Love Addiction

Dependence on love

The ways of overcoming the love dependence

In this article "Addiction is a substitution of Love" there were described the causes and the manifestations of dependent attitudes and the differences of dependence on love and a real love. The purpose of this article - to chart a path out of the state of dependence, to learn how to build with another person mutual satisfactory relationship - a relationship of love.

As it has already been described, the reasons for a various sort of dependences (love, alcoholic, narcotic, game, food, etc.)  are in the childhood. We cannot change the childhood, but we are aware of our problems and we are able to work on them and use our relationship with loved ones.

Few parents who were so wise that they gave as much in the childhood the love, care, acceptance, freedom and the control as necessary. More often than not, love, freedom and control was too abundant.  Therefore most of us are more or less dependent in the relationships, even without realizing it. The problem occurs when the degree of dependence is high, when the other person begins to occupy all the space in our lives when a failure occurs. This causes suffering.

How to cope?

Admit there is a problem!

The first and a very important step is awareness (and recognition) that you are in a dependent relationship. Without the recognition of this fact, any changes are impossible.

People who have dependent relationship with other people (as well as having a tendency to other addictions - overeating, alcohol, drugs, etc.), have the following personal characteristics:

•.  They have low self-esteem, there is a lack of love for themselves (sometimes it can manifest itself as arrogance, a sense of superiority over others); 

•.  They are poorly aware of their needs and desires;

•.  Unable to meet their own needs and desires; 

•.  Do not know how to ask for what they need; 

•.  They have a lot of repressed (unconscious) feelings;

•.  They don't know how to say "no"; 

•.  The psychological bounds are either blurred or concrete;

•.  They present the fear of life, there is increased anxiety (sometimes unaware);

•.  The fear of rejection is great;

•.  Feelings of guilt and shame plays a big role in their lives;

•.  Heavily dependent on external evaluations.

Analyze whether you have these signs. Recollect circumstances of the childhood, which have made you a dependent person.

Often in childhood in the order to get the love and attention of the parents, kids have to give up their true feelings from their true selves. Often the child is loved not for the fact that they simply are and not such what they are, but only when it conforms with the concept of the parents, to the family norms. In most families, there are unwritten rules that prohibit the open expression of feelings, direct honest communication. In such families, it is not acceptable to be frank, vulnerable, to show imperfection, to openly discuss the issue. Anger is considered an unacceptable feeling and often the child is forbidden to show it. Boys can shame the tears, comparing with a girl mock fear of the child. The child has to suppress the need for love. These rules are often formulated as unconscious installation: "Do not think", "Do not feel", "Do not trust".

As a result, you can generate a false "I", if you feel that your true "I", your true needs and feelings are unacceptable to the people around you. When, as a child, you naively tell the truth and get punished for it, you will soon learn to keep quiet or say what they expect of you. As a result, you get used to focus more on what is expected of you than on your private world. By suppressing your feelings, thoughts, ideas about yourself and the finest features of your personality that leads to your true "I am" hides - both from others and from yourself. You no longer feel it, cease to be in contact with it. It builds up the false "I", which was comfortable and loved by your parents. Many messages and disciplinary forms that teach us to deny our true "I", given to us by parents or other notables who believe they are doing it "for your own good". It is also important to remember that parents tried to make their best and they used the skills and knowledges they have.

Without getting in contact with your true feelings, with your true “I”, it is impossible to cope with dependence. Not realizing your true needs and desires, you cannot love yourself, gain confidence in yourself.


How to forgive parents and to grow up

If you will not manage to forgive your parents, to adjust warm emotional attitude with them, to understand that parents are not good or bad but what they are, with all their positive and negative qualities (like all people, like you actually), you will not be able to raise your self esteem, you will not be able to treat yourself, respect yourself. This is a psychological law. And without a good attitude towards yourself, without respect for yourself (and others), you will not be able to break free from the chains of dependence.

As a practical exercise, you can make two lists of outstanding problems in the relationship with your parents (mother and father separately). In the first list, write everything that was said and done in relation by your mother (father) at the time when you were a child and that, in your current opinion, does not bring you any good and may even cause damage. In the second list, list everything you would want your mother (father) would have said and done when you were a child and that you think would make your life easier now, would go in your favor.

The first list shows that you have not completely forgiven to your parents, something for which you may still have on them personally. This is what constrains you and assists your dependence. It is necessary to get rid of it, if you want to escape from the trap of dependence.

The second list contains all the things that you still expect from the parents or from the partner. Here all is specified that you still hope that someone, other than you, should do it for you. You have to take care of this by yourself or ask your family to help you meet these needs. You will be bound by addiction until the problems are resolved identified in the lists.

