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Author Topic: Using the BPD's drama to give oneself an adrenalin rush?  (Read 1927 times)
VitaminC
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« on: July 23, 2016, 04:54:52 PM »

Did anyone else enter their relationship, and stay in it, partly because they wanted to somehow access something in themselves that was otherwise out of reach?

Does this make sense?

Did anyone else have an awareness, at least for the early parts of the relationship, that it wasn't a normal healthy one, but kind of want to take the risk because something else in yourself was being stimulated? And you wanted that bit to be stimulated, even though you knew it wasn't actually good for you in the long run?

To be clear, I am aware this smacks of emotional immaturity and even using the pwBPD in some way. I don't want judgement about the selfish aspect of it, not that there's much judgement on these boards. I'm just saying I don't want to get into a discussion about the morality of it - if that's even a danger.  I know people "get" all kinds of things out of relationships, there are many transactions on many levels, some we are aware of and others not.

In this case, I was totally aware of the fact that I wanted this particular drug in my system. I don't know how else to put it right now. It's a realisation I had early on about myself and then completely forgot about in the ensuing mess.

I am interested in hearing if that resonates with anyone else.

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balletomane
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« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2016, 05:17:46 PM »

For me, no. At the beginning of my relationship with my ex I was aware that all his previous relationships had been short-lived and turbulent, and I knew that he had problems that had contributed to this (although how deep those problems went I didn't know). I thought that I would be the person who could offer him a successful, stable, loving relationship. He hadn't known his other partners long at all before dating them (sometimes only a few days) whereas we'd been friends for years, so my admittedly grandiose idea that our relationship would be different did have a grain of common sense in it. But only a grain. I thrived on being a caretaker and a rescuer, the one to put things right, and I enjoyed viewing myself as different from all those other partners who had 'failed'. While this isn't the same as what you're describing, it's certainly a dynamic that would make me very uneasy now. I think most of us will have had less than good motives driving us deeper into the relationship.
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« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2016, 09:00:17 PM »

Did anyone else have an awareness, at least for the early parts of the relationship, that it wasn't a normal healthy one, but kind of want to take the risk because something else in yourself was being stimulated? And you wanted that bit to be stimulated, even though you knew it wasn't actually good for you in the long run?

Yes, chaos and unpredictability are exciting, are stimulating, and so are new relationships in general, and did we consciously choose to ride the upper buzz, or did it touch something in us we may not have known was there, and once hooked, chasing that buzz became an addiction?

And not only that, external stimulation, ongoing chaos and unpredictabilty, are great ways to avoid our own stuff, as is making someone else a project and putting their needs first, perfect for a borderline, someone in continual need.  I used to use drugs and alcohol for the same reason, to outrun myself and not feel; a borderline was a different kind of drug that met the same purpose, only deeper and with more extreme consequences, at least in the short term.

Excerpt
To be clear, I am aware this smacks of emotional immaturity and even using the pwBPD in some way.

Either that, or the dynamic of a relationship with a borderline triggered something in us very old, some unmet need from the past, and once triggered that need became all-encompassing, not because of immaturity and a conscious using of our partner, but because it had remained unresolved to that point.  That can be a gift of the relationship, getting a spotlight shined on an unresolved need in an undeniable way, so dealing with it becomes necessary and crucial.  What if everything happens for a reason and it serves us?
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« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2016, 10:34:15 PM »

It was exciting for about a month after we broke up. After that, it was just exhausting and annoying.

I'm not sure how to proceed with my dating life because my ex is in the periphery with the whole "I'm pregnant! But, I may miscarry." nonsense. It's funny because the moment I've decided I'm gonna move on, she started conjuring up new episodes to this soap opera.

Fun fact: she broke up with me by calling off the wedding a month before it was supposed to happen earlier this year in April.
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VitaminC
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« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2016, 02:13:49 PM »

... .consciously choose to ride the upper buzz, or did it touch something in us we may not have known was there, and once hooked, chasing that buzz became an addiction?


Yes to riding the upper buzz.
I knew what it touched. It was like playing a harp or something; the right string was plucked and it hadn't been plucked in a while and felt absolutely amazing.
Of course it became an addiction.

And not only that, external stimulation, ongoing chaos and unpredictabilty, are great ways to avoid our own stuff... .


