No relationship that's vertical is healthy. Vertical relationships are top-down, meaning, one partner requires the other to be socially, financially, emotionally, and/or sometimes even physically vulnerable or weakened in some way. That's not a true partnership. True partnerships are made up by two equals. There's an even exchange of ideas and energy, thanks to mutual respect. Friendship is similar. True friends never ask more of you than they do of themselves. Kindness and compassion are also part of equal relationships--being sympathetic to a person's pain means you're not in competition with that individual. You only feel competitive with those you see as a social threat. There's no such thing as "friendly competition" in that regard; being competitive requires an underlying ruthlessness. Ruthlessness does not include compassion, kindness or wisdom. Rather, it's synonymous with multiple pathologies from the Dark Triad.
If the person you care for receives romantic interest from someone other than you, it's natural to feel threatened. Why? Because you now have competition. Feeling insecure in new relationships can sometimes kill the relationship before it even begins thanks to a lack of self-confidence. When you know someone has fallen for you, and you them, yet, they're keeping their distance--it almost always has to do with a sense of insecurity and/or lack of confidence on their part. Past-hurts can make us cautious, insecure. Those past hurts represent trauma. We get "gun shy" when we have experienced significant emotional pain. When that happens, it's because we are still living in the past.
Abuse of any kind can control you without you even knowing it. If you suffered abuse in a relationship for a long period of time, unless you become more self-aware, you may find that your future relationships don't stand much of a chance. You'll be inclined to let the right people slip away and pick the wrong ones--or, those who will continue to hurt/abuse you.
If you lack financial independence (usually as a result of a vertical or abusive relationship), you may not be able to leave. Anyone who abuses you does not really love you. You're only "loved" if you consent (through your continued presence) to being an emotional, physical, fiscal, and/or psychological punching bag. This eats away at your self-esteem and self-confidence over time and can lead to things like anxiety, depression, insomnia, obesity, unemployment, and suicidal thoughts. Even if you know you did nothing to warrant the obvious inequities, you may still feel a sense of self-loathing at "allowing" it to happen in the first place. But it's not your fault. You are already responsible for the consequences of another's actions. Don't burden yourself with regret that isn't yours, too. Instead, use that energy to open proverbial doors and windows, create cracks and crevices--anything that will facilitate a future "escape."
How do you know if someone you just met is a future abuser?
Abusers have traits from the Dark Triad--ruthlessness is present in all three (psychopathy, narcissism and Machiavellianism). Part of that ruthlessness includes coming on really strong before you even meet, as well as high expectations of you and your time, energy and resources (like texting throughout the day, constantly questioning where you're going and who you'll be with, showing up unexpectedly to check on you, etc.). If you're asked for your ring size after three days, or invited to move in after just a few weeks--these may be signs of a person who wants to control you. Of course, there are people who just know what they want, too....
There's a difference between a person who wants to control you and one who is simply being honest about how they feel. You can tell the difference because an honest person will be consistent--even when you're not. You may back off, feeling uneasy at their obvious enthusiasm for you, especially if you've suffered any trauma in relationships and generally feel unworthy of someone who is physically attractive, educated, maybe appears to have a modicum of wealth, or, perhaps has more cultural knowledge--in other words, "too good to be true." When you've been burned in the past, it may be hard to believe anyone who knows their own value would also see yours. But, somehow, the guy or girl you're interested in does, in fact, love you. S/he legitimately cares for who you are--nothing else that you may see as problematic matters because the love is real, pure and totally awesome. And yes, people like that really do exist. When we finally figure out our feelings, the love lasts a lifetime. We won't ghost you or disappear. We're patient. We know you're worth the wait...well, we know true love is worth the wait. We may sigh a bit and roll our eyes as we wait for you to catch up...but we'll still be here when you finally do. And that's what counts!
Can I tell you a secret? No one is perfect. We are ALL beautiful. We ALL have talents. But not everyone has the confidence to own up to who they really are. That person on the inside who wants to belt out a Mariah Carey song at the bar during karaoke, but chooses to let opportunity after opportunity for growth, expansion and joy pass you by. That's part of self-sabotage. You may be new to RebeccaHousel.com in 2020--but we spent most of 2018 dealing with that very subject. Pieces like #Amen and #Choices come to mind. Ultimately, we all have the lives we want to live. Unless you're being held physical or fiscal hostage (which absolutely happens), you are your own jailer. Complacency (or being so comfortable in a bad situation, you no longer want to leave) is your enemy--not your abuser.
Abusers win when they get us to hurt ourselves. Makes their job as our personal saboteurs so much easier.
Never give up or give in if you can't leave because you've been stripped of your self-worth, confidence, health, and/or personal wealth by a partner or spouse. If you feel unsafe, talk to anyone you know who can help at least give you a place to stay for 3-6 months or longer. Don't be afraid to explain why you are frightened and need help. Considering suicide means your abusers have won. But people who hurt you don't deserve to win--you do!
Screenshot the list below and say it every morning when you wake up and meditate on it each night before falling asleep:
1. I am built for victory!
2. I am favored with a unique set of talents and skills that can and will help me gain financial Independence.
3. Because I exist, so does my equal.
4. I give love so deserve to receive it and will find someone who wants to love me the same way I love them.
5. I am not responsible for the negativity of others. I am only responsible for my own thoughts, feelings and actions.
6. I am worthy of the respect that comes with true kinship.
7. I am worthy of long-term love and commitment.
8. My success is inevitable.
9. I believe and receive the blessings in my life (list out a few of the things you are most grateful for--perhaps healthy children, a roof over your head, food in your fridge, a working toilet, electricity, clean water, friends, family...even having decent shoes is something to feel thankful for!).
10. Everyday miracles are possible and probable--they can and will happen to me!
The most important relationship you will ever have is the relationship you have with yourself. Saying affirmations is a way to communicate with your inner spirit--it increases your energy and helps you start and end the day on positive notes, which means you'll get more rest and be more productive overall.
People tell you who they are and what they want--as long as you listen. Remember to continue to work on your discernment skills by trusting your gut instincts. It will help you to avoid insecurity and self-sabotage. If you haven't heard from someone you love, it just means you haven't heard from them. Don't allow ego and pride to make you weak in your resolve to be victorious, successful, loved, financially sound, as well as mentally and physically healthy.
This is your year!!! Communicate positives to yourself and others. Be suspicious of those who ask more of you than they do of themselves--those people are not your friend and they don't love you. They are using you for their own ends. Steer clear and keep speaking positives into your own life.
You really are built for victory. We all are. We just have to choose to start living a victorious life by choosing to believe it is possible...because, it is.