It is important to acknowledge your feelings of resentment, anger, sadness and pain that you put down, it is important to allow them to speak. Genuine forgiveness does not deny the truth about your feelings. It is important that your resentment or even hatred towards parents was recognized. This is the beginning of the path to true forgiveness. When your hate and anger will be completely expressed (no need to pour out the wrath on parents – you can express your feelings in a letter, and then burn it), make space for empathy and sympathy. This will make it possible to truly understand your parents, to see them as victims. They did everything they could, they need healing, just like you. They also do not have enough love from their parents, and for them to control you - it's the only way familiar to them receiving love. Show them the opposite. Become a biographer for the parents - it's a good way to establish emotional intimacy. Ask the parents about their past, be interested in their present life - separation anxiety is treated exactly by emotional closeness.

When a person reaches a certain degree of independence in their family of origin (and it does not matter whether the parents are alive), it surely has a positive impact on all the other important relationships. To be separated, it is necessary to accept parents easy and to not be indignant any more with their mistakes, to accept them for what they are. Only then you can accept yourselves.To separate, it is necessary to calm the parents and do not resent their mistakes, accept them for what they are. Only then can you accept yourself. "Honour thy father and thy mother, that thy days later on earth may be prolonged" (Exodus 20, 12), says the commandment, but after reading sincerely, forgive and let go all the negative feelings, to establish warm emotional connection. Not separated from their parents, unable to connect with loved ones. "And He said: for this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife" (Matthew 19.5,6.)

As parents, it is necessary to forgive yourself. You can repent and ask forgiveness from the person to whom to blame, but not to forgive yourself and carry that sense of sin through the rest of your life. To forgive - it means letting go. If you do not forgive yourself for something you did wrong in relation to your parents, it also connects you with the parents, as though you have not forgiven them. And this relationship is not positive, it makes it difficult to become an adult. God forgives us, why do not we forgive?


Learn to express your feelings

Dependence, first of all, is an illness of feelings. Dependence characterized by impaired ability to adequately feel. Dependent people have a lot of suppressed feelings. The person thinks they are peaceful and good, no one will say a bad word, but they have a lot of, for example, suppressed anger. But even if we deceive ourselves, to deceive others is difficult. Suppressed anger can sometimes be shown accidentally in a frowned eyebrows, sharpness of our voice, sharpness of judgments, categorically of our assessments, in condemnation of another person. Particularly close people feel it and do not believe our "kindness."

It is very difficult for us to recognize negative feelings such as jealousy, self-pity, envy, greed and hatred. All these feelings are considered bad, and we in fact wish to be good. But in order to let love into your heart, the heart must be freed, clear - to recognize and acknowledge their repressed feelings, to learn to express them correctly, inoffensive to the other person, to learn to transform them, to manage them. To be suppressed does not only mean the negative feelings – it can be suppressed for love and care, it can be suppressed by the need for intimacy with another person intimately, because we might not realize it in childhood.

Feelings are the signal for us that something is going on with us. For example, we feel fear, which signals the actual or imagined danger. Or we feel anger. Together with anger we can receive a signal that our emotional demands, our desires chronically are not satisfied, or that our borders are violated. Getting angry is bad and we suppress our anger as an unacceptable feeling, not understanding, a reaction to that was anger. Sometimes we suppress negative feelings as though automatically, without even realizing it, because this unconscious mechanism of suppressing unacceptable feelings developed in our childhood.

The suppressed feeling leaves a field of our consciousness, but does not cease to be. For suppression of feelings we need energy – our force is required. The suppressed feelings collect and turn to despondency and disbelief in themselves  (auto-aggression - as it is called in psychology, aggression on itself, self-destruction). Unbeknownst to us, they start to have a negative impact on our relationships with people. The more we suppress, the more unexpected and more furious it will be to the manifestation.

Suppressed feelings block our energy, make our behavior constrained, making the tension in our relationships with people, depriving us of the strength and naturalness. We can make a comparison with the river. When the river flows freely and water movement does not interfere, then as you go further to the sea it slows down, the river becomes more calm and smooth. But if the route of the river has a barrier, current stops, the water will accumulate until the dam does not break and the water will not flow turbulently. The riverbed may change. So we deform ourselves. 

Generally, people who have a lot of suppressed feelings in life feel vulnerable. They are often caught in a situation where someone is angry at them, and they can not resist it. Such people cry a lot, afraid of anger of others, feel depressed, unhappy, victims, dependent (woman's cry often have hidden anger and fear). And, as a rule, they are indeed the target for aggressors. Because, constantly suppressing their feelings, they cannot defend their personal boundaries. Their aggression is directed inward, at themselves. 

