Holding on and letting go

Talk about relationships in the context of Spiritual Enlightenment

Holding on and letting go

Postby painBody » Sat Nov 19, 2016 12:56 am

What I'm about to write about is something I have almost always known, intuitively, to be true, but yet, have never been able to apply or realize in my life.

A Buddhist meditation teacher I learned from for a while, often spoke about desire and fear in the context of relationships. She said that, when we hold on to someone too tightly, or push them away, we cause suffering. And, ever since she brought up that topic, I have given it a lot of thought.

After having been alone for the entirety of my existence - 33 years, I don't see the need to spend another day alone. In my experience with dating/women, I have always held on tightly, because of the sheer dread of returning to that all too familiar and eternal loneliness that has consumed me for as long as I can remember. And, inevitably, almost all of those "relationships" ended in a matter of weeks or less. When I think of the desire/fear truth, I see clearly, why all those relationships didn't stand a chance. Yet, I know, with equally strong conviction, that, given another chance at a relationship, exactly the same would occur.

ET talks about giving someone "space". I hate that word, because of how it is misused, esp. in the context of relationships. True space, as defined by ET, is the space for someone to be him/herself. That is what space really means. It doesn't necessarily mean physical space or time (a "day off" from the significant other). It just means allowing the other person to be whoever they are, without intruding into that space with your ego. It means not imposing yourself on the other. And that makes perfect sense. Because, my ideal mate would be someone who lets me be myself.

I think that there is such a purity and beauty in letting go of someone who doesn't want to be with you. I think of opening the door to the cage of a bird. Give the bird a choice. If it wants to be with you, it will. Otherwise, it is best for it to fly away. If it is meant to be with you, it will return.
God, grant me the humility to accept the things I cannot understand, the creativity to utilize the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
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Re: Holding on and letting go

Postby dijmart » Sat Nov 19, 2016 4:52 am

Hi PB,

I really like your posts, they're very heartfelt.

She said that, when we hold on to someone too tightly, or push them away, we cause suffering. And, ever since she brought up that topic, I have given it a lot of thought.


Id say that's true, but I'd also say that if someone feels uncomfortable being held to tightly, it's almost a given to want to push them away. I'm guilty of the pushing away, my husband is the one who holds to tightly. So, I can completely relate here. He invades my personal space, literally, quite frequently. That makes me uncomfortable and he knows it. I was the kid that would yell "stop touching me!" If my sister sat too close and her leg was touching mine..lol. She would lick my face, out of the blue, because she knew I couldn't stand it. Oh, and because she was 4 1/2 yrs older then me, she would regularly hold me down, just to show who was bigger and stronger.

So, I developed a strong sense of personal space. However, I don't push someone away, unless they repeatedly cross my boundaries (like sit or lay on me without my consent, or constantly touch or grope at me. Etc) or try to show dominace in some way or fashion. Most the time my husband thinks it's funny, as he can be an agitator. Occasionally, I miss read him, push away and hurt his feelings a wee bit. I'm not an overly affectionate person in general. I just wasn't raised that way.

Yet, I know, with equally strong conviction, that, given another chance at a relationship, exactly the same would occur.


Cognitive behavioral therapy may be able to help with this or finding a klingy girlfriend. One who holds tight to you, therefore wouldn't be bothered by being held tight back.

I read what you wrote about space, but I think in a relationship it should be mutual if you invade one another's personal space, if you need time apart (just to be alone or whatever), I think thats fine and healthy Also, of course, to let each other be themselves.

Now, of course this is all on the relative level of the apparent reality. But I know that no matter what happens, I awareness, am not affected in the least, so theres usually a momentary irritation at this point, then it's let go of... It comes, it goes. Painful experiences appear, they disappear... my essential nature is left untouched.
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Re: Holding on and letting go

Postby dijmart » Sat Nov 19, 2016 5:53 am

I have got to add this...perfect example! My husband has been at bowling all night, comes home, I'm sitting on the couch typing, he sits down next to me, then proceeds to lick my chest!!! Not some cute little baby lick, ohh no a big, slimey lick right down the center of my chest, for no reason, but to be annoying . I'm not even kidding...
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Re: Holding on and letting go

Postby painBody » Sun Nov 20, 2016 1:18 am

Thanks, dijmart. I'm glad you like my BS.

No, CBT is the biggest waste of time ever. I did it for years.
God, grant me the humility to accept the things I cannot understand, the creativity to utilize the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
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Re: Holding on and letting go

Postby dijmart » Sun Nov 20, 2016 3:44 am

painBody wrote:
Thanks, dijmart. I'm glad you like my BS.


