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How Emotional Loneliness Transcends Gender

I’m going to help you change your life one thought at a time.  My name is Michelle Raza and I created Finding Yourself SATX life coaching in 2017 to help people like you achieve success, by first writing out your personal vision statements, then translating these into actionable goals, and most importantly, meeting often enough with your coach to be held accountable and achieve success. Please check out my website - it's at www.findingyourselfsatxlifecoaching.com.


Today we're going to go through an excerpt of Chapter 1 of Dr. Lindsay Gibson's “Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents”, regarding how Emotional Loneliness Transcends Gender.  Beginning on Page 14, Dr. Gibson states:


“Although women still outnumber men in seeking psychotherapy, I've worked with many men who have faced the same issue of feeling lonely in their primary relationship. In some ways it's even more poignant for them because our culture maintains that males have fewer emotional needs. But taking a look at the rates of suicide and violence reveals that this isn't true. Men are more likely to become violent or succeed at suicide when they feel emotionally anguished. Men who lack emotional intimacy, a sense of belonging, or caring attention can feel as empty as anybody else though they may resist showing it. Emotional connection is a basic human need regardless of gender.

Children who feel they cannot engage their parents emotionally often try to strengthen their connection by playing whatever roles they believe their parents want them to. Although this may win them some fleeting approval, it doesn't yield genuine emotional closeness. Emotionally

disconnected parents don't suddenly develop a capacity for empathy just because a child does something to please them. 

People who lack emotional engagement in childhood, men and women alike, often can't believe that someone would want to have a relationship with them just because of who they are. They believe that if they want closeness they must play a role that always puts the other person first.”


Dr. Gibson then goes on to tell Jake’s story. Jake was trapped in a toxic positivity spiral of his own making - and we know that pushing away negative feelings just makes everything worse! He’d married someone who was naturally very upbeat and happy, and he felt he had to match her. But he also felt like he was “faking it”. And he was. Maybe his wife was just a more genuinely bubbly person, but that didn’t mean that Jake had to change his personality to match. He came to Dr. Gibson afraid that if he showed his true self to his wife, she wouldn’t accept him. But the opposite happened. His wife Kayla was happy to see him through the good and the bad, just as she’d promised when she recited her marriage vows to him. 


On Pages 15 and 16 Dr. Gibson states:

  “I told Jake that I believed sharing his honest feelings might have enraged someone in his past, but it didn’t sound like how Kayla would respond. It sounded more like what he had told me about his angry mother, who was quick to blow up if people didn’t do what she wanted.

Jake’s secure relationship with Kayla was tempting him to relax and be himself, but he was sure that his relationship would suffer if he stopped trying so hard.

When I told Jake that maybe this safe new relationship was giving him the chance to finally be loved for himself, he was uncomfortable with the reference to his emotional needs. He looked embarrassed and said “When you say it like that, I sound pitiful and needy.”

During childhood, Jake had gotten the message from his mother that showing any emotional needs meant he was weak.

Further, if he didn’t act how she wanted him to, he felt inadequate and unlovable.

Jake was eventually able to understand his feelings and become more genuine with Kayla, who totally accepted him. But he was astounded by how much anger toward his mother we’d unearthed. “I can’t believe how much I hated her.” he said. What Jake didn’t realize is that hate is a normal and involuntary reaction when somebody tries to control you for no good reason. It signals that the person is extinguishing your emotional life force by getting his or her needs met at your expense.”


Anger is a useful emotion. One does not have to become destructive with anger but rather it can be used as a beacon to indicate that something is not right. We can use our anger for good.


Trusting your feelings when you have been invalidated your whole life is a process; it won’t happen overnight. Be patient with yourself; you’re worth it. 


Thanks for hanging out with me today. I hope you will consider starting your journey with our digital packages - don’t wait. For $0.99 you can begin to change your life, one thought at a time.

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