There is another type of dependent people - they are able to defend its borders, they know how to say "no", but violate others, require a partner and don’t have any right to demand. These people seem to be strong, willing to take responsibility for another, to control the other person. But deep down, they are vulnerable and they have a very great need for love and affection in their heart's open wound. Their control - is a way of obtaining love, the other way they do not know. They think (they may not be aware of it) that if they do not take everything under control, they cannot get what they want – love. This is their childhood experience. But, as a rule, they in such a way also do not receive love. The partner, tired of their control, jealousy, nagging, can leave them. After all, love lives only in freedom – it withers in prison.

Suppressed feelings can lead to psychosomatic illness - blood pressure, cardiac neurosis, gastritis or peptic ulcer, asthma, back pain, spasms, etc. Diseases caused by psychological reasons, cannot be cured with pills - they still come back.

Often in relationship the person has any negative feelings. Sometimes these feelings specify that our interests are broken. But sometimes the negative feelings that a person is in a relationship with a loved one, may indicate that it is a distorted perception of reality. For example, the person would like, that their partner acted in a certain way. When they do not do so, the person has a "righteous anger", they take it as a personal insult, and so from time to time. Life in this relationship becomes complicated.

And the reason may be that, the person have overestimated or have improper claims on their partner. When they expect from the partner of any certain behaviour which is not, it violates their personal territory. Person overstep the limits, when they don’t feel their own borders. When they don’t really know their own real “I” and live with false “I” without accepting yourself. Nothing puts such harm to relationship, as sensation of the person, that they cannot be themselves next to you. Because, not accepting yourselves, imposing on yourselves restrictions, you automatically impose the same restrictions on all other people. And then, when they violate these restrictions, you come to the indignation! You do not give opportunity to others to live as they like. Because first of all, you do not give yourself an opportunity, you are afraid to be yourself, because you consider yourself bad, thinking that you should relax and let go of your desire - so there and then, there will be trouble.

But in fact the part of those feelings which we suppress, is fair! Some of them truly indicates a problem in the behaviour of the other person. Let's say we are irritated, we are angry, feel discontent – we can get the message that we have wronged, that our interests are violated, violated our rights, our emotional demands are not satisfied. Often our anger and resentment signals the need to preserve our integrity when it is threatened. And we can and should express the feelings, to give a signal to the other person that they are not right toward us that we needed something from him. Suppressing in ourselves something that gives people information about their behavior, you're depriving their ability to know the consequences of their actions. Without the response of other people it is very difficult to change destructive patterns of behavior. The unique and very important expression of feelings is inoffensive way for other person of their expression. If they really love us, they would be happy to fulfill those desires that are fair and not based on dependencies. 


Restoring of function to express feelings releases a loop of dependence. There are no “bad feelings”, there is an important reason for each of them. It is important to understand the reason and to pay attention to it. When you have any feeling – it is a signal. It is important to understand, what this signal is, what your demand chronically is not satisfied, or what your inner distortion signals this feeling. If you have any negative feelings that are too violent and you are concerned that it may cause harm to your loved ones, it is important not to suppress them, but every time they occur, understand them, to accept, survive and not feel guilty for their existence.

If you feel, that you do not own your feelings and they own you, you can say to yourself STOP (you can see the eye of prohibitory sign, or come up with a way which will help). Then take a few deep breaths and hold an exercise to fill the heart with love. For example, it is possible to concentrate attention to areas of heart, to present heart in an image of a flower, which is closed, but under beams of the sun starts to unfold around them and exude beauty and aroma. One can imagine the heart in the form of a vessel, which is filled with Divine love, Divine energy and emits this energy around itself

If that doesn't work, take a walk, take a break, escape to another room until you're calm and will be able to analyze what had happened. To curb the anger, it is possible to use exercise “the Internal tiger” (see in the end of the chapter). After you have calmed down, ask yourself, whether your feelings are true in this situation? How much of your anger is righteous? What could induce you to such violent reaction in a given situation? (Most men hide behind anger their sadness or fear). Lead analytical work – what's the reason for these feelings? Whether your territory is broken, whether your interests are infringed upon, or you have unfair expectations from other person?

Depending on the analysis, proceed further. If your interests are infringed upon, quietly, politely, without pretensions and lovingly tell the other person, tell them how their behavior has caused you, what behavior you expect from the person, you were good with them, ask them about what you want. Find out what bothers them, what they would like from you, what they feel.

If it is your unfair expectations, then it is necessary to deal with them – why, what and where these feelings were, what does your unsatisfied demand cover, is it possible to satisfy this demand peacefully. The anger or discontent, certainly, are a signal that in relation to you, the partner has broken something, but … If you have misconceptions about your personal territory and you think that their personal territory is yours, you will experience anger when the partner is doing something on its territory, not the way you want and your anger will be exclusively your problem, from which it is necessary to understand. 

