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User Topic: Journey from abandonment to healing by Susan Anderson
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 10:38 PM, May 29th (Thursday)

If anyone like to discuss about this book, I will be happy to. I read this book so many times. Please post your thoughts or any questions, if any.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
ittybittya
Member
Member # 7527
Default  Posted: 10:41 PM, May 29th (Thursday)

I really need to pick this book up at my local library.

I've heard it's wonderful for those dealing with abandonment issues.


...still has much to learn :-(

Posts: 13528 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: Oklahoma
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 10:46 PM, May 29th (Thursday)

Hi itty!!

Yes, it is.

I was responding to one of member's post... telling him that

I had abandonment issue from childhood. My parents are still married, but emotionally unavailable. Always critical and I feel like I was not good enought to them. I was emotionally abandoned.

Since I can see where your root cause is coming from, I would like you to deal with your core issues, before you focus on something else. While giving her space to heal, you, too do your homework. You need to become your own nuturer. You are responsible to take care of you, and not your W or anyone else. You need to reprogram your thinkings.... I hope this makes sense.


It also helped me when I let it go.

Let me know when you do it. We can discuss as you go, too.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
Hope24
Member
Member # 9344
Default  Posted: 1:03 PM, June 1st (Sunday)

I just bought this book yesterday from Amazon.

I'd love to talk about it.


She packed up her potential and all she had learned and headed out to change a few things.

Posts: 7605 | Registered: Jan 2006 | From: Poolside
burnt_toast
Member
Member # 16891
Default  Posted: 1:35 PM, June 1st (Sunday)

Amazing book.

The biochemical info about loosing the link to your partner was tremendously helpful and interesting.

All the exercises helped me a great deal, especially building my dream house. I even ended up fixing my appartment IRL!...a project that helped me moving formward.


It is what it is.

Posts: 4699 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Quelque part
plant_flowers
Member
Member # 18523
Default  Posted: 6:46 AM, June 3rd (Tuesday)

I also really love this book and read from it whenever I'm not feeling well!

The bonding with the inner child totally worked for me right away. It felt right and I was able to do it.

The anger part wasn't as much of an aha experience to read - I wanted more help with this somehow, as I've been spending lots and lots of time in anger mode. But her descriptions of the outer child really describes my X to a frightening degree. It describes me too somewhat, which has been eye-opening and not so pleasant to read about. But nonetheless very useful.

I will go back and do more of the house building exercise, I think. Like burnt-toast, I've also been thinking about making my real life house a bit more lovely while I'm at it.

What I also really like about this book is that she's completely optimistic about our ability to make another meaningful (better!) connection when we're ready and willing. That calms me and allows me to focus on healing without stressing too much about the prospect of never meeting someone again.

[This message edited by plant_flowers at 6:48 AM, June 3rd (Tuesday)]


DD: December 31, 2007

Posts: 213 | Registered: Mar 2008 | From: Germany
FreedomRoad
Member
Member # 13961
Default  Posted: 10:46 AM, June 3rd (Tuesday)

I love this book! The parts where she explains the biological/neurological underpinnings of the pain I was going through really helped me relax into the healing process and surrender to it.


Conduct your blooming in the noise and the whip of the whirlwind - Gwendolyn Brooks

Posts: 5286 | Registered: Mar 2007 | From: East Coast
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 11:20 AM, June 3rd (Tuesday)

Thank you for your response.

Sounds like dream house exercise have helped you. That's great!!

I use dream house when I am feeling down. It gives me warm and comfy feelings. I just dream myself to build a house at a new place in the foreign country, or take a arm chair travel.

The other exercise that I use most is shattering, whenever I have triggers (bad memories/flash backs), or fear of unknown. It helps me to bring myself back to here and now, because I cannot control the past or future. Also memories are just memories. I then tell my mantra "That was then, this is now, I am at a peace"

I do this even I am not in the shattering moment, like 5-10 min at my lunchtime everyday, or before the bedtime, so that when the actual shattering moment comes, it comes in handy. I can handle trigger better.

The other one is "self dialogue" with my Outer child, who is selfish and self centered inner child, when the Outer Child acting out in rage. Remembering that I have 3 personality in me. One is a Little girl, then Rebellion girl and then adult me. In this dialogue, adult me would talk Outer down, so that I don't act out in anger. Like telling her to what is the point...?

plant flower, you said

The anger part wasn't as much of an aha experience to read - I wanted more help with this somehow, as I've been spending lots and lots of time in anger mode.

Have you made your own dialogue?

Anyone else?

Hope - when you are ready and have something to talk about it as you go.

[This message edited by beach at 11:36 AM, June 3rd (Tuesday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
GraceisGood
Member
Member # 17686
Default  Posted: 4:51 PM, June 4th (Wednesday)

Hello All, I have not read this book, but today I found (purely coincidentally seriously,) that the author is doing a 3 day retreat in July in my kneck of the woods. Here is the link if you are interested. I guess I should check out the book to see if I might want to attend

http://www.breitenbush.com/events/july25-27anderson.html

Grace


We have a tendency to think the love offered us is a reflection of our worth and value.But in actuality,it's a reflection of the person that is giving it.We love out of who WE are-not because of who the receiver is.At least in terms of real love.TSMF

Posts: 3434 | Registered: Jan 2008 | From: how far the east is from the west
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 9:40 PM, June 4th (Wednesday)

Thank you for sharing, Grace.

That's wonderful that you got a nice place for a retreat where you live.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:54 AM, June 10th (Tuesday)

Whenever I get the triggers, I get flash backs. I just let the flashbacks float away from me like a bubble and then I practice mindfulness. And then I take a deep breath, and say my mantra "That was then, this is now, I am at peace". It works for me.

I wanted to share this excersise that is called Shattering excersise from a book "Journey from abandonment to healing" by Susan Anderson, but this technique helps you to focus on HERE and NOW.

This is for those of us who had a trigger or has too much wondering mind. It is also helpful to know how to bring you back to now and reality. The key is to awareness.....- beach

SUMMARY OF SHATTERING


The severing has cut through the dense tissues of attachment, right through to the molten core of self. Like it or not, you are in touch with your deepest needs and feelings. This is where a whole new life can start. The pain of shattering is an epiphany.

Abandonment cuts so deep it feels like a mortal wound, but as you have seen, it arouses your instinct for survival. Cut off and alone, you cry out. You feel primal need and fear. These are the most vulnerable and important feelings you have. They represent your most elemental needs that have been with you since birth. As you learn to manage the pain, it is important to listen to your fears. They tell you what you need. When you dare to accept these feelings, you are ready to begin to heal.

Akeru allows you to transform the piercing pain of abandonment into an opening. It offers an invitation to experience life in the moment. You become more present and accessible to others, to life, and to the child within. This child is free to experience sensations, its eyes and ears and skin not yet so well-defended against life experience. For the adult as well as the child, all the sensations of life are most intensely felt in the moment. It is this reawakened self that you bring into the moment with you - along with the openness, wonder and discovery of the child.

As you emerge from the shattering state, you have taken significant steps in the direction of emotional self-reliance. You have learned to: step one, understand the depth and nature of your abandonment wound; step two, acknowledge its pain; step three, avoid shame by accepting your feelings as natural; step four, affirm your strength - you can stand alone; and step five, manage your feelings by getting into the moment.

Shattering is a rite of passage similar to the initiation rights of the shaman who journeys to the spiritual world and wrestles with demons before he can own his power. Some of the best healers in our society are those who have been through overwhelming trauma, because they have worked through their shattering.

At the end of the chapter, there are step-by-step instructions for Staying In The Moment which is a way to recover from shattering. The definition of staying in the moment is not what I initially thought....I thought it was to really feel the pain and stick it out and sometimes that is just too hard. Staying in the moment simply means tuning in to your environment and focusing on your senses rather than your worries and grief. Staying in the moment isn't just an exercise; it's a way of being.

Step-By-Step Instructions For Staying In The Moment:

Preparing Yourself for the Moment

Begin right where you are. Just stop whatever you are doing and take in your immediate surroundings. Is there natural light or lamplight? Is the room sparse or cluttered with many things?
Take it all in: the sights, the sounds, the feeling of the room.

Listening to Background Noises
Is it quiet, or do you hear the blaring noise of a radio or television? If you can, turn them off. Your goal is to remove any sounds that can drown out subtle background noises. Listening for faint background noises is on of the most effective ways to get into the moment.

Close your eyes and focus your attention on the sounds you hear.
At first, the loudest noises command your attention. You may hear someone's voice in the background or people moving around in other rooms or a truck driving by.

Try to identify all of the sounds you hear.

Now listen more closely. Can you hear the distant sounds of birds? Can you hear cars on faraway streets? Can you hear the hum of an appliance in another room - the refrigerator or a ceiling ? Keep going, listening for the faintest of sounds, as long as you can.
You have used your sense of hearing to momentarily come out of your thoughts and enter the peace and calm of the moment. Your task is as simple as this.

Use Your Sense of Touch to Bring in the Moment
Use your sense of touch in a deliberate, self-disciplined way. Close your eyes. Is there any movement of air in the room? Can you feel it against your face, neck, or hands? It may require deep concentration to tune in to this sensation.

What else do you feel? How do your clothes feel in contact with your skin? Can you feel their weight on your shoulders or their texture against your legs? Can you feel the weight of a watch or bracelet on your wrist, the weight of the shoes on your feet?
Think of everything in contact with your skin, beginning with your feet. Do you feel a breeze against bare skin? Pressure of warm socks? Are they too tight? Or do you feel only the pressure of sheets across your bare feet?

Next, think about the skin on your legs, then your torso and arms, as you slowly move up your body.

Pay close attention to your hands. They are very sensitive and can pick up the slightest movements of air. Reach out with your hands and feel the texture of things around you. What does the chair you're sitting on feel like? The sheets on your bed?

Your face is also sensitive to air currents and temperature. What do you feel? The weight of your hair across your scalp? Tingling?
As you take in these sensations, you have entered the moment. You are delivered from your painful thoughts.

Use Your Sense of Taste and Smell
I don't mean for you to practice this exercise at meals. In fact, you will gain the most benefit by trying to discern very subtle tastes and smells.

Concentrate on what the inside of your mouth tastes like. Is it a neutral taste? Minty? Smoky? As you inhale, do you notice any changes? Upon inhaling, can you detect the scent of wood? Of dirt? Of cleaning agents? Of fruit? Use your senses of taste and smell to bring you out of your thoughts and into the moment.

Focus on Your Breathing
Feel your chest rise and fall, the air filling your lungs, your diaphragm expanding, then release it all. Can you feel the air as it exits your nostrils? Concentrate on the muscles that work to draw your every breath, on the air moving in and out of your lungs.

Most people are able to hold the moment very briefly when they are feeling intense grief and loss. The natural tendency is to slip back into obsessive thoughts. Staying in the moment is a skill requiring concentration and effort. Try to extend these brief interludes as long as you can and start again each time you recognize that the moment has slipped away. Try seeking out the most beautiful place you can find and drink it in with your ears, your eyes, your skin and your nose. Listen to your favorite music.

