Building relationships starts with knowing yourself. Because, whatever we know about the world and about others, we know from ourselves.


A person can be very intelligent, logical and sensitive, and still be far from knowing himself/herself. If those around you define the world for you according to their own biased (wrong) relationship models, finding the correct models by yourself can take a large part of your life. That is, if you are lucky… It is also possible to pass your whole life away without being aware of yourself and of others.


This month, I will tell you about the “How come we can be unable to meet ourselves?” part. And in November, this section will contain the relationship patterns that prevent meeting others. I think, when we put all together, there will be a greater awareness regarding the title of this article.


                Don’t resist yourself – or do!

Persons who resist themselves do not differentiate what they feel, what they need in the face of what they experience. That is, they either reflect the feelings they experience to others, or take in what others say, or direct their energy to self and do to themselves what they want to do to others, or deviate from the purpose, or act as if they are the only person in the world and others have no significance, and blow their individuality out of proportion. The clearest expression of this is that these persons are insensitive towards themselves.


If these persons are doing these consciously, and choosing to use these relationship models, we say, “They know something,” and we think that this behavior benefits them in some way. But if these relationship models are being used without choice and involuntarily, those persons become people who say, “How come my relationships don’t work.”  


Let us get to know the relationship models of the people who resist themselves better:


Reflection: People who reflect assign the characteristics they don’t accept in themselves, or those that they wish they had, to others. Their sentences usually start with “You…” “You don’t love me, you are angry with me…”


Swallowing Whole: People who swallow everything whole, accept everything the other person says without weighing it, as if destroying themselves. They have set value judgements. Their sentences always include “must, mustn’t.” “I mustn’t marry someone my family doesn’t approve of…”


Directing the Energy to Self: Those who get headaches, start drinking, shut themselves in their room are from this group. They take out their anger at someone else on themselves.


Deviating from the Purpose: People who deviate from the purpose are those who, just as something important is being discussed, start making jokes or thinking about what to eat for dinner. If their thoughts about themselves annoy or distess them, they instantly switch to another subject and shelf the previous one.


Inability to Separate: This is the relationship model who cannot place boundaries for others, whose I-you boundaries are not clear. They can never be alone. They are dependent, they mostly play on being helpless.


Becoming Insensitive: Insensitives are usually unaware of what is going on around themselves. You have to narrate everything to them, as if you haven’t experienced everything together. Their lives are usually devoid of excitement.


All these that I have related are forms of resisting one’s self. These are the obstacles in front of the information the person can glean about his/her self. We all use these at times, by choice, because at the moment, that is the relationship model that works best, that protects ourselves. But if these models are being used unconscously, that means we are distancing ourselves from getting to know our self.


Until we meet next month, with the obstacles preventing relationships with others…


Expert Psychologist Derya Gulterler