It is important to accept the other person for what they are - it is the foundation of a healthy relationship. Man tries to assimilate a foreign territory when they do not feel it. It's so much easier. It's easier to go wide than deep. To go deep into yourself is always terribly and sometimes painful.

It is important to learn the correct way to express feelings, not suppressing and accumulating them. And it's a real art! Take responsibility for your feelings. You can think and feel at the same time and it will make you stronger. You can manage your feelings - not to suppress them, not to ignore but to manage them, having taken all the power, all the energy that make sense, on service. But to do this, you first need to recognize the feelings and allow yourself to experience them.

It is very important and very difficult to learn not to condemn yourself for feelings. But instead try to accept what you are going through, as a fact, and try not to blame yourself for it. It's just feelings – the reactions to the events of your life, or respond to any of your internal damage. 

It is useless to talk about what you "should" or "shouldn't" feel. It is necessary to learn to realize the feelings as they are. In this form, they are the key to solving your problems. If people can not recognize their true feelings, even to themselves, they are half-lived, they are alienated from themselves. When a person suppresses their feelings, this is not a sign of courage. Courage is to be the person who you really are, even if the surrounding will have a different opinion about what you should be. And it's not always possible if you express your feelings to others, but no one stops you to be honest with yourself. Moreover, there is nothing that either perpetuating "unworthy" of feelings, as we try to remove them, we try to pretend that we do not have them.

When the mind rejects any feeling, that feeling of "going underground" and continues to influence human behavior through the unconscious, over which man has virtually no control. And then you find yourself dependent on the feelings. But if the feelings are accepted, the person gets rid of them much easier or change them.

The closeness between people is when they share their true feelings and experiences. Once the feelings begin to hide, intimacy is lost. If the feelings are clear, it promotes the mental health of all family members. Honesty in certain circumstances involve pain, but that pain is nothing compared to the loneliness and isolation that arise when people can't be themselves. A situation where it makes more sense to hide their feelings, are much rarer than it may sometimes seem. 

As your understanding will grow and change the perception of reality, the so-called "unworthy" or "wrong" feelings will change also. They change a lot faster if you allow yourself to experience them. Denying feelings deprives us the opportunity to learn what they could say: because the feeling  - is the same experience on the basis of which there is a new understanding.

It is necessary to talk separately about such  feelings, such as fear and guilt.

In a dependent relationship fear plays a big role. It can be said that, fear - a basis of addiction. Anxiety, fear is the opposite of love. The fear holds us down, blocks, suspends us of those situations where we feel danger, limits our reality. There are no people, deprived fear, there are people deceiving.

People have different appeal to fear. Fear can paralyze, and may be mobilizing, concentrating force - depends on the attitude towards it. If we are afraid not only of the situation, but we are afraid of fear itself, then fear becomes a gripping force, we avoid those situations that may cause fear. But it is in those situations, what cause us more trouble, for us there is something very important and through these situations, it is necessary to pass – in them we receive invaluable experience for ourselves. Fear, like any other feeling, is necessary to take, not to run away from it, not to suppress, to not deceive oneself that there is no fear  – accept and live through it, not avoid, stay in it, to pass through it. You will see that it is possible, you will feel like one gains courage as the paralyzing power of fear turns to move the force. This will expand your capabilities and reduce your dependence.

A large role in the dependent relationship is a sense of guilt. This is a very destructive feeling deprived us of self-confidence, self-love. By means of this feeling one person manipulates, operates the other person. If you are really guilty to someone – ask for pardon to this person, repent in a confession, do not repeat the mistake and release this feeling. But this is often accompanied by a feeling of the dependent person in life - they feel guilty, where their real guilt is not present, many people try to make them guilty. Always correlate the guilt to a reality. You are not to blame for distortions of others, you are only responsible for yourself! The ability to remove their guilt from its hooks can significantly improve the lives of fault, to change the destiny. 

When all of your feelings will be present in its entirety, you will begin to live a more fulfilling life. You'll find that the tension that you used to suppress the certain emotions, go away. The capacity to feel tenderness and compassion will come back to you and you can express the deep emotions in intimate relationship. 

You will feel more relaxed and satisfied. You will have much more strength.


Exercise “Inner tiger”

Mentally imagine your anger in the form of a tiger, on which you sit astride. Send the animal where it's necessary for you. Tiger is extraordinary strong, so let its energy go to where you don't have enough: health, activity, confidence, decision of creative problems. It is possible to dream up and think up the exercise and the animal, which will obey to your will – be creative in working with it.

Breathing exercise is a powerful tool of psychotherapy. Breathing techniques are directed on restoration of contact to your deep feelings. Old models can be in your subconsciousness and breathing exercises will help establish communication with many suppressed feelings and to be released from them.

