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Coming to terms with myself
September 10, 2005
11:16 pm
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wornout1
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September 24, 2010
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Hi to everyone,
I'm brand new at these boards, and at the realization that I'm codependent. I've read quite a few threads and most people seem so nice and helpful.
I am in the middle of figuring out whether or not I should end my marriage. I've been married for almost 5 years, and we have two kids. I also have 2 other kids from a previous relationship, that live with me and my husband. My first relationship was hell. He lived for drugs and nothing else. When I married my husband I thought I was being careful. He drank on weekends, and never did drugs. After our first daughter was born, everything has steadily gone down hill. he now still drinks on weekends, but he drinks till he passes out, which isn't early, because he also does a lot of drugs. It has been a gradual change. Only the other day did I realize that his pattern of behavior was becoming more like my ex, and I estimate that at the ate he's going, it will be the same hell for me all over again in about 6 months. You'd think I would have left already. But it's so hard. I live in a perpetual state of chaos and confusion. I'm a ticking time bomb. My kids are just waiting for me to go off. I just the other day started reading Melody Beattie's "Codependent No More", and it is so helpful. I am starting to realize that I am responsible for me and my children. I am not responsible for my husband, my addict brothers, or anyone else. For as long as I can remember, I have been a people pleaser. It seemed to me that it was the only way people would like me is if I gave, gave, gave, and did, did, did. But I'm starting to realize that it didn't make people like me, it made people use me. That is easy for me to see. What's not so easy is trying to not care whether people like me or not. I realy need to be liked. I really need praise. When i don't get, I feel like my efforts were wasted an I try harder, exhausting myself, and getting angry too. I just want to be loved. I want to not have to be the strong one all the time. Sometimes I wish I would have the problem, so others would take care of me. But sadly, when I have had problems, illnesses to be exact, no one seems to care. They expect me to hurry up and recover, so I can be the responsible one again, the caregiver. I actually felt bad about my husband having to take care of our daughter when I was in the hospital having our second daughter. So I asked to be released early. The next day was Thanksgiving, and although we were going to my aunt's house, I felt I needed to bring something, so after I got all 4 kids to sleep, I stayed up until 2am making pumpkin rolls. Why? because everyone else was bringing something, and I already said I would do it. I didn't want to let them down. I see now how I shouldn't have felt that way, but what I'm trying to figure out is WHY? I am sorry that I'm rambling. I just need someone to listen, and I don't have anyone that I know will listen. I am only 26, and i don't want to live the rest of my life like this. I don't want to ruin my kids lives, or have my daughters grow up to be like this.

September 10, 2005
11:26 pm
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hollow
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You want people to like you. You don't value yourself accept through pleasing others. I've never had this problem. If people don't want to empathize with you to hell with them. I understand but all I can say is to get over the fear you must face it. So next time don't feel you have to do anything for Thanksgiving and wait. No one likes a doormat. Right?

September 10, 2005
11:36 pm
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wornout1
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No one likes a doormat. Right? Exactly. Beliving this and "living this" are two different things. I am trying to live it, but I'm not doing so well. Old habits die hard.

September 10, 2005
11:55 pm
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cindle
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September 27, 2010
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It takes a lot of energy to be a people pleaser and caretaker. That energy would be best spent taking care of yourself and realizing that you need to be healthy both physically and emotionally for your children. Your husband is an adult and can take care of himself. I would recommend an Al-Anon meeting. You'll find women there in very similar situations.

September 11, 2005
8:31 pm
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CODA_Mom
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Hey (((wornout1))),

Gosh, girl, at this rate you will be "burnout1" in no time.

You have 4 precious children in your care, and you are understandably in need of support and care yourself. Good for you, to recognize that they are your main concern. Part of keeping them as a priority is to say "no" to others who are trying to impose their agendas on you. Having to stay up until 2:00 a.m. making rolls for a dinner after putting 4 kids to bed is absolutely ridiculous!! (I say that with the deepest respect for you, but with disdain at those who wouldn't insist that you not bring something).

For your own sanity, you need to set strong boundaries with others. Boundary-setting means letting others take responsibility for their lives and choices and you taking responsibility for yours. It may be difficult for you to do this at first, but if you can get past the false guilt feelings it does get easier.

Your people-pleasing, your over-giving and lack of boundaries all point to self-rejection and low self-esteem. Somewhere back in time you did not receive the affirmation that you needed and came to believe that you didn't deserve it (shame). You have been losing yourself in others, trying hard to be who you think they want just so you won't be abandoned.

I would like to tell you that you sound like a very strong, intelligent young woman. Try to write a list of all of the things you like about yourself or others have said are good things about you. Let go of people-pleasing, it is a relentless performance trap...you need all of that wasted energy for yourself and your kids.

Insist on accountability in your hubby. If he doesn't want to get the help he needs, get help for yourself. Go for counseling, if you have insurance that will cover it. His present drinking and drugging behavior will keep your family in chaos and confusion. Do not cover up or make things easy for him to continue with what he is doing.

As your thread title read, "Coming to terms with myself", you are starting on a journey of self-discovery and growth. All growth requires that we pass thru hard places, and that is where you are right now.

Remember, we are all here for you because many of us either are on that same road or have made it further down.

Blessings to you, wornout1, I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

((((hugs))))

CODA_Mom

September 11, 2005
9:05 pm
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pixie123
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Hi...I totally understand where you are coming from. It makes it really hard to walk away especially when you have kids. I find it's complicating my leaving...mostly because you can never completely walk away. He is after all, your children's father and they will be involved with him for the rest of their lives. It's so painful to try to walk away knowing that you can never completely rid of him. I'm there right now. I just want to run, but he can make me come back cuz I have his kids. What do you do?????

September 11, 2005
10:02 pm
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star eyed
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September 30, 2010
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hi...i have realized that i too am a people-pleaser. It makes me feel silly and weak... i guess that's because when I feel that way, it gives everyone else control, but not me... that hurts....

i have been working on it alot in therapy and have come very far... i just want to say that i understand where you are coming from .... what happened for me in therapy was realizing where that came from (my upbringing and not getting the affirmation that I guess i needed or wanted from one of my parents)... so for the last few months, i have surrounded myself only with those friends who are positive supports to me... by spending time with them, i've learned about the good inside of me and learned to value myself and not have to do things in order to get the affirmation that made me feel like i was worth something-- i'm learning to get from the inside...

wornout, you will wear yourself out because your going on a path that never will end -- you are seeking something from people who cannot guarantee that-- the only person who really matters is yourself-- if you like yourself, others will too--

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