"Yet a time is coming
and has now come when the true worshipers will worship
the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the
kind of worshipers the Father seeks." - John 4:23

My Heavenly Daddy is healing
me from the inside out.

Transparency is Real.
Many times painful.

Daddy let me be secure in You only!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

LIVING MY LIFE THROUGH SOMEONE ELSE


I hate living by circumstance. But, this is how I have lived most of my life. Up down up down up down up down. Whom can I please to make me feel accepted? Up down up down up down up down yada yada yada.

Over my life span I have perfected my trade in pleasing people just to make me feel good and feel worthy. I learned very early on, all the intricacies in playing against different personalities by observing and watching what makes one person happy and what makes them not. I deliberately became what the other(s) wanted me to be, whether with my parents, relationships, friends, co-workers, etc. I certainly knew what I was doing and would even question myself at times why I was living my life through someone else? A lot of the time I felt other people’s lives were much more interesting and pleasant than mine! If you are honest and share this same struggle, you can agree that it takes a whole hell of a lot of mental and play acting effort, to keep this charade up. The majority of the time I was successful in pulling off “pretend friendships” a/k/a co-dependency, until the Lord had enough of that and once again "moved the person(s)" out of my life. Only to have the cycle start over again with me, finding someone new. It is a miserable existence, which sucks the life out of you!!!

In my journey to freedom, this is just another branch extension of mine that I am working on conquering! When you have been addicted to something for such a long time and it is taken away from you, there comes painful withdrawals. My "la-la land" runs along side with this and gets tangled up. Which in turns creates false perceptions at times. I can honestly say that the Lord has been preparing me for close to two years with this particular part of my journey. Thank God this element of it has been slow. As this is a tremendous stronghold for me, and for it to be ripped away from me in one sitting would certainly have landed me somewhere not too pleasant.


Many of us learn early in life that we need to earn our sense of value.
For some, value was earned by entertaining people with our clowning acts.
For others, value came from taking care of everyone else. And for others,
value was derived from achieving success of some kind. But often there is
no way to entertain enough, take care enough or achieve enough to meet our needs for approval. No matter how compulsively we entertain, or care or work, we still are not able to feel valued. These substitutes do not meet the deepest longings of our heart. In addition we run the risk of becomingv compulsively attached to these substitutes because we fear that the sense of value which they offer is our only hope of finding peace.

The longing to experience ourselves as valued is a fundamental human need.
The need is really a need to be heard, seen, enjoyed and loved by others
for who we are rather than for what we do. No amount of earned approval
can meet this need. We long to know that we have value simply because we exist. This kind of value cannot be earned, it must be received as a gift.

Jesus says to us "you are valuable. Simply because you are, you are valuable". The birds of the air are God's creatures. God sees them and cares for them. God made them and God enjoys them. They are valuable. You, too, are God's creation, made and known by God. God sees you and cares for you. You are of great value.

As we grow in our awareness that our true value is a gift already given to us by God, we can begin to let go of the tight hold we have on our substitute strategies for achieving worth.

Copyright 1991 Dale and Juanita Ryan

54 comments:

  1. Delighted to meet you, and to find someone real and sharing their struggles to encourage us all. Your profile captivated me and I needed to meet you. Glad I did, I'll be back.

    Hugs for your day,
    Sarah Dawn

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  2. This was a great post, JBR. I could relate so well with all you said. I've spent a lifetime trying to be someone that others would accept and approve of. Somewhere I lost me in the process.

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  3. AD-Totally understand your last sentence....but there is hope in regaining our "me's" again.

    Sarah Dawn-Pleasure to have you visit. Thank you for the hugs!

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  4. Hello JBR:
    Thank you for this very heartful and interesting post. I am so glad you are moving forward in your journey with Jesus and realize that you and he are all you need. You don't need fake friends' approval. You are gloriously and wonderfully made in his image. He knew you before you were born and formed you. He knows the number of hairs on your head, and everything wonderful about you. You don't need other people to validate this fact. If you have to jump through hoops to get their approval, what's the point?