Method of breathing

You inhale and exhale. Connect a breath and an exhalation so that between them there is no pause. Present a circle mentally, during a breath – one half, during an exhalation – another. If suppressed feelings begin to be released, you just keep breathing. From 45 minutes to half an hour of exercise can cause the release of old patterns, made in your body. You may feel emotional relief. Exercise can be repeated as needed.


Full acceptance of yourself - the first step to self-love

It happens that some people annoy us. We do not like some certain qualities in other people. We can even consider such people "enemies." They can be very annoying, constantly meeting us through life. Why is it so? 

Perhaps, you have some of the personality that you do not like, or you think that might be unacceptable to the other. Based on childhood experiences, when the need for love and affection are not met, you have learned not to show to other people that part of your personality. Perhaps, you no longer seek and receive affection. Eventually, this part "separated" from your consciousness, "hid" from you. After the part of your person "was separated", strange things starts to occur. People who can freely show those qualities what you "have separated" and have ceased to be aware of their presence, start to annoy you. 

For example, as a child you were active and restless with a large charge of creative energy, could disobey and bring trouble to the parents. But in your family such behavior is considered unacceptable, you are expected to be calm and obedient, otherwise you will be punished, deprived of love. Love for a child is important as air is. So you had to give up your individuality, creativity and become "good", obedient boy (or girl). In your movements there was shyness, you began to be guided not by the intuition, and on authorities, opinions of other people, you have lack of confidence. When in life you meet someone who has not given up his activity, creativity, individuality and self-confidence and these qualities are in an active state, such person can cause stress, anger or embarrassment, you will condemn it.

If you deny that you like to take responsibility and manage the situation, you'll find people around you, trying to lead and manage you. You can be involved in a conflict with a powerful head and decide to change jobs. Your new boss is a man who is easy to get along with but, seated at a nearby table is powerful and you will have problems with it. And the situation will be repeated until you are not aware of the same quality that have irritated you in the head. 

The more full a part of the personality "separated" from your mind, the more it will begin to meet you in life. Detecting the separated part of your personality in the other person, you sometimes perceive it as "the enemy."

This phenomenon occurs when you see the separated parts of the "I" in other people and do not recognize them in yourself. In psychology this is called projection. Moreover, the more these parts are ignored or denied, the more strength they acquire. Failure to another - this is the reverse side of the failure to itself. How to change this? You just need to watch the people and their behavior that upsets or annoys you. People that you once thought of as "enemies" becomes "lost part of themselves." As a result, you will be more to accept yourself and to understand others.


“Healing the inner child”

In Russian culture very often self-love is associated with selfishness. In fact, egoism and self-love – are two very different things. And it's impossible to learn to love another person if we do not love ourselves. "Love your neighbor as yourself" – Christ teaches. Our attitude towards people - a blueprint of how we treat ourselves. If a man says he loves people, but does not like himself, one can say for sure - he is deceiving himself.

But it is difficult to love yourself, if in our childhood we did not have enough love. In fact, if the child receives less love from parents, they do not understand the point of the parents, they believe that it is to them that something is wrong: just do not like them and that they are not worthy of love. And this attitude they carry through life afterwards. It is difficult to change, but it is possible and necessary. After all, good attitude, accepting yourself for who you are, self respect - the basis of a good relationship with people, building warm relationship, love. Imagine yourself as a young child (up to 4 years), see this child very clearly – how he looks, what he's wearing. Walk up to him, look into his eyes. What does he want? He is waiting for your love. So pull your hands to him, hug him, and squeeze him gently, with love, give him what he lacks. Tell him how much you love him. Tell him that it doesn't matter if he makes mistakes. Give him as much love as he needs. Promise to always be with him, take care and protect. Always be in touch with him, feel his needs, take care of it. Be a good parent to oneself – you will be a good parent to your children. It seems like a paradox, but it is through the restoration of ties with our "inner child" that, we, finally grow. Loving our "inner child," we can love ourselves. 

There is another way to heal the wounds of childhood and improve one's attitude, that goes well with the first. Almost all of us suffer from lack of love and acceptance in childhood, trying to compensate in the dependent relationship. I suggest you to watch a film about yourself, as a part of this film, see yourself in your early childhood, as early as possible. Always with you was your Angel, he was present during your birth and you have seen him. You communicated with Angel, He was your best friend, your protection and consolation, your educator and teacher. He protected you with his love and you did not feel lonely. Take your life from the very beginning up to now with your Angel. Have you had difficult moments – you didn't understand, you're hurt, you feel alone or abandoned. Your Angel was always with you. What did He say? Has He comforted you? What did you ask Him? What did He advise? How He protected you? How did you feel in His presence? How your life was in His presence? What your prospects have opened up? All this should be very clearly seen and felt. In your life, you have to go through more than once, changing it, heal the wounds. In changing the past, we are changing the future.


