Carol Boulware, MFT, Ph.D.
Los Angeles - Santa Monica & Redondo Beach, California
IN A PAINFUL RELATIONSHIP AND CAN'T LEAVE?
If you answer "Yes" to one or more of these questions and still can't figure out how to fix it and you can't leave either, then read on. Your problem is not unusual.
What causes the problem?
The core of the problem is usually a subtle or not-so-subtle belief that, "I am not lovable. Therefore, if I lose this relationship, I'll never have another and I'll be lonely for the rest of my life." Or another, more pernicious belief, "I deserve to be treated badly, because I'm bad and unlovable." Those core beliefs allow people to tolerate being abused, neglected, and/or shamed in on-going relationships and even to seek them out -- choose them over more nurturing and satisfying relationships.
Where do these beliefs come from?
The origin of these beliefs about the self are in early childhood. The experience of intimacy, love and nurturing that we have as babies and small children form our beliefs about our selves and what love and intimacy are. Everyone is abused and neglected to some degree as small children, either through parental ignorance or life circumstances, either by accident or on purpose. Even the wisest and most well intentioned parents can't meet a child's every need. However, the more the abuse or neglect and the less the child's needs are met, the more likely the child will feel unlovable and believe that love and nurturing in intimacy are not possible.
I feel so stuck. Can I get out of this situation?
The good news is that you can heal. You can learn to believe that you are lovable and to surround yourself with and make loving connections with people who love you.
You make it sound so simple. How can I learn to love myself and have more satisfying love in my life?
The principles are simple. Doing it is not easy. Here are some of the requirements to healing your relationships:
Sounds like a tall order, I don't even know how to start.
Get help. This work is not easy. So much of the problem is out of awareness that it usually takes a trained professional to help people be clear and objective about their beliefs and behavior patterns. It also takes a trained professional to help people find and heal the core of their self defeating beliefs and behaviors.
Dr. Boulware has over 20 years experience helping people who are in the same dilemma that you are.
You will have your own path to healthy relationships, yet Dr. Boulware has identified some steps in the process that seem to be helpful for everyone.
My childhood is past and I can't stand the thought of digging up that old pain.
Is it absolutely necessary? EMDR (Eye Movement Desentization and Reprocessing) is a new method to help work through the memories and painful incidents from your past.
For information about making an In-Office Consultation Appointment or
CALL (310) 395-3351
Day & Evening/Weekend Appointments
Copyright ©1998 - 2006 Carol Boulware, Ph.D.
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