Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
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MakersDozn Offline
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Just talking  Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
We have difficulty letting go of feelings and memories. On some level, we believe that letting go, releasing these feelings and memories into the past, means that they weren't "real enough" to last and therefore be recognized as valid.

If a feeling were valid, we'd still be feeling it. If a feeling were valid, it would have the strength and substance to last indefinitely. If a feeling were valid, it would last long enough and be strong enough to be obvious "evidence" of its existence, its reality, and its validity.

We have a lot of issues with feeling valid. We were never validated as a child, and to this day, we never feel "good enough." And we depend too much on others to determine our sense of our own worth.

How do you deal with these kinds of issues? How do you work through them successfully so that you can heal and have a better life?

MDs
09-08-2013, 12:19 PM
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nats Offline
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RE: Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
it's a tough one. we also depend too much on external validation, probably for similar reasons. why should you let painful feelings go if they're valid? well, mainly b/c, while they may always remain valid they may not always remain central to you or your identity.

sometimes we let go of old shoes, even though we still like them, b/c they're worn out, they don't fit properly, or we've outgrown the style. it doesn't make the shoes wrong or invalid, they just don't fit anymore with what we want going forward. we need to let them go to make space for what we want now. similarly for feelings. anger and grief are right and valid, but if we only give them space we have less space for equally valid feelings such as joy and gratitude.

realise, you know all this already. there really is no magic answer though.
Blush Learn how to manage conflict, because the greater the level you can tolerate, the more freedom you will retain - E. Walsh Smile
09-09-2013, 03:55 AM
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tweeter Offline
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RE: Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
(09-08-2013, 12:19 PM)MakersDozn Wrote: We have difficulty letting go of feelings and memories. On some level, we believe that letting go, releasing these feelings and memories into the past, means that they weren't "real enough" to last and therefore be recognized as valid.

If a feeling were valid, we'd still be feeling it. If a feeling were valid, it would have the strength and substance to last indefinitely. If a feeling were valid, it would last long enough and be strong enough to be obvious "evidence" of its existence, its reality, and its validity.

We have a lot of issues with feeling valid. We were never validated as a child, and to this day, we never feel "good enough." And we depend too much on others to determine our sense of our own worth.

How do you deal with these kinds of issues? How do you work through them successfully so that you can heal and have a better life?

MDs
_____________________________
The concern about validation is not something I would experience in the same way, or to the same degree. As far as childhood went, I felt I existed for my parents only as they wanted me to be. What I was didn't come into it, but I knew that. So I discovered on my own, and didn't depend on others for validation.
Unfortunately, I also missed out on the developmental process of parental acceptance and direction (according to the reality of what I was). Unsocialized as I was (and to some extent, still am), I didn't know how to make my way in the world. My deep personal identity was not at stake, but being a successful being in 3D was. I failed.
Bottom line for me was/is the question of how to bring about cooperation with people who either didn't understand or value me, or with whom I didn't know how to establish some sort of common ground. I am either ignored, or things get very polarized very fast (my old way of being honest (oh man).

I have found myself to be expendable, especially when my ways thr**tened the the status quo of power in other people's lives, those whose support I needed to do almost anything because I had no practical foundation.

The validation you speak of, while not strongly affecting my self-validation within, does seriously impact what I can do and how I go about in an uncooperative environment. When it gets to the point where I am rejected via dishonest or self-serving evaluations, my own opinion can be diminished because I have little to show for my efforts or explanations. This leads to defensiveness, as opposed to self assertion.
Damage is done by that. Defensiveness unhinges constructive self defense.
While my identity is not made non-existent or invalidated within (and neither should yours), it will have difficulty developing. The beginning is not all there is! I become too permissive or trusting, too subordinate. I make mistakes that all but ruin me via the encouragement and/or actions of others, or my own social clumsiness.

So, I go off and live for months or years in a relative hermit-like life. I must take a time out from interactions, because I can't trust, and have no reason to.
But, I can do this only so long, because prolonged inaction can bring about the very invalidation that was to be escaped from to begin with. When I no longer exist for the good of anyone except for myself. Because part of my nature is to seek and explore, and to share (give back) what I have learned. So, I am unhappy.

I very much agreed with nats' response.
Personal identity and feelings are part of each other. But a person is more than a sum of feelings and memories, no matter how important they are! No matter what can't be allowed to be forgotten in order to feel safe. Those feelings might change in intensity, for instance, over time. It's okay to let that happen. That's when a different kind of learning can begin, with or without supervision (everyone needs a helping hand sometimes). It's not that what you hold is not important. Letting them go, to me, allows them to become part of you in a somewhat different way. I mean this, with particularly painful feelings and memories in mind.

The poorly fitting shoe makes it so these very important interactions within cannot find a resolution such than you can go on, with them, but differently. Sorry I don't have better words for this, cause I'm working on something now myself.

Sometimes an example is best. You know about this, so I can maybe be brief. I feel like I'm wading thru the f****g English language. I apologize.