And to avoid boredom and deadness and uncertainty and a lack of focus.


Either that, or the dynamic of a relationship with a borderline triggered something in us very old, some unmet need from the past, and once triggered that need became all-encompassing, not because of immaturity and a conscious using of our partner, but because it had remained unresolved to that point.  

Exactly the conclusion I came to myself a couple of months ago. Very upsetting when I realised it and it spelled the end of the relationship for me.

Ehm, I've got 3 big things there :  the plucked string, my lack of focus, old unmet need. 

I think I've got the unmet need kind of sorted now. I am trying to create my own focus and keep on it and though its the slow lane of the superhighway, I'm at least driving the car.
But the plucked string; oh dear, I actually don't know how to begin figuring this one out at all.

Free, you've really helped me. Very insightful. Thank you.
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« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2016, 02:27:48 PM »

My T tells me that what I'm really doing is trying to resolve issues that stem from my FOO. That I ignored the  Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post) because the entire situation was very familiar to me.

She also tells me that I'm also a high sensation-seeker, so the chaos that came with the r/s was very soothing for me.
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« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2016, 02:38:44 PM »

Ehm, I've got 3 big things there :  the plucked string, my lack of focus, old unmet need.  

But the plucked string; oh dear, I actually don't know how to begin figuring this one out at all.

Of course the go-to is our family of origin; if we didn't feel loved growing up, or validated, and a borderline comes at us with that intense need to attach, so they become exactly whom we need, it temporarily meets those unmet needs from our youth, like a dream come true, until the dream becomes a nightmare.

Or maybe the plucked string, the lack of focus and the unmet need all have a common source:  it can be difficult and painful to look back at our past with new eyes, and make painful distinctions that are hard to accept and can rock our world.  It can also be difficult to get off our butts and pursue the life of our dreams, an empowered future, because that would involve growth and change, uncomfortable and maybe painful too.  Change and looking outside our comfort zone are scary, so easier to stay in a maybe disempowered present, but hey, it's familiar.  Another gift of the relationship, having our world rocked by a borderline can motivate us to dig, resolve some old issues, and become very discontented with the present and the prospects for our future, great news really, as we embark on a process that can ensure our best days are ahead of us.
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VitaminC
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« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2016, 04:41:10 PM »

I ignored the  Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post) because the entire situation was very familiar to me.

She also tells me that I'm also a high sensation-seeker, so the chaos that came with the r/s was very soothing for me.

Hello soulmate! Smiling (click to insert in post)

haha

Yes, I realised too that feeling crap and ignored was more familiar than feeling appreciated. I had a long and very good marriage and am still very close to my ex. I had 3 relationships when that marriage ended. All good men who respected me and with whom I had a healthy dynamic.

But did that teach me that I was ok in myself? Hell no. When BPD became a raving lunatic and I felt like I was scrabbling up a slippery and jaggedy glass mountain, completely without any way to get in, that's when I felt I was on familiar territory.

That realisation, when I had it, was shattering.

And yea, I love the thrill of the chaos. Better dangerous cliffs than a windy grassy path through a forest. I even feel irritated thinking of the forest path I've just conjured up! 

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Meili
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« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2016, 04:43:58 PM »

Do you know why it is more comfortable to you?
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VitaminC
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« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2016, 04:45:29 PM »

Or maybe the plucked string, the lack of focus and the unmet need all have a common source

Yes, I suppose they must. Dammit.

What does one do? Make lists? Talk? Interpretive dance?
Jeez, when will I ever get to the bottom of it?
 

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VitaminC
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« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2016, 04:48:26 PM »

Do you know why it is more comfortable to you?

Do you mean the cliffs?
Well, in fairness, part of it could just be my personality: high energy physically and mentally. Generally curious and like new things and people and ideas. I think of those as good things.

But, yeah, part of it is, I guess, something else. I don't know. Distraction?

Do you know why it is that way for you, Meili? 
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VitaminC
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« Reply #11 on: July 24, 2016, 04:59:01 PM »

wow, I think the relationship kind of calmed me down! It gave me a focus, it gave me access to my own pain but through the filter of someone else's and then eventually the pain that was mine but because of the relationship.

So not generalized pain because of old wounds or whatever, but specific pain that was to do with the relationship. So I could puzzle that out to keep busy.

