The latest lyric that has crossed my mind is from an album by Simply Red, “To be free or to feel free, the first one is a myth”.
This morning, I want to consider the complexities of attachment disorders. Attachment disorders are very real and in many ways affect the functionality of individual lives every day. Attachment is a crucial element in our developmental process and when the stages of development are absent or have not been completed successfully, it makes for a very lonely existence. Many times an individual is defined as a “loner” and the reality of that label is very accurate. It isn’t that a person will not attempt to attach or, at times, even successfully do so but it is an internal sense of being that hurts when you are with people and hurts when you are not. It is a strange relational phenomenon that is often observed as a quandary but there is no real ability to ease the pain.
The mystery is interpreted as snobbish, bizarre or selfishness, when in reality it is a condition of developmental proportions. There is a duality that exists, a craving for rhythmic regulation while at the same time, there is a need to run, “to be on the go“. It is impossible to have an existence that accommodates both or at least that is how it feels for a person in that predicament.
The mind is a busy place and it is much easier to live in the mind because it can accommodate the duality with much more ease than can that of real life. The internal need cannot sufficiently be met in the substance of daily existence and the imagination is the resource for fulfillment.
Depression often accompanies this way of being because their is no way to get “satisfaction“. I’m speaking this, as a person who has moral authority on the matter, it is true of who I am. Restlessness is the inevitable and it keeps me in a cyclical quagmire most of the time.
A person who enters into the process with someone, in this circumstance, must have an understanding of who it is they are actually dealing with. If they do not, they will approach the relationship with expectations that will most certainly be dashed.
You may be relating to what I’m saying and asking yourself the following question, “I’ve been in a stable, consistent home environment all of my life, how is it possible to have these feelings of aloneness“. My answer to that is not based in proximity but founded in community. If your existence was based in “doing” rather than “being” you may have the understanding of what I’m saying.
“Being” and having the warmth and affection of such creates a sense of belonging and allows a person to love and be loved. Without that sense of unconditional belonging accompanied by appropriate parental physical interaction, in childhood, a person just wanders aimlessly both internally and externally looking for a sense of warmth and compassion. The magical thinking associated is “over the next hill“. “Over the next hill“, I’ll find the answer, “over the next hill“, there will be that sense of fulfillment, until one day you just stop climbing the hill. Dreams stop, ambitions cease, wonder loses its ability to uplift and a person lapses into a depressive dull drum of nothingness. Every person is only equipped with so much fight and no amount of pushing and shoving can fix those conditions that occur even before a person is cognizant of the deficiency.
There is no shame or blame to be applied. A person, as an adult, cannot push through what was lacking in the seasons of development that existed even before there was any real, viable comprehension. Living from that place becomes the normalcy of life as it developmentally unfolded.
The challenge for those of us who suffer is in determining where we go from here. In this particular circumstance, a recognition is not equivalent to a solution. I have found that having something to do, for a sense of purpose, can definitely help but that doesn’t mean that the relational stressors diminish.
In some ways I liken it to a soul wound. Knowing how to be in a relationship with a person of this particular placement is about strategic living. The come and go elements are both emotional and physical in nature. A consistent presence, in warmth, is like a calming agent for the nervous system. An existence of perpetual disorder emotionally or physically is internally brutal.
Being a “loner” yet, in relationship, is a ruthless dynamic for both individuals. As a single, I find myself, in mercy, not wishing that upon anyone. However, I experience the duality of longing, as well, and no matter what I know about myself, I want to contribute and to love another. It is the most awful sense of being imaginable and I say that not for pity sake but because there are vast numbers of people who haven’t the platform or understanding to speak about what they are feeling much less find a resolve.
Sometimes you have to just play the hand you are dealt and adapt to a lifestyle that correlates for the good of everyone involved. The duality is a given and the incapacity to be otherwise gets lost in a time and place of no return, for that I grieve. It is a quest to find those fulfilling purposes of life and the wisdom comes through setting the rhythm of being to accompany the, “what is”.