Keep good reading material on hand, books that will hold your interest and inspire you. Two I recommend are Silences by Hannah Merker, and Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat-Zinn. Writing (diary, journal, free writing) helps you concentrate on the present and is an excellent way to focus your thoughts, create an action plan for the day, or even plan your new life.

The more you practice this exercise, the better you become at accepting reality. It is a state of being that Zen Buddhists and other spiritual orders have aspired to for centuries. To learn to live your life with this kind of mindfulness is to accept change and participate in the joy, love and bounty of life around and within you. Each time you use the moment as nature's greatest refuge from pain, you strengthen your ability to accept life on live's terms.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:59 AM, June 10th (Tuesday)

I have found these resources helpful in the recovery.

Here is one of the exercises in the book:

In the second emotional stage, we use "internalize excersise". Try to have a conversation between a little girl in you and a big adult in you. Big adult you will tell Little that she will not leave her and she will love and nurture her no matter what.

You will try to build a dream house by imagining the place where you want to be in the future, which is your well and come back whenever you are sad or feel empty to nourish your soul.

Dialogue with Inner Self

Step One: Your first task is to create a vivid picture of your abandoned child that newly awakened part of yourself. Recall yourself as a very young child (of about four) and use that image to personify your emotional core. Imagine that you, the adult, can stand back and observe this child, as if she or he is a separate being, standing outside of you. This helps to cognitively draw the needy feelings this child represents out from where they are hidden within your limbic brain. Robertiello and Kirsten recommend that you picture this child standing five feet away from you on your left side. The idea is to remind you that your child self is in fact more vulnerable and dependent than your adult self.

The child has long been within you, making its needs known, trying to control and interfere in your adult life. When you feel insecure, for instance, it is the child within you who is insecure, the child who feels desperate for acceptance and approval. It is also the child who is afraid to take risks and the child who sabotages your attempts to form new relationships. Rather than forsake these feelings, your task is to accept and care for this long-abandoned part of yourself.

Step Two: Now visualize your adult self. Form a picture in your head of the person you wish to become.

Many struggle at first when they try to see themselves as strong, capable adults. Try picturing your adult self doing something you know you are reasonably good at. Think of the times you knew you were at your best, most competent, and independent. From these positive recollections, form a composite image that includes all the best of you.

Step Three: Now you’re ready to start a dialogue between the adult image of yourself and the child – between big you and little you.

By creating an image of your child self and potential adult self, you have created a triangle. You, the individual are at the top of the triangle. The child is on the bottom left, the adult on the bottom right. You are going to remain at the top as an objective observer, where you can mediate the dialogue between these two figures, between your most urgent needs and the capable adult you know you can become.

The role for the adult self: Your adult self’s job is to provide the child with al that he or she needs: a sense of belonging and love, to be admired and listened to, to be relieved of guilt and burden. Your adult self should act like a good parent toward a cherished child.

The role of the child self: In turn, the child will express its feelings and look to your adult self for help. As you begin to see your child self as a separate figure, he or she reveals its most basic needs, fear, hopes and dreams. Many of these things have been buried for a long time. This exercise is designed to bring them out in the open.

The role of the individual: As the mediator of the dialogue, you will be conducting a kind of one-person role-play. You, of course, give voice to both your child self and adult self. When you are speaking for the child, you take on the language and attitude of a child. When you are speaking for the adult, you take on the body language of a strong and sensible adult whose main goal is to help the child.

Your task is to become more aware of what you are feeling. Attribute these feelings to the child. You are also supporting the adult who is striving to be strong and emotionally self-nurturing.

To gain maximum benefit from this exercise practice it daily, preferably at a fixed time and in the same place. Your adult self opens the dialogue by greeting the child and asking about its feelings. Big you draws out what is really bothering you by asking questions an demonstrating a sincere interest I understanding and helping.

At first the dialogues can be long. The child often has a great deal to say. Later, the dialogues become more focused and direct. Your overall approach is to reassure the child that everything will be all right. This also helps to reinforce the strength and confidence of your adult self. Your goal is to put your child in a good mood if at all possible. Getting the child to express its feelings is the most effective way to lift its mood (and yours).

Here is an encapsulated version of one of Roberta's first dialogues:

BIG: What the matter, Little?

LITTLE: I'm sad.

BIG: Tell me what's bothering you. I'll help you.

LITTLE: I think you made a mistake yesterday at work and I'm afraid your boss will be angry with me. I don't like being yelled at. I'm scared.

BIG: I understand how you feel. You don't need to be afraid. If my boss yells, I will handle it. I'll take care of you no matter what happens. Besides, he's usually very nice. He doesn't expect me to be perfect. Anyway, this is not your problem. It's mine. Don't worry about it. I'll make sure he doesn't hurt you.

This exercise does not guarantee that you will walk away from the dialogue with all of your conflicts neatly resolved. Establishing a dialogue with your inner self is no different from opening any other type of dialogue; it is an ongoing process whose outcome is far from predetermined.

Working with the child within is really nurturing the growth of the adult. By administering to the child, your adult self becomes free of the child's destructive, negative influence and functions on a more mature level. In fact, when you find yourself handling stressful situations poorly, it is because you have allowed the child to slip back inside. Your goal is to make sure that your child and adult selves remain in their separate roles.

Many report that at first their adult selves don't know what to do. "My child was so difficult, my adult was completely stumped," said Jill. Here is one of her early dialogues:


LITTLE: I feel fat and ugly and it's all your fault, Big!

BIG: I'm sorry, Little. But I really do know how you feel.

LITTLE: Don't hand that "I know how you feel" crap to me, Big. You're the one doing all of the eating. I'm the one doing all of the suffering. I want to look nice and you won't let me.

BIG: That must make you feel sad and lonely.

LITTLE: Well, do something about it, Big. Go on a diet and stick to it, so I don't have to feel so terrible and ugly.

BIG: I'll try, Little. I know how you feel.

LITTLE: Never mind try. That just means nothing will happen. You always let me down.

BIG: It's not all my fault, Little. You're the one who loves sugar.

LITTLE: Don't blame me, Big. You always go ahead and eat too much, and I'm the one who has to pay for it. I hate you for making me fat!

As Jill continued her daily dialogues, her ability to remain in the adult role in response to Little's attitude showed steady improvement. With a bit of practice, her adult self took on a more effective role.

Here is an example:

BIG: I want to be thin too, Little. But I am going to need you to talk to me every time you feel needy or hungry.

LITTLE: What does that have to do with it?

BIG: I care about your feelings, Little.

LITTLE: All I care about is for you to get thin and pretty so I don't have to feel so fat and ugly.

BIG: Exactly, Little. And I care about those feelings, too. It helps when you remind me of them In the meantime, I am going to get some help losing weight.

LITTLE: It's about time you admitted you can't do it by yourself. You're too weak.

BIG: For your sake as well as mine, I'm getting stronger.

You'll get the best results if you begin by writing the dialogue. Writing helps you, the individual, to keep Big's and Little's roles clearly defined and keeps you on task. Writing is a form of taking action; it involves you more deeply in the exercise, just as taking notes helps you focus on a lecture.

In spite of the aversion many people have to writing, the results are almost always worth it. The kind of writing you are doing is very different from preparing a report or lodging a formal complaint with a credit agency. Anyone can do it. It goes fast because the idea is not to give critical thought to what is going down on the page but simply to resort the conversation. No one is ever going to read your dialogue unless you want them to; it does not need to be legible or coherent. As you write, your feelings will carry your pen swiftly across the page.

As you become more practiced at this exercise and your child and adult are well-defined, you can speak the dialogue aloud instead of writing it all down. Some people who have been doing the exercise for a number of years report they are able to perform the dialogue silently, inside their heads.

Whether you are writing, speaking or thinking the dialogue, the important thing is to keep the needs and feelings of the child from slipping back inside your head where they can subvert your efforts to become the strong and capable adult you know you can be.

When you can't get in touch with the child, go back to step one and create a distinct visual image of the child. Imagine it outside yourself, and then begin writing dialogue to draw the feelings out. The process sometimes takes a great deal of effort. As any parent knows, finding ways to relate to a needy child is a real challenge. You may have to summon all of your patience, but keep gently pushing, keep asking questions.

Remember that Little can easily feel abandoned. She needs to feel taken care of all the time. That means talking to Little at least once a day.

The following is an example of Keaton, who hasn't talk to Little on a regular basis:

LITTLE: Why should I tell you anything! You don't care about me. You haven't paid me any attention in my whole life! So don't pretend now that you care about my feelings. You'll just forget about me all over again and pretend I don't exist!

BIG: I'm sorry that I neglected you for so long. But I genuinely want to know what you're feeling. I want to comfort you. I really do care. I won't neglect you this time.

LITTLE: It's too little too late. I'll never speak to you.

"Of course that was just lip," Keaton told the group. "Now I can't get Little to shut up."

Marie's Little expressed similar anger for being abandoned.

LITTLE: I feel so upset, Big. You let Lonny leave! How could you lose him! It's even worse than when Mom died. I'm lonely all over again.

BIG: I know how hurt you are, Little. But even though Lonny left, I will always be with you. I would never leave you.

LITTLE: But I miss Lonny.

BIG: I know you do, Little, and so do I. But at least you know that I love you and always will.

Remember that the purpose of the dialogue is not to wrap up a problem in a two-minute conversation. It is to create open channels of communication that lead to change over the course of time.

In fact, many clients report that the child makes unreasonable demands. He or she is, after all, only a child, frightened of being alone and full of needs. It is up to Big to parent the demands of Little and gently but firmly explain to Little why some things can't happen. Let's look at Marie's ongoing dialogue.
BIG: What's the matter, Little?

LITTLE: I don't trust you, Big.

BIG: Why not?

LITTLE: Because you put me through too many horrible things. I want you to promise that nothing bad will ever happen again.

BIG: I can promise that I will never let anything come between you and me ever again.

LITTLE: No, Big, I want you to promise that nobody will ever leave me again. I want you to promise that you will find someone who will always love me, so that I never have to go through this again.

BIG: I can't make promises that I may not be able to keep, Little. If I could control these things, I would. But the truth is that there are no guarantees in life when it comes to other people's feelings or behavior.

LITTLE: But I want you to protect me from being hurt again.

BIG: One thing I can guarantee is that I will do my best to find somebody who is loyal and devoted, to help you feel more safe and secure.

LITTLE: I want you to promise.

BIG: I can promise that no matter what happens with the other people in my life, I will always love you. I will never leave you.

Some people report that Little tries to get them to do things that their child selves want much more than their adult selves. It becomes a power struggle.
"Little Keaton was really angry at me because I wouldn't let him get a dog," explained Keaton. "Of course I couldn't tell anyone else about this because I'd sound like someone with multiple personality disorder. But we were having a fight, Little Keaton and I. I had to tell Little over and over that my landlord didn't allow pets. It took alot of writing and many sheets of paper to convince Little, to get him to calm down."
"Of course, Little got me to promise that I'd do other things to make it up to him. And I'd dame well better carry them out, or he would be on my case all day. Little has become so real that I can't imagine turning my back on him again - I'm afraid he'd kill me."

