It’s easy to mould yourself into what the drinker wants and needs. Which can easily apply to other areas of your life. Like me, are you good at transforming yourself into what people want?
Sometimes being yourself isn’t accepted by others, whether that’s parents, caregivers, friends or people at work. The drinker in your life may have blamed you, criticised you for being you or been difficult so you had to adjust to fit in.
Where have you gone?
What happens is that you start to lose yourself and the longer that goes on the deeper you go into yourself. As the child of an alcoholic your reality is distorted, because you can often be told that what you’re seeing, feeling and hearing aren’t really happening. Maybe you shared your feelings and were told not to cry, don’t be angry or it may have been more subtle.
You can then learn not to express yourself and your feelings, you transform how you’d be to what others are teaching you.
The impact of transforming yourself
What happens when you keep behaving in a way that isn’t really you? Well initially you need to be aware that’s what’s happening. If you’ve been acting and thinking a certain way for years then it’s what you know. You may think you’re being accommodating, kind or thoughtful.
You are being those things, to others! But not yourself. You’re trying to fit a mould that you weren’t built for. This isn’t who you are, it’s who you’ve been moulded to be. This is what happens when the actions have some pay off. By being what others want you to be, means you are liked, given attention, loved, whatever it is for you.
This can happen in relationships because you want that connection, acceptance and love.
So, are you good at transforming yourself into what people want?
What’s the pay off or cost to you?
This behaviour can work for a period of time, but in my experience it rarely lasts. Ultimately your beliefs and values will get conflicted and over time you can’t sustain it. It’s hard to keep up a facade and takes a lot of effort.
You’ll feel good by being liked and whatever other positive pay-offs you get, but what are you compromising to get that?
Ultimately you maybe scared to be who you are, act how you like, say what you feel and want for fear of being rejected. The funny thing is, why would you want it if it’s false?
Is it fair to you or others?
In essence, are you being authentic? No, but it’s not surprising if being you has been criticised or you internalised it as wrong or bad. It’s also not fair to the other person because they aren’t seeing the real you. People in your life may feel shocked that you’re doing things you don’t want to. Being someone that you aren’t, often people can tell it anyway.
So what now?
Well, it’s not a short answer. You need to get to the stage where you know it’s OK to be you. To be honest, to not worry about what others think. To learn to not prioritise others well-being over your own and self-love and care is a priority. None of these things are quick to change, but you can be who you are!
I did a post on personal boundaries which you may want to read, it talks about what is and isn’t acceptable to YOU. Click here to have a read.
I’ve also done a lovely positive affirmation bath for you to listen to. Here is the link, just sit comfortably and let the words wash into your subconscious.
Remember you aren’t alone, bring out the person you are by first recognising what aspects you’re compromising on. Recognise the justifications you make that come up. Be honest. It’s OK to put yourself first, to be who YOU are and not what others want and expect of you.
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