Wednesday, February 16, 2011

In Relationship - Being a helper versus really helping

I've known there was a difference for a long time now. And in my private practice, with clients, I do my best to do the latter.  However, I haven't experienced such a clear difference in my own life until this last week.  I've felt prompted in the last few months to build a friendship with someone I didn't know before.  She is a marvelous person, with gifts and talents 'par excellance'.  We share of the same ideas and feelings, and our bond has grown strongly.  I've also developed a deep affection for her husband and children,... and even her pets,... at the same time..  But there's a problem - a little things that gets in the way of our really 'relaxing into intimacy' so to speak.  (Of course, there are so many more ways to be 'intimate' than requiring taking your clothes off.  You know what I mean.)  The problem? She continues to 'try to help' me. She seems to be so sure I need just the kind of help that she can give.

It's not the sharing of food that I object to.  I enjoy it when someone shares their food creations with me, especially when they enjoy what I share back to them in return.  It's really quite fun.  But it's the attitude I'm being approached with that is getting in my way.  There is this constant, underlying feeling of, "Here, let me help you understand how much 'better' I am than you are, and how you can be that way too, with my help."  She's not said any words to this effect - except when she has, but not as clearly as I just described it.  It's the 'feeling'.  Her words are as if she expects a judgment of some sort from me.  And that's not something that I experience in my own mind and heart about her at all.  I love her dearly.  And when I 'look inside' (and I do), I love her without conditions of any sort.  It's not about that.  I wonder if it's about her own fear of some sort, being projected out upon me.  All I know is that it isn't 'clear' and I feel uncomfortable in the presence of that.

Ah well.  In the past I would have been a bit heartsick about this, because I hadn't found 'the connection' I'd sought, and put time and energy into building.  I may have even blamed the other person, or circumstances, for it.  But now I just feel a bit sad.  I still love her, and that will probably never change.  She's on her own path, as I am on mine.  I'll probably see her from time to time still.  But there will be no more effort on my part to share 'of the spirit' to the level I have before.  My experiences seem to be deemed as worthy of judgment of being 'less that', even 'wrong', that I might be 'fixed', and brought into some sort of wholeness by her.

I know that each of us has our lessons to learn, and it requires certain situations, with certain experiences, to do that.  Hence, this situation, now.  In the face of this, I'm learning how to set my own boundaries even more clearly, without judement, without blame, without irritation of any sort, but acceptance.  Even the sadness wanes now as I 'have it' more fully, knowing the loss of something I'd hoped for, wanted, yet was unable to really relax into, thus really enjoy.

What I know about myself is that I go for a quality of intimacy in relationship that is not always easy to find.  What I realize more fully now is that each relationship will not dip as deeply from that well of spirit and trust as another does.  And I'm learning to accept that.  It's not always easy.  Just simple.  And my heartache?  What I really want is a certain quality of intimacy in relationship with every being.  I used to make it my fault that I was not worthy of that.  Not at all.  It just doesn't happen.  It's just that I want that quality of intimacy with everyone I care about, because that's really 'fills'.  There's the fullness of joy.  Nothing short of that fills the bill.  My friend wants something other than thant (self validation?) more than she does the intimacy.  It appears she wants to needed by me.

We all address neediness issues, but it doesn't fill the need to reach down and pull someone else up.  That just feeds our ego.  Issues of neediness are often still in the way.  They need to be cleared for there to be an equal and honoring exchange of validation in relationship.  Then there is no need, just sharing.  That's what I want.  In my practice I facilitate others in clearing those base issues so that they may have the kind of relationships that really fill - equal, honoring, true intimacy.  These relationships are truly healing.  And the process begins with a quality of unconditional acceptance of self, and other.

Only when we have a solid ground to build upon, our castles of sharing and love in relationship are built.


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