After doing the exercise for a while, the child self begins to feel like a real presence, with its own personality. Some like to remind themselves that Big and Little are simply images, others prefer to think of them as real people. Some of my clients christen Little with names of their own, including inner child, inner self, core feelings, primal self or emotional core. Regardless of how they refer to these figures, after doing the exercise a few times, profound changes begin to take shape.

Marylou became involved in abandonment recovery in order to deal with her old abandonment wounds. She was plagued by childhood demons, as she called them, stemming from the fact that her father had been sexually and physically abusive, and her mother cold, distant and severely punitive. So Marylou began doing the exercise with great hopes and expectations for relief. Things turned out very differently from what she expected. About three weeks into it, her Little asked her to go to her grandmother's grave.

BIG: It's four hundred miles away, Little.

LITTLE: But I want to go. She is the only one who ever loved us.

BIG: But I have to work, Little.

LITTLE: I want you to take time off and drive me there.

BIG: Maybe when my vacation comes up, I'll take you.

LITTLE: I can't wait that long, Big. I want to go now. I want to remember what it felt like to have Grandma's love, to talk to her. I want to get her love back.

BIG: How about if I read to you tonight, Little, or do something else you like? They you'll know how much I care about you. That's what really counts.

LITTLE: No, I want to visit Grandma. I miss her, and I want to be near so I can talk to her.

BIG: But I don't really want to drive to Massachusetts just to talk to Grandma, Little.

LITTLE: I want you to. If you care about me, you will.

Marylou described how Little nagged her on a daily basis until she finally agreed to make the long trip to visit Grandma's grave. As she made plans for the trip, it occurred to her that an old high school friend still lived in Massachusetts, so she looked her up and they talked about old times. They made plans to meet for dinner.
So off Marylou went to Massachusetts. During the car ride, she was urged to listen to Little once more. Little asked her to buy something to plant at Grandma's grave site. Marylou went along with this, hoping that this would be enough to satisfy Little.

At the grave site, Marylou had a very emotional experience. Little reminded her of the times when she was nestled in her grandmother's lap, feeling cherished and at peace with the world.

Marylou went off feeling drained but with the sense of emotional relief and looking forward to meeting with her old friend. Together, they planned a trip to Norway - Marylou's first trip abroad - to visit the homeland of both their families.

To be effective, the dialogue needs to be an ongoing part of your life. As you continue practicing, you will be able to gradually resolve unfinished business - injuries from earlier losses and abandonment, as well as any current crises, all the while helping your adult self become stronger and more effective.


This Akeru exercise doesn't attempt to sidestep the grief. It works with it, using withdrawal's powerful drive toward attachment to form a bond between your adult self and your child self. Rather than distracting you from these feelings, this exercise uses them as fuel for growth. As you strengthen your adult self and address the needs of your child, you have taken a giant step in the direction of becoming emotionally self-reliant.

Separation therapy works. It is not hard to learn and along the way you become your own therapist and mentor. And it works for everyone. We all have a child who sometimes needs help.

SUMMARY OF WITHDRAWAL

Withdrawal is when all of the connections with our lost love are torn. We try to move forward with loose wires hanging out, exposed and sparking. We were so medicated by the relationship, we didn't realize how intricate our connections had become. Only now can we distinguish which of the wires are part of a healthy connection to our loved one and which were based on fear or the excessive need to please. As we heal, we test the loose wires through soul-searching, therapists, sponsors, friends and trial encounters with new people. Eventually, we discover the connections to true nurturing and healthy relationships.

Our core feelings are awake and alive - the oldest, most enduring part of ourselves. All else is ripped away. The child on the rock cries out for what is lost. It is this child who feels the wrenching tear in the tissues of attachment, the frustration and intense need to reconnect. When we give the child a voice, we are finally able to administer to the needs, fears and longings of our innermost self.

During withdrawal we are like the baby chick without its shell, still wet, facing the world without its protective cover. It is the ultimate trial of survival. We are free from the restrictive bonds of security. No longer sedated by our former relationships, we emerge stark and alive, our needs exposed, our feelings raw, to forge new connections.

Withdrawal is you becoming you for the first time.

It is individuation.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
lucie
Member
Member # 6773
Default  Posted: 5:36 AM, June 26th (Thursday)

I love this book! I bought The Journey from Heartbreak to Connection too.

I read them 2+ years after dday and I wished I known about them sooner.


Very happy, the rest doesn't matter anymore.

Posts: 5778 | Registered: Mar 2005
burnt_toast
Member
Member # 16891
Default  Posted: 7:01 AM, June 26th (Thursday)

That book is fabulous. It helped me so much in the aftermath! The house exercise is very powerful.


It is what it is.

Posts: 4699 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Quelque part
smallmouse
Member
Member # 19649
Default  Posted: 9:24 PM, July 18th (Friday)

I got this one, but it came second, after I started another. I have started having the book on my lap and reading it at stoplights that's seriously the only free time I can find in a day (got to have my SI time too, though it's not much either, lol)

I haven't read the posts since I don't want to spoil my suprise. I should finish the first book this weekend, I actually haven't got too much planned.

Excited to read this now after seeing the thread!!!
sm


pancakes!

Posts: 1446 | Registered: May 2008
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:17 PM, July 23rd (Wednesday)

Lucie - I also have Heartbreak to Connection. It is a workbook and it was helpful, when I read Journey from Abandonment to Healing first.


small mouse - don't try to rush and read it at once. When I read, I treated it as a textbook. 1 chapter per day, or per week. I highlighted the part that relates to me, or wrote down the notes, too. It sinks better when I do that.

[This message edited by beach at 8:47 AM, July 24th (Thursday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 9:38 AM, October 17th (Friday)

Bump for zonagirl.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
ohpuhlease
Member
Member # 13679
Default  Posted: 10:17 AM, October 17th (Friday)

Thank you beach! I know you bumped this for Zona which made me come over and take a look.

Some of the conversations with Big and Little had me in tears and I wanted to scream 'Oh my God that is ME!'

Okay...I'm going to dry my tears and wash my face then head over to the book store.

Thanks again beach!


Those who know others are intelligent. Those who know themselves are truly wise. - Lao-tzu, Tao Te Ching


Posts: 5714 | Registered: Feb 2007 | From: *Proudly Canadian...Eh!*
PeacePower
Member
Member # 17129
Default  Posted: 11:26 AM, October 17th (Friday)

I never post in this forum, but I saw the thread and just had to say I love, love, love this book!!! I recommend it all the time! So much so that I know I sound like a broken record.

In my opinion, it does bog down a bit in later chapters (perhaps the author was trying to make it long enough) but all of the advice is sound. The exercises work. The summary at the end helps me alot when I'm out of sorts and needing to refresh my memory of what she wrote.

Everyone should read this!!!


Me: XBS-female 39. She: gone-D'ed 06/01/08.

Finding new hope, new love, new dreams!

We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty. ~Maya Angelou


Posts: 2092 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Southern California!
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 10:56 PM, October 18th (Saturday)

op,
I am glad you are going to get this book. I am sure it will be helpful for you.


PeacePower, I am glad you saw this thread and that it is nice to know another fan of this book.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
PeacePower
Member
Member # 17129
Default  Posted: 1:08 AM, October 19th (Sunday)

Thanks, beach!

I talk about this book so often that a couple of my friends are like "Yeah, yeah, yeah that 'Abandonment' book... we know!"


Me: XBS-female 39. She: gone-D'ed 06/01/08.

Finding new hope, new love, new dreams!

We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty. ~Maya Angelou


Posts: 2092 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Southern California!
smallmouse
Member
Member # 19649
Default  Posted: 9:09 PM, October 25th (Saturday)

I'm reading this now, I just got to the chapters on second of the five stages. It takes me a while to read, I'm so busy all the time, I just read here and there. I still feel like the second phase is in my past, and I'm eager to read on and learn more.

I realized very early on after Dday, that I am really codependant. I feel like this book helped me start to wonder why I'm that way, and admit that some of my past really set me up to be like that. My dad was injured when I was very young and couldn't work, yet was very distant with me even though he was home all day long, and my mom had to work long hours. I was terribly shy in school, and I always remember sitting alone at a lunch table in 7th grade for half the year, after my friends from elementary school kicked me out of their 'circle' because I wasn't cool enough for them. There was another group of girls who were all really nice, and I WAS near them, but still alone, at the end of the table. I never realized that I was suffering abandonment then. I always just focused on feeling sorry for myself that I couldn't make friends, never realizing that people were trying to BE friends with me, but I was outcasting myself, by not trusting them. When one individual girl came along, a new student, we quickly became good friends. I was ok, that's what I thought. I always felt like I was just meant to have a sole friend, and not be in a click. I think it sort of trained me to seek friendship with a sigle person, and rely on just that one person, and thus be terribly co dependant on them.

I dunno, I guess what I'm just learning now is that the past has a bigger impact on me fundamentally that I could ever see before. Meeting WH, and latching onto him immediately, was not caused by him, it was the way I was due to my past abandonment.

Sometimes I just think how I'm feeling "exactly as miserable as before I met him" and now I'm starting to realize, that's the flashback, like me remembering how I felt back then. It's crazy that a flashback can make me forget that I have two beautiful children, a great job, my finances are good, I have friends now, a lot of things are going great. I just think of me in my first year of college, where I was depressed, lonely, thinking I'd never find someone, and daydreaming of meeting prince charming all the time. All that sadness, just because I'm currently single? geesh! :P
sm


pancakes!

Posts: 1446 | Registered: May 2008
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:33 PM, November 12th (Wednesday)

(((Smallmouse)))) You have been through alot of abandonment in your life. Your dad was there, but was not emotionally available. I, too was shy, procrastinator (I was trying to get the attention, even though it was negative...), and I was bullied, thus I was abandoned by my classmates. I felt so isolated. I was like you, when I graduated Jr.HS, I went to a different school district, I tried to open up one by one. After I graduated HS, it was getting better, or so I thought.

I am glad you find this book insightful and hopefully it will be beneficial for you!!

When I get the bad memories (triggers), I practice staying in the moment (Shattering exersise). When I feel down, I imagine dream house and try recharge myself.

Please take your time. Hang in there!!!

ETA: Try give a little girl in you a hug, and talk to her that you as an adult will never abandon her. You will be always be with her.

Bumping for other people.

