When a man fails to realize where the rain started beating him, he cannot predict where it will stop -African Proverb
Help! I’m Addicted
Did you know that a relationship can be just as addictive as drugs or alcohol? You know a relationship is addictive when no matter what you do, you can’t stop thinking about the person. You know you are in an addictive and perhaps unhealthy relationship when you feel like you can’t live without the person. You know you are in an addictive and perhaps unhealthy relationship if when you try to withdraw, it tears your heart apart and you hyperventilate. You know you are addicted when the memories of the good times make you tingle all over even though the person has been gone a long time. You know you are addicted when you keep revisiting the person’s social media profile even when you are not with them. You know you are in an addictive and unhealthy relationship when although you are miserable, and crying your eyes out, you still want to be with that person. You know you are addicted when you know it’s bad for you but you can’t let go all by yourself. Are you addicted to someone?
Well, I know what it’s like to be addicted to someone like a moth to a flame, when just their voice causes you to melt, and you can’t stay in the same space because like cocaine and alcohol they cause you to lose your mind. For some, it’s an addiction to an abusive relationship which they can’t get out of. Well today, I hope to share some things I have learnt, to help someone get out before the relationship kills you. Toxic relationships will ruin your life, sooner or later. It’s time to win with relationships.
A Relationship Pacifier
A pacifier is a person or thing that pacifies or soothes someone. It’s a thing of comfort especially used with babies. It can be very helpful. A pacifier isn’t a substitute for nurturing or feeding, of course, but if your baby is still fussy after you’ve fed, burped, cuddled, rocked, and played with her, you might want to see if a pacifier will satisfy her. But a pacifier can be harmful.
Pacifier use may increase the risk of infections in babies and young children. It used to be thought that babies who used a pacifier before they got the hang of nursing sometimes experienced nipple confusion, which interfered with successful breastfeeding. What do you do when the pacifier becomes harmful? When do you know that you no longer need a pacifier? You do not want your 17 year old still using a pacifier! Sooner or later you have to grow up. Sometimes that which used to comfort is no longer useful. You get to a point of maturity or experience hurt, and you realize that this relationship is no longer comfortable or healthy. You begin to see a larger vision of yourself or discover your worth, and realize that you have to get rid of the pacifier. Getting rid of the pacifier can be just as difficult as giving up cocaine or alcohol.
How to Let the Pacifier Go
I heard author, Terri Savelle Foy teach on breaking soul ties and she used the example of weaning her daughter off the pacifier to demonstrate what to do. When she started weaning (depriving) her daughter off the pacifier, she screamed and cried for no less than half hour, and this she did for several days. But after a while, her daughter no longer wanted it or needed it. The point is you can break free through the weaning process as well. It’s gonna be hard. It’s gonna hurt but I know from experience that you can get to a point where you no longer need that relationship. If you wanna break free, you have to let the pacifier go. Now how do we do that?
6 Steps to Let Go
Here are six (6) steps that I recommend which have personally helped me, some of which Terri recommends to break the soul tie and release the pacifier
1. Disconnect and Deprive Daily
Remove the pacifier, get out of the person’s space as quickly as you can. No more emails, no more phone calls. Resist every urge to communicate and stay in touch. Establish a “No contact” boundary.
2. Get Help to Disconnect: It was not the baby who threw away the pacifier. Someone with a bigger vision, who knew better, did it. You need to reach out to someone for help. This is where my accountability partners and best friends come in. But it takes courage. There is a sense of shame that you have to let go and admit to someone else that you need help. If you can find non-judgmental people who will love you no matter what, they will help you break free.
3. Discard the Reminders: Get rid of the pictures, renounce the vows, get rid of the momentos, the love notes, the gifts, the emails etc. Sometimes the reminder is a child and of course you cannot get rid of your child. May God help you to love that child. Don’t let the child suffer because of what the other parent did. However, limit contact with the person.
4. Do Something About your Mind: Feed your mind with positive, empowering and uplifting thoughts. Work on your self-image. If you are a Christian, begin to fill your mind with the Word of God and what it says about your worth. Declare out loud daily what the Word of God says about you. Transformation comes through the mind. Identify the patterns of thinking that got you into the situation and seek to think in new ways. What created the dependency? Take time to introspect and chart a new way forward with a new way of thinking.
5. Focus on the Future and Your Purpose: Forget the past and forge ahead by discovering your purpose so you can now refocus and run towards a fulfilled life. You are here for a reason. Get busy chasing what you feel called to do and in time, healing will come. In time you will see the pacifier and don’t even need it or want it.
6. Do Yourself a Favour and Forgive Yourself: This step is key in the healing process. Forgive yourself for the things you did wrong and let go of the shame. No one is perfect. Be kind to yourself. It’s not about being knocked down. It’s staying down that’s the problem
Check out Terri Savelle Foy’s videos on breaking soul ties. No, I’m not being paid to promote, just sharing resources to help those (especially women) who feel bound to certain relationships, and have a desire to let go but can’t find the strength to let go. If you have broken free from an addictive and unhealthy relationship, share how you did it here. Feel free to comment and share this article.
Questions for Reflections
- What is the pacifier saying to you?
- Is it time to get rid of that relationship pacifier?