199: Othering Ourselves in our Relationships (Sort Of)

Can we start to see the world from a new perspective? Can we “other” ourselves? Meaning, can we start to see that our judgments of others are actually the ways our bodies want to be, and not how other people’s body’s need to be. What would it look like to nurture ourselves instead of focusing on making sure we look okay in the world to others? We talk through trying to look at our relationships from the perspective of othering ourselves and others.

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recovery sort of is a podcast where we discuss recovery and addiction topics from the perspective of people living in long-term recovery this podcast does not intend to represent the views of any particular group organization or Fellowship the views expressed here are solely the opinion of its contributors be advised there may be strong language or topics of an adult


nature okay can we talk about your dick move at the baseball game can we talk okay great so so Billy was an [  ] at the baseball game no Billy made a comment about a kid who didn’t put much effort into getting the ball right kid could have been scared we talked about it who knows what was going on for him but you had a reaction that was judgmental or critical about that you know from the stands of like oh man why is he not you know trying harder whatever the hardest thing for me and I’m just really getting AGG grasp on this in my life is understanding that you’re not talking about that kid you’re talking about Billy and what you’re doing if I was sitting there next to you on the bench is telling me about Billy you’re not talking about that kid at all you’re telling me what it would be like if Billy was in that situation how he would feel about himself right has nothing to do with that kid and it’s like the more I can understand that the way I’ve been talking about the world I’ve been judging everybody else by my idea of what’s right right so like my wife uh says hey I’m going to go out with your mother this weekend and get our nails done and I’m like when people do that without asking their partner they’re [  ] because if Jason does that without asking his partner he’s an [  ] that’s my belief I’m talking about me Kimberly does that and she’s not an [  ] when she does that that’s not her intention that’s just how she was raised rais to communicate hey I’m going to do this if you have a problem you’ll speak up about it I don’t need to ask or you know give you a preemptive running it by you this is running it by you right right but it’s this whole time I’ve been judging everybody else or or looking at everybody else by what their actions would mean if I was doing them I have different intentions when I do my actions right I say uh memes you’re yelling at me and she says I didn’t even raise my voice like we have different Rea but I’m I’m always judging her by what it would mean if I did it and instead of letting her have her own meaning to her actions and that has been so [  ] huge for me to understand and like when we’re talking about these situations between Rel couples right you’ve been romantic for what’s romantic for Billy and you can’t understand why Jen doesn’t get it right and it’s like oh wait a minute maybe I’ve been trying to be romantic for what Billy thinks is romantic what I believed is romantic what what does Jen think is romantic in the world I want to learn who Jen is now that has been such a [  ] Revelation for me you’re on a dick on the on the bleachers talking about the kid you’re a guy that struggles with not putting effort in and making mistakes and when we can notice that and realize it’s not about the kid we’re always talking about us it just makes a lot more [Music] sense

[Music] yeah and like with funny enough with the Love Languages thing because that kind of came up with