[This message edited by beach at 8:35 PM, November 12th (Wednesday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
foralways
Member
Member # 18642
Default  Posted: 9:54 PM, November 12th (Wednesday)

great reference about this gem!
it is become my lifeline, i read and reread and read again and again, this book along with "getting rid of the gorilla" by Brian Jones and "facing love addiction" are helping me so much.


what's love got to do with it?
me BS 48 WH 49 M 24 yrs.
Children: awesome sons: 21& 23, amazing daughter 15
D day 2/11/08 - S 2/11/08
R working on it since 5/10/08
7/29/08 find out it was F R
filing for D 8/19/08~ filed 9/8/0
divorced 3/24/09

Posts: 1722 | Registered: Mar 2008 | From: Las Vegas
ohpuhlease
Member
Member # 13679
Default  Posted: 12:51 AM, November 16th (Sunday)

I've made it to the Chapter that deals with anger.

This book has probably been the best self-help therapy for me yet.

My father was an abusive alcoholic and only parented as well as a drunk could when he was beating us. Abandonment.

My mother was never around as she was the main income earner. When she did get a break, she spent all her time at church praying for a better life for her family. Abandonment.

My first serious boyfriend was an abusive piece of crap who would leave me on a regular basis. Abandonment.

Nine years ago, our oldest son was killed instantly in a car crash. Abandonment.

As I've been reading, and of course reflecting on my life, there were times when I would just well up with tears and couldn't even focus on the words anymore.

I knew, I mean really understood that abandoment issues rear their ugly head in our adult lives but I just never really *knew* to what extent.

This book just blows me away.

[This message edited by ohpuhlease at 12:55 AM, November 16th (Sunday)]


Those who know others are intelligent. Those who know themselves are truly wise. - Lao-tzu, Tao Te Ching


Posts: 5714 | Registered: Feb 2007 | From: *Proudly Canadian...Eh!*
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 10:20 AM, November 20th (Thursday)

Thanks, foralways.


((((op)))) You have gone through lots of abandonment. You can see those characteristic of your Outer-Child. It helped me doing the self-dialogue.



SUMMARY OF RAGE

Rage is a time of power surges and blown emotional circuits that plague us at many points throughout the abandonment process. Rage maintains an internal dialogue that feeds on itself and fans its own flames. It seethes beneath the surface.

Until we recognize our outer child, we act without thinking. We use our anger to justify our behavior. But there is a way to use our rage energy constructively. Constructive rage does not destroy, inflict injury, or perpetuate pain. It does not retaliate. It converts to healthy aggression. It is the energy we need to rebuild ourselves and our relationships.

Recognizing outer child traits allows us to choose our actions rather than be guided by habit and reenact deeply entrenched patterns.

The deconstruction of the outer child holds the key to true recovery.

FOURTH AKERU (RAGE) EXERCISE: IDENTIFYING THE OUTER CHILD

The Fourth Akeru exercise is an awareness tool designed to help you better understand your responses to anger and change your behavior.

We have already discussed the inner child that part of us that holds onto feelings of frustration, resentment, and rage. The outer child acts out the inner child's anger. By becoming aware of your outer child, you are finally able to gain access to your primitive, unconscious defenses that interfere with your relationships and your life plans.

In the hierarchy of self, the outer child is sandwiched between the inner child and the adult:
Adult
Outer child
Inner child

Left unrecognized, your outer child can subvert your best intentions. Recognizing behaviors that stem from your outer child is the first step toward positive change.

Your outer child has been the hidden saboteur in your life. It rationalizes its maneuvering by claiming it wants to protect you. It poses as your ally but acts out rather than asserting your true needs.

Identifying your outer child builds upon the previous Akeru exercises by lending them a new level of personal awareness. In exercise one, you learned to use the moment as a source of personal power; in exercise two you began a daily dialogue with your innermost needs and feelings; in exercise three, you learned to strengthen the relationship between your needs and actions through a visualization exercise that shaped your vision of the future. This fourth exercise helps you to recognize the self-defeating patterns that limit your life progress.

The key to disarming outer child defenses is to acknowledge them. Once you learn to identify the special features of your outer child, you'll expose its covert operations and look for emotional triggers that set them in motion. You'll emerge with a new level of insight that puts you in the driver's seat.

Your task is to isolate and take command of your outer child behaviors, using the same separation technique you used to create Little and Big.

Form a mental picture of your outer child 丒an image distinct from Little or Big. While Little represents valid emotions, the outer child acts out undesirable behaviors, especially deeply entrenched patterns that stymie your growth. By separating these behaviors from your true feelings, you gain psychological distance from which to observe the interaction between the two.

It may take time to establish a clear representation of your outer child. But once you learn to separate behavior from feelings, you can dismantle automatic and troublesome responses to the many stresses you encounter.

OUTER CHILD INVENTORY

What follows is a list of 100 easily recognizable traits common to the outer child in each of us. They are presented randomly, reflecting the illogical thinking of the outer child. Your daily exercise is to use this inventory to become aware of your outer child 丒to spot its behavior and find its hiding places. Remember that your outer child is a misguided expression of your inner child's feelings. Touch base with what your outer child is doing by keeping an active inventory of its behaviors, using the list as a guide.

Each of us has a unique outer child, depending upon our individual experiences, needs and feelings. The list of 100 traits is by no means exhaustive. And not all of the items will describe you. The more you are able to recognize your own and other's outer children, the more self-awareness you bring to your relationships.

You can circle the items on the following list that relate to you, or just read through them, allowing your awareness to build. The random nature of the list is designed to catch your outer child off guard. Hopefully, this will help you to recognize aspects of your behavior you otherwise wouldn't see.

For best results, read through the entire inventory more than once. You may not recognize your outer child at first glance. Remember that your outer child lives in your unconscious mind, and because some of its characteristics are less than flattering, it may be hard to own them. Stick with it until your outer child begins to emerge. You can add to this list as you discover traits unique to your outer child.

Reviewing and updating this inventory daily is the key to breaking down outer child defenses. By keeping your outer child in focus, you'rel move beyond where 90 percent of people are able to go and truly understand the dynamics of your behavior.

Each time you spot an insight or trait related to your outer child, you're keeping your unconsciously driven defenses in better focus. As a result, you'll be able to choose more constructive responses to stress.

Outer Child Inventory

1. Outer child is the selfish, controlling, self-centered part of all of us.
2. Outer child encompasses all of the outward signs of the inner child's vulnerability 丒all of the scars, the warts, the defenses that show on the outside.
3. Outer child is developmentally around seven or eight. Self-centeredness is age appropriate for the outer child.
4. Outer child wears many disguises, especially in public. Since other people's outer children are usually well hidden, you may think you are the only one with an outer child.
5. Outer child is the hidden Chuckie of the personality. Even the nicest people we know can act like a seven-year-old with a full blown behavior disorder when they feel threatened enough.
6. Outer child is developmentally old enough to have its own little executive ego (much to our chagrin). It's old enough to forcefully exercise its will but no old enough to understand the rights and feelings of others. (Inner child isn't old enough to have its own ego, so it has to appropriate ours.)
7. Outer child steps right in and takes over, even if we had every intention of handling a particular situation in a mature, adult manner. Outer child handles things its own way, leaving us holding the bag.
8. Outer child can dominate your personality if you're had a history of repeated abandonments. Many abandonment survivors of childhood are mostly outer child.
9. Outer child throws temper tantrums and goes off on tirades if it feels criticized, rejected, or abandoned. If Outer seems emotionally disturbed, it's because of what you're been through. Don't blame your outer child 丒it doesn't react well to blame.
10. Outer child takes revenge against the self. It sees itself apart from self and creates a schism between Big and Little whenever an opening presents itself.
11. Outer child likes to blame its faults on your mate. It tries to get you to imaging that your unacceptable traits belong to your mate.
12. Outer child doesn't like to do things that are good for you.
13. Outer child would rather do something that will make you fat or broke than think or fiscally responsible.
14. Outer child is a hedonist.
15. Outer child talks about your friends behind their backs.
16. Outer child thrives on chaos, crisis, and drama.
17. Outer child enjoys playing the victim.
18. Outer child distracts you when you're trying to concentrate.
19. Outer child loves to play martyr.
20. Outer child is a world-class procrastinator.
21. Outer child makes huge messes that take forever to clean up.
22. Outer child makes you late for appointments.
23. Outer child loses things and blames it on others.
24. Outer child can find an excuse for anything.
25. Outer child tries to look cool and makes you look foolish.
26. Outer child is the yes but of the personality.
27. Outer child is reactive rather than active or reflective.
28. Outer child explodes when it encounters difficulties with its own abilities.
29. Outer child can never be wrong.
30. Outer child hates asking for help. It's stubborn, ornery, blind and pigheaded.
31. Outer child acts like a tyrant but is secretly a coward, afraid to assert its needs.
32. Outer child acts gracious when a friend steps on one of your toes and then holds onto the anger for the next twenty years.
33. Outer child specializes in blame; if it has an uncomfortable feeling, somebody must be at fault.
34. Outer child uses crying as a manipulation.
35. Outer child criticizes others to keep the heat off itself.
36. Outer child has a phony laugh to cover up stray feelings.
37. Outer child acts on its own, rather than consulting us, the adult.
38. Outer child needs total control to avoid having to feel inner child's feelings, especially hurt, loneliness, disappointment or loss.
39. Outer child can't stand waiting, especially for a significant other to return your call.
40. Outer child doesn't form relationships 丒it takes emotional hostages.
41. Outer child doesn't like to show its vulnerability; it keeps its injuries hidden.
42. Outer child will demand, defy, deceive, ignore, balk, manipulate, seduce, pout, whine and retaliate to get its needs for acceptance and approval met. It doesn't see this as a contradiction.
43. Outer child has a favorite feeling: anger. In fact, outer child's only feeling is anger.
44. Outer child has a hole in its pocket when it comes to either anger or money. Both must be spent right away and damn the consequences!
45. Outer child wants what it wants immediately. Yesterday.
46. Outer child wants to get right in the middle of things when you try to start a new relationship. It becomes more reactive, more demanding, and needier than ever before.
47. Outer child may be found in our mates. Sometimes we marry a person who can act out our own outer child wishes. Hopefully, our mate's outer child doesn't act out against us.
48. Outer child may be found in our children's behavior. When we get into power struggles with one of our real children, we find ourselves battling our own outer child. Sometimes we secretly encourage our real children to fulfill our outer child needs. They act out the anger we don't wan to own.
49. Outer child goes off on a rampage if it detects even the subtlest signs of abandonment. This leaves Little in jeopardy, unprotected.
50. Outer child strives for its own self-interest while pretending to protect Little. But your outer child wants one thing only: control.
51. Outer child is a people-pleaser with ulterior motives. It will give others the shirt off your back. And what have you got to show for it? Nothing. You're left cold and naked.
52. Outer child is not old enough to care about others. Only you, the adult, can do that.
53. Outer child tests the people it looks to for security 丒to the limits.
54. Outer child tests new significant others with emotional games. Its favorite is playing hard to get.
55. Outer child can be very cunning, putting its best foot forward when pursuing a new partner. It can act the picture of altruism, decency, kindness and tolerance.
56. Outer child can be seductive, funny, charming, and full of life. When it succeeds in catching its prey, it suddenly becomes cold, critical, unloving, and sexually withholding. Outer child makes us pity the person willing to love us.
57. Outer child is the addict, the alcoholic, the one who runs up your credit cards and breaks our diet.
58. Outer child enjoys breaking rules. Your best friends may have very dominant outer children living within. Their rebelliousness might be what you enjoy most about them.
59. Outer child actively ignores you, the adult, especially when you try to tell it what to do. Outer child just goes right on doing what it wants to do.
60. Outer child strives for independence. Maybe someday your outer child will become independent enough to leave home, but don't count on it!
61. Outer child gains strength during dormant periods. Then, when you feel vulnerable, your outer child acts out, jeopardizing the new relationship.
62. Outer child tries to defeat the task of intimacy, which is to get your inner child to become friends with your mate's inner child. Intimacy is when you nurture each other's inner child and don't take each other's outer child too personally.
63. Outer child loves to hook up with your mate's outer child. They instantly get into power struggles. It is futile to try to control each other's outer children. Your best bet is to find something for your outer children to do other than interfere in the relationship. If you can't ignore them, send them out to play.
64. Outer child has enough vanity and pride to try to conquer an emotionally dangerous love, one who is potentially rejecting, distancing and abandoning.
65. Outer child thinks emotionally unavailable people are sexy.
66. Outer child is attracted to form rather than substance.
67. Outer child wants what it wants 丒emotional candy. This goes against what's good for Little, who needs someone capable of giving love, nurturance, and commitment.
68. Outer child seeks all the wrong people. It can't resist a lover who won's commit.
69. Outer child refuses to learn from mistakes. It insists upon doing the same things over and over.
70. Outer child developed during the rage phase of old abandonments when there was no one available to mitigate your pain.
71. Outer child becomes most powerful when Big and Little are out of alignment.
72. Outer child believes laws and ethics are for everyone else.
73. Outer child obeys rules only to avoid getting caught.
74. Outer child can dish it out but can't take it.
75. Outer child can be holier than thou.
76. Outer child loves chocolate and convinces you that it's good for your heart.
77. Outer child beats up on other people's inner children 丒especially the inner child of a significant other.
78. Outer child bullies its own inner child.
79. Outer child tries to get self-esteem by proxy by chasing after someone who has higher social status.
80. Outer child can deliver a subtle but powerful blow if it perceives a social slight, no matter how small.
81. Outer child covers up in public. Some people are better able to hide their outer child than others. Of course, some outer children are easier to hide than others.
82. Outer child can't hide from your closest family members: they know. That is what intimacy is all about: the exposure of your outer children.
83. Outer child can express anger by becoming passive. A favorite disguise is compliance. Outer child uses compliance to confuse others into thinking that it doesn't want control. But don't be fooled; outer child is a control freak.
84. Outer child finds someone to take for granted and treats them badly without having to fear rejection.
85. Outer child expects new significant others to compensate it for all the hurts and betrayals inflicted by old relationships dating all the way back to childhood.
86. Outer child protests against anything that reminds it of being on the rock.
87. Outer child refuses to stay on the rock. Unlike Little, Outer climbs down, picks up a hatchet, and goes on the warpath.
88. Outer child has a chip on its shoulder, which it disguises as assertiveness.
89. Outer child is like the annoying older brother who constantly interferes in the guise of protecting you.
90. Outer child doesn't obey the golden rule.
91. Outer child obeys its own outer child rule: Get others to treat you as you want to be treated, and treat others as you feel like treating them.
92. Outer child needs to be disciplined, but don't expect limit-setting to go smoothly.
93. Outer child provokes anger in subtle ways, and then accuses others of being abusive. Other loves to play the indignant injured party.
94. Outer child submits so it can seethe at being dominated.
95. Outer child knows how to wear the white hat.
96. Outer child is master at making the other person look like the bad guy.
97. Outer child behavior ranges from mild self-sabotage all the way to criminal destructiveness.
98. Outer child can gain control so early; the individual doesn't develop any true empathy or compassion for himself or others. The extreme outer child is a sociopath.
99. Outer child needs to be understood, owned and overruled by an airtight coalition between the inner child and adult.
100. Outer child holds the key to change. Inner child beholds our emotional truth, but can't change. When you catch your outer child red-handed, wrest the key from its hands and unlock your future.