    So, don't be so hard on yourself, you can make yourself feel great by seeing that you are coming into your own. I used to be a big people pleaser too, and you are so right, it's VERY exhausting. God moves people out of our lives for a reason...it you have to work so hard at having them around, they are not worth it.

    Good Luck and thanks for your nice blog. The pic of the two little lizards was adorable, too.

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  5. This really hit home. I lived the same life for so many years. Thank GOD I began the healing process in 2002 and no longer play those games of pleasing others, etc. You will conquer this..it is a tough road, but the other side of this life is WONDERFUL. Bless you sweet one, andrea

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  6. Andrea-It is encouraging to read your victory over this stronghold! Thank you for your confidence.

    Amusing Bunni-Hello! Precious words you shared here, much appreciated!

    I certainly am aware that God did move people out of my life, and when it was happening, I knew it would and it did....but unfortunatly I did not get the hint the first few times.

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  7. Great post, JBR.

    I have yet to begin my journey. I only know there is one and I can't seem to find my way to it...

    I am looking. Thank you being real.

    Ivory

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  8. To be brutally honest I can say I don't share the same religious beleifs, however codependancy has been much of my journey , a path I no longer choose,and who knew it would be so hard finding out who I really am. I know that you will find strength along the way.. :)

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  9. AlmightyHeidi-Thank you for your visit, honesty and words of strength! Nice to read that you no longer struggle with co-dependency.

    Ivory-You made the first step dear one, by admitting that "there is one" to travel. In time. Thank you for sharing!

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  10. No advice from me. One told me, "If I don't know what I'm sayin'...don't say it!"

    But I believe there IS HOPE for all, in that Spirit of the Universe. Spirit...that word! An underdog basketball team can have it, when everything clicks, passes are caught, baskets are made, game is won. Team Spirit, is what won the game.

    I believe also that same attribute of "spirit" is within groups of recoverers, who are held together with a common bond of illness, or adversity, and have no other goal, but to see one another get better.

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  11. I have always lived with this too. Trying to please my parents (impossible) my classmates, teachers, co-workers, boyfriends. I feel like they find me interesting when new but then when the novelty wears off they find my eccentricities and problems annoying and they turn their backs on me. So I'm always jumping through hoops saying "please, somebody, like me."
    Recently I ended up relapsing into S.I. because I feel like such a failure. It is an ugly and maybe ultimately deadly cycle.

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  12. Lily-I am so very sorry you relapsed....please be gentle with yourself dear one. I understand your pain.

    Stevie-Hope is good, thank you for sharing!!

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  13. Let me say first-- I love the photo you used in this post.

    Now for the post-- you have given me a lot to think about. I was prepared to comment, but I think I will mull this over a bit first.

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  14. I lived a majority of my life in the same manner. And then I started counseling 9 years ago and have since been on this intense journey of self-growth that has allowed me to figure out who I really am and to not need the validation of others, but only of myself.

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  15. Yaya - Amen!! Thank you!

    Tricia - :) Take your time.

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  16. Count me in with struggling with people pleasing. At one point or another to get an approval by a parent or spouse you can end up doing something you normally wouldnt do. Guilty! Great post.

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  17. I used to worry about what others will say so there I go trying to please people then. But not anymore. Thanks to God's grace. I learned to be "me" whether they like me or not. I don't have to try hard to be accepted knowing Someone accepted me just the way I am.

