I was sitting in my car on my lunch break, wondering why I am so negative all the time. Why am I so inclined to notice, focus on, and mention other’s faults and flaws? The obvious reason is that’s what my upbringing taught me. That’s what I’ve learned. My mother had no qualms mentioning to me that I needed to desperately pluck my eyebrows. She would regularly mention to my brother, in front of family members and strangers alike, that he needed to do a better job washing his face. She was constantly telling my siblings and I what was “wrong” with us and how we needed to improve. She shined a mega-watt spotlight on all “imperfections”. No “defect” was excluded. I was chided for my hair, my clothing, my nail polish (“only whores wear red”), the smell of my feet, my weight, my teeth…Anything that didn’t rise up to meet her impossible standards of what “should” be was subjected to her scrutiny. No wonder I’m so quick to point out anything less than perfect about Crazy Jay. LMCAO (Remember? That stands for “laughing my crazy ass off”)
I think another possible reason I may focus on the flaws of others (and constantly point them out to some) is to bring them down to my level. I think I am worthless. I think I am nothing. I think I am extraneous. If I fixate on the problems and blemishes of others, not only does that take the attention off of MY problems and blemishes, it makes me feel more of equal. It levels the playing field. I don’t have to feel so inferior if I just think about all the crappy parts of the other person. I don’t have to worry about being a piece of trash because, look! You’re trash, too!
Jay and I tried out a therapist last night. She tends to use what I would consider a more new-agey approach to life and therapy. She focuses on pressure points, aroma therapy, and meditation. She believes that negativity harms your mind and your body, and that it is manifested physically in your body. She talked about how changing negative thoughts and getting rid of your past baggage (through a lot of hard work) can help to encourage happiness in your life. I think there may just be something to what she says. She said she has learned that talk therapy and medication can’t always help everything. Sometimes one needs to approach things from a non-traditional route. Jay and I certainly are “non-traditional” people.
I think she is going to be very helpful; both to Jay and myself as a couple, and to each of us individually. We each have homework for this week. My homework is to start writing down things that give me a glimmer of happiness, since I mentioned that a goal I have is to feel happy or satisfied with something…anything. She asked me what makes me happy, and I just didn’t know what to tell her. I can list some things that are acceptable to pass the time when I have some to spare, but that’s not happiness. Those aren’t hobbies I enjoy. Just things I do to get to the next minute.
Our therapist is kooky. Jay referred to her as a “wakadoo”. He and I both agree, though, that it’s going to take a special kind of crazy to give us the help we need. All other therapists fell short. I think this one may just be nutty enough to help us feel better about ourselves, and, in turn, to help our marriage to thrive.