Some of my memories/feelings are recorded like a snapshot or bit of film. That generally happens when there's a question for which requires an answer; otherwise I'm in a standstill. Years can go by. The intensity of voluntary playback cannot be adjusted because that is part of the feeling, part of the mystery, and, in this case, something I didn't want to be separated from, because it's the final moment. It was when trainman was making his way back from the snack car......, and I saw something which I didn't verbally get. I held onto that memory with all the feelings for months. I figured it out. I wrote to him saying I was sorry......... No answer. More agony.

But, I let it go because the question was answered. And with that something happened over about a year or so. I looked around. Surfed cable TV. Found some stuff I never would have looked at before. While my identity remained the same, my honesty becoming less strident and defensiveness fading, my beliefs at their core the same, but allowing in other states of mind associated with other belief systems, I found something good in myself that no one should find fault with. Now, that might happen anyhow because I'm not going by the same route, but C.S. Lewis would understand.

I'm not forgiving the unforgivable, like doing a 180 into deer-in-the-headlights mode. I haven't forgotten what I am. In fact, I have become what I was, which was lovely. Except that I am mindful that I can not allow myself to be a v*ct*m of another person's *ng*r, frustration, or m*dn*ss. I don't have the same innocence. This life does not permit that. It would be nice if I could be that way with some people, mutually. Not an all or nothing deal.

So, I still have the memory and feeling described. I know what it is and what it was about 3 years ago. I have changed and my feelings towards the feeling has changed so that what is left after all the processing, is something very nice. I know what happened and I carry that. I carry what resulted from that in myself. This is the first that I've expressed these things. I have no further words, not for here anyhow. I hope I haven't driven you to distraction, and I know that your experience is not equivalent to mine.

Yet, there are important parallels. Please don't be afraid. When memories and feelings are stored, they're intact. I know they are. It's part of my work. What we carry up front in our hearts, the eventual distillation, could reflect a natural process for a particular person. The experience doesn't have to contain the same pain, and if a person (one, or of a family within) remembers without feeling the bad things, that experience and that person remain valid and real, and become safer.
The rest is in there. Comes a time when it needs to be released within, not rejected, so that some of the h*rt*ng can stop, IMO.

tweeter
"Even the very emptiest of the emptiest
Has a false bottom, a false bottom."
(This post was last modified: 09-09-2013, 01:20 PM by tweeter.)
09-09-2013, 01:03 PM
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MakersDozn Offline
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Other/All/Unsure   RE: Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
Hi nats and tweeter,

We realize the truth in what each of you has said. The shoe metaphor is a particularly valuable one. Not too long ago, some of our others gave away about 15 or 20 summer dresses of mine, because we could no longer fit into them, and they were not appropriate for someone of our body age. I was aware of the plan to give away these dresses and agreed with it, but my agreeing didn't mean I was happy about it.

For me at least, there's a big chasm between what I feel and what makes sense. It's really hard for me to deal with.

Thanks,

Charity
09-09-2013, 03:32 PM
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Tangled Web Offline
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RE: Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
If a feeling were valid, it would last long enough and be strong enough to be obvious "evidence" of its existence, its reality, and its validity.
I read this sentenced and it struck something from within. We are constantly looking for evidence, reality, so we can feel validated. And I might be way off here but for us it is about if we have the evidence, then it is ok to have to feeling, the feelings I guess can be justified and valid. It has more to do with being believed and finding the truth.
And now I have completely lost my train of thought........
I do know we always get our self worth from other people also. We are not able to find that from within yet and not even sure how to.
The way we are dealing with these types of issues at the moment is talking to our T. Learning about feelings, learning they are not as a black and white as we thought they were. Having proof or evidence isn't always possible and trying to trust enough to just believe her words like she just believes our words just because we say them. Not an easy thing to do at ALL.
We are sorry this is so hard for you.........sending you a blue flower.
Tangled
"You may not remember what someone says or does, but you will never forget how they made you feel" Mac Anderson.
09-11-2013, 12:37 AM
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MakersDozn Offline
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Friendship/Support  RE: Difficulty Letting Go of Feelings, Memories
We're glad to see you back, TW. And we agree with everything that you said.

I read this sentenced and it struck something from within. We are constantly looking for evidence, reality, so we can feel validated. And I might be way off here but for us it is about if we have the evidence, then it is ok to have to feeling, the feelings I guess can be justified and valid. It has more to do with being believed and finding the truth.

Yes. We've never felt believed when it came to things that matter. I don't mean things like who started an argument with our brother. I mean believed about feelings and needs and the substance of who we are.

I do know we always get our self worth from other people also. We are not able to find that from within yet and not even sure how to.

The way we are dealing with these types of issues at the moment is talking to our T. Learning about feelings, learning they are not as a black and white as we thought they were. Having proof or evidence isn't always possible and trying to trust enough to just believe her words like she just believes our words just because we say them. Not an easy thing to do at ALL.


Yes to this as well. We keep trying to remember that feelings are not always black and white. Feelings have always scared me, but I continue to immerse myself in them, because I prefer feelings to logic and reason. It doesn't make sense to me that I prefer something that scares me, but it's true.

We're trying to trust our T enough to believe what she says "just because." And it is hard.

Thanks and take care,

Charity
09-11-2013, 11:11 AM
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