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Addicted to Chasing Unavailable Lovers: Outer Child is a Notorious Abandoholic – Part 1

September 9, 2011 2 comments

Outer Child is a Notorious Abandoholic

© Susan Anderson 2010

What is Abandoholism?

You’ve heard of food-oholism, work-oholism, shop-oholism and, of course, alcoholism. Now here comes another, most insidious, addictive pattern – abandoholism.

Abandoholism is Outer Child’s tendency to become attracted to unavailable partners. Abandoholism is one of Outer’s most insidious patterns, and it is shared by millions.

Abandoholism is similar to the other “oholisms,” but instead of being addicted to a substance, you’re addicted to the emotional drama of heartbreak. You pursue hard-to-get partners to keep the romantic intensity going, and to keep your body’s love-chemicals and stress hormones flowing – an intoxicating brew to which you become both physically and emotionally addicted.

What makes someone an abandoholic?

Abandoholism sets in when you’ve been hurt so many times that you’ve come to equate insecurity with love. When your wires get crossed like this, unless you’re pursuing someone you’re insecure about, you don’t feel in love.

Conversely, when someone comes along who wants to be with you, that person’s availability fails to arouse the required level of insecurity. If you can’t feel those yearning, lovesick feelings, then you don’t feel attracted. Your Outer Child has taken hold and got you caught up in a pattern of pursuing unavailable partners. You’ve become neuro-biologically addicted to the high stakes drama of an emotional challenge and the love-chemicals that go with it.

This abandonment compulsion is insidious. You didn’t know it was developing. Until now you didn’t have a name for it: Abandoholism is a new concept.

Insecurity is an aphrodisiac.

If you are a hard-core abandoholic, you’re drawn to a kind of love that is highly combustible. The hottest sex is when you’re trying to seduce a hard-to-get lover. Insecurity becomes your favorite aphrodisiac. These intoxicated states are produced when you sense emotional danger – the danger of your lover’s potential to abandon you just when you start to attach.

At the other end of the seesaw, you start to turn off and shut down when you happen to successfully win someone’s love. If your lover succumbs to your charms – heaven forbid – you suddenly feel too comfortable, too sure of him to stay interested. There’s not enough challenge to sustain your sexual energy. You interpret your turn-off as his not being right for you.

How about following your gut?

If you’re an abandoholic, following your gut is probably what got you into this mess in the first place. Your gut gets you to pursue someone who makes your heart go pitter pat, not because he’s the right one, but because he arouses your subliminal fear of abandonment. And your gut gets you to avoid someone who is truly trustworthy, because he doesn’t press the right insecurity-buttons to create the aphrodisiac.

Enrich your mind. Follow your wisdom. But until you overcome your abandonment compulsion, don’t follow your gut – it will only get you into trouble – because your gut tells you that unavailable people are attractive.

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Trying to Take Back Control of your Life?

October 19, 2010 Leave a comment

So many people are in relationships where they have given their power away.

Two Scenarios:

One: You’ve been abandoned and you’ve given all of your power to the abandoner. Your life rests on whether they call, whether they don’t call. You impotently wait and hope for them to come back, because only their return can take your pain away. Why? Because you have given them your power. One person put it this way: “My abandoner walked away with all of the gold. I need to get it back.”

Two: You’re current relationship doesn’t feel mutual. Your partner tends to withhold love, putting you in the “emotional beggar” role. You walk around starving in emotional hunger, desperately needing a love-fix, groveling for crumbs of attention. The sun rises or sets depending on whether today you are treated you lovingly or not. Why? You have invested all of your power in your partner and you’ve become impotent.

The antidote: Take back control of your life. Regain your power. Invest in yourself. Claim your gold.

But how? This seems “more easily said than done.” But that’s because you might not know where to start, or what to do to make it happen. First, you need to know it is doable. Second, you must learn to to become a separate person.

Being a separate person doesn’t mean you have to be single, alone, or in a state of break-up. It means taking 100 percent responsibility for your own emotional well-being and stop laying your emotional needs at the feet of your partner.

If things are going well and you trust your partner, it is okay to count on them to satisfy your needs to feel loved, special, and important. It is okay to look to them for a sense of belonging and security.

But if things are not going well, then you get to practice learning to stand on your own two feet – and I mean emotionally. Learn to look to yourself rather than your partner to make yourself feel secure. It means work. It means taking complete responsibility.

It involves taking actions that are on your own behalf. Take strides in your own life. You might begin with a small step. For example, depending upon your interests, go to the library and take out a book with beautiful photographs or paintings or travel pictures and study it intently. Do this in the presence of your partner. Your focus is not on them, but on your own interests. You are taking responsibility for yourself.

You have to keep making these efforts larger and larger, until you transform into a self-assured person who can command your own power and sustain your own supply of gold.

Usually, this transformation completely changes the dynamics of your relationship, but even if your partner continues to neglect you, it elevates your life where you need it to be.