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  18. JBR, 20 years ago I was invisible to everyone, including myself and if I could not hide I tried to please everyone so hard, including my mother who abandoned me. I have come a long way, still life holds challenges over and voer again. It is a good feeling not feeling the need of hiding anymore, not needing to become invisible anymore, not needing to please anymore.To be honest there are still issues around and always will. As we changing so much we always touch different and deeper layers of hurt and patterns. Have you in my thoughts. Big hug across the pond. xx

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  19. Paula - What a refreshing comment. So glad the majority of your battle has been won. Yes, you have come a long way!! Blessings and ((((Paula))))

    RCUBEs - You have it right there dear! Only the knowledge of knowing that God has accepted us all, no matter what should suffice! Thank you dear one.

    Strawberry - Seems we are all in the same struggle one way or the other. I do hope things have improved for you. Blessings!

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  20. The mark of finally being at peace with yourself is the day when what others think becomes irrelevant. I was a mouse growing up, and spent a lot of my adult life being what everyone else wanted and or needed, but it depletes your energy to such an extent that you cannot take care of you. And if you can't take care of you, who will? Plus , if you are not taking care of what your needs are, then you cannot be of any use to others. I am glad that you have recognised this, and I pray that you get the strength to move forward and stop "living" for others. The real eye opener for me, was that you really do start seeing who the people are who really do care about you , as you, and who are just along for what they can get. All relationships are different, but you cannot live your life for others. Not only do people take advantage of this, but they do not show any respect either. When you take a stand, you'll be amased at how much more at peace you will be. You may take a bit of flack in the beginning, but long term you will have true friendships and sound family relationships. Lots of hugs.
    Me

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  21. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
    Rom 8:2

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  22. An award for you: http://your-dailyword.blogspot.com/2009/06/to-give-is-better-than-to-receive.html

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  23. Mikes-Appreciate the award, thank you for considering JBR!

    Tola-Thank you for the scripture verse! Amen!

    Karen-Appreciate you sharing your past struggles in this area.((((Karen))))

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  24. JBR,

    I love the picture of the lizards. I never thought of myself as a lizard when I was being codependent. Pretty funny:) I love this line in the post "The need is really a need to be heard, seen, enjoyed and loved by others
    for who we are rather than for what we do." Have you ever been around someone that you can just be "you" and they are happy about it? It's a pretty cool feeling. Great Post JBR.

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  25. stuck-in-the-middleJune 01, 2009

    LOL the picture is adorable! JBR you keep striving towards your goal.

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  26. Stuck-Will do stuck, thank you!

    FF-Appreciate your comment. Ahhh, the lizard picture could also mean they are camellon's changing when convenient (smaller versions though ;) ) I am certainly working on the "being me" part. Blessings.

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  27. Oh yes, I have been many colors of a chameleon for others. This can be very painful. Now I'm just myself, a fruit loop of some sort. I'm having a lot of fun, though. One of the benefits of becoming free from others opinions is you just don't care and can laugh at yourself. Your picture shows you have moved one step closer to freedom. Maybe we should start a lizard's (aka former chameleons) anonymous support group. Cheering you to find your own unique color. :)

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  28. FF-Ahhh, I am sure you are aware the breakfast dish (cannot spell cerel or ceral or however) 'fruit loops.' Has many colors. Maybe I should have put them up instead of the lizards. Nahhhh.... Sounds like a plan with the support group! Thank you as always for the encouragement! Blessings!

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  29. Oh do I know these traps. To this day I can easily get tripped up in this way of thinking. It is truly freeing when we can get ahold of the truths that you mentioned. Good words here. So nice to meet you!

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  30. oh, the people pleasing trap... your post is great. many a good thing here.

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  31. Are you certin we are talking about you and not me? I have serious co-dependency issues that I work on frequently - and as soon as I let my guard down, up they pop, like a dandilion in a field... great post.