Develop the self-confidence

Self-confidence allows you to communicate in such a way as to maintain self-respect and respect for the other person to achieve your goals, to meet your needs and protect your rights and personal space, not dominating over others and not manipulating them. Confident person knows their personal needs and desires, and try to satisfy them, without prejudice to the other. Dependent people are poorly informed about their needs and desires, making it difficult to build self-confidence. Dependent people learn to adapt to the needs and desires of others and ignore their own. They cannot just ask for what they need. To do this, they must carefully select words that help to manipulate people, control them, and to please, while remaining passive. They expect that everyone close to them will understand what they need, and all will perform and when this does not happen – they get offended, angry, make claims, "If you really loved me, you'd understand that I needed and gave me this."

It is important to understand, what you actually want. Not what your parents want from you or other relatives, not something forced by society, but what your true “I” wants from you and for you. By not finding your true "I", you will not be able to get in touch with the way of God, which is in you. "As you know, there is nothing so useful to man as to know himself. Know thyself know God "(Schemamonk Hilarion).

Try, when alone, relaxed, ask yourself the following questions: "What do I want? What are my true desires? What are my dreams? "The answers may come immediately, but they will come if you persevere and be honest with yourself. And if you discover your true desires - do not abandon them, it is important to you. Make your desires of the goals you want to achieve. Find a way to implement them, and if it depends on the other person - directly and politely ask him or her about it.

It is important to understand that you want to learn how to ask your loved ones about what you need - this eliminates the manipulative behavior and the power of games, this revitalizes the relationship. Phrases beginning with the word "should" lure you into a trap, phrases that begin with "I want", tends to release. When both partners are aware that in these respects, their wishes can be satisfied and they can talk about it, there is no need to manipulate. After all, manipulations are needed to obtain the necessary detour.

Relationships are harmonious, when you feel good with your loved one, and he feels the same with you. We are well with the people with whom we can be ourselves, to follow our true "I", to feel God in his soul. Always good to feel in the presence of a person who's sincere - sincere with yourself and with other people, do not try to be someone else, that is not you. You can trust to such person. Trust is a very important element of harmonious relationship. If you are setup to wish your loved ones by refusing their needs and desires, suppressing them, or even not feeling them, that is, refusing itself, it will not lead to the sincerity and confidence in your relationships and discontent will grow.

By the way, the person who unfaithful to themselves, will definitely unfaithful to the spouse. Unfaithfulness appears where there is no real intimacy. In order to build trust, you must first learn to be honest with yourself, learn to feel your needs and desires, then the other person will trust you too. You need to learn how to kindly and openly talk about it with your loved ones. It's not easy if you do not have such experience. It is important to identify their needs, desires and interests and support them. It is important that your partner believe that to be himself around you is safe.

There is such an exercise: "Be who you are"

You are invited to sit in solitude and focus on the following topics: "Enough criticizing yourself. Stop tell to yourself that what you think, feel and what you want – is wrong. When you work with yourself at a censor, you brake the development. Your creative flair, your intuition, the voice of your soul can be heard only when the censor is asleep and the silence in the soul. There is no need to be afraid of yourself, afraid to meet your inner "I". There is no need to run away from yourself, there is no need to hide yourself. You are creative, loving and your life has a significant purpose. It is time to open yourself, to meet your dreams and aspirations, your real inclinations and desires, your understanding of what is right, what is wrong. Discover yourself, listen to yourself, express yourself, enjoy yourself. And then others will also get the pleasure of communicating with you".


Self-esteem as an aspect of self-love

Self esteem represents deep feeling of your self-value felt by your whole body. Positive self esteem represents complete and unconditional acceptance of the objective knowledge that you have both strong and weak points, both positive and negative qualities.

Self-esteem – one of the components of self love or its result. Self-esteem is an impact on the relationship with other people. We can say that only people with positive self-esteem (not too high, not too low) can build a harmonious relationship with other people. To build a positive self-esteem you need to focus on their own positive qualities, good qualities and successes.

With two the most powerful tools you can create positive self-attitude:

The ability to ask for what you want

The readiness to receive what you want.

It is important to get used to a positive conversation with yourself. Negative conversation diminishes your mental abilities and actions. Negative thoughts form a "mental chains" operating in your brain like a tape with a continuous cycle of work. They have devastating effects on your life, creating repeated cycles of negative experiences. A positive conversation with yourself liberates your mental abilities, perceptions and actions. It is important not to forget that you somehow must move forward. Positive internal dialogue should focus on a condition, which you wish to achieve, rather than on what you want to go or what you fear or don't want. For example, thinking to oneself: "I refuse to be dependent”, you still focus your attention to your condition of dependence. Thinking: "I want to be independent", you are focusing on what is your real goal. It would take a great effort to get rid of the habit of doing a negative self-talk. If someone gives you their negative thoughts, you should not be hastily agreeing with them mentally, better make a positive judgement, to neutralize the negative impact. For example, when your partner says: "this relationship brings me nothing but trouble", you can say: «problems offer opportunities for greater convergence”. A positive conversation with yourself supports a positive self-image.


