I had another interesting session today. I went in feeling very angry today; lots of anger bubbling under the surface with no place to go. It’s been a busy week and frustrating one too! I am angry with my ex for his lack of support, I am angry with a man I fancied for telling me that I could be myself with him and then turning on me when I was very honest; saying he couldn’t handle my frustrations and that I should implicitly trust him even though he hasn’t earned that trust.
I am also a little angry at me for being so giving with people who don’t deserve it. I started chatting to a guy on an online dating app and we seemed to have a good rapport. We were chatting constantly for about a week and then arranged to meet. At the time we were supposed to meet. I got a text from him saying that he hadn’t left his place yet because his mum in Sicily had kept him on the phone for two hours. He asked if we could meet two hours later and said I was being overdramatic when I told him how he had inconvenienced me.
I struggled with myself for a few minutes and then I told him that I wouldn’t be waiting two hours for him. I went on to have a lovely afternoon by myself and took a long walk by the river and had delicious street food. I then deleted his number. No fucking way! It’s not good enough for me. Poor excuse and no real apology and on top of that telling me that I am ‘overdramatic’. I don’t need that in my life. Not anymore, I have always been surrounded by people who invalidated my feelings and by extension me. I don’t want that anymore. I want people who take responsibility for themselves and don’t turn everything on me.
But I was angry at myself for the hope that it created in me and the fact that I even bought him a book because it came up in our chats.
So that was the backdrop of my week and I went into my counselling session today holding all of that. My counsellor asked me what I was ‘hungry’ for and what I needed. What do I want from the app. I don’t know. Companionship, a potential someone-special, love and to be loved, to feel less alone, togetherness and intimacy. I have since deleted the app because its a free one and one that seems more for hook-ups. I started getting so many messages and it was just too exhausting emotionally and mentally trying to work out who the fakes were.
I drew fire and water today in my session. The water is the clam, the inner wisdom and quite voice within that I find it hard to listen to when faced with the promise of romantic love. But it is there, and my counsellor made me aware that I did listen to that quite voice when I told him that I wouldn’t be able to meet two hours later. I laid a firm boundary and I showed that I wasn’t going to accept being treated like that. That’s new and unfamiliar and uncomfortable for me but I did it. Boundaries are so hard for me to maintain but I am learning new ways.
Deleting the app, replying to the man I liked and saying that he hadn’t exact;y earned my implicit trust was also another way I asserted myself powerfully. Going on to treat myself to street food and great afternoon by the river was also a way I channelled that anger I felt at being let down.
I will get there, the road is bumpy and it feels like an uphill struggle but I am moving forward despite the discomfort and hurt and disappointment. I try not to be angry with myself because I gave the gut the benefit of the doubt when I got him the book. My heart is open and I have hope; something I wouldn’t want to lose ever.
Yet I know I have to keep listening to that quiet voice that knows, even in moments when I want to do the opposite and go the way I have always gone. The fire in my drawing is the anger and anger is fine. Looking at the fire with its hues of orange and red on that paper was liberating. I am allowed my anger and I can integrate and channel it. I can express it creatively and productively to push me forward. It doesn’t have to be hidden and kept down. If I can draw it, I can allow myself to feel it without thinking I have done something wrong.
Finally my counsellor made me aware of the fact that maybe there is a part of me that doesn’t trust people. That part of me that hasn’t been allowed expression because I have been so busy trying to be the good, agreeable girl so that I could be liked and wanted. That part of me that went underground because I had no choice but to trust my primary caregivers, the two people who didn’t deserve my trust.
That part that doesn’t trust needs acknowledgement and acceptance too and I can integrate it somehow so that it can be used to protect myself. I can learn how to judge actions and let people earn my trust and respect before I lavish it so freely on strangers who use good words and seem kind and trustworthy but don’t deserve it. It’s all hard work. But I will get there.