Acceptance: Clearer Understanding
I have been trying to practice acceptance without a full understanding. I was listening to the alcoholic, giving more attention to his pleas than to the pleas coming from inside of me.
I know I had to accept him as a drinking alcoholic, so I tried. And I’ve felt terrible for trying to accept him. Getting angry about how he acts and the mean, inconsiderate things he does. The thing is, i was trying to accept his drinking without accepting how I feel about it and all it’s consequences.
I began to draw my boundaries long ago but was doing so incompletely. I was trying to listen to only what I felt was bearable, and still drawing the line based on ‘reaction’, based on what I expected from him, not solely on what I needed or wanted or know I felt.
I didn’t know that accepting him does not work without ‘really’ accepting me. If I do not accept how angry I get/am and act on that, I am still not accepting his alcoholic self. If I do not stop accepting the lies and the using and the manipulation and act on how I really feel about those things, I am not accepting him as he is right “now”. If I do not do what I really need (in this case distance myself from him, not lend him my car, not listen to his explanations, not act like we have a safe enjoyable relationship all round), I am not accepting. Accepting him and myself as we are does not mean accepting his dishonesty in my life. It means, if I am feeling unmanageable, I accept that he is less than considerate and honest and sensitive and aware and accepting that that ruins my every day, and then I make a change. If his presence disrupts my every morning, my every afternoon, accepting that he is not caring in the way I need means allowing him to be that way and me being making a choice that saves me from the suffering, so choosing to be away from that.
I can’t forget that he can choose. And I can’t forget what he chooses when I have told him how I feel.
That is what a as really confusing, because I was taught to ‘put up’ with things, that that is what made me “Wonderful”…
That is why it feels so awkward, uncomfortable and even shameful…I feel ashamed that I can’t accept him in my life, his lies, his rationalizations, his verbal insults and insensitivites… because I love him, or I always thought I have. He makes me feel so bad for not putting up with his pain. Because I love him. Or I thought I did.
The fact is, that whether I love him or not, I am supposed to love me first! I am supposed to accept my feelings first. I am supposed to act on my discomfort and pain first.
Acceptance is supposed to be mine first. I am supposed to accept that I can not accept such an incomplete love from him. It may hurt him that I cannot accept his behaviour.
But what I am supposed to do first and foremost is not accept being unhappy. I am supposed to accept that I need a partner who cares about himself so that he can care about others, especially me. I am supposed to accept me for what I really want to feel.
I can accept that he wants to stay in unhappiness.
But I am supposed to accept and ACT ON the fact that I want calm, ease and joy for myself.
Posted on January 31, 2014, in 12-step, AA, Addiction, Adult Children, codependence, emotional abuse, emotional sobriety, Inner child, Meditation, recovery, Relationship, withdrawal. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.