In my last submission, I said that I had the thought that “I wish my mother were happy”. I am now realizing that I have a manual for her that says “she should be happy”.
Then I ask myself: If she did what I asked and was happy and told me about it and acted like she were happy, what would I feel?
The answer to that question is that I would feel relief. If she followed my manual, I would feel relieved, absolutely. It feels like a huge weight is lifted off my shoulders, that so many possibilities open up, and I can actually allow myself to relax. I think underneath my desire for her to be happy is the belief that I should MAKE her happy, which feels like a giant burden. I’d love to let go of that.
So then I ask myself what the thought is that creates that relief? I don’t think I fully know that model yet. I think it’s something like “I don’t have to try to make her happy anymore”. I mean, I know that it doesn’t work, but I’m clearly still trying to manage her emotions with my behaviour, or at least I’m feeling guilty for not doing it.
Maybe some other thoughts are, I can love her completely without trying to change her, or she doesn’t have to be happy for me to love her, or it’s impossible for me to change her emotions, I can love her completely and fully 100% how she is, or I can’t make her happy but I can make myself happy….I think I like the thought that she doesn’t have to be happy and I can 100% love her anyway. Or even just that “I’m learning that my mother is 100% responsible for all of her emotions”….
And now I also can see that the reason I am trying to make her happy is that I feel like if I stop doing that, our relationship will dissolve.
C: I no longer try to control my mothers emotions with my actions
T: If I give up on making her happy, the relationship will dissolve.
A: I continue to blame myself for the way she feels, and continue to try to manipulate the situation to make her feel better
R: I give up the relationship with myself and I continue to have no real relationship with my mother.
Maybe this is actually the thought I need to work on. Thoughts?