Struggling with my people pleasing mindset


#1

Hi everyone I’m struggling today a little bit. I’m happy to report that I have been off Tinder and other dating sites for 9 days and I have so much respect for any of you who are quitting things like alcohol or drugs or anything else because I can’t even imagine how hard it must be. I’m seeing a therapist tomorrow I want to work with her on my relationship issues because my Tinder addiction which is basically my addiction to affection and acknowledgement of how amazing I am LOL and approval, I also have a lot of people pleasing qualities in me. In my relationships I used to always start off really confident but I end up making the relationship be about the guy. for me relationship start a little bit like haunted houses you walk in all confident and then when you’re inside it’s not what you think it would be. so a simple conversation with a guy like today triggered that fear of abandonment in me making me feel like what do I have to do for him to like me? I love this point in my life I know that the answer is, nothing just be me. But it’s hard sometimes.


#2

So often we look externally for answers to questions we can answer ourselves, if we’d only be still and listen.

Good job on the days, and seeking professional help. You’ve decided to be better, and now you are better than you were 9 days ago. Keep getting better at getting better, today better than yesterday, and tomorrow better still.


#3

You may just be on the path to self-love and appreciation, where a chance for a nice connection with someone is possible! That’s a great journey and I’m happy for your because I’m on the same one.
I have a husband but I too sought often, still seek, to be amazing and get attention in ways that depletes him and me. I’m learning what it means to forge positive bonds , give and receive, relationships.
Courage to you :heavy_heart_exclamation:


#5

I feel like you are soon going to find yourself on a new and better path where you will not need any external validation. :heart: You will find what you need in yourself and others opinions won’t matter, good or bad. That was a huge unexpected bonus in my self love journey this last year! You’re doing great taking new steps to help yourself, this is a beautiful thing!


#6

LOLZ, dude you are killin’ it lately :joy::rofl::joy:


#7

True…and a grilled cheese on Na’an bread over achieves.


#8

Thanks for sharing keep fighting the lies and discovering the truths.

I am 52 days sober from alcohol and 14 from nicotine. I thought my mind was sooo clear already and all my relationship issues/struggles were from my alcoholism. What a hard truth to swallow when I see my sober self come out of a relationship replay just like the drunken days. Meet boy that is clearly infatuated with me my body says ok let’s be infatuated too (or my ego does) can’t decipher the real feelings from the fake lead this guy on end up getting intimate only to immediately want nothing to do with him for a multitude of reasons. On top of that finding myself just plain out depressed not thinking of drinking just realizing how jacked up my years of programming have me and that it’s going to take time and work to truly unwind all of that. Just sad to see how i brought somebody else and their emotions into my mess.

Today we can both be grateful we are seeing some truths and trying to be better people to ourselves and those who enter into any sort of relationship with us.


#9

“how I brought someone into my mess” ha, I can relate to that. I start off healthy in relationships but over time I am afraid I will fall back into my love-addict ways as if the relationship was FOR THE GUY. Even sex turns into an act where I self promote basically. I don’t want to do this with this new guy.


#10

Recognition is the key to change. The fact that you are seeing those people-pleasing tendencies as they come up is a huge step forward. I have found that boundaries have helped me and my Codependent ways. Waiting to be asked for help, rather than rushing in to “save” the day. This actually taught me to start asking for help when I need it because I don’t expect anyone to read my mind, the same way I can’t read theirs.
For taking on someone else’s identity, I really just had to learn me. I had to take the time to be alone and learn what I like and don’t like. In conversation, I can disagree with people. I no longer feel the need to love what they love when I really don’t. This comes from knowing that I don’t actually NEED this person, that I am okay just by myself.
The greatest gift this healing has brought about is real friendships. My desire to have everyone like me led me to a place of loneliness and isolation. I lacked the courage to stand up for what I believed in because I was agreeing with everyone so I didn’t know what I believed in. I lacked the ability to be real because I was so busy fake liking the stuff that other people liked that I didn’t know what I like.
Therapy helped, so did spending most of a year alone, working on myself and not too much time fostering a romantic relationship. I wouldn’t be surprised if your therapist suggested you spend some time learning to love yourself, by yourself.
Keep it up! You’re well on your way to happiness.


#11

It’s been 11 days. I feel very much at peace (even though I am texting with a guy who is really into me and I like him a lot too), it hasn’t become an obsession. I also haven’t been looking for validation on social media or Tinder. When we don’t text, I read, work, shop or just watch TV. I have a therapy session tomorrow. My thing is, how do I take this healthy mindset and maintain it within the relationship. Today I asked him what is priority in a relationship. Mine is safety. He said he would like to have a partner who inspires him to be better. My brain instantly jumped at it as, how can I make him better?? I had to sway that thought away. It’s not about me. I have my priorities and needs to fulfill. If we are meant to be, we’ll find what we need in each other. The reflex to jump in and try to make things better for a man is such a knee jerk reaction for me tho. It’s nuts.


#12

Why haven’t I tried this?!?! New mission this weekend!


#13

My grilled cheese deluxe: American Cheese, grilled ham, thin sliced tomato and a pinch of oregano on Na’an bread. Serve with some tomato bisque…oh my.