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  32. Michele, Shadow and Angie-Thank you for your comments. So very sorry you all struggle with this. (((hugs to all)))

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  33. OH MY....OH MY.... I am really just STUCK ON STUPID right now....COMPLETELY blown away. I've been trying to put this insecurity into words and YOU NAILED IT. AWESOME, AWESOME and VERY REAL. While I thought I was "over" the people pleasing and people crutch, God smacked me upside the head with the Holy hand and said, "no, it's not them you have to "worry" about, weather they like you or not, weather they agree with you or not; It's ME...ALL of Me". Each time I tend to "hold onto" that text, tweet, email or phone call, I have to ask myself, if God were to remove this person would He still be a Good and Just God? The answer is HECK YES....HANDS DOWN...ALL THE TIME! We must rend our hearts, not "garments" (joel 2:12-13...which is the verse that knocked me "straight").
    Thanks for sharing this...

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  34. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  35. Tee hee..I laughed.im sorry..I think I wrote my post wrong..I think I will always struggle with being co-dependant..i am always eager to please others..even if it means taking a chunk outta myself...I think much like an alcoholic, who will always be one, who will always be in recovery, I wiill always have to keep myself in check :O)

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  36. God is teaching me a lot on this topic. Love the picture!
    ~ Wendy

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  37. Wendy-Appreciate the visit. Sounds like God is teaching a lot of us this topic.

    AlmightyHeidi-Thank you for the return. Thank you for your statement and honesty.

    Glowing4Him-Sounds like God has shown you some truth here dear one. Thank you for sharing!!

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  38. Great post I agree. Great understanding into the minds of us all and how we operate. Fascinating. Thanks for posting this.

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  39. DeeDee-You're welcome. Thanks for your visits. Blessings.

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  40. Great post and I could relate to it totally, I was always trying to please people, and to get their approval. I tried to please my parents but that didnt work, all I received in return was abuse, verbal and sexual.

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  41. DarkKnightJune 02, 2009

    This post displays a lot of truth in it for my life as well. Especially growing up among four other siblings striving for attention and being the last born was hard in a family of strict discipline.

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  42. I can relate to your post. I have been on a journey to freedom for some time now and it has been a struggle at times but it's a journey well worth taking.
    I will be back to do some more reading here and thanks for stopping by my blog!!!
    Many blessings!

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  43. Jamey-Nice of you to visit. Appreciate your comment and glad that your journey is also leading you towards freedom. Blessings!

    Dark Knight-Appreciate your visit and comment. It must have been a struggle for you, being the youngest. Blessings.

    Mary-So very sorry for the abuse you endured!! Appreciate you stopping by and leaving a comment dear one.

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  44. Just Be Real, I fixed that link. Thanks for letting me know. And thanks for your post and for being so open and REAL.

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  45. Colleen, thank you for your visit and comment. Blessings dear one.

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  46. Just Be Real...it's my first time over. Wow, what a blessing. Yep, you are real. No one can deny that. We need transparent Christians desperately. Thank you for encouraging me to be just as "real" with my readers today.

    I am heading over to click your "Follow Me" button right now.

    Blessings new friend.

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  47. Joanne, what a nice visiting comment to leave. Thank you very much. I would of loved to of checked out your blog, but your link is disabled. Blessings dear one!

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  48. You probably even do not know how much I thank you for you presence. All the best to you, my dear Friend.

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  49. Thank you for your interest in HTC! We appreciate your support.

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  50. Hi there,

    I hope you doing good today, I am behind on reading my blogs again. When I was young I would do that when I was with a new man and change my interests to be just like him. It took a lot of years of growing up to realize that Hey if you can not like ME the way that I am they we are not meant to be. But hey you are aware of it and you can change it, over time. Hugs!

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  51. I am trying to leave comments on you previous 2 entries on my google reader but they seem to be gone?

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  52. Tabs, thanks for the vote of confidence. Do not know what is going on with your 'google reader?' Blessings dear one.

    Marie-Thank you for the visit.

    Magadalena-Certainly appreciate your kind words, thank you too. Blessings.

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  53. Thank you for sharing your feelings in this post! I have only recently learned about codependency and it fits me so well. I can definitely relate to the ups and downs depending on how well I felt accepted by others.

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