Tools for independent work

1. Listen to the subconscious "magnetic tapes," on what negative judgments about yourself are recorded.

2. Make positive statements about yourself, which will neutralize the negative and help you achieve what you want.

3. Write these statements, using the following guidelines for their use:

•.  Define the person, say: “I”

•.  Use present tense: “I am.”

•.  Define your changes as a target, for example: "I am loving and beloved."

•.  Identify the purpose more clearly.

•.  Say the statements every day when you get up in the morning and before going to sleep, how to speak in present tense, as if it's already there.

•.  Visualize the end result of the goal as already achieved, when you say the statement.


Exercise to improve low self-esteem "Mirrors."

Close your eyes and imagine, that you are in a large room with two mirrors on opposite walls. In one of them (left) you can see your reflection. Your appearance, facial expression, posture - talk about extreme insecurity. You hear how timid and quiet you say the words, but your inner voice constantly says: "I am the worst of all!" Try is to blend perfectly with your reflection in the mirror and feel a complete immersion into the swamp of uncertainty. With every breath and exhalation increases the feeling of insecurity, fear, anxiety, suspiciousness. And then slowly "exit" from the mirror and notice how your image becomes dimmer and finally goes out completely. You will never go back to it. Slowly turn around and stare at your reflection in the mirror. In the mirror of your present and future. You are a confident person! You treat yourself well, you like yourself, you love yourself. Your appearance says about it - you have a joyful facial expression, confident and relaxed posture, easy and gentle movements. Memory suggests two or three events of your life, confirming this. Your inner voice broke out: "I believe in myself! I am confident! "The red column of the thermometer of your confidence of with each you breath and exhale rises to a centigrade mark. What color is your confidence? Fill them yourself. Create a cloud of confidence around yourself and surround them with your body. Add music of confidence, smells. Try to see the symbol, an image of your confidence and merge with it. Imagine sprawling gilded inscription on basalt, "I believe in myself!" At the end, take a deep breath and open your eyes. The phrase "I believe in myself" can be replaced by any other, such as "I'm good," "I love myself."


Personal boundaries are as important as the national (public?)

Psychological personal territory represents your needs, desires, intentions, your feelings, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs, your style of behavior, your choice, your outlook, your spiritual component. Your territory also includes your body. Every territory has its limits. The boundaries of your body is the skin. The psychological boundaries consists of sensations and awareness about the whole person with clarification of what is mine and the other in the psychological field.

The most important word to build boundaries – the word "no." If we let to understand to someone without words that this behavior or attitude will not be tolerated, then we set boundaries. The one who violates another's boundaries is usually the one who does not feel their own. The dependent people borders either blurred or reinforced concrete. Dependent people blame others for their feelings, thoughts, behavior or for other people's feelings, thoughts, and behavior. The boundaries of dependent people are muddled. Healthy boundaries are generally flexible and semi-transparent. Awareness of their own boundaries, means that I know:

•.  how far can I go in a relationship with you;

•.  what I shall endure from you;

•.  what I'll do for you;

•.  what I'll never tolerate from you;

•.  what I will never do for you or instead of you;

•.  what I will let to other people do with me and what I will never let to do.

If relationship that is important for you don’t work, check the borders. Yours and partner’s. The love of self is reflected in your relationship with others, including the ability to set the psychological boundaries. You can say "no" to who abused you, invaded your personal space, operation, managed and manipulated you, to develop you feeling guilty of.  

Awareness and establishing personal boundaries (borders?) is one of the most important phases in healing from dependence, because all structures require rebuilding the relationship. To set your personal boundaries you may need some time to confront your friends and family. Because your family system is accustomed to you as a dependent person - that is, executing others desire and renege on satisfying the needs of others and do not know their implementing an alien purpose and does not have their own. Opposition or strong self-confidence is needed in order to protect yourself, to meet your needs, to be able to achieve your goals, to maintain and develop your spiritual component, given to you by God. "You are opposed to those people to whom you want to approach, or to those who invade your space without asking permission."

