I Suffer from the Messiah Complex

codependency messiah complex people pleasing Apr 27, 2021
woman glowing brightly from within, reflecting in water

"This is the last thing I'll say."

No it's not.

"This is the last thing I'll send. We had a good relationship for 5 years. Let's not throw it away because of one bad year. I love you. I love us. 💗💞"

Oh my God. Why does this make me so uncomfortable? I don't agree. I don't feel like I'm throwing away my relationship, I feel like I'm re-membering, re-finding, re-newing myself--the self I had "thrown away" for this relationship, which was good! 

Key word, was.

Until it changed or I changed or I simply realized that good doesn't always mean good for me.

Sometime later. . . 

"Happy Birthday" at 10:22 (my birthday being 10/22).

This is the last thing I'll send. 

Not it's not.

We can't resist it, we with such strong, stubborn attachments.

Maybe he's attached to you and you are not attached to him, but what are you attached to, then? There must be something. It must be a little vague.

What am I attached to, if not him, if not this relationship? 

Oh. 

I just want him to realize how good it could be if he'd just let go and find a way to be happy without me. The Messiah complex!

Why did I think staying and trying to show him how to be happy without me would work if I was there, constantly, appeasing his every whim and desire, making excuses for his irritability, alcohol dependency, emotional absenteeism? 

It doesn't matter why. I thought I could show him by being there. That's the attachment. I want to "save" him, "wake him up," "show him how good it can be." I am suffering indeed, from the Messiah Complex.

Unfortunately, that job doesn't pay. You do.

How much guilt do you have to feel to make it okay? How much shame do you have to feel to make it okay? How many tears do you have to shed for it to be okay. How bad to you have to feel in order for it to be okay that he feels bad too? 

No one wins in the scenario. You're playing a zero-sum game. 

He has the delusion of being happy because he sucks it out of you. Neither of you is authentically happy. Neither of you can be. Neither of you will be, until one of you wakes up and realizes that it's not the other person: it's you.

That typically creates a really big mess. And we don't like messes, do we? We'd rather just let things be and not have to mop anything up. We'd rather pretend we are okay, let someone suck the life out of us--like a baby does his mother, and make excuses for another's behavior (not to mention, ours) than to open the closet, fill that mop bucket up with sudsy water, let the mess land as it may, and start cleaning the floor.

Literal cleaning is so much easier than metaphorical cleaning.

The problem is, with literal cleaning there is inevitably another mess in as little minutes to as much as several days. With metaphorical cleaning, there is an opening to freedom. The mess is not the problem, the freedom is.

I would like to solve this problem.

See, I'm still out trying to "save" people, but this time, I'm starting with me. You're welcome to watch or participate or share your experiences. None of us is ever alone, even though it nearly always feels that way.

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