Understanding Self-Love and Romantic Love
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Dear Psychic Reed,
My life has been a journey of extremes. Childhood traumas left my emotional mind very fertile and I developed some not-so-pleasant ideas about love and life. As a result, I have not been able to form real relationships with myself and others. Will I ever love myself? Will I get the opportunity to truly understand love with another human being? I crave it, but I don’t understand it.
I have been working on loving myself and I think I’m making progress. Also, I have a deep love for animals and those who are suffering. I feel like my connection to the Universe is powerful in those ways. But will I have that comforting, nurturing, trustworthy relationship with a man? And, don’t I have to love myself first?
With universal gratitude,
Psychic Reed ext. 5105 responds:
With the sort of trauma you suffered, it’s no wonder you find it challenging to connect with people. You’ve already conquered some of the biggest obstacles in your path though: You know that you need to realize just how lovable you are, you know that your not-so-pleasant ideas came from manipulation and lies told to manipulate you, and you know that what you needed instead was comfort, nurturing, and the ability to trust. That’s half the battle right there!
For now, keep working on trusting, comforting, and nurturing yourself—yes, that’s self-love. You are making progress in this. You ask, “Will I ever love myself?” but you already do in some ways. Now it’s just a matter of expanding that love to cover more and more facets of you. You’ll know when you are there because you’ll want to cut out all the things (foods, habits, situations, people, etc.) that aren’t healthy for you.
You are also going to need to work to adjust your ideas about how relationships function, because you have examples of dysfunctional relationships, but have been denied the chance to experience examples of healthy relationships. There are tons of resources in the world for increasing your knowledge about healthy communication and boundary setting, how to problem solve as a couple, how and when to communicate your needs so that they get met, etc. Educate yourself! This will empower you in so many ways. It will help you to adjust your approach to relationships, it will help you to build the very relationship you want and need, and it will give you priceless confidence in yourself. Eventually, you’ll be able to say, “Yes, I love myself.”
Learning the best relationship skills will help in your relationships with others, but it will also help in your relationship with yourself. For example, the habits of good communication work just as well internally as when spoken out loud to others. The concepts of respectful boundaries and fair fighting should be applied to ourselves as well as others. I would highly recommend the work of Harville Hendrix, Byron Katie, and Brene Brown. Brown’s work actually helped me in a time when I found it hard to love myself.
You’ll keep working on this and keep making progress. Your future partner is out there doing the same right now. He’s overcoming an emotional trauma that has kept him from love. He will be ready this fall, around mid-October, and so will you.
As for understanding love, you will! First, it will push you out of your comfort zone and you’ll deal with it because of your new confidence in yourself. Then, you’ll find yourself vulnerable and at peace at the same time. At that point you’ll know that your trauma no longer isolates you. You’ve won the battle and you’ll know that you’re in love.
Keeping you in prayer,
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