The emotional beggar
Photo by Francesca Zama
We tend to equate mental health with words like depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder As we surrender our conceptual understanding to these conditions, others don’t get the attention they deserve.
These other conditions can become lost in the complex world of mental health. Especially when do not address them specifically. As a result, we mince the words, and then, we mince our feelings. This is not a good thing.
Today, I will try to avoid that mistake and talk about ‘the emotional beggar’. Whose presence could well be in all of us at some point in our lives . All it needs to manifest itself is for us to ‘downgrade’ ourselves through creating an illusion of grandeur around something or someone else.
How the process develops
For many of us who have felt abandoned in early life, the emotional beggar is frequently present in our relationships. The fear of others leaving often “makes” us do or say things that belittle ourselves. This type of response, takes the energy from us and gives it to the person we envision as either a potential abandoner or somehow superior to us.
Therefore we come across as insecure, unsure of what to say, fearing that the wrong thing comes out and are left with our need for approval, belonging and validation.
This is the cycle that the emotional beggar creates. The sense of abandonment develops and can spiral out of control. Whereby the more we fear it, the more we cling to people who are not available to us.
However, if we take a closer look at the people we place on a mental pedestal, it is often the case that they are the ones that have let us down. That, in actual fact in the exchange of energy, referred to above they got the upper hand. This is because we forgot one very important rule.
This rule is very simple, one that I have talked about many times. It is our sovereignty. Our own value in the energy wars. We can say no to abuse and neglect. It is possible, indeed necessary, to create boundaries and establish a limit as to how far we will go to keep someone close to us.
Another not-so-fun fact about this predicament is that, as demanding as it is, it seldom works. There is something to say about the lack of self-respect and begging for love from others. More often than not, people don’t react well to it, which leaves more breadcrumbs for us to follow, more self-downgrading. All this simply perpetuates the cycle.
The Emotional Beggar – Another perspective
On the other hand, people tend to react well to self-respect as they observe that our attitude is self-sustained. This version of ourselves needs to be cared for, nurtured into existence and muscled into gear because it is only in this context that our relationships can have any value to us.
This isn’t an easy job. In my case, it has taken years and years to recognize that pattern in me and a huge effort to bring my sovereignty to the forefront of my chosen self.
But, after many mistakes and exaggerations, I have seen and tasted the rewards of it. There is no way back. The next step is to recognize situations that don’t require me to stand up for myself when someone is trying to take my energy from me.
I will leave that for my next article.