No matter what kind of relationship you have with someone, people are in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. In other words, it’s not just some chance encounter as nothing is ever coincidence. They are there to be your teacher so you can learn whatever lesson(s) you need to learn. And believe it or not, you’re doing the exact same thing for them.
This got me thinking about the men that I had dated during my life and my marriage which ended officially (documents and all) in June 2017. As I was thinking about each relationship, I noticed one common thread that was sewn throughout each one.
I gave my power away…
…to every man I was in a serious relationship with since college.
I gave my power away. I gave my power away. I gave my power away.
To me, this screams self-worth issues, abandonment issues (fear of losing them), and I certainly had very low self-love and actually zero self-confidence. Some of these relationships would be considered emotionally, mentally and verbally abusive, not to mention controlling and manipulative.
Thinking about this breaks my heart and brings tears to my eyes as I can’t believe I allowed myself to be treated in this fashion. I did not stand up for myself and if I did, I knew I would be on the receiving end of someone screaming at me and gas lighting me. If you’re not familiar with the term gas lighting, according to google dictionary:
manipulate (someone) by psychological means into questioning their own sanity.
Isn’t that fucked up? Just so you’re aware, this is a VERY common thing, so if you’re in a relationship where you feel this is occurring (whether you’re male or female), know that is it NOT right, NOT healthy and a form of mental abuse.
When I gave my power away, I found that I was fearful about speaking up for how I was truly feeling with specific situations. I would go along with what my partner ultimately wanted and since I was a people-pleaser their happiness always came before my own. If I did not want to do something, I would still do it…always wanting to please and then feeling like shit afterward.
I was always putting my partner first and 100% completely undermining my needs, my wants, my values, my morals, my worth, my love and my very own self-respect. Yes, there is such a thing as putting others before you, but you must know to do so without jeopardizing your own identity. In trying to fix, to help, to rescue others, I lost myself in the process.
If you’ve ever flown on an airplane before, what do the flight attendants always tell you about the oxygen masks?
Place YOUR mask on YOU FIRST, then assist others.
You can’t be something to someone if you aren’t something to yourself first. Learn to trust yourself. Learn to listen to your inner guidance system because it will never steer you in the wrong direction. It’s what most people refer to as ‘your gut.’ What does your gut tell you? It’s time you started to listen to it because THAT is where your power lies.