Who do you blame


With all that’s been going on in my life recently (the house under construction, lack of privacy, son not doing well in school, serious stomach issues to the point of being sick after every meal) I kinda lost it Tuesday night.

D took me out to see a show in Philly and as some of you may already know, I don’t generally do well after 8pm. I am a homebody and I go to bed very early, but will make exceptions from time to time. I can’t eat past 6pm either (I know! I’m a total old lady, but I’ve been this way my whole life).

At any rate, I made the exception as I have been doing a lot for D, since he loves going out. And so we ate at 6 at a really cozy, bohemian restaurant in Northern Liberties, and then shot over to the World Cafe Live to see Over the Rhine. But I had two Margaritas (something else I never do), my stomach started to bother me and the next thing I know it’s 11:30 and  I am crying hysterically back at D’s place (because at my house there’s no bed for the both of us), wanting to go home. He’s not engaging me at all (no begging me to stay, no “what’s wrong? let me try and fix your problems.”). He’s just calmy saying, “OK, if you want to go home, I’ll miss you, but you gotta do what you gotta do.” Ok, then.

Long story short, I ended up sleeping on the sofa (the thought of having sex so late at night, with yucky stomach issues stressed me out so much that I wanted to be alone, but I didn’t want to leave).

In the morning we talked. I said I didn’t think I could be a “normal” girlfriend, I can’t go out all the time like you want me to, I can’t live like you want me to. I need my privacy. I don’t always want to sleep in the same bed with you. I’m not used to being this close.

His response was, “I love you. I don’t think you’re weird. And we’re going to be OK as long as you don’t blame me for your problems. That’s when the trouble comes in.”

Blame.

I came right out and said, “I don’t blame you for anything.” And yet, I was secretly blaming him for a gazillion things: dragging me out late at night when he knows I don’t like it, influencing me to have margaritas, making me eat past six…These issues were not my fault, they were his. And it was his fault too that I had to sleep over his house, it was his fault that my house is under construction in the first place, his fault that I am so stressed out and having stomach issues and his fault that I can’t go to sleep peacefully, when I want because he wants to have sex.

My God. I realized that morning the vat of boiling negativity and blame inside me. Was I really blaming him for these things? Yes, I was. But why?

There was an interesting article posted on a site called 2KnowMyself.com, but it had the answers I was looking for:

  • Your childhood & blaming others:: If you blame others for your problems then most probably you are still attached to the way you used to be as a child. Children always blame others because they haven’t yet learned how to be responsible for their actions.
  • Acceptance and blame: Blaming others is usually an indication of the lack of ability to accept and cope with different situations that occur. Learning how to accept things the right way will certainly help you stop blaming others.
  • Weakness & Blaming others: The person who blames others is usually in the weak position and he tries to gain some power over the situation by blaming other people. If you want to stop blaming others then you should learn how to become in control of your life, how to be stronger and how to face different life problems.

And then one of my favorite’s on the forums posted this cute little diagram:

It all made sense. Blame is a low-functioning, bottom line behavior of love addiction. I’d fallen back into my old ways.

But it’s not D’s fault I stayed out so late. It’s mine. And it’s not D’s fault I ate past six. It’s mine. And it’s not D’s fault there are construction workers in the house. It’s actully no one’s “fault,” but rather the plan we both agreed upon when we decided to move in together.

And as soon as I realized that ALL those things were in my control and that I was the one responsible for addressing them, a weight lifted off me and I suddenly felt better.

And I still feel better because now, my actions are more responsible. D said he was coming over tonight a bit late and that “we can discuss dinner plans when I get there.” But I think I’m going to grab something to eat earlier and take care of myself so I’m not cranky and resentful when he arrives. And if he wants to stay up late, that’s fine. I’ll be bringing a book to read and I’ll retire early.

I know there will be ocassions where I won’t have the luxury of doing things on my own timeline, at my own pace, but if I can keep those times to a minimum, instead of frequently (because I think I have to please other people and their schedules), I’ll probably be OK.

Lesson learned: the more I cater to the will of others and deny myself that which is necessary to my nature, the more I will begin to resent and blame others. Thing is, I have only myself to blame. No one else.

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