#14

Congrats on your journey so far. It is great you are seeking help. I saw a consellor at university. It is time well spent.

At this point I think you need to build a relationship with yourself. Ask yourself what you would like to do this weekend. Plan it, for you. Treat You to something that you like. Plan an alone activity.

Most of my life I was looking for the perfect woman to go on trips with, adventutes etc. I really wished i had just planned things for myself. I spent so much time in bars meeting women and looking for Miss perfect.

Anyway, you sound like a fun and wonderful woman. Feel free to post here any time and we can reinforce how special you are. No need to look to strangers.


#15

Thanks @JohnCT that’s very sweet of you to say.

I’m gonna have to revisit the idea of a grilled cheese sandwich for sure :slight_smile:

I think about my ex a lot. The more clarity I have I can see he’s a possibly narcissistic functioning alcoholic… And his life is not that great, he’s got issues in his personal life and I feel bad for him. Im not in love anymore, but I feel sad that he’s unhappy I guess. It breaks my heart to see someone I care about suffer.

On the other hand I am starting a new relationship with a regular, healthy guy. I’ll see him in two weeks. I think he’ll be good for me while I untangle the mess that’s in my head … and also because I really like him and I would love for things to work out. I’m terribly scared of being “abandoned” again even though I try to let go and let God… It took me years to actually understand what that slogan really means to me btw.


#16

Your playing with fire to be asking relationship questions toward a guy you like. Your basically showing interest by doing so. You should not be talking to any men yet. If he is meant and doesnt want just sex he will wait at the other side when your ready (a year is the recommend). Your best to take some time off. Your affaid of being lonely and you need to accept that and love yourself even when alone. Goodluck to you but i would talk to your therapist about this new guy and a professional opinion. Dont get flustered when she may tell you the same thing to cut him off. with your addiction is too early to handle. You barely have a week . As with all addictions we have to take time away from DOC until we can be strong enough to face it face to face…


#17

You should look into and Adult Children of Alcoholics meeting, which is not limited to just people who meet that criteria. Here is ACA’s “laundry list” of issues that are worked on. I ended up there by accident, but the topics fit so well that I’ve continued going.

The Laundry List – 14 Traits of an Adult Child of an Alcoholic

  1. We became isolated and afraid of people and authority figures.
  2. We became approval seekers and lost our identity in the process.
  3. We are frightened by angry people and any personal criticism.
  4. We either become alcoholics, marry them or both, or find another compulsive personality such as a workaholic to fulfill our sick abandonment needs.
  5. We live life from the viewpoint of victims and we are attracted by that weakness in our love and friendship relationships.
  6. We have an overdeveloped sense of responsibility and it is easier for us to be concerned with others rather than ourselves; this enables us not to look too closely at our own faults, etc.
  7. We get guilt feelings when we stand up for ourselves instead of giving in to others.
  8. We became addicted to excitement.
  9. We confuse love and pity and tend to “love” people we can “pity” and “rescue.”
  10. We have “stuffed” our feelings from our traumatic childhoods and have lost the ability to feel or express our feelings because it hurts so much (Denial).
  11. We judge ourselves harshly and have a very low sense of self-esteem.
  12. We are dependent personalities who are terrified of abandonment and will do anything to hold on to a relationship in order not to experience painful abandonment feelings, which we received from living with sick people who were never there emotionally for us.
  13. Alcoholism is a family disease; and we became para-alcoholics and took on the characteristics of that disease even though we did not pick up the drink.
  14. Para-alcoholics are reactors rather than actors.

Tony A., 1978

Note: The Laundry List serves as the basis for The Problem statement


#18

Congratulations on your change and seeking help. Although my addiction is alcohol I can definitely relate to the people pleasing mindset. I have been sober for 160 days and am working on not always being a people pleaser as well. Now that I allow myself to feel my feelings and don’t have alcohol to get in the way of my true self I am realizing how Much of my life, choices and interactions are based on wanting to make others happy. I find it hard to even differentiate what I want for myself but am finding my voice and setting my boundaries as I work on my sobriety. I once had a therapist ask me if I felt like I could be myself around others. I couldn’t even comprehend the question for a long time, and kept asking what she meant. Doesn’t everyone alter their personality around others or try to change to fit in? Apparently not. So I’m learning to love myself and be myself flaws and all. I hope you continue to find strength and value in yourself every day.


#19

Wow what a good question. I too alter my personality depending on who I’m with. I’m at my most relaxed alone at home with my parrot… :slight_smile:

Now that I don’t spend time swiping left on Tinder, I have a lot more time on my hands. But I have a hard time focusing on reading for example, which I love. I think it could be a side effect of Anafranil. Either way, it’s been two weeks and I am ok. My ex texted me today (he’s the alcoholic I wrote about earlier) and I felt… Almost nothing. I didn’t burst into tears (yay) I just had this heavy uneasy feeling in my chest. I replied politely and that was it (he owes me money so i don’t want to block him and cut him off completely for practical reasons)… I’m not sure how I feel now. I had also talked about him during my session on Saturday so he has been on my mind. I wish he wasn’t.

@Lotys I check all the boxes on that list. I’ll look into ACA literature thank you!