I remember thinking, after the confession of cheating, that as destroyed as I felt by that, I now knew what that kind of thing felt like too, firsthand and not just through literature and films.

Like I was some kind of scientist or method actor.

Maybe I am a nutjob and beyond help.

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« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2016, 05:23:23 PM »

Excerpt
Maybe I am a nutjob and beyond help.

I don't think so, but if you choose to believe that, you will be.

What does one do? Make lists? Talk? Interpretive dance?
Jeez, when will I ever get to the bottom of it?

Well, first, make a list of your values, and then prioritize them, most important value first.  Then, focus on living by your values, living your values; if you do that so you can feel it to your core, your self esteem will skyrocket, and you'll get a sense of contentment.

Then, coming from those values, create a vision for the life of your dreams, a life worth living, and make it so big and bright that it's compelling, so it pulls you towards it.  Then, take one step in that direction.  Then another.  You'll be going on faith initially, but after a while you'll notice progress, which builds momentum, and before you know it you'll be living that life, and although the goal is still there to give you direction, it's not the destination it's the journey.  And as you do that your life will be so full that you won't even notice that your ex has faded into the past.  And then you will be free.

If we make detachment a project, the best kind of project, and use the pain as motivation to get us off our butts, pain is good for that, it can serve as a launching pad for the life of our dreams, and make sure our best days are ahead of us.  No really.

So what's your number 1 value?
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VitaminC
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« Reply #13 on: July 24, 2016, 05:26:04 PM »

I'm smiling at you, Free. I really am. 

Thanks.
I have to think and am going to make myself have lucid dreams to get cracking on this list.
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« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2016, 05:26:52 PM »

Yes, I do. It's because I was born into a chaotic household and family. The yelling, the hitting, the drunkenness.

I was conditioned to survive on that type of environment.

Not everyone who is a sensation seeker comes by it from environment though. There are also those who are genetically predisposed to it.

Either way, there are those of us who seek out dangerous situations. The mundane is something we avoid. We crave new experiences.

There are healthy ways to fulfill this need. Extreme sports are often suggested.
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VitaminC
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« Reply #15 on: July 24, 2016, 05:29:52 PM »


Extreme sports are often suggested.

Thank you for answering.

Yes, extreme sports. I have a predisposition to extreme sport with my emotions. Not so clever.

I get what you're saying though. Thank you.
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« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2016, 05:59:54 PM »

I have to think and am going to make myself have lucid dreams to get cracking on this list.

OK, and while you're doing that, what's your number 1 value?

Here's a list of values, and feel free to add a few of your own.  We rarely stumble into the life of our dreams, we get to create it.

Authenticity
Achievement
Adventure
Authority
Autonomy
Balance
Beauty
Boldness
Compassion
Challenge
Citizenship
Community
Competency
Contribution
Creativity
Curiosity
Determination
Fairness
Faith
Fame
Friendships
Fun
Growth
Happiness
Health
Honesty
Humor
Influence
Inner Harmony
Justice
Kindness
Knowledge
Leadership
Learning
Love
Loyalty
Meaningful Work
Openness
Optimism
Peace
Pleasure
Poise
Popularity
Recognition
Religion
Reputation
Respect
Responsibility
Security
Self-Respect
Service
Spirituality
Stability
Success
Status
Trustworthiness
Wealth
Wisdom
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VitaminC
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« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2016, 06:32:00 PM »

Wow!

I guess I don't know.
I've always thought curiosity defined me. I don't know. But giving me that list is a very good thing to do. 

I'm really going to enjoy thinking about this. May I report back?

Thank you do much, Free! You're pushing me, I like it
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« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2016, 06:43:12 PM »

I've always thought curiosity defined me. I don't know. But giving me that list is a very good thing to do.  

There you go, make curiosity number 1 for now, and then pick 4 more; if we value everything nothing's a priority, so best to start with the top five, prioritize, and add from there.

Excerpt
I'm really going to enjoy thinking about this. May I report back?

Certainly!  And if we don't hear by tomorrow we'll pester, only because we want you to get what you say you want.

