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how does your 'identity' affect your relationships?


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i've been putting alot of thought into this idea of late. i think through my own suffering in the recent past i've been put in a position where it's time to assess and acknowledge (and subsequently gain acceptance and forgiveness)

of some of my ways.


i guess the question is...do you identify yourself in some way? an example might be that you see yourself as someone who has always suffered...and have been so accustomed to that notion that you now accept it as your identiy...as a part of who you are. are you conscious of this identity? do you fear that if you give that part of yourself up that you're losing a part of your identity? personally, i've learned that i had become very attatched to

the idea of my own identity. i think we all seek something that will makes us feel unique in some way. sometimes...it comes to a point where the very idea of change is a threat...even in circumstances where our identity is covertly impairing our ability to be at peace.


i guess the other question would be...do you find that you seek out relationships with people who share that same identity...or some of the same facets of your own identity? i realize that's somewhat of a rhetorical question. but do you do it consciously? ask yourself if finding that in someone else ever really made you 'happy' in the long run. i would hazard a guess that the majority of people that do this find that in the end the other person only served to fuel the more negative side of that identity. the result can often be devastating. the more time you spend...the more deeply rooted your identity becomes. your identity isn't you. your body and your mind are only tools to be used by your consciousness.

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Yes, definitely. I have things which I consider attributes of who I am, both positive and negative, and I have noticed they can affect relationships. I tend to revert to a personal "type" or behavior sometimes, and I feel like a phoney, even if it really is part of who I am. I think for me it comes from insecurity over just living in the moment. But it affects my relationships, sure...


How? Well I get sterotyped or pigeonholed. And my BF defined me very rigidly based on those things. It led to serious escalation when we had a fight because I would get really upset at how he saw me.

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My old therapist actually talked to me about this one time. I told her the same type of intense guys always seemed to find me, and I don't know what it was. She said the common denominator in the situations was me. That the way I present myself (perhaps vulnerable, seeking a knight in shining armor) attracted the type those with the hero complexes, which then gives you the feeling of "this person saved me!" or "I saved them!" and that's mistaken for love. She told me to maybe ask a friend or observe myself in social situations, because even my body language could be putting out vibes I'm not intentionally sending. Lo and behold, it was true. I did see myself as needing to be saved from my "issues" and even if I never said it out loud, my demeanor said it for me. My subconscious identity was attracting others subconsciously to me.


That being said, I don't think I could last very long in a relationship with someone who has the SAME problems I do, but I also couldn't with someone who has never encountered the same issues, and has no idea how they themselves would handle it. I don't think you seek out the same identity, just one that's complimentary.



It IS hard to change your "identity," and it can be scary. If you see yourself as someone who's always suffered, breaking out of that shell might make you happier in ways, but you'll still feel like you've got a chip on your shoulder because you have suffered, and are no longer acknowledging it. Identifying as someone who "suffers" gives you almost a martyr complex. Losing that can be a blow to your carefully constructed self esteem. I think that's why a lot of people get angry when you tell them to just get over their problems and move on.

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