have access to that wheel except you should they? No. They shouldn’t. So, let’s just take that back, shall we?

What we really want is to just feel better. We want all the yuckiness to clear out so that we can feel good again. It is more of an internal/emotional shift that we are looking for from another person.turning point

Luckily that is a gift we can give ourselves, much like forgiveness. We have to do it all the time really when you think about it.   We know that the rest of the world, our coworkers, strangers, etc are not responsible for our feelings, right? So, if we apply that to relationship “closure” we don’t really need the other person to help us move on do we? No. We don’t 🙂

I would say instead of trying to deny it or drink, drug, or shop your way out of it……

Do this instead: 

  • Just acknowledge that something sucky happened. Don’t pretend you’re not hurt just so you look all “together”.  That’s just gonna mess you up for interacting with other humans. It doesn’t mean your weak, it means you’re human.
  • Get real about the feelings you have – name them. Are you sad, hurt, humiliated, betrayed, violated*. You get to decide what’s important and significant to you.  Nobody else can tell you what’s real for you or how bad it hurts. Don’t compare yourself to others.
  • Resist the need for outside approval. You don’t need others to validate your feelings.  Learn to accept and acknowledge your own state of being and consider it valuable. This way you can trust what you want and need for yourself. Use your own voice!
  • Learn something as you process this life moment. It will help you make different decisions next time. Nobody’s perfect or has all the answers and that’s ok because we’re designed that way.
  • Finally, give yourself the gift of closure by honoring yourself, remembering you are awesome, and that sometimes other people really suck and that’s not got a darn thing to do with you.

-with love from aneternaltraveler 😉

*If you feel that a crime has been committed against you, I would add to the list that you consider contacting authorities and taking appropriate legal action.

Don’t Talk, Don’t Trust Don’t Feel

god sharkWhile I love delving into a variety of psychology topics, I seem to have developed an acute interest in researching, understanding, and explaining Narcissistic behavior.  Perhaps it is because I grew up with an abusive, alcoholic “N” father and was left with a lifetime of questions I’ve been working to answer. I also seem to meet a lot of narcissists and even date them (Freud. Is that you?).  As time has gone on I’ve gotten far better at recognizing the red flags and have healed so I walk away a lot faster and minimize the damage done to myself.

Recently I was reading an FAQ on Sam Vankin’s website, who is a narcissist himself and writes extensively on what it is like from a 1st person perspective.  For whatever reason, his description about the two different “geneotypes” of narcissism; somatic and cerebral struck a different cord for me.

It made me think about religion and its long standing relationship to misogyny and narcissism.

First and foremost, narcissistic men hate women.  So do most religions. It is hatred of an irrational and passionate kind. Narcissistic men despise women who are independently minded—those they cannot fool and know instantly who they really are.  So they hate women in general and independent women especially.   Keep in mind, that they are aware enough to realize that this is not appropriate, so they have learned to repress it.  But it is always lurking beneath ready to burst out with the right irresistible trigger.  In religion the hatred is couched as acceptable simply by saying it is “tradition”.math codependents

The second thing that it important to know is the definition of the two genotypes and that if you stick around long enough you’ll witnesss both. One is default or dominant, but both will show depending on circumstances:

Cerebral narcissists – basically trying to impress you with their brains, intellectual accomplishments, “the know-it-alls” define this dominant type.

Somatic narcissists – these are the ones that are into their bodies, sex as conquest, the philanderers. They treat women as objects to get off. If you ever felt like you were having sex with a man that felt like he was basically using your body to masturbate, you may have been with this dominant type.

In an excerpt regarding Narcissists, Sex and Fidelity, Sam Vankin, a dominantly cerebral narcissist writes, The somatic narcissist uses sex to “conquer” and “secure” new sources of narcissistic supply. Consequently, the somatic rarely gets emotionally-involved with his “targets”. His is a mechanical act, devoid of intimacy and commitment. The cerebral narcissist feels that sex is demeaning and degrading. Acting on one’s sex drive is a primitive, basic, and common impulse. The cerebral narcissist convinces himself that he is above all that, endowed as he is with superior intelligence and superhuman self-control.”

god narcissistThis made me think about about religion.  Let’s take a look at what St. Paul has to say in 1 Timothy 2:12: “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, she must be silent.”