Happy valuing!
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Larmoyant
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« Reply #19 on: July 24, 2016, 07:17:25 PM »

This thread is really useful. It's helping me get back on track. Thanks for posting VitaminC.
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VitaminC
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« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2016, 09:37:58 AM »

1. Intellectual Rigour ( I strive for this and am always drawn to others who think clearly and fluidly)
2. Loyalty (to self, to others, to ideals)
3. Kindness (to self, to others)
4. Beauty (relishing it and creating it in one's surroundings)
5. Emotional Depth ( thinking deeply about feelings, not being afraid to experience them and appear inconsistent at times - )
6. Autonomy (moving through the world with self-reliance and self-respect, but being ok with asking for help too)
7. Authenticity (being "real" but mannerly)
8. Energy (in everything one does, a curiosity that drives)
9. Creativity (making something meaningful, maybe beautiful, but always honest out of thoughts & feelings)
10. Humour (being able to laugh at oneself)


That's them. The first 5 were easy to oder, the order of the second set of five is not as clear to me.

Anyone else care to share some of theirs? This feels nice. 



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« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2016, 10:28:53 AM »

1. Intellectual Rigour ( I strive for this and am always drawn to others who think clearly and fluidly)
2. Loyalty (to self, to others, to ideals)
3. Kindness (to self, to others)
4. Beauty (relishing it and creating it in one's surroundings)
5. Emotional Depth ( thinking deeply about feelings, not being afraid to experience them and appear inconsistent at times - )
6. Autonomy (moving through the world with self-reliance and self-respect, but being ok with asking for help too)
7. Authenticity (being "real" but mannerly)
8. Energy (in everything one does, a curiosity that drives)
9. Creativity (making something meaningful, maybe beautiful, but always honest out of thoughts & feelings)
10. Humour (being able to laugh at oneself)

Nice VC!  It's easy to see how someone with those values would have challenges in a relationship with a borderline; did you find yourself violating your own values in the relationship?  I value emotional depth too, although when I went there with my ex it was met with a wide range of crap, so I gave up after a while.  Note to self: if you can't be emotionally open and honest in a relationship, you're in the wrong relationship.

So for bonus points, we all have rules about what has to happen, or what can't happen, to meet each value.  It's fun and enlightening to look at those rules and tweak as necessary to make it easy to meet them and hard to violate them, without sacrificing their validity.

For example, what has to happen for you to be kind?  What can't happen?
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« Reply #22 on: July 26, 2016, 10:48:37 AM »

For myself, no. In fact, as soon as I realized his true nature, I was sick and got very depressed. I recognized the roller coaster, and wanted off immediately. Of course, my "fix it"(codependency) kicked in, and I tried harder, and my stubbornness kept me there for quite a while. Then, after those wore off, I bought into hopes of his empty promises. I think he brought those out when he realized I was getting healthier, and could see this wasn't going to work if HE didn't also work on himself. Those promises were empty though, so I've had to face reality: get out, or live this way, and have it affect everything. Never have the truly happy life I could have.

I hated the highs and lows. Hated the chaos. In fact, I'd go to great lengths to avoid them, so certainly never got any rush or high out of them. I think he does though. Sadly.
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« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2016, 11:04:42 AM »

... .did you find yourself violating your own values in the relationship?  I value emotional depth too, although when I went there with my ex it was met with a wide range of crap, so I gave up after a while.  Note to self: if you can't be emotionally open and honest in a relationship, you're in the wrong relationship.

Yes, I became less kind, so that was a violation. I also permitted him to show me kindness only sporadically.   
And yes, I hear you on the emotional depth - the more I listened openly and the more I revealed, the less I felt that was a value we shared at all. I couldn't be emotionally honest - not at all - it became dangerous to be so.

So for bonus points, we all have rules about what has to happen, or what can't happen, to meet each value.  It's fun and enlightening to look at those rules and tweak as necessary to make it easy to meet them and hard to violate them, without sacrificing their validity.

For example, what has to happen for you to be kind?  What can't happen?

An excellent question, another thing to think about. Yippee!
 
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« Reply #24 on: July 26, 2016, 11:35:11 AM »

For myself, no. In fact, as soon as I realized his true nature, I was sick and got very depressed. I recognized the roller coaster, and wanted off immediately.

I hated the highs and lows. Hated the chaos. In fact, I'd go to great lengths to avoid them, so certainly never got any rush or high out of them. I think he does though. Sadly.

Thank you for sharing, Ceruleanblue. For every little crack in our psyche, there's a disordered way to fill it and a healthy one. 

