Your romantic partner just left on a distant work related job. Inside, two days later, you feel a growing chill.
You are not alone in this type of response. Physical separation can challenge intimacy. (Save the snarky comments on the positive influence physical distance can also have Carl. 🙂 )
We want safe connections. What and how do we get those?
Secure interpersonal connections allow us when together or apart, in any place we find ourselves, we find that we are still connected.
In contrast, when you and I, he and she, her and she are doubting our own self and/or each other, in crisis and unpaired spirits, when together or apart, in any place we find ourselves, we find that we are not. We are not connected. Connection isn’t only about proximity of person to person.
This can be one of the healing forces in victims of abuse. In the discussion of our last post, Col said:
I have been trying to figure out how to connect back to a part of me kind of lost behind….
…Time to build some trust bonds.
Likewise, Antonia reminded me of this. Although she came in with “her eyes rolling in her head” – her words weren’t always entirely connected, Antonia’s courage in life was undiminished. I learned a lot from this survivor who spoke with a Sevillian accent, (including the theta sounds.)
I am so pleathed to meet you, Doctora!
Her teeth were stained and overlapped each other and the right side of her face and right arm I saw were in a ruin of tumbled scars. Story unfolded that she was molested as a child by her brother for years. Her mother had died young and her father had helped her understand that that was what girls were for. Escaping from Spain to France, she married in hopes to be given a “start-over.” Her husband was violent though and finally when he lit her on fire, she was hospitalized long enough to grow some scars; inside and out. She threw herself into another “start-over,” this time including God and three years later, landed in Temecula.
Throughout the progress of her story I was sounding dismay at her suffering. However, I couldn’t for very long at any time before she’d offer me comfort to me!
No no! That was all before….
…I am thankful for my life!
I hab so much! God is really good to me. He sabed me!… Her scars were tight around her soft smile and eyes.
I know in my boots that Antonia is not all that she is today because of her medications, psychotherapy and life-saving skin grafts. She is connected. She is connected to her Me and to her Other. She has security that is bigger to her than her insecurities. (Remember yesterday when Suzicate described the friendliness of that? Thank you Suzicate.)
This ties us in to one of our premises of what it takes to be our own friend – accountability to Me. Although we are all victimized, being the victim is our choice and we have the power.
Questions: What has grown your sense of safety in your connections? How does your perception of abuse, victimization and maltreatment relate to this? Please tell us your story.
Self-Care Tip: You have the power to have safe connections to self and others.