I have been reflecting about Independence Day ever since this past July 4. Besides commemorating America’s independence from England, for Joyce and me it is also a celebration of independence in general, our personal freedom. Our personal independence allows us to choose our lives, live them however we want, decide who we marry, what kind of work we do, if we want to have children, and the religion or spiritual path we follow. Independence gives us freedom of choice.
In all this celebration of independence, however, we can easily forget an equally important thing … dependence. Dependence is rarely celebrated. Instead, it is too often seen as something negative, an unfortunate condition of the weak. The obvious dependence of babies and children, the clear way they need their parents, is usually seen as a temporary state. Children will grow up and become independent, and often this process is hurried by the parents. Many children receive the message that dependence equals weakness. They feel the pressure to grow up and become independent.
Saying Goodbye to Childhood and Dependence?
I remember feeling this pressure and the sadness of saying goodbye to my childhood. I also remember needing to armor myself against the lack of safety and my sensitivity. I remember riding home after school one day on the school bus. The boy sitting behind me didn’t like me and was picking a fight with me. I was a timid, introverted thirteen-year-old. In that moment, I literally hid away that sensitive child and put on the disguise of a tough fighter. The bus stopped. I got out, followed by the instigator and his friends, who circled around to watch me get beaten up. I adopted a fighting stance with my fists up, like I’d seen in the movies. I must have looked formidable enough, because it kept him away. However, that and a number of other moments like it, also sealed off the child part of me. It has taken years for me to reclaim my inner child.
Sometimes I have gotten a little carried away in the celebration of my need and dependence. Once, a number of years ago, Joyce and I were invited to lead one day of a longer training program. We were brought in as the “relationship experts.” For some reason, I especially addressed the importance of need and dependence in our relationships. Perhaps I sensed the resistance in the room, so I became quite vulnerable about my pain and struggle to find my inner child and his deep need for love and nurturing. Finally, someone spoke, “Barry and Joyce, it seems you both are unaware of what we have been learning these past days. We have focused on standing in our full power, rather than the need and dependence of our inner child. Now I see that we can’t be powerful until we embrace our dependence. Thank you.”
From Hiding Our Deep Needs... to Accepting Our Dependence and Interdependence
In another workshop, I spoke passionately about my need for Joyce’s love. During a break, a woman approached Joyce and said, “How can you stand it? Barry is so needy!” Rather than answer her, Joyce told her to wait, then ran to find me. She said, “Barry, there’s a woman who thinks you’re too needy.” It brought such a smile to my face. I rushed up to the woman Joyce had pointed out and said, “Really! You think I’m too needy. Thank you so much. That means so much to me.”
When the group reconvened, I could hardly contain myself. I shared with everyone what had happened and how happy it made me. Someone really saw the depth of my need and dependence. No matter that it turned her off. It was so refreshing to not hide my dependence from myself and others. It took so much energy to push away my dependence.
Our real independence is our acceptance of our dependence. As long as we hide or ignore our inner child who needs love, we are not free. When I finally realized how much I need Joyce, I felt free at last.
The Difference Between "Need" and "Neediness"
Remember the difference between “need” and “neediness.” Many people, like the woman in our workshop, don’t realize they are two different things. “Neediness” expects someone else to give you what you need. It is other-directed and, unless perhaps you are a small child or infant, usually a turn-off. “Need” is inner-directed. It expects nothing from anyone else.
In my early years of awakening to my need, I would sometimes call Joyce from my job in the middle of the day and announce, “Joyce, I’m feeling my need for your love.” Joyce knew I did not expect anything from her. It was simply a celebration of my dependence. She would smile and thank me, and feel my cherishing of her.
Our Independence Keeps Us Separate and Separated
Our highest dependence is on God. It is our independence that often keeps us separate from the highest power in the universe. When we feel our complete dependence upon divine love, we feel like a child being held by the most perfect parents.