Separating Feelings from Behavior

Outer child has its own covert agenda. The only way to expose and derail that agenda is to maintain your daily inventory. Don't let your outer child remain in an unseparated state, entwined with your feelings, where it can control responses from within.

Separating feelings from behavior is a crucial step in the healing process. So often people use feeling as an excuse for unacceptable behavior. Your task is to keep tabs on what your outer child is doing. As long as you keep your outer child in focus, you can gain mastery over your life when stressful situations crop up or afterward.

Adding Your Outer Child to the Daily Dialogue

One of the best ways to gain mastery over outer child defenses is to strengthen your bond with your inner child with ongoing daily dialogue. Speaking to Little every day, on good days and bad, helps to satisfy Little's need for love and nurturance. Since the outer child thrives on need-deprivation and unacknowledged feelings, staying connected to those feelings can steal your outer child's thunder.

Many find it helpful to include their outer child in their daily dialogues. Some find it works best to keep the dialogue exclusively between Big and Little, talking to Outer behind its back. Here is a piece of Keaton's dialogue following a date.

Keaton's Dialogue

LITTLE: I liked Janice. But I was so scared the whole time. I felt so needy and I couldn's relax.

BIG: That was Outer trying to hide your feelings.

LITTLE: Well, it's your job, Big, to keep Outer out of the way. He was stiff as a board.

BIG: I'm sorry Outer made the date so uncomfortable, Little.

LITTLE: Outer was trying to control me. Janice will never want to be with me again. And I liked her. I wish you stopped Outer from ruining the date. You weren't doing your job.

BIG: How can I help you with being afraid, Little?

LITTLE: Just don't leave me.

BIG: I'll stay with you, Little. But tell me, how can I help you feel less afraid, more relaxed?

LITTLE: You抮e ashamed of me when I feel afraid. I can tell. You don't want me to be afraid because it embarrasses you. You don't want me to have those feelings.

BIG: I accept you as you are, no matter how afraid you might be feelings. But I would like to help you feel more relaxed.

LITTLE: I think you only want me to feel relaxed because you are sick and tired of me feeling this way. You don't like me. You don't really accept me.

BIG: If that were true, Little, that would be very upsetting and make you really mad.

LITTLE: It does. You're the one who lets Outer get involved! You want Outer to hide my feelings and make them go away. You don't accept me 丒you just want to change me. I'm too much of a nuisance. I can't help my feelings.

BIG: If I am able to accept your feelings and love you for them, then maybe Outer won't need to come in anymore and try to take control.

LITTLE: Outer is your job, not mine. But I do want you to be proud of me, no matter how I'm feeling. I don't want you to be ashamed of me and try to hide me, even if I'm feeling insecure.

BIG: Next time I have a date, things will be different. If you're afraid, I won't try to cover you up or put you in a straitjacket. I'll let you have your feelings.

Keaton was not able to bring closure to all of his uncomfortable feelings, but through the exercise, he gained awareness of its emotional triggers and was able to better understand the deeper issues. It brought him in touch with deeply rooted shame.

Identifying outer child behavior is a process, not a quick fix. In fact, the outer child thrives on a false sense of closure and easily hides behind the illusion of control. Many abandonment survivors, overwhelmed with a tumult of feelings, may crave immediate gratification feel-good relief. Mastering the outer child is a slower process but a powerful vehicle for real change.

Another way to include Outer in the daily dialogue is to let Little talk to Outer in the presence of Big. Here's a sample of Marie's diary:

BIG: Outer, Little has something to say to you, but there are ground rules you need to follow. The rules are, you can't argue or criticize Little. Just listen quietly.

OUTER: But.
BIG: No buts, Outer. You need to hear about the consequences of something that you did.

OUTER: (silence)

LITTLE: You ruined everything, Outer. I was feeling sad and upset because Paul left early. And then you had to go and freak out like a maniac. You just couldn't stop yelling and screaming. And now look what's happened. Paul is mad at me and I am even more sad and alone.

OUTER: But
BIG: Remember the rules, Outer.

OUTER: (Silence)

BIG: Do you remember what you did, Outer, that got Little's feelings so upset over Paul?

OUTER: I was only trying to help.

BIG: I know you meant to protect Little, but sometimes by fighting for Little, you make things worse.

OUTER: Well, what did you expect me to do? Paul left early and I felt very rejected and mad.

BIG: Do you remember what you did?

OUTER: I yelled and accused him of being selfish and inconsiderate and I cried.

BIG: And what happened next, Outer?

OUTER: He got really mad and now he's not calling anymore.

BIG: Are you aware of how Little feels?

OUTER: Yeah

BIG: How?

OUTER: She is sad and alone because Paul is mad at her because I yelled.

BIG: That was very good, Outer. Can you understand your part in it?

OUTER: Yes. But I was very mad at Paul for acting like he didn't like me.

BIG: Never mind, Outer. You leave handling the feelings to me. Your job is to find enjoyable things to do, not to take over when something goes wrong or when Little gets upset. That's my job.

Again, these dialogues involving Outer won't instantly resolve a conflict, but they will help you clearly distinguish feelings from behavior. Your task is to keep them separate so that your adult self can better make decisions and control your actions, rather than letting your outer child gain control.

Identifying outer child behaviors benefits your inner child as well. It lets you blame you unacceptable, counterproductive behavior on Outer and attribute only the pure, valid feelings to Little. Little can look directly to your adult self for reassurance and love, without taking the rap for Outer's behavior.

Establishing a strong alliance between Big and Little frees Outer from its need to defend your feelings. Your adult self now controls how you express your feelings, releasing Outer to use its assertive energy in other, more productive ways.

ADDING OUTER TO THE VISUALIZATION EXERCISE

Another way to put the outer child concept to work is to add it to your visualization exercise.

Many do not find it necessary to include Outer in their dialogues or visualization exercises. They keep Outer in check with the daily inventory alone. That quick, daily reminder is all they need to control their frustrations and reactions and change old patterns.

Daily outer child sightings serve as a powerful vehicle for personal growth and development. As your ability to spot your outer child improves, you act more and more out of free choice, no longer tied to outdated behaviors. You finally determine your own life direction.

[This message edited by beach at 10:27 AM, November 20th (Thursday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 11:15 PM, January 10th (Saturday)

Another bump for anyone who wants to discuss.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 12:39 PM, February 2nd (Monday)

for shockdbyndbelief

[This message edited by beach at 12:40 PM, February 2nd (Monday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
heart_tears
Member
Member # 22283
Default  Posted: 1:09 AM, February 28th (Saturday)

I bought this book not too long ago and read the whole thing, but now I find myself picking it up again here and there to re-read parts as they apply. The author is right in that we definitely cycle through these stages, and sometimes in no particular order! I am finding it very useful to identify stages as I'm in them, and it helps me know that my feelings are very common.

