I don’t know when it was that I started to turn away from needing. But I know it happened especially in late adolescence when I could not seem to be seen or heard. I was listening to a programme on radio this morning I which survivors of childhood institutional abuse were speaking as today in Australia our Prime Minister is making a public apology to all such people affected. The man speaking broke down crying when asked what it had meant to hear just such a public apology from the British Prime Minister, the man in question’s tears where because he had been heard, believed and recognised. His soul suffering had been affirmed.
In no way have I suffered that kind of abuse. I did have a roof over my head, my parents never gave me away, neither was I taken from them, but I struggled to be seen and heard a lot. I was asking Kat today in therapy if a child who throws tantrums is a ‘bad’ child since a few years back my sister told me I should have been ashamed at how selfish I was as a child for ‘always throwing tantrums’. I had tears in my eyes as I asked this. Kat just smiled and told me it was about frustrated needs my parents could neither hear nor validate, and quoted a thing she always says to me. “Anger is the final cry of the True Self.”
Today we were exploring in therapy how I sometimes wont allow others to need me too much and I most certainly won’t allow myself to need anyone else too much, due to the fact in the past such needs were so regularly disappointed that is was challenging and very risky for me to ever hope to have needs met again.
Sometimes also I don’t recognise my own needs either, such as resting when tired, having a break from something tough, trying harder and harder and harder when it would be easier to let go and better for me. I am not alone as most addicts or those of us in recovery who suffered abuse or neglect also suffer in this way. In early sobriety I was always told to beware of the HALT’s not to get too hungry, angry, lonely or tired.
I also think along the way I developed a fighting and defensive persona. I have a great fear of being controlled but at the same time it would be better for me to surrender and co-operate at times rather than just bloody mindedly push on all alone and make others feel they have to do the same. Its a side of myself I am seeing more and more lately.
Anyway its not easy taking all of this need on board but with Venus squaring my natal Moon Saturn Mars its timely. I am trying to keep my heart open lately rather than have knee jerk reactions or go behind defences yet again. It is a risk to be vulnerable, to show that I am not bullet proof and that I need others. I see where at times barrelling through and not risking depending has been damaging and wrong and to see this means I feel the pain so I shed a lot of tears in therapy today. However I am glad to see all of this. Its a timely wake up call. Today I have taken yet another risk with being vulnerable and its not easy but I just trust whatever happens will happen. The fact that I took the risk is good, the outcome is not really all that important in the long run. For as the Bahagavad Gita says “you have only control over your actions, not the fruit of your actions.” Risking saying I do need and wish to depend is a big one for me, I may be disappointed in the end, but at least I have opened my heart and soul to try again.