Selfish Love - You Can't Leave Me

You heard the songs that talk of a man or woman in a relationship not being able to live without one another.  Some talk of dying if they can't be with the other.  It all sounds so romantic, but this loving talk has a dark side.  It programs couples to think that they can't manage in this world without one another.  In time, one is on the suicide path.  This sort of thinking is toxic!

A person that feels like he or she can't move, sleep, awake, go anywhere, or do anything without the other has become trapped in a cage of a relationship where there is no key to escape.  One's mind is consumed with the thoughts of the other quite often.  Whenever an independent thought or idea comes up, the abused victim thinks, "If I make this move or that one, what will he think, what might he do?  If I go here, how will she react?"  On the surface, it appears reasonable to consider the thoughts of the other, but for victims of frequent emotional and physical abuse this happens all the time and nothing is ever done to appease one's self.  So the wish to do something different is nothing more than what it is--a wish.  Plans are made to do something fun or interesting but rarely, if ever, acted upon.  The partner talks his or herself out of doing anything apart from the other or not at all.

Selfish love is built on nothing more than selfish motivation.  The abusive partner who is planning, controlling, demanding, pouting, and doing other things to maintain control is thinking all the while about his or her self.  "How is this making me feel when she does ABC?  How do I take back control?  Is what my partner asking benefiting me in some way?" Mr. or Ms. In Control is rarely listening to your objections, suggestions or concerns.  He or she can smile, laugh, charm, cry, yell, or fight one's way into getting you to meet needs.  People on the outside looking in will warn, "Don't fall for that..." but victims will every time!

The frustrated victim feels weary, broke down, and will not bother to stand up for personal thoughts/plans/ideas and anything else with the argumentative easily irritated kind of partner.  But with others, for the victim's sanity sake, he or she might direct one's attention on needy family members' issues since they seem to be the only things that the victim feels he or she is in control of while the controlling partner objects to the victim's involvement in those affairs too.

Like a mother tired of hearing a screaming toddler will lay the child down, close the door, and walk away, the victim will do something similar with the angry partner, rather than send him or her to the room, the victim will lie down and rest or go outside for a breath of fresh air hoping that all will be calm upon his or her return.  Then when the abused is a little less weary, he or she will either sit outside the ring that the boxer for a mate has designed or sit outside of it observing the poor man or woman fighting with his or herself or others.

Victims never stay away long physically or emotionally when dealing with their selfish lovers.  They are like servants tending to their every need.  They can't take a vacation without getting clearance from the controlling mate, some won't bother to make that arrangement for fear of the partner's negative reactions to their request.

When outsiders call the victim's attention to certain things, they pretend as if all is well while looking for flaws in the one exposing him or her to the truth.  "You really need to get a life.  Why are you always in the house with your man?  What is so important that your wife demands you do that you can't get away and see your relatives?  Why do you worry and stress over responding to her text immediately?  Why have you shut everyone and everything out that you like to meet the demands of your insecure partner?"  Victims who don't want to see dysfunction will choose to go blind to it.

If you see yourself or someone you know in this blog entry, consider this, many people do this for a time even in a so-called healthy relationship, but it doesn't make it right to enable selfish love.  True love takes two and no one is playing victim or abuser in a healthy relationship.  A person who genuinely cares, respects, loves, and appreciates you will give you the space to express yourself and connect with others that matter to you!  You are able to thrive in your job(s), hobbies, relationships, friendships, and more.  You don't feel limited in your abilities due to the partner's criticisms and unreasonable requests.  A person who loves will let you love and be yourself around others.  However, a sick person, one who has many emotional and physical issues is miserable, and so the old adage goes, "Misery loves company."  Former victims with unresolved issues, controlling people, current victims, mentally handicapped individuals, religious fanatics, and other difficult people seek out those who will validate their dysfunction, are you a victim or an abuser?

Nicholl McGuire is the author of Laboring to Love Myself and other books.

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God didn't put you with an abusive mate. Your flesh did.


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