If someone was to say to me some years ago that I would be writing a blog about taking control of my own life I would have thought they were mad. It is my life, nobody else can control it. How wrong was I!?!
I now know that my ex wife and my ex girlfriend were two people in my life who controlled me. I cancelled plans because they didn’t want me to go somewhere without them, I cancelled plans because they didn’t like the person who was going to be there (my friend or family member), I cancelled plans because they were available and I had to drop anything I was doing to be with them instead.
This was far from the only things I did but I didn’t see it until near the end of the relationships or afterwards. I just knew something wasn’t right.
Being controlled by someone is not something I thought was possible until it happened to me. I mean people can say ‘no’ right? Why wouldn’t people just do what they want to do rather than be pushed into something they don’t want to do?
Well i’m afraid I don’t have an answer for that. Yet!
Part of the therapy I am receiving from Rape Crisis covers how I have been controlled throughout my life. Finding out if there was a particular incident or incidents that led me to live a life of being controlled feeling like I couldn’t escape.
I love my mum more than I can explain but our relationship has become more and more strained over the years. I feel guilty if I don’t do what she asks as soon as I can which in turn makes her dependant on me and doesn’t help her independence and confidence.
I wasn’t aware of how my actions could affect my mum until my therapy session today. I had never thought that helping my mum so often could take something away from her too. If I am completely honest I am sure my mum doesn’t realise it either. But why would either of us even realise what an impact our actions are having on each other.
Mum asks I go, mum asks I go, mum asks I go. I discussed with my therapist that I am not living my own life and mum is being very demanding and I felt I had to do the things she was asking and I had no choice. My therapist mentioned that actually how I react to her requests probably has an impact on my mum as well.
With this, my history with my ex partners, my history of sexual assaults etc. I understand now that it shows a pattern. I find it very difficult to say no, I feel like I cannot escape certain situations, I do not value my own life and put others first.
I have been sexually assaulted over 7 times (that I remember). Each occasion I have felt like I could not escape even if I wasn’t being held down and could simply open a door and run. My reaction, like many others, was to freeze or do what the person was demanding through fear or having no self worth.
Now despite all of this I am far from saying this is all my fault because it isn’t. None of it is! What I am saying is that whatever initially happened embedding this way of life in to me has won for the last 42 years.
It’s time for me to take control of MY life!
Is this possible? Yes it is
- It’s not a quick fix
- It’s not easy
- But it can be done!
I am starting by writing a list of the things I want to do. This will no doubt have some simple things and some not so simple but it’s a start.
- Play golf
- Write book reviews
- Nights out with friends
- Travel to see friends
- Be at home doing nothing
- Spend time with my family
- Holiday where I want to holiday
- Did I say play golf lol
These are a few things I would like to include in MY life over the next few months.
So how am I going to do this? Meh!
Firstly, when someone asks me what I am doing on a certain date I am going to respond with ‘why’. This gives me the freedom to say that I would rather not do what they are suggesting before seeing if I am free. This might sound odd but I always feel like I must do what the person is suggesting if I am free and have told them that.
I am going to write a weekly schedule including things from the list above. Now sometimes there will be weeks when I won’t do some of those things but that’s ok. It’s about doing what I want to do when I want to do it.
What I need to make sure I am doing when I write up the schedule is do things because I want to and not because I feel I should or feel guilty if I don’t. This is the tough bit for me. I worry so much about what other people think.
So for instance
|Spend time with my family|
|Be at home doing nothing||X||X|
|Write book reviews (as and when)||X||X||X||X||X|
You can see that I have left a few things out of the table because they wouldn’t be weekly. Also I have not selected any dates to spend with my family at the moment. This is only because I am feeling suffocated, for want of a better word, at the moment. This will change and I will see them each week or every other week when I want to.
With that said this doesn’t mean I will not help my mum if she needs me. It will just be when I am free rather than dropping everything. Believe me this will be very difficult. I hate to think that my mum might get upset or annoyed because I don’t go there when she wants.
Anyway before I revert back to how I am now….
I think that is enough to start with. If I overload myself I know I will get overwhelmed and stay as I am.
Feel free to follow me or come back in a few weeks time to see how I got on.