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Posts Tagged ‘not feeling loved’

**** religious triggers ****

I have shared a few times that I am working through a Beth Moore Bible study entitled Breaking Free. In this blog entry, I shared that I had trouble answering the question: “Who is someone you are absolutely certain loves you?” That question made me cry because, even though I know in my head that a lot of people love me, I am not “absolutely certain” about any of them. Many of you wrote some sweet comments to me on that post. :0)

This week’s topic of the Bible study has focused upon God’s unfailing love. It did swing around to thinking about someone who you are “absolutely certain” loves you again, but I was in a better place emotionally and chose my son. What I found much more helpful was writing a list of characteristics of a child who feels loved versus a child who does not. That one was easy – I just thought about myself versus my son. It was night and day!

It is no wonder that I struggle with feeling “absolutely certain” that anyone loves me. It is a mother’s job to instill confidence in feeling loved in her newborn baby, and my mother failed miserably. While there are certainly other influences in a child’s life, that very first bond between mother and baby lays the foundation for feeling loved or unloved for the rest of your life. When you do not believe that your own mother loves you (whether that is true or not), it sets the child up for feeling unloved in every other relationship.

Here’s the good part for anyone with a faith – The focus of the Bible study this week was on God’s unfailing love and that He loves me to pieces. He is the only One who knows everything that I have been through (even the memories I have yet to recover) and fully understands why I am the way that I am. If I could truly believe and embrace that God loves me this deeply, I believe it will go a long way toward repairing the shattered foundation that my mother left me.

The truth is that I do have people in my life who love me deeply. However, I have trouble receiving or believing that love, in part because all of them are human and have failed me from time to time due to their own limitations. Also, I feel like a great resource rather than someone who is loved. I am the “go-to” person for many things, which makes me feel like I am appreciated for what I do rather than loved for who I am. I have been caught in this loop for my entire life, never truly believing that I am loved.

I am going to try to apply what I have learned in this Bible study and “pray in my unbelief” to believe that God truly loves me to pieces. Feeling someone else’s love penetrate all of those empty places inside would go a very long way toward healing my brokenness. Also, if I was confident that somebody truly knew and loved me, then I would finally believe that I was lovable and might be more open to receiving love from those in my life who do love me.

Does anyone else struggle with feeling fundamentally unlovable? Do you think your faith might be the answer?

Photo credit: Amazon.com

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I had another tough week with the Beth Moore Bible study I am working through entitled Breaking Free. Don’t worry – What I have to talk about today is not religion-based, so there are no religion triggers in it.

This week’s focus is on childhood dreams from girlhood and the ways that your faith can fulfill those dreams. I felt like a fish out of water, and recognizing my lack of these dreams hurt … I guess because it drives home just how different my childhood was and how this was another loss for me to grieve from childhood.

Beth Moore says that all young girls have the following four dreams and that this is one reason little girls love fairy tales:

  1. To be a bride
  2. To be beautiful
  3. To be fruitful
  4. To live happily ever after

We were supposed to put a check mark by each one that we remember dreaming about as a little girl. I could not check any of them.

I had no dreams of growing up to be beautiful because I “knew” I was not beautiful as a child. My mother forced me to keep my hair in a boyish cut and dressed me in boyish clothing. Until I hit puberty, people constantly thought I was a boy. On top of that, I saw myself as “ugly” because of the abuse.

Quite frankly, I have no desire to be “beautiful” today because I don’t want to attract anyone’s sexual attention (not even hub’s.). The more beautiful a woman is, the more men think about her sexually, which I see as dangerous. I had a well-meaning friend offer to give me a makeover, and I told her no quite firmly. I am not plucking my eyebrows into a sexy arch, wearing sexier makeup, dressing to flatter my figure, or wearing high heels because all of these things would attract sexual attention, and I don’t want any. I don’t want anyone to see or think about my body. I do believe this ties into why I struggle so much with trying to lose weight even though I work out an hour a day most days each week.

I did not dream of being a bride … I did not think that anyone would want me, and I was frankly shocked when hub did. I definitely had no dreams of being fruitful as a little girl because I saw that as more helpless children that I would have to protect, and my sister was enough. I used to have my Barbies abort their babies, and I hated dolls. You can forget living happily ever after – My dream was to grow big enough that my abusers could no longer hurt me.

And then here was the kicker that made me cry – The question: “Who is someone you are absolutely certain loves you?” and then list how you know. My answer was no one. I might have said my son a couple of years ago, but his mood swings sometimes make me question this. I know I have many people in my life who need me, but “needing” me is not the same thing as “loving” me. I sometimes question if I am in people’s lives because I am “useful” rather than because I am loved.

Do I know in my head that I have people in my life who love me? Yes. Is my heart certain of anyone’s love? No. I am certain that there is not one person in my life who is in it forever and that any of them could leave at any time. Yes, I know that my loved ones who have moved away still love me, but that doesn’t do me a lot of good when they are 8 hours away by car. I feel like I am easy to leave. I don’t begrudge people for following their dreams (or their husbands’ dreams), but it doesn’t change the fact that they leave. So, no – I am not absolutely certain about anyone’s love for me on this planet, and that hurts.

Photo credit: Amazon.com

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