Relationships During Recovery the inner work

handling outside criticism

There was a period of time in my life where I was hell bent on convincing the world that I just DGAF.

 

I was angry, critical, outspoken and completely hated authority.

I worked on portraying this confident / ‘you can’t fuck with me’ personality as a way to protect the deep pain and sadness that I wasn’t ready to face and was completely sure I could override.

It was also a means of survival as I couldn’t show any real emotion in my home without it being made fun of or used against me.

 

So, I spent a good half of my life being this way.

And while I don’t see that person I was portraying as a complete façade as I think there has always been a part of me that is naturally sure of herself, … what the truth is, is that I was doing this from a place of fear.

 

I needed people to see me as together.

I needed people not to question me.

I needed people to see me in a way that I wished I could see myself.

I needed control of some kind.

 

The second problem was, … This image I created for myself was also beyond secretly dependent on outside approval ratings.

I wasn’t doing anything for myself or anything that felt remotely true to me.

I can thank my mother for this.

 

For most of my life with her, I was conditioned to believe that without her approval – my decision was shitty.

Without her agreement, I wasn’t to make that move.

She was the judge, jury, guru, lawyer – etc.

Every step I took, I thought of her.

Every move I made, I contemplated her reaction.

Every door I slammed, every dollar I spent, every mile I drove – her voice would appear in my head.

 

And I couldn’t admit it at this time … but without the development of my own self-worth or self-agency combined with the dependency of my mom’s agreement and her constant eyes on me– I became obsessed with what everyone else thought of me.  

 

I practically became the most silently self-absorbed person I had ever met.

I was constantly battling what I thought the perception was.

‘Was I too intense?’ ‘Was I too loud? ‘Are they talking shit about me?’

I took everyone’s behavior personal. Even when it wasn’t.

It was never-ending and I felt so much shame about it.

 

 

Let’s fast forward to my decision to not only go no-contact but to choose to speak about it publicly. 

It was a huge one and one that I didn’t take lightly.

I was definitely met with my own criticism and judgement but also came across outside confusion and persistence to defend my mother because of ‘what I didn’t know about her.’

 

This is how I handled it and what I’ve come to realize:

 

As I’ve gotten to know myself, loyalty is one of my biggest values.

I know that I’m either all in or all out.

I don’t operate in the middle and I sure as fuck don’t do anything half ass.

Most importantly, once I’m in – it takes a lot for me to walk out.

I will put in the time, communication, patience and will always exhaust my options before I pull the plug on anything.

I mention this because I know in my heart that I’ve done everything I could have possibly done to make the relationship with my mother work.

 

I have cried, pleaded, compromised, screamed, yelled, been patient, punched walls, kept secrets, forgave and tried again.

The problem wasn’t me and what I was or wasn’t willing to do. The problem was that I wanted to change the role in the relationship and she wasn’t willing to grow and understand that.

Which is okay. I stopped trying to convince her otherwise.

Learning how to handle outside criticism when it comes to your decision making.
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With that, I’ve worked so hard on becoming comfortable and clear about my efforts that I no longer feel the need to gather my evidence to plead my case.

The case is over.

Maybe I won. Maybe she won. I don’t give a fuck.

It was never about winning. It was about feeling the way I want to.

I accepted what needed to happen and I made my move accordingly.

I’m allowed do that.

I’m allowed to ‘go against’ these exhausted notions that you need to respect your elders or your parents, — ‘just because.’

I also no longer allow anyone to try to change my mind or put their unasked for advice where it doesn’t belong.

I worked my ass off to make things right but no matter what I did – nothing seemed to change.

Again, that’s okay, — I just now put my energy back into me.

I am finally now loyal  … to me.

 

And let’s also touch on the fact that no one wants this life.

No one wants a broken relationship with their family, much less their mother.

And if I meet someone who hasn’t experienced it or just ‘can’t imagine’ – rather than allow them to judge or question my decision making – I encourage them to just be grateful.

 

We all have decisions to make in life that aren’t the easiest and sure as fuck aren’t preferred.

But we also have to take control at some point and that includes living in reality and accepting what is.

Which for us, was/is really fucking hard to do.

But we do it anyway.

Why that isn’t always looked at as admirable and inspiring, is truly beyond me.

Anyway, …

 

That’s what I did, that’s what I chose to do.

With that acceptance, comes the acceptance (I try to remember this over and over again) that some people are going to understand me and some people aren’t.

That’s okay.

Their confusion or doubt towards my lifestyle is their shit, not mine.

I’m not here to please everyone.

I’m here to build a life I feel great about.

To learn the lessons assigned to my soul contract so that the next physical body my soul enters, won’t have to do so much of this work.

To raise children who don’t have childhoods to heal from.

To be me.

Fully me.

 

And unfortunately that includes a life without my parents and most of the people I once knew.

I cried.

I tried.

I bent a lot.

I tried again.

But no more.

 

So if you come across people who don’t understand you, — at this point, expect it.

People can only see what they are willing to see.

People can only feel what they are willing to feel.

I stopped getting mad about that and just kept it moving.

 

If you’re worried about outside criticism so much that it’s paralyzing your decision making – work on becoming secure within you.

What you’re looking for inside others, start giving to you.

Whether that’s love, loyalty, acceptance or validation.

Start taking on that role.

Be mindful of how much weight you give to other people and their opinions about your life. 

And remember that people can only question you, if you’re questioning you.

 

And lastly, trust that you were meant for this life.

You were meant for your experiences to learn what you need to.

BUT that doesn’t mean you have to put up with anything.

You are allowed to feel how you want to feel.

And you being okay with what you’re doing is enough.

That’s where the true power is.

Even when others try to tell you otherwise.

 

 

You’re also never alone. And you never will be.

Believe me.

XO 

 

PS — If you’re looking for extra support and guidance as you navigate the difficult waters of healing, my signature program; The Scapegoat Daughter’s Guide could be the perfect fit for you. Click here to sign up for the waitlist where you can learn more and also be the first to know when we re-open the doors. 

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