Common responses to trauma include increased anxiety, emotional detachment, and addictive behaviors such as alcohol, drugs, sex, overeating, gambling, shopping, etc. Things that remind a person of a traumatic event can trigger avoidance symptoms. These symptoms may cause a person to change his or her personal routine. Have any of these behaviors replaced love in your life?
You don’t have to be trapped by your history. Human beings are amazingly resilient; we can heal ourselves. Healing is the restoration of health, soundness and spiritual wholeness. It is a reconciliation of the past and present for a brighter tomorrow.
The most effective way to heal is to do it together. The first step is to start with self-love—love the person you are. Healing with your family, friends, and/or significant others who are also conscious enough to be on a path toward collective recovery and love is also important and immensely helpful. Remember that you must first love yourself in order to be able to love others. Your healing begins on the inside; so, don’t be afraid to surround yourself with love on the outside.
We heal when we put love first. We heal when we prioritize ourselves. We heal when we master the art of LETTING GO of the past to honor the gifts of the present and move forward toward a wiser, more positive future.
In The Ecstasy of Surrender: 12 Surprising Ways Letting Go Can Empower Your Life, author Judith Orloff, M.D. devoted a chapter to letting go of any patterns that keep you from loving. In her own words:
One of these patterns in being drawn to unavailable, commitment phobic people. It’s important to be very clear about what constitutes an unavailable person so you won’t be fooled by their charm or potential.
12 SIGNS YOU’RE ATTRACTED TO
EMOTIONALLY UNAVAILABLE PEOPLE (EUP)
Here are some red flags to watch for. Even one sign warns you to be careful. The more that are present, the more danger exists.
They are married or in a relationship with someone else
They can’t commit to you or have feared commitment in past relationships
They have one foot on the gas pedal, one foot on the break
They are emotionally distant, shut down, or can’t deal with conflict
They’re mainly interested in sex, not relating emotionally or spiritually
They are practicing alcoholics, sex addicts, or substance abusers
They prefer long distance relationships, emails, texting, or don’t introduce you to their friends and family
They are elusive, sneaky, frequently working or tired, and may disappear for periods
They are seductive with you but make empty promises–their behavior and words don’t match
They send mixed messages, flirt with others, or don’t give a straight answer–you’re always trying to “de-code” what they really mean
They’re narcissistic, only consider themselves, not your needs
They throw you emotional crumbs or enticing hints of their potential to be loving, then withdraw
Does any of these sound familiar?
For those Black women who’ve tried their hand at finding love online, the results may not be all that surprising. But the racial breakdown of desirability is certainly intriguing.
Buzzfeed produced a video to explain the findings of the many studies on racial preferences in online dating:
Advice from African American Matchmaking:
Break out from the the mold of expectations, assimilation, wanna-be behavior, doubt, and insecurity by being yourself.
Keep the faith and keep Black love alive by doing something different, not just online dating.
We know that Black women are desirable and have been for centuries. Don’t allow dominant culture beauty standards confuse you with erroneous social comparisons and avoid over-reliance on technology when dating.
Know your worth and find a partner who does, too.
In her new feature photo shoot for the beauty and fashion magazine Violet Grey, actress and director Angela Bassett goes bold in sexy black lingerie and talks about what it takes to be a woman of strength, but she also talks about her most vulnerable times:
V.G.: WHO MAKES A GOOD DATE TO AN EVENT?
A.B.: A friend or a sister. I mean, the husband is always great, but there is something about a girlfriend…
V.G.: WHAT DO YOU SEE WHEN YOU LOOK IN THE MIRROR?
A.B.: A passionate woman who knows what she loves and has been blessed to be able to do it…and continue to do it!
V.G.: WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST WEAKNESS?
A.B.: Love…and sugar.
V.G.: WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST VULNERABLE?
A.B.: When I’m told I can’t do something. When I’m told I’m not good enough, that I can’t have something, can’t go somewhere, especially because of the color of my skin.
Hiding secrets from your spouse is never a good idea and the foundation of a healthy relationship is trust. The truth will almost always reveal itself eventually. But that doesn’t stop people from trying!
*Whoa! According to one new study, 25-percent of married couples say that they hid (and are still hiding) something pretty major from their spouse. And 42-percent say they doubt they will get caught.
What is this costly secret that could potentially be a marriage deal-breaker? The study says it ranges anywhere from money troubles to infidelity to (gulp!) a pornography obsession.
And yes, these secrets have (and do!) cause the bearers many sleepless nights.
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