Then I remember that at the core narcissists hate women.  Finally, I went back once more and thought about why religion remains a pervasive part of our society even though we supposedly have equality. How could parents bring their children to a mass that condones this kind of sexism? I thought about the horrors women still face and the very real danger they are often in.

There is a clear endorsement of female subservience in Ephesians 5:22, “Wives, submit to you husbands as to the Lord”; and similar advice for slaves in 1 Peter 2:18: “Slaves, submit yourselves to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the cruel.” One truly cannot discern a difference between being a woman or a slave.

narcissist impress strangerAnother blood-curdling tale from the Book of Judges, where an Israelite man is trapped in a house by a hostile crowd, and sends out his concubine to placate them:

“So the man took his concubine and sent her outside to them, and they raped her and abused her throughout the night, and at dawn they let her go. At daybreak the woman went back to the house where her master was staying, fell down at the door and lay there until daylight. When her master got up in the morning and opened the door of the house and stepped out to continue on his way, there lay his concubine, fallen in the doorway of the house, with her hands on the threshold. He said to her, ‘Get up; let’s go.’ But there was no answer. Then the man put her on his donkey and set out for home.” (Judges 19:25-28)

Fundamentally at the core of religion is the degradation of women. The fact that both genders still participate is an act of consent to the precepts both written and preached. 

As I consider narcissism and the misogyny that exists at its core, I cannot help but be convinced by the overwhelming evidence that the very founders of most world religions were themselves narcissists. I imagine two types of narcissist priests – the somatic who has urges he tries to repress (they are the ones we eventually hear stories about) and the cerebral narcissists who find sex disgusting anyway so it is not that hard to abstain.  These are the ones making the sexist, degrading laws.  All because they have a dysfunctional relationship to their bodies, women and sexuality.

The more traditional the country, the more easily it is bound by religion. The worse it is for women. But even here in the USA where we are in the land of the free and we supposedly have equality, day after day women continue to support religion as a front for their own degradation simply because they show up and self-identify!  And puuuhlease, even though I hear this all the time, NO! You cannot pick and choose the parts of religion that you’ll support or not support either. Every time you show up and keep quiet, every time you donate your time or your money, you condone it all – part and parcel.

3 rulesDo you know that there are 3 rules to keep a dysfunctional family intact: Don’t Talk, Don’t Trust and Don’t Feel. As long as you feel that you are being treated badly and don’t say anything, you are complicit.  You are enabling the behavior to continue.  And when it comes to religion, if you are woman supporting a religion in any way that categorically degrades women into a lesser position, then you are saying “it is ok” to treat me like less, my daughter like less.  It is ok to expect less. It is ok to be dominated and silent. And as a man you are also agreeing to treat your wife, daughter, sister in this unequal manner and to teach them that this is what it is to be a man.

stood up for self bitchIf we had any kind of real equality, religion either wouldn’t exist or it wouldn’t put the genders in a one-up, one-down position. But in the competitive society in which we live, we can’t even imagine a world where both people are equal.  There has to be a dominant and submissive model in play.  Do you realize that research shows that only 1 in 4 relationships have women in the one-up or dominant position?  That mean 75% of our “romantic” relationships have men dominating women and women in the “one-down or devalued position”.  And of course the culture punishes the men by calling them “wimps” and the women “bitches” in hopes that it will get them back in line.

Do you see that all of this perpetuates the idea that narcissism and misogyny is ok? Do you see that religion sticks around because our society keeps generationally reinforcing that this model works even when it doesn’t. The social pressure to conform feels like too much. So we stay quiet in public and dissent in private.

Don’t talk,  don’t trust, don’t feel. It masks reality.  It gives way to learned helplessness, drama, and victimhood. Instead of empowering yourself, you become “the one who survived” each life event and think that measures your success.

Woman or Man – If you want to change how you’re being treated… If you want to leave the Narcissist in your life/dysfunctional relationship…  If you want to live in a healthy society and have healthy relationships between and among genders….

… Then do 3 things: TALK, TRUST, FEEL. 

– with love from aneternaltraveler 😉