August 13, 2003
In order to take care of myself with my parents I have always been selective in what information I shared with them, and how I shared that information. Whether I tell myself that I am taking care of me, or taking care of them really isn’t the point. The point is that I have fallen into the habit of putting “spin” on my information sharing with them. Because they are people I love, I associate careful information sharing with love. I suspect that could I travel back in time and observe, that I’d see myself learning at a very early age what to tell my parents and how to tell them, so as to keep what I felt was judgmental love coming.
When my taxes started getting out of control I didn’t want to share it with Michele because little Mark was afraid that the love he felt from her would be revoked. In order to keep that love I put spin on what was happening. Somewhere in my childhood I built a rather confused model of the world that included the idea that if you share bad information people will be angry with you, and that anger means they don’t love you anymore.
But not addressing the immature and obviously incorrect view of the world I continually leave myself open to situations where I want to tell the truth but I am afraid of the reaction I’ll get. Only by being totally honest and taking care of myself emotionally can I be free from the fear of rejection. I need to focus on my little inner child and comfort him when I need to express information that may cause an emotional reaction. I need to let my inner self learn and grow past the childish idea that emotional responses to my actions aren’t negative, they aren’t my fault, and that those emotions really aren’t about me at all.
I need to live my life in my emotional center for a time, and learn how to cope with my emotions and the emotions of others. Trying to manufacture emotional responses in others through the information I present is only hurting me, because in the end the truth will come out and I’ll have not only the original emotion to deal with but the reaction to my lie to deal with too.
Total honesty equals total freedom. No more spin. No more shielding others to manipulate the emotional feedback I want. I will give myself the emotional feedback I need, and I will take care of myself rather then hoping for someone else to take care of me.
Welcome to a (scary) brave new world.