As a practical exercise, you can offer to write diary entries every time you realize that someone has invaded your space without your permission. Describe aspects such as inappropriate touching; interruption or completion of phrases instead of you; When someone enters your intimate zone; rummages in your desk; reads your diary; decides something for you; imposes something to you; better know what's necessary to you. Write down your feelings, your reactions when it was happening. Mark your stereotypical reactions and responses to these situations. What results they produce? Think about how you can react and respond differently to make a difference. Talk with loved ones about their feelings and their actions (kindly), agree with them on account of your borders. Sometimes the firm inner conviction that this is your territory, but you do not have the right to it, no one changes the situation without words.

I can suggest one more exercise. Imagine that a year has passed, your situation has changed for the better. None of the relatives do not violate your boundaries. You have established a warm and happy relationship with your family, you are happy. You meet your friend and she (he) asked what happened to you? You're all (whole) light! And you tell her (him) about the changes in your life (in great details). Tell her (him) that it is for a change and as you come to them. What has changed in your life? How did the relationship with your family change? How your condition has changed? What have you done for this purpose? Who helped you with this? What made this change possible? This will be your personal story, very bright and vivid, your individual recipe for happiness.

Respect to your own borders gives respect for other people's boundaries. When you respect other people's boundaries, you allow the other person to be the way they are, that is, themselves, and not trying to change them; you don't demand from them the fact that they will give you (or will not) and appreciate what they give you voluntarily. As you know, war is due to violation of boundaries.

I think it is appropriate to quote psychotherapeutic rhyme:

I live in this world not to

Conform to your expectations.

And you live in this world not to

Conform to my expectations.

You - it's you and me - it's me.


Healing of love

Many dependent people think that their love is very strong and sacrificial. In fact, their love is sick. In the depths of their victims is greed - doing something for the "beloved" person, instead they want to get the love, warmth of the soul - that they could not get from their parents in childhood. In doing so, they do not give him the love that he wants, simply can not, because at heart they do not give this source of love. Even with good intentions and good gusts, contrary to their will, the dependent person is selfish – their love is selfless.

Therefore, to heal your love, learn to love truly - an important goal of a dependent person who wants to be happy. Only by learning to love, only by opening the source of love to oneself, one ceases to be dependent and will be ready for intimacy with another person to love.

There is a school where you can learn to love; a hospital treating love. It is the faith in our Creator, that the love of God is the Church. The main objective of the Orthodox religion is just that: to teach a person to love.

What a dependent person can learn in church? 

1. Love yourself

Selfishness - is not self-love. Love for yourself - this is not selfishness. Egoist cannot love himself for the simple reason that they do not know their deep essence, do not know their soul.

This self-love begins with an understanding of what an important part of us is our true "I," our soul, with the awareness of our likeness, with self-acceptance in our entirety. We are loved, we are not alone, God loves us all. You just have to believe in it, you just have to allow yourself to feel it, to connect with an inexhaustible source of divine love - to open his heart. Understanding immortality and height of destination of the soul, cleansing the soul, working on yourself, connecting to the infinite source of divine love, one gains true dignity and love of self.

What's in it for healing a dependent person? People become self-sufficient, self-confident and begins to value themselves, simply because he is a man, not on the grounds of another person.

2. Love other people

When a person is filled with divine love, he somehow automatically want to share it with other people, for it is as natural as breathing. Christianity is known to its spiritual law:  “who loves will be loved" When you give your love to people, in return you get a hundredfold. Other people are interesting and are close to you. Loving yourself, you will be able to love other people, loving other people you'll be loved by them. God - the source of love, giving his love unselfishly, you don't lose, you gain, you are filled, you become stronger.

3. We shouldn’t love anyone more than we love God.

Dependent people put their beloved in God's place. They create for themselves an idol, they become fixated on it. "Do not make yourself an idol," says commandment. By creating yourself an Idol, you reject God, from his love. When you are connecting through your faith with God, letting God into your heart, you are filled with love, you are filled with divine energy.

What does it give the dependent person? The person stops to create idols. Approaching God, man is the inexhaustible source of love, selfless man who mistakenly was looking for in a relationship. Man attains full independence, perfect freedom.



In order to build good relationship with other person, love relationship, you first need to learn to be independent. Independence is necessary in order to get a feel of who you are, what you want to find your true "I", the image of God in your soul.

We can write a lot about healing from dependence. We just set the path. Freedom from dependence requires time and a fairly lengthy work over oneself. This is usually a year or more individual and group therapeutic work. But without a sincere belief in God, without faith in His help and guidance, to His participation in you, it's hard to do anything. Be co-workers of God. Help Him to help you. I wish you love!


Translated by Angelika Drigo, Lorraine Hynson, Samantha Chivers


( 2 voices: 4.5 of 5 )

Psychologist Natalia Domkina

Psychologist Natalia Domkina

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See also
About Love Addiction. The 4 Practical Steps to Overcome Love Addiction (Michael Hasminsky, crisis psychology)
Addiction is a substitution of love (Psychologist Natalia Domkina)

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