When I saw J on Tuesday I told her that I messaged B and she wanted me to address why his response made me feel guilty. I stumbled over my words and held back emotion as I tried to explain that I hated that he remembers me as being “so sad”. Those words are just ringing in my head. “so sad”. I was “so sad”.
B’s not wrong to say that but I hate remembering how sad I was back when I was a teenager. So sad.
After a spat with Michael I began to realize how my past intimate relationships were dictating my current relationship. I am essentially punishing Michael for what my ex’s did because I can’t go back to them and say, “fuck you”. So sad.
And then it crashed, but a good crash, and I realized that I live in denial about how much pain I’ve experienced and what caused that pain. I think I see that as being weak. I feel like if I’m sad then I’m a fake. So sad.
Rationally, I know all of that is not true. In the words of Linkin Park, “even the people who never frown eventually break down.” I’ve had this conversation with some of my Mad colleagues about how we go around presenting, training and sharing about recovery but then we’ll go home and self harm, or purge, or think about suicide. It’s about living though, pushing yourself through the hard times, not about forgetting everything, or trying to forget.
I’ll have to admit/accept that I was “so sad” and that what got me there was bullying, abuse, self hate and finding myself in less then desirable situations.
I still need to focus and be proud of who I am now, which is happy for the most part.
As I wrote before I was having issue understanding radical acceptance and maybe it was just because the exercise didn’t chose good examples to teach me how to do it. Radical acceptance is something that I have been doing for a little while now but just didn’t have a name for it. It was just acceptance to me.
One task from the radical acceptance exercise that doesn’t make me feel complacent is: Review a non-upsetting event that happened in your life many years ago and use radical acceptance to remember that event without judging it.
About 3 and a half years ago I left yet another controlling boyfriend. We had been together for 14 months, which was my longest relationship at that time. I found myself upset that I had wasted that much time on someone who wasn’t going to change his controlling behaviours. So how to radically accept this moment?
I can’t take back that the relationship happened. i’m out of the relationship now and it’s time to look forward. I only have control over my future.
The concept of radical acceptance isn’t very difficult for me. In the upsetting moment it is hard, and I know that this strategy is for the beginning of those moments so I don’t have a full blown angry one, but I don’t really hold on to things the way the woman in the example did by being mad at her friend for 3 days and starting up the argument again. I do let things go….until we fight again on a possibly unrelated topic….so I guess temporary or hidden acceptance doesn’t count.
Work in progress!
Next in the chapter on Basic Distress Tolerance is “Distract Yourself from Self-Destructive Behaviours” (this is what I need)