When You’re Learning to Have a Real Partner

“Sis, the inability to receive support from others is a trauma response.

Your “I don’t need anyone, I’ll just do it all myself” conditioning is a survival tactic. You needed it to shield your tender heart from abuse, neglect, betrayal, and disappointment from those who could not or would not be there for you.

From the parent who was absent by choice or by the circumstance of working three jobs to feed and house you.

From the lovers who offered sexual intimacy but offered no safe haven that honored your heart.

From the friendships that always took more than they gave.

From all the situations when someone told you “we’re in this together” then abandoned you, leaving you to pick up the pieces when shit got real, leaving you to handle your part and their part, too.

From the lies. The betrayals.

You learned along the way that you just couldn’t really trust people. Or that you could trust people, but only up to a certain point.

Ultra-independence is a trust issue.

You learned: if I don’t put myself in a situation where I rely on someone, I won’t have to be disappointed when they don’t show up for me, or when they drop the ball… because they will always drop the ball sooner or later, right?

You may even have been intentionally taught this protection strategy by generations of hurt women who came before you. #generationaltrauma #ancestraltrauma

Ultra-independence is a preemptive strike against heartbreak.

So, you don’t trust anyone.

And you don’t trust yourself, either, to choose people.

To trust is to hope, to trust is vulnerability.

“Never again,” you vowed.

But no matter how you dress it up and display it proudly to make it seem like this level of independence is what you always wanted to be, in truth it’s your wounded, scarred, broken heart behind a protective brick wall.

Impenetrable. Nothing gets in. No hurt gets in. But no love gets in either.

Fortresses and armor are for those in battle, or who believe the battle is coming.

It’s trauma response.

The good news is trauma that is acknowledged is trauma that can be healed.

You are worthy of having support.
You are worthy of having true partnership.
You are worthy of love.
You are worthy of having your heart held.
You are worthy to be adored.
You are worthy to be cherished.

You are worthy to have someone say, “You rest. I got this.” And actually deliver on that promise.

You are worthy to receive.
You are worthy to receive.
You are worthy to receive.
You are worthy.
Worthy, sis.
You are worthy.

You don’t have to earn it.
You don’t have to prove it.
You don’t have to bargain for it.
You don’t have to beg for it.

You are worthy.

Simply because you exist.

I love you. 🧡~J.

Written by Jamala White

Credit: Original image by Rising Woman, reposted from The Womb Sauna. Commentary by moi, Jamila White (FB: @inspiredjamila, IG: @inspired.jamila)”

I saw this post on Facebook a few weeks ago and I felt like I’d been punched in the stomach. For so many years I was forced to handle every hard thing and even every good thing and then 1. blamed when things didn’t go well or 2. accused of being controlling. The mental and emotional abuse of this pattern was heavy, exhausting, and damaging. If you have no partner to make choices with you or handle crises but someone still has to and so you do handle it and then get labeled for it: there is no winning here. Because this is abusive.

To say I always knew something was wrong with this dynamic is true. And I had many labels for it. When I began to learn what it means to be a safe person several years ago, much was revealed. But it wasn’t until I had a true partner that I could see and understand so much of what I had been put through in this way. Having a true partner means you’re never putting the fire out alone. It means when you seek advice and thoughts from your other half they do not say “I don’t know” or “whatever you want to do.” You’re never counting the last pennies alone. You’re never crying about lifelong affects of choices for your children alone. You’re never alone. You’re not pushed into a corner and labeled by their actions and told its your fault.

History cannot be rewritten. It can be falsified and lied about and exaggerated. But it remains. The truth stands. I see it, God sees it, others see it. History is already written.

And every single day I have a true partner who strengthens me, who upholds me, who is honest and good, I become more of who I am meant to be. The Lord has given me a partner like no other, a kind of life I always dreamed of; stability and consistency and tenderness and partnership. And I see the effects of this daily on my kids and I feel it inside myself. Every day I am able to let go of a little more ultra-independence and lean on my beloved. Let go. And it is bliss. I am learning in every circumstance that he comes through, that I can depend on others and I will not drown ever again.

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