One of my favorite stories is about the disciple who approached his teacher and urgently said, “I must know God. Please help me, Master.” The teacher brought his disciple down to the river and proceeded to hold the disciple’s head under water. At first the disciple thought, “How great, he is baptizing me so I can be born anew.” After a minute or so, and he was running out of air, the disciple had a new thought, “Why is my master drowning me?” When he finally saw the bubbles and understood his disciple was out of air, the teacher lifted the student’s head out of the water and spoke, “When your need for God is just as great as your need for air, then you will know God.”
I hereby nominate a new international holiday: Dependence Day. We could celebrate Dependence Day by reflecting upon and expressing our need for one another, our interdependence, as well as our need for the divine. We could rejoice in the dependence of our inner child, and thus really feel loved.
* InnerSelf tarafından altyazılar
Barry Vissell'in ortak yazdığı kitap:
Paylaşılan Kalp İlişkisi: İlişki Başlamaları ve Kutlamalar
Joyce & Barry Vissell tarafından.
Bu kitap, tek eşli veya bağlı ilişkinin güzelliğini ve gücünü öğrenen bizler içindir. Daha derin için bir başkasıyla gideriz, kendimiz hakkında daha fazla şey öğreniriz. Buna ek olarak, kendimizde ne kadar az saklanırsak, kalbimiz o kadar fazla kullanılabilir ve sevinç için o kadar derin oluruz.
Daha fazla bilgi ve / veya bu kitabı sipariş etmek için.
1964'tan bu yana hemşire / terapist ve psikiyatr çifti olan Joyce & Barry Vissell, Santa Cruz, CA yakınındaki danışmanlar. Bilinçli ilişki ve kişisel gelişim konusunda dünyanın en iyi uzmanları arasında sayılmaktadırlar. Onlar yazar Paylaşılan Kalp, Sevgi Modelleri, İyileşme Riski, Kalbin Bilgeliği, To Be Meant, ve Bir Annenin Nihai Hediyesi.
Barry ve Joyce Vissell'in önderliğindeki etkinliklerde hayatınıza daha fazla sevgi ve büyüme katmak için birkaç fırsat: Temmuz 21-26, 2019 - Paylaşılan Kalp Summer Retreat Breitenbush Hot Springs, OR'da; Eylül 24-30, 2019 - Assisi Retreat, İtalya; ve Jun 7-14, 2020 - Paylaşılan Kalp Alaska Yolculuğu Telefonla veya şahsen danışma seansları hakkında daha fazla bilgi için, onların kitapları, kayıtlar veya görüşme ve atölye çalışmaları. Adresindeki web sitesini ziyaret edin. SharedHeart.org.
Vissells'in İki Yeni Kitabı (2018):
Bir Kadını Gerçekten Sevmek
Barry ve Joyce Vissell tarafından.
Bir kadının gerçekten nasıl sevilmesi gerekiyor? Eşi, en derin tutkusunu, duygusallığını, yaratıcılığını, hayallerini, neşesini ve aynı zamanda kendini güvende hissetmesini, kabul edilmesini ve takdir edilmesini sağlamasına nasıl yardımcı olabilir? Bu kitap, okuyucularına ortaklarını daha derinden onurlandırmak için araçlar sunar. Bu yazılar çoğunlukla heteroseksüel kadınlara ve erkeklere atıfta bulunsa da, LGBTQ için bir bilgi hazinesi var. Sonuçta odak noktamız, bir erkek ya da kadın olsun, başka bir insanı nasıl derinlemesine sevmek.
Bir erkeği gerçekten sevmek
Joyce ve Barry Vissell tarafından.
Bir erkeğin gerçekten nasıl sevilmesi gerekiyor? Eşi, hassasiyetini, duygularını, gücünü, ateşini ve aynı zamanda saygı duyulmasını, güvende ve onaylanmasını hissetmesini sağlamaya nasıl yardımcı olabilir? Bu kitap, okuyucularına ortaklarını daha derinden onurlandırmak için araçlar sunar. Bu yazılar çoğunlukla heteroseksüel kadınlara ve erkeklere atıfta bulunsa da, LGBTQ için bir bilgi hazinesi var. Sonuçta odak noktamız, bir erkek ya da kadın olsun, başka bir insanı nasıl derinlemesine sevmek.