This post is Part II. For Part I click here.

If I wasn’t so strong, I’d probably be dead.

If I hadn’t become so fiercely independent, perhaps I’d feel at peace; nestled securely in the warmth and sturdiness of – you.

I wish you’d let me help you.”

I want to be here for you, but my efforts just seem to make it worse.”

You always know what’s best for you, so I feel like I have nothing to offer when you’re going through something hard.”

How to identify a nervous system pattern:

Since we met in spring 2016 Stefan has been trying to tell me something about myself that I was willfully blind to. I couldn’t see it. We’re never ready til we’re ready, right? Besides, I felt justified in my ways.

You’re right,” I’d say. “I DO know what’s best for me. What’s wrong with that? I’m really good at knowing how to take care of myself and I don’t understand why this upsets you. Why is this a bad thing?”

‘Justified’ is a pretty unyielding state. On top of that, I secretly (or not so secretly) wanted him to be better at taking care of himself instead of relying so much on me.

No wonder it took a year to crack this one open!

More like 27 actually.

We sat facing each other on the couch a month ago when I told him “I need you to be self-sufficient. I need you to be autonomous. I need to know you’re ok without me.”

Here was that pernicious nervous system pattern of mine in action, the one hiding in plain sight all these years that – once liberated – was about to rock my world when a savvy therapist asked me a few weeks later:

Do you believe you deserve the kind of relationship you truly desire?”

What I couldn’t see and didn’t know about myself was ruling my life and painfully influencing my relationship (and business, but I’ll get to that part later). My recent behavior and feelings were a direct result of my subconscious patterns, and I: their unwitting accomplice.

His reply: “Why are we in a relationship then?”

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