During this time of year we all look back at what has happened in our lives and think of areas that we can change or how to let go of hardships that we have gone through. I have had many hardships in life, whether it is from abuse as a child or a messy break up to learning how to contain my emotions during conversations. Most people who know me would say that I wear my emotions on my sleave but I always thought that I was good at hiding, I guess not.
This one year close to Christmas time I was told that I was manipulative. Me manipulative, I had to look the word up to see what it ment and how I needed to change to make it right. Manipulative meaning: exercising unscrupulous control or influence over a person or situation (Oxford dictionary). Now that we have the meaning down lets examine my behaviour that would constitute being manipulative.
During our childhood years we did not have much control over our lives and situations that we were put in. So how would a child in those situations act or even learn to be manipulative. Well I did learn and was good at it. During my teen years I learned how to manipulate the people around me to provide me with the needs that I needed at that time. Did I know what I was doing? No, I did not know what I was doing until someone pointed it out to me.
Learning to live and not be manipulative was difficult for me as it was the only way I knew how to survive in the world. Having to learn to be a productive individual in life and not have that control is difficult as you make yourself vulnerable. Being vulnerable was a not a high point for me as I wanted to have control over all aspects of my life and those that choose to be in it with me.
The only control I seemed to have was to make people do what I wanted them to do. But why would that make me a bad person? It doesn’t make you a bad person just one people did not want to be around for the sake that you may take their free will away from them. I still do not understand that but I guess perception is the name of the game here. I always thought that I was thoughtful and kind to other people for I did not want them to feel the way I did deep down.
Influencing people could be looked as a good thing also, whether they realize it or not. I most definitely did not have any harm in mind if I influenced their decision to participate in an activity or not. I thought that I just was following the lead in many situations as that is what I had learnt as a child. Follow what is going on and do not rock the boat and no one will get hurt.
So being manipulative was a survival technique that I needed to get through the life I was living as a child. As an adult this behaviour was frowned upon and there I was again trying to figure out how to survive in his new world that did not understand me. I had to let go of all that I had learned and relearn new coping skills to get me through. Little to my surprise it lead me down a dark road of depression.
Our mother suffered from depression and I did not want to be anything like her do I ended up being in denial and refused treatment at my own expense. I was so scared of becoming the person that she was that I refused treatment with medication as I may become an addict just like her. I knew I needed help but to what degree I was not sure.
I suffered for years with depression and the black outs, but I was stubborn stating I did not need the help of medication like my mother. Until the day came that I was really having trouble functioning in life I knew them it was time to make a change and a drastic one it was.