I almost deleted my post last night, it got the old memory banks triggered to tell my "story", sorry about that. But, thought maybe there was something useful there? Maybe not.

No, CBT is the biggest waste of time ever. I did it for years.


It helps some, some not. I think it depends on the therapists skill and how firmly held the conditioned beliefs are...
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Re: Holding on and letting go

Postby meetjoeblack » Sat Apr 22, 2017 5:24 am

painBody wrote:What I'm about to write about is something I have almost always known, intuitively, to be true, but yet, have never been able to apply or realize in my life.

A Buddhist meditation teacher I learned from for a while, often spoke about desire and fear in the context of relationships. She said that, when we hold on to someone too tightly, or push them away, we cause suffering. And, ever since she brought up that topic, I have given it a lot of thought.

After having been alone for the entirety of my existence - 33 years, I don't see the need to spend another day alone. In my experience with dating/women, I have always held on tightly, because of the sheer dread of returning to that all too familiar and eternal loneliness that has consumed me for as long as I can remember. And, inevitably, almost all of those "relationships" ended in a matter of weeks or less. When I think of the desire/fear truth, I see clearly, why all those relationships didn't stand a chance. Yet, I know, with equally strong conviction, that, given another chance at a relationship, exactly the same would occur.

ET talks about giving someone "space". I hate that word, because of how it is misused, esp. in the context of relationships. True space, as defined by ET, is the space for someone to be him/herself. That is what space really means. It doesn't necessarily mean physical space or time (a "day off" from the significant other). It just means allowing the other person to be whoever they are, without intruding into that space with your ego. It means not imposing yourself on the other. And that makes perfect sense. Because, my ideal mate would be someone who lets me be myself.

I think that there is such a purity and beauty in letting go of someone who doesn't want to be with you. I think of opening the door to the cage of a bird. Give the bird a choice. If it wants to be with you, it will. Otherwise, it is best for it to fly away. If it is meant to be with you, it will return.


I spent my teens single. I finally resorted to pickup because of the dread I had of single life. Prior, I would date through serendipity, waiting on perfect situations or social circle. I remember I would enamor over some girl, obsess or cringe worthy, take flowers to some girls house. I had no understanding of dating or social skills. I remember I bought this girl ice cream and things were good but, they got weird. I was hung up on her but, it was off. I was this 'good guy' but, it was because I thought this is what to be. My ego was to preserve this 'good guy' image. I tried to understand girls and dating but, I just kept seeing girls chasing 'players,' and it annoyed me. It annoyed me seeing my crushes pregnant and single moms. It annoyed me to see girls that never give me the time a day come around later on in life as I did self improvement.

I am embarrassed to admit doing pickup and approaching. I have always been genuinely interested. What I learned was that, there was no reason I am not enough. I have dated. I met some awesome girls but, I also realized how warped world was before hand and how much it messed with my psyche. I just thought you meet someone, you date, get married, and have a family. Maybe be a grandpa one day.

Like you 'Painbody,' I held on tightly. I couldn't understand, the good girl I could see myself marrying and having a family with running away to have a one night stand with the player. As I approached lots of girls, as I dated more, and hooked up, I stopped caring. I don't care anymore. I let go. I am not trying to capture the girl. I am just giving love, giving her the opportunity to get to know me, and see what happens. Maybe its my next gf or future wife or maybe she rejects me. I have been rejected quite a bit in the process but, I date more now and I am not lonely. I am still single. I just am a more fun person to be around.

Painbody, search youtube for 'freedom from outcome.'

I read the bhavada-gita (pardon spelling). I came across this concept from pickup but, in the Gita, Arjuna' dedication to Krsna in everything he does unattached. I am doig this in my daily life be it approaching or school/work life. What do you want in a given moment? Be in a relationship? find love? Pursue a relationship? Can you be that place of 'being' and yet, unattached to 'the fruits of your actions/works?'


I confess, I feel shame for pickup, and yet, there was no alternative. My genes would be weeded out of existence. I tried every alternative. Now, I met a girl in a coffee shop. I meet girls at the gym. I met some students or girls at cafes. I am getting older. I would like to date more and work on self discovery before thinking about a family one day. In all honesty, I have not dated or explored enough self knowledge to be ready. I hope you find what you are seeking in this life. Its helped me overcome a lot of my own personal fears especially anxiety or rejection. Its still there but, I am afraid of being alone which is what I knew most of my life so, what harm is approaching, saying hello? To asking a pretty girl out for coffee or for drinks? It hasn't been 'forever' but, nothing is which makes it all the more special.
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