Ladies, you are competing with something that is not real (click Portfolio then before/after).
I want to stop trying so hard to keep people around me happy all the time. It's not my responsibility, and it doesn't work, anyway. All it does is cause me to exhaust myself and then withdraw. I feel held hostage even by our puppy when I come home - I must see to him and make sure he gets the attention he needs before I can relax.
I'm not sure where along the line I picked up this way of interacting with my world, but after 30 years or so, I'm worn out. I know how to care deeply, and I know how not to care at all. What I don't know very well is how to care deeply without feeling responsible. A lot of my life has been spent snapping back and forth between intense involvement and disconnection.
These sort of realizations and struggles are one of the reasons I'm attending an eleven month course at the counseling office where Bevin works. There are 14 students in the class, and it is a great group. I'm excited about getting to know them better, and figuring out a bunch of our questions together.