I have issues.
Ok, so that much goes without saying. More specifically, I have guilt issues. THey come from a few different sources, here's some of the major ones:
- Close relationships with passive-agressive/manipulative people. THese people have the unique ability to bend reality to suit their needs, making others responsible for their feelings, actions, disappointments etc. It's hard enough bearing the weight of one's own live, let alone that of others.
- Work situations that caused me to bear the consequences of the decisions of others. This is why I'm always nice to people who work at call centers. It's not their fault; they're just doing their job.
- The inability to meet unspoken expectations. I will do all I can do to meet a reasonable expectation, but if all I feel is the negativity from not meeting some obscure hidden standard, I'm left feeling defeated.
So I have this issues, and I'm aware of it, but that doesn't make it go away. For example, a few weeks back I told Tyler and Denise I'd help chaperone a trip to the zoo for their summer program. THe day before the trip the breaks started acting up in the car and I didn't feel save having Hana in it (and Ben didn't like having me in it...). Unfortunately, because of circumstances beyond my control, me not going would me the trip couldn't happen. THankfully something worked out, but I still felt guilty all day for causing the complication.
I'm realizing my guilt issues affect my life. If Hana can't sleep I feel it's because I'm a bad mother. THe rational part of me knows it's because she's overtired/going through a pahse/whatever.
It doesn't matter, I still feel responsible, and I still feel guilty.
I have sleep issues. Sometimes they interrupt the daily flow of our family because I need to nap. Usually, instead of sleeping, I toss and turn because I feel guilty for needing the sleep.
I let myself get into situations that I know are unhealthy for me because protecting myself would put someone else out.
I'm pretty much always feeling guilty.
I really don't know what to do. I feel so responsible for the happiness/fulfillment/dreams/expectations of those around me that at times I just feel helpless. And then I feel like it's all my fault and feel guilty for having any frustration, let alone expressing it.
So here's my idea. I'm not trying to be selfish, I'm just setting some ground rules to try and make things a little easier.
- If lack of sleep is preventing me from being effective in what I am trying to do and the opportunity to sleep arises, I will take it.
- If my family does not regularly enjoy a specific food or drink it should not be expected that we regularly have it available, no matter how much our guests may enjoy it, so long as we have a suitable substitute.
- being a good wife and mother means regularly taking time for myself and my passions. I will fell free to do so as long as my immediate responsibilities to my husband and child are taken care of.
- I have a right to my opinions and am entitled to express them respectfully.
- I am not responsible for the happiness of others so long as I am treating them with dignity and respect.
- I can not be held accountable for the decisions, attitudes or actions of those around me.
- The house needs to be cleaned once a week; it doesn't even all have to be on the same day. When other things are more important, housework will wait.
Now maybe if I can remember those things I'll be able to ease up on myself a bit.