You know those hardy little flowers and things that can grow out of a stone wall with a tiny crack in it? Sometimes the plant can get really big, which always amazes me. 

They seem so determined to survive. Although another way to look at it is to wonder at how little they will manage with when they have no better soil to plant themselves in. Maybe if we could do a cross-section of the wall, we'd see that some cracks run very deep and provide a better environment than we'd think at first.

Ah, me and my stupid metaphors. Does that make any sense?

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« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2016, 02:06:18 PM »

So for bonus points, we all have rules about what has to happen, or what can't happen, to meet each value.  It's fun and enlightening to look at those rules and tweak as necessary to make it easy to meet them and hard to violate them, without sacrificing their validity.

For example, what has to happen for you to be kind?  What can't happen?

Wait, I'm stuck.

These are my values. They are things I think are important, that I posses, and that I respect in others. Right?

First thing is to be clear about them as defining principles or characteristics of myself. Living in a way that remains true to these is to live authentically, fully in oneself. So far, so good.

Are we then attracted by someone who has something we don't or just has more of it? Why would I find magnetically interesting someone who does not posses most of these and it's clear to me that they don't from the outset? Is this part of the mystery of human attraction?

If I place a premium on kindness and I see little of it in another, what would make me say "hm, I wonder what they're really like?" instead of just saying "no.".  Eek, there's no mathematical formula is there?

Am I getting ahead of myself? Should I just do the homework and see what the next step is?  My mind just rushes all over the place and bounds ahead

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« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2016, 02:30:52 PM »

Are we then attracted by someone who has something we don't or just has more of it? Why would I find magnetically interesting someone who does not posses most of these and it's clear to me that they don't from the outset? Is this part of the mystery of human attraction?

If I place a premium on kindness and I see little of it in another, what would make me say "hm, I wonder what they're really like?" instead of just saying "no.".  Eek, there's no mathematical formula is there?

We've just been talking about personal values so far, a great place to start.  Point is if we live our values without compromise, we live authentically, our self-esteem skyrockets, and we're much more content.  An easy one is if you value health, and you smoke, you may come up with all kinds of justifications for why that's OK, but at your core you know you're violating a value, which does nothing for your opinion of yourself.  So it's a matter of reviewing and getting clear on our values, and then living that way, and eliminating thoughts and behaviors that violate them.  And when we do that we get mighty attractive!

So then there's relationships.  It's not necessary that partners share values, opposites attract and all that, although if someone values adventure at a very high level and you value security, that may be a conflict yes?  And having that conversation, what are your values and what are a potential partner's, is a great conversation to have.  And then, most importantly, can you live your values in the relationship?  If we're kind, we value kindness, and we are kind to someone, and they're a taker or someone in constant emotional need, like a borderline, is our kindness going to be taken advantage of so we lose ourselves and dabble in codependency?  Or autonomy, one of yours, are you going to be able to be autonomous while also being part of a relationship and considering someone else's needs to their satisfaction, or are you going to seem too aloof or independent to someone who is looking for more interdependence?

Sticky stuff, humans are complex, although those are great conversations to have, right from the git-go, and when we live from our values without compromise for a while, the quality of people we're having those conversations with goes up.

Of course this is all reactionary on my part, I did none of the above as I fell into a relationship with my ex, and I was not in a good place when we met, and see what happens?  It starts with us, at our core, and the more comfortable we get living from that place the less willing we are to compromise it.  It's a brand new world... .
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« Reply #27 on: July 26, 2016, 03:09:19 PM »

Great answer! Thank you very much.

And I also understand now what you meant by those values making a relationship with a Borderline challenging. My first thought when I read that was " isn't anyone living in accord with their own value system going to find and be found to be challenging by a Borderline.

I can also see how our values are separate to our needs and the complications if there are needs we are not fully aware of in ourselves.

How'd you get so smart anyway? x
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« Reply #28 on: July 26, 2016, 03:37:29 PM »

I can also see how our values are separate to our needs and the complications if there are needs we are not fully aware of in ourselves.

Nice!  Needs is a whole nuther topic... .

Excerpt
How'd you get so smart anyway? x

I dunno bout smart specially, just got tired of falling on my face too many times,   tired of the pain, and got it that floating through life ignoring the stuff that matters can get you screwed.  Not the only way to learn, but hey, it works... .
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