I am definitely no stranger to the rage cycle, and I have entered into the lifting one. I find both of these stages to be the easiest ones, because they feel more empowering. But I don't always know what to do with my anger (how to express it in constructive ways). But I have very much enjoyed feeling an increase in confidence during the lifting stage.

Shattering, Withdrawal, and Internalizing the Rejection are the hardest for me. I had to re-visit some of these areas after contact with my WS, and it was very painful. I often feel very alone and lonely during these stages. It feels especially hard to go to work when I am feeling this way. I get depressed, and want to pull the covers up over my head because I feel flawed, and very self-conscious.

I re-read what the author said about Internalizing Rejection last night. There was one part in particular (about self-esteem) that stood out to me, and was difficult for me to read. It is as follows-

Most people recognize signs of low self-esteem in themselves and others. They include:

*Difficulty asserting yourself

*Feeling inhibited in certain situations

*Indecisiveness

*Excessive need for approval

*Difficulty tolerating imperfection in yourself or others

*Feeling inadequate, not good enough, not up to par

*Becoming intimidated around those who seem to have a stronger ego

*Comparing yourself to other people, feeling they have what you don't

*Being oversensitive to criticism

*Avoiding competition for fear of failure

*Fear of performing- you're convinced you'll make a fool of yourself

*Fear of succeeding- you don't want to make others envious of you

*Letting performance anxiety hold you back professionally

*Ruminating about how you behaved during a stressful social encounter

*Worrying about how others perceive you

*Letting insecurities interfere with your relationships

*Avoiding the spotlight but resenting the lack of recognition you receive

*Difficulty expressing anger or negative feelings directly

*Difficulty asking for what you want, especially if it is emotionally important to you

*Difficulty accepting compliments

*Wanting power and authority but having difficulty marking your territory

*Feeling small, weak, easily taken advantage of

*Putting yourself down before others have a chance to

*The need for immediate gratification (more is said about this in the book)

[This book also let me know that it is perfectly normal to have stages of feeling like you're a toddler having a tantrum, or like an inconsolable, crying baby].


"To everything,there is a season,
and a time to every purpose, under Heaven." -Book of Ecclesiastes

Posts: 283 | Registered: Jan 2009
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:44 PM, March 1st (Sunday)

((((heart_tears)))

I feel for you. I do have low self-esteem and it is rooting from abandonment issue.
In my culture, we were taught that H is sperior than W, and think about other people first. I am being Americanized now though. MIL taught me how. :) Oh and H taught me to speak up, too, because he is not a mind reader and that he failed that area (he was telling jokingly). In our household, H is always superior, had verbal traits, and strict one with the kids and they respected him, but they were afraid of him.

Post A, I reconnected with my self, and read many codependency and abandonment books. After I was forgiven, I felt that H and I are now equal partners. I was then able to applly the knowledge that I learned from books how to put the boundary and how to respect myself and then I was able to speak up my truth without feeling afraid of H's reaction.

I am not really focused person, like not centered especially at work. I still feel like out of balance. I might check out Reqall. At work, I am not really motivated and my mind wondering off and check in, if not post, I lurk SI. I want to work on that right now.

It boils down to,,,, it is rooting from your family of orgin (how you were raised) or childhood.

I am going to share something from the book "Recovery of your self-esteem - A guide for Women" by Carolynn Hillman

Why we are the way we are.

We devalue ourselves andtreat ourselves in harsh, judgemental, overly critical ways because we have been taught to do so. Each of us comes into the world with her own personality and temperament traits. Some emerge from the womb as lusty babies who spend most of their our family members - usually with mother's first, and the with those of father, siblings, and other housefold residents. Gradually the circle widens to include additional relatives, family friends, peers, siblings, friends, teachers, coaches, neighbors, camp counselors, clergy, and many others who touch our lives in some way. In each of these interactions there is the opportunity to be nurtured and CARESSed( C - Compassionate, A - Acceptance, R - Respect, E - Encoragement, S - Support, S- Stroking).

A noted longitudinal study of babies from the age of two months into adulthood shows that a crucial determinant in a child's emotional growth and development lies in how the parents respond to the child's temparament. If the parents react to the child's personality with loveing acceptance, the child grows up to feel good about herself, and capable of many things. If the parents react with annoyance, anger distance, or by being overwhelmed, the child grows up feeling troubled and sometimes gets into trouble. Some children are lucky enough to have parents whose personalities mesh welll with theirs, or have parents who are able to appreciate their child's personality even though her temperament clashes with theirs. Others are not so lucky. They have parents who mainly disapprove of them, who constantly criticize them and demand that they be both different and better. Still others have parents who largely ignore them, parents who pay attention to their children only when their children are catering to their needs. The children of these critical, distant, or self-involved parents grow up feeling that they are not good enough to merit their parents' love, so they constantly criticize themselves, hoping to improve and thereby gain their parents' attention and approbation. The most unlucky of all are children whose parens seem to hate them - nothing these children do is ever right or can ever please. They get the message that they should never have been born and , in identification with their parents, hate themselves for being here and having needs. They spend their lives trying to make up for what they believe to be their badness. Most people's experiences growing up were somewhat mixed. Perhapes, one parent was nurturing and CARESSing, and the other was withdrawn, or critical, or absent. Perhaps both parents were sometimes overly critical, and sometimes caring and compassionate. Maybe one parent was both self-involved and critical or over-involved and critical. Perhaps your parents divorced and remarried, or only one remarried, and you grew up shuttling back and forth between two very different households. The possibilities are endless.

First though, I want to make clear that we are examining these styles of parenting to help ourselves, not to blame our parents. I firmly believe that most parents, no matter how much they might not have me our needs, did the best they could at the time - and they too were once children and suffered the raveges of family and society. This doesn't mean, however, that we don't have a right to feel angry , sad, or hurt about many of the things that our parents did or didn't do. It is important to acknowledge these feelings and work through, so that we are not burdened with them for life. We all know that "she who does not learn from history is bound to repeat it". Our history is important to each of us so that we don't perpetuate what started in childhood.

If you have the over-involved parent, Those of us who had intrusive parents may have impressive accomplishments in the world - we developed a lot of strength in pulling away from mother - but we are not impressed with ourselves and do not feel successful, because inside we feel bad and guilty. We hurt in a place where we cannot let others in, though we may feel that it is the others who are not there or will not enter. We do not realize that it is our own door that is not really open.


When we have the distant parent, enter adulthood longing for closeness, while often afraid to be vulnerable. We search for the magic that will make us "like everyone else" - loved... accepted... valued. This becomes our holy grail, our golden fleece. Only instead of traveling the world searching, we search within ourselves - to figure out what is wrong, missing, lacking, what is off-putting about ourselves. If only we could find the magic key, we could turn it and make everything right.

When we have the narcissistic parent, we often have difficulty being empathically connected to others. We cannot give what we never received. though we may have pleasant, charming personalities, can be entertaining and erudite, and often have lots of people we call friends; underneath we feel emmpty. Our relationships usually lack real intimacy, and it is very difficult for us to CARESS and be CARESSed. As we head into mid-life we often become increasingly depressed, as our youthful good looks start to fade and people become less interested in playing mirror to our sparkling surfaces. We long to be seen ... and appreciated.... and loved - but have little idea how to let another human being get really close to us. Moreover, we usually are not aware that we are not close to the people in our lives. We just know that something seems to be driving us, and making us unhappy, and we easily feel picked on and not appreciated.

The insecure parent - some mothers or fathers are so insecure themselves that, despite their best intentions, they can model only insecurity to their children. Their children sense these parents' insecurity and view the parents as weak and inadequate. These children are likely to regard themselves, too, as insubstantial, feeling "How can I be worth when I am the product of such and inferior being?"
In adulthood some of these children will identify with the stronger, perhaps bullying parent, while others will identify with the insecure parent and become insecure and overanxious to please. Insecure women tend to seek our authority figures (often mates) who seem sure of themselves, hoping to find a confident parent who will bestow on them the mantle of worh and adequacy. Unfortunatelly, all too often, insecure women choose mates whose aura of self-confidence proves to be ersatz.

And then the highly critical/abusive parents.....

and so on....


sorry. You can get more from reading this book. Recovery of your self-esteem - A guide for Women by Carolynn Hillman (recommended by BrokenRoad)


Anyways, my point was that keep good image (appearance/status), is rooting from trying to get approval from parenting (or authority) figure by acting certain way.


Hope this makes sense.....

I am tackling this issue now as matter of fact by reading the book .

I think, this is a timely article for those of us who are working on self-esteem.

February 26, 2009

Five Things

A Self-Esteem Exercise

Our primary relationship in life is with our selves. No one else goes through every experience in life with us. We are our one permanent companion, yet we are often our worst critic. To remind ourselves of our magnificence, we can do this exercise: Five Things I Like About Myself.

Begin by writing down at least five things that you like about yourself. This is not the time to be modest. If you are having trouble coming up with a total of five items, you know that this exercise can really benefit you. Be sure to include more than your physical attributes on your list, since our bodies are only part of who we are. If you are still struggling with what to include on your list, think of what you like about your favorite people, because these traits are probably qualities that you possess too. Another way to complete your list is to think of five things you don't like about yourself and find something about these traits that you can like.

Continue this process for a week, thinking of five new things you like about yourself everyday. At the end of the week, read the list aloud to yourself while standing in front of a mirror. Instead of looking for flaws to fix, allow the mirror to reflect your magnificence. You may feel silly about standing in front of a mirror and reading aloud a list of your admirable attributes, but it might just bring a smile to your face and change the way you see yourself. Remember, it is when you feel the most resistant that this exercise can benefit you the most. Because we are constantly looking at the world, instead of looking at ourselves, we don't often see what's magnificent about ourselves that others do. When we take the time to experience ourselves the way we would experience someone we love and admire, we become our best companion and supporter on life's journey.

Source : dailyom.com


Let's add the word "really" in your sentense.

Think of it this way.
You are your own care taker and a cheerleader. By writing out is kind of like enphasise more (and which means you are doing proactively, not passively...) and it will help ingrain into our brain and over time, it will be able to help developping the solid confidence within us.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 9:06 PM, March 1st (Sunday)

Oh, another thing...

did you know that you can learn how to turn rocks into gold? That's the next step....

That's what the book "Recovery of your self-esteem - a guide for women" by Hillman tells readers that by using own self-criticisms to set goals for ourselves. I am working on this list now....


For example in the book:

one woman's self criticize list

#1: Has something terribly wrong with her that makes people not like her - Truth is many people like me and I get along well with them. Some people, especially people who are condescending, narcistic, and competitive, I have a great deal of difficulty with".

Self-criticism #2: Not assertive enough. - I need help to become more assertive.

Self-criticism #3: Shy - I am becoming less shy, but need further acceptance and encouragement so I can feel more willing to put myself out there.

Self-criticism #3: Always feeling sorry for self. - I need to have more compassion for myself.

Self-criticism #4: Big baby, bothered too much by her problems. - I am not a big baby, but I do too easily interpret the actions of others as negative reactions to me. I also too easily accept other people's dissapproving opinions of me, and assume they know the awful truth about me. I need help to feel better about myself and to develop a system for evaluating myself that is not based on others' harsh judgements.

Self-criticism #5: Lousy job, no relationship, no children, no future - a big failure. - I need to learn to accept myself and my shortcomings and have compassion for myself while giving myself the respect, support, encouragement, and stroking that I need to be able to pursure my goals with belief in myself.

You get the idea?

I am working on it, and it is hard.



If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
heart_tears
Member
Member # 22283
Default  Posted: 2:25 PM, March 11th (Wednesday)

Thanks, beach.


"To everything,there is a season,
and a time to every purpose, under Heaven." -Book of Ecclesiastes

Posts: 283 | Registered: Jan 2009
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 10:45 AM, March 30th (Monday)

bump for hurtingalot.

You are welcome, heart_tears


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
FaithFool
Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 11:29 AM, March 30th (Monday)

I think I'm going to buy a copy and give it to STBX.

He needs to ingest this information to work on his FOO issues. Bigtime.


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17294 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
FaithFool
Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 11:29 AM, March 30th (Monday)

double post

[This message edited by FaithFool at 11:29 AM, March 30th (Monday)]


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17294 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
hurtingalot
Member
Member # 22194
Default  Posted: 1:17 PM, March 30th (Monday)

Thank you Beach!!!!


ME- 41
H - 48
Married - 17 yrs. together 20
2 - kids
Divorcing

Posts: 126 | Registered: Dec 2008 | From: NE
Charli
Member
Member # 15601
Default  Posted: 2:21 PM, April 18th (Saturday)

Thank you, beach :)

I am reading this now, and absolutely loving it.

I'm having some trouble with my dream house though, and I wonder if anyone has any advice...

Right now, WSO and I are in complete limbo. We love each other, but there are big issues on top of his A. I am trying to do my part in fixing the things I can change in me and the way I interact with him. I don't know whether he is capable of doing the work he needs to. He has made some steps that were extremely difficult for him, but I don't know if he can address his commitment issues stemming (I think) from abandonment. I also have abandonment issues, but they have the opposite effect on me: I cling too hard. We are both afraid of real emotional intimacy.

Because I don't know whether we will be together anymore, I am trying to construct my dream house in a way that doesn't involve him and doesn't remind me of him. However, when I first walked into WSOs mother's house six years ago, I literally thought "this is my dream house". I just absolutely loved the way she had decorated the place... and it keeps intruding on my dream house. The living room is mine, but the kitchen is still all hers... it is what I would have dreamed for myself, but having it cropping up in my dream house now makes it feel like a sad and unsafe place. I love to cook and eat with friends, the kitchen is very important to me. Also, one of the suggestions is to imagine a new partner, a family maybe. I'm not thinking of a new partner because I'd like to be with WSO - but again, he keeps appearing in my dream house with me, and again it makes me feel sad rather than strong and safe.

Did anyone else have these kinds of problems with their dream house? Did your partners/exes or reminders of them keep popping into it? How do you deal with that?


me: 31, F, XBSO, getting on with my life!

Posts: 1573 | Registered: Aug 2007 | From: The Netherlands
FaithFool
Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 2:33 PM, April 18th (Saturday)

Funny, maybe it was the writing on the wall all along, but whenever I would go into meditation during yoga, my visualizations rarely included STBX, even before D-Day.

My dream house is extremely sparse, but extremely expensive and modernistic, which he would absolutely *hate*

All smooth surfaces and walls of windows overlooking the ocean, no clutter to block the view of the infinity pool.

He's never even entered into the equation in that department, thank goodness.

It's the one place I can go where he doesn't take up any space inside my head.

[This message edited by FaithFool at 2:34 PM, April 18th (Saturday)]


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17294 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:33 PM, April 19th (Sunday)

Charli,
I don't know whether he is capable of doing the work he needs to. He has made some steps that were extremely difficult for him, but I don't know if he can address his commitment issues stemming (I think) from abandonment. I also have abandonment issues, but they have the opposite effect on me: I cling too hard. We are both afraid of real emotional intimacy.

When you mentioned about intimacy issue in your statement, I wonder how each of your family of orgines are.

Like were either you and your WSO's parents, distant and strict, or overly involved? That's you may want to look into it.

My parents were emotionally too distant, and always compared with other people's kids and they were always right. We didn't know how to deal with things when people got upset, sad.....etc. It was very dysfunctional...

Have either of you checked out about each FOO in IC or something?

My dream house is located by the beach, and very open and has a big window.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
1DLW
Member
Member # 21971
Default  Posted: 9:19 PM, April 28th (Tuesday)

I have been reading this book too, since Beach suggested it

I just realized I haven't done much on the dreamhouse except the deck. My BH asked, is there a house? LOL I think I just enjoy the outside so much, that's the place that makes me feel most calm and serene.
I went there yesterday when I was having a biopsy, it did work, and made me feel better.

I haven't been able to do the dialog, it just feels too weird to me. I have found the characteristics of big, little and outer, but I just feel weird making them have a conversation kwim?
I do have to focus a lot reading it because it seems to be focused on present abandonment, and my issues are from the past and my FOO, but I am finding it helpful


WS 42

Posts: 483 | Registered: Dec 2008
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 8:52 AM, May 6th (Wednesday)

1DLW,
I haven't been able to do the dialog, it just feels too weird to me. I have found the characteristics of big, little and outer, but I just feel weird making them have a conversation kwim?

Yes, I know what you mean. How about use your favorite stuffed animal as a Little? And you talking to her as a Big you? If you have any trouble remembering the childhood memories, try looking at your pictures when you are little.

Would this help?

[This message edited by beach at 8:53 AM, May 6th (Wednesday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 3:46 PM, June 11th (Thursday)

bump for shyguy


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
TrustedHer
Member
Member # 23328
Default  Posted: 5:00 PM, June 15th (Monday)

I'm reading this right now and having trouble with all the dialog stuff.

It just seems so silly and foreign to me. I understand, I think, what she's trying to achieve, but I really don't know if I can ever visualize myself made up of 3 separate beings inside, and facilitating conversations among them.


Take care of yourself. There's a great future out there. It won't come to you; you have to go to it.

Posts: 5134 | Registered: Mar 2009 | From: DeepInTheHeartOf, TX
WantingGodsHelp
Member
Member # 23690
Default  Posted: 3:21 AM, June 16th (Tuesday)

I am thinking of buying this one and giving it a go.


BS: me 31
WH: him 32
Married 5 yrs, together for 1 year before M
D-Day: Dec 2008
kids: 0
Status: S

Posts: 139 | Registered: Apr 2009
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 9:31 AM, June 16th (Tuesday)

TrustedHer -

I really don't know if I can ever visualize myself made up of 3 separate beings inside, and facilitating conversations among them.

I tried to explain in 1DLW's question above. I normally did it in my head, but how about try using a stuffed animal as a Little you(helpless infant/toddler) and put it next to you on the sofa and then use something else as an Outer child (Self-centered/ rebelion) put it next to Little.

The situation of missing x and a dialogue would be like this.

Little : " I miss my x (abandoner) and I need to hear his/her voice. I want my x. I want my x. "

Outer: "Why did he/she left me? he needs to take care of me. I will call for you. I should matter to him/her"

You as an adult : "Outer, remember when you called last time, how she/he was cold towards you? NC= No New Hurts. I will take care of you Little. I will not abandon you. I love you no matter what and take care of you for the rest of your life"

I am not sure, if anyone else have other idea, or have tried something else...


WantingGodsHelp -

[This message edited by beach at 10:41 AM, June 16th (Tuesday)]


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
sick_and_sad
Member
Member # 22958
Default  Posted: 10:27 AM, June 16th (Tuesday)

Just wanted to jump in and say I just bought this, too, and so far am really impressed!

When I get a little farther, I'll come back and read this thread...

Thanks for starting this, beach.


Me 50
Twin boys 16
On our own since 5/21/2009


Posts: 506 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: Minneapolis
formerlyteflon
Member
Member # 16725
Default  Posted: 7:24 PM, July 8th (Wednesday)

Very impressed with this book so far.

Count me as one of the readers who never realized how far back my abandonment issues go. My unreliable, untrustworthy parents sure did a number on me!

I was skeptical of the visualization exercises, so imagine my surprise when I started sobbing tears of relief while mentally building my dream house!

I'm quite curious about another of the author's books, From Heartbreak to Connection, but it looks like it's out of print and the lowest price I've found is $55.


“There is a limit to the amount of misery and disarray you will put up with, for love, just as there is a limit to the amount of mess you can stand around a house. You can’t know the limit beforehand, but you will know when you’ve reached it."

Posts: 930 | Registered: Oct 2007
FaithFool
Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 7:38 PM, July 8th (Wednesday)

Just coming back to say... this book rocks!


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17294 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 9:17 PM, July 8th (Wednesday)

FF - Yey!!

formalytefron - have you checked out half price book store?


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 7:21 PM, July 14th (Tuesday)

Bump


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
sofresh
Member
Member # 22912
Default  Posted: 12:15 PM, July 15th (Wednesday)

I am reading this book right now, as well as Codependent No More.


ME BW 30 & DS 14 mos.
STBXWH 38 sociopath, SA living with OW 25
D day #1
4 F/R's and corresponding D days
For unhealthy relationships, Dr Seuss would probably say to us…
“Be happy its over, don't cry because it happened”

Posts: 630 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: NY
sofresh
Member
Member # 22912
Default  Posted: 8:27 PM, July 18th (Saturday)

Thank you Beach for the instructions on speaking to the inner child.
It was truly moving. I am trying it.
I haven't gotten there in t he book yet because of court and respective cross-motions and meetings as well as the bible, and child rearing books

sad, i see my inner child as me when I was about 3/4, Farrah Fawset(sp) hair, crouched over the ground, looking down.

my successful me is, just married in my wedding dress(oblivious me) but nonetheless confidant, radiant, still involved in my artwork and doing well at work.


ME BW 30 & DS 14 mos.
STBXWH 38 sociopath, SA living with OW 25
D day #1
4 F/R's and corresponding D days
For unhealthy relationships, Dr Seuss would probably say to us…
“Be happy its over, don't cry because it happened”

Posts: 630 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: NY
stunned-dad
Member
Member # 3488
Default  Posted: 1:33 AM, July 19th (Sunday)

http://joy2meu.com/emotional_abuse.html

For those that don't have access to the book the following link contains several modules similar to many of the themes in the book.

Read the first one the click on links of interest including healing the innner child.


BS-Me 47 WS-Wife 40 Kids-D13 S10
DD 11/20/02 Affair lasted 2 1/2 years. OM sexual predator 12+ prior affairs. Wife had suppressed sexual abuse/rape issues she hid.

Life gives us us sorrow so we can have something to measure happiness with.


Posts: 6152 | Registered: Feb 2004
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 4:36 PM, July 30th (Thursday)

bump for TexCir.

Thanks for sharing the link, stunned dad.


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
ThriveNotSurvive
Member
Member # 22093
Default  Posted: 1:12 AM, September 9th (Wednesday)

I just bought this for $3.50 on Amazon. I'm hoping it will help me.

Lets see, my mom divorced my dad and left when I was 6

My best friend committed suicide when I was 13

I suffer from pretty severe social anxiety which is just one rejection and percieved abandonment after another

My first love married me then he went and died 3 months later

Now this infidelity and STBX leaving for OW.

I think like smallmouse I will also be looking into why I am so co-dependant as well.


Strength, Courage, and Wisdom, it was inside of me all along - India Arie

Some women are Angels, and when someone breaks our wings, we simply continue to fly...on a broomstick if we have to...cuz we're flexible that way.


Posts: 1582 | Registered: Dec 2008 | From: Las Vegas
cd103
Member
Member # 1713
Default  Posted: 1:20 PM, October 5th (Monday)

Bump


To Do No Harm

Posts: 5608 | Registered: Jul 2003 | From: planet earth
inconnu
Member
Member # 24518
Default  Posted: 8:03 PM, November 22nd (Sunday)

I finally picked this book up today.


Say what you wanna say and let the words fall out...honestly
I wanna see you be brave

Pretty pretty please, don't you ever ever feel
Like you're less than, less than perfect


Posts: 12144 | Registered: Jun 2009 | From: TX
inconnu
Member
Member # 24518
Default  Posted: 12:17 AM, November 23rd (Monday)

got to the part about the withdrawal stage. wow, that explains so much of how and what I was feeling a month ago.

it's a tough read though. lots of self-examination.


Say what you wanna say and let the words fall out...honestly
I wanna see you be brave

Pretty pretty please, don't you ever ever feel
Like you're less than, less than perfect


Posts: 12144 | Registered: Jun 2009 | From: TX
lucie
Member
Member # 6773
Default  Posted: 7:34 PM, November 29th (Sunday)

Bumping because it's such a great book!


Very happy, the rest doesn't matter anymore.

Posts: 5778 | Registered: Mar 2005
scout
Member
Member # 3986
Default  Posted: 1:08 AM, November 30th (Monday)

*waves at beach*

Just wanted to join in with the "This book rocks" crowd. I was first introduced to the book by beach, several years ago here on SI... however I did not read it until my IC made it one of the focal points of my therapy. I wish I had read it sooner after DD. Dealing with the abandonment issues originating in my childhood has finally given me a solid foundation to heal from the pain of infidelity.


Scout, you got sand. ~DS

Posts: 11741 | Registered: Apr 2004 | From: Solitary refinement
beach
Member
Member # 7533
Default  Posted: 12:27 PM, November 30th (Monday)

Hello, Scout!

I am so glad you finally got to read this book! Good luck with your healing journey!


If you don't find peace with yourself, you cannot find anywhere else.
Appreciate and cherish what I have.

Posts: 8680 | Registered: Jul 2005 | From: midwest
takeadeepbreath
Member
Member # 26025
Default  Posted: 7:55 PM, January 6th (Thursday)


got my hands on a copy

giving it a go

better late than never


tadb


Posts: 465 | Registered: Oct 2009 | From: west coast
wordsfail
Member
Member # 30289
Default  Posted: 1:18 PM, January 27th (Thursday)

I'm reading it now. It looks like I dipped it in blood as I tend to make notations in the margins with red pen at parts that "speak"' to me. Fitting color. I feel like my life is bleeding all over the pages.


SHE/ME: 40's
WSO: 40's
OW: x-BF, 30's
Met 11/06. Moved in 1/08. Engaged 8/09. EA 11/09. PA began ??. My Mom died 12/09. DD 2/8/10. WSO is with x-BF now. My Dad died 12/10.

Posts: 192 | Registered: Dec 2010 | From: wish I knew
GraceisGood
Member
Member # 17686
Default  Posted: 7:12 PM, March 16th (Wednesday)

http://www.breitenbush.com/events/july29-31.html

Just wanted to let you all know that she will be doing another workshop and there is plenty of time to sign up if you desire as it is not until July.

I have not been to Britenbush, but think that this will be my first time there if I can follow through and go.

Grace


We have a tendency to think the love offered us is a reflection of our worth and value.But in actuality,it's a reflection of the person that is giving it.We love out of who WE are-not because of who the receiver is.At least in terms of real love.TSMF

Posts: 3434 | Registered: Jan 2008 | From: how far the east is from the west
Whisperingwillow
Member
Member # 24550
Default  Posted: 12:46 PM, March 25th (Friday)

My copy arrived today. I had a big big cry just a few pages in.

I have known for a long time, pre-A, that I have abandonment issues, and it is something I am talking about in IC. Read the first chapter and it really resonated. I'm leaving it there for now - usually if I get a "self-help" book, I devour it in one sitting and it makes very little difference to my life. This seems different.

I am wondering about the Workbook, working through two of them together, I don't know if anyone has done this.

I am beginning to think WS has abandonment issues too; but that is as far as that train of thought is going. I have given up reading any kind of relationship books or infidelity recovery books and have finished MC unless WS accepts responsibility for his actions, acknowledges the depth of pain his behaviour has caused me, shows remorse, apologies, goes for IC etc etc, which could be never. So whatever happens, I really want to recovery and thrive, this book seems like a great companion on that journey.


Posts: 300 | Registered: Jun 2009 | From: London, England, UK
Newtwood
Member
Member # 21154
Default  Posted: 2:12 PM, March 30th (Wednesday)

I just ordered this one. Can't wait to get into it. When I read some excerpts it was like reliving my life and it all made so much sense now.

I know why I 'LOST IT' on D-Day to the extent I did.


Faithful Wife of 24+ yrs: Me
WS: Him
OW(s): AFF Skanks/GRANDMOTHERS!!!

Status: Struggling Everday to
Survive

what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another-Anatole France


Posts: 2181 | Registered: Oct 2008 | From: North Carolina
Whalers11
Member
Member # 27544
Default  Posted: 12:53 PM, April 2nd (Saturday)

I just bought this one... looking forward to reading it.


Me: BGF - 33
Together 11+ years - not married, no children.
D-Day: 2/9/2010
OC Born: 10/9/2010
Status: He chose OW/OC and left immediately.

Posts: 2211 | Registered: Feb 2010
cass
Member
Member # 24261
Default  Posted: 3:56 PM, April 2nd (Saturday)

Trying to lay my hands on it too.


DDay - April 2008
Me - 54 and doing great. Found myself again and loving life
Him - who??

I can see clearly now, the rain is gone (Johnny Nash)

Those who stir the shit soup get to lick the spoon!


Posts: 4965 | Registered: Jun 2009 | From: UK
bumbed
Member
Member # 31024
Default  Posted: 12:10 PM, April 10th (Sunday)

I have been reading the book for about 3 weeks as well as Living in the now. They seem to be good companion books.

I have been having problems with the Big and little me. It seems like little just makes things up and we don't seem to be able to get to core issues from my childhood.

Is it possible that I don't have issues from my chiildhood but have been so deeply scared by my first husband leaving after 20 years with "I'm not happy" and then the second one leaving after 25 years with "We have nothing in common... I'm not happy".
Not a confidence builder

Could I be going back too far and there isnt an issue in childhood?


I rather suspect like all the worst things in life, making sense of it will not happen.


25 year relationship D day 1/28/11
The we door is closed but the ME doors are opening


Posts: 471 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: a better place in Michiagn
Helen of Troy
Member
Member # 26419
Default  Posted: 12:20 PM, May 5th (Thursday)

I have a love hate with this book. Loved the descriptions of what happens to a mind from shattering to lifting. Loved reading that my reactions weren't crazy, that they were normal given the situation.
Hated inner child and big me and little me stuff.

Posts: 4693 | Registered: Dec 2009
heart_in_a_blend
Member
Member # 24191
Default  Posted: 2:23 PM, May 5th (Thursday)

I didn't even realize that I had abandonment issues until my husband abandon me. It almost killed me. I was so frighten I didn't know what to do.

It's been three years and when I look back at my childhood I realize why I feel this as an adult.

I was the last child, and my parents where tired of having children so they just left me to on my own while they went on vacations. I was suppose to go to school, but of course I didn't.

Anyway, maybe I should give this book a try.


In life, much of what one grieves one never had.

Posts: 3036 | Registered: May 2009
GraceisGood
Member
Member # 17686
Default  Posted: 10:05 AM, July 29th (Friday)

OK, I DID follow through and am going today for the workshop with the Author of this book.

Please, send me any mojo, good thoughts, energy, prayers, whatever you can spare would be greatly appreciated. I have been searching for so long and hope I get something out of this, not expecting the moon, but hoping for a little something.

Will update when I get back if anyone is interested.

Grace


We have a tendency to think the love offered us is a reflection of our worth and value.But in actuality,it's a reflection of the person that is giving it.We love out of who WE are-not because of who the receiver is.At least in terms of real love.TSMF

Posts: 3434 | Registered: Jan 2008 | From: how far the east is from the west
Hope24
Member
Member # 9344
Default  Posted: 9:09 AM, November 20th (Sunday)

Bump


She packed up her potential and all she had learned and headed out to change a few things.

Posts: 7605 | Registered: Jan 2006 | From: Poolside
Strongmama
Member
Member # 33062
Default  Posted: 9:25 AM, November 20th (Sunday)

Thanks Hope24

Posts: 662 | Registered: Aug 2011
Jayne Doe
Member
Member # 32664
Default  Posted: 2:58 PM, November 20th (Sunday)

Wow - thanks for posting this... going to definitely order this book.


Everyday is a blank canvas, and only you hold the brush.
30y M traded in for a POM (pathetic Old Maid 46, 2 kids from different dads. never married)
S 11/11, D final 1/14.

Posts: 1454 | Registered: Jul 2011 | From: Suburbia, Arizona
formerlyteflon
Member
Member # 16725
Default  Posted: 1:29 PM, February 12th (Sunday)

If you found "Journey From Abandonment to Healing" helpful, you'll get a lot out of "Journey From Heartbreak to Connection" and it's available for free online!

http://www.abandonmentrecovery.com/workbook.frame.member.html

It's a workbook that I've been curious about since I read "Journey From Abandonment..." but it's out of print and $100+ on Amazon. All you have to do is register at the above site (it's free) and download the workbook as PDFs. I'm in my first serious relationship since D and hit a wall a few weeks ago with some abandonment stuff. I've printing out the PDFs and am writing in the workbook and I'm almost finished. I feel like this could be a turning point in my healing.


“There is a limit to the amount of misery and disarray you will put up with, for love, just as there is a limit to the amount of mess you can stand around a house. You can’t know the limit beforehand, but you will know when you’ve reached it."

Posts: 930 | Registered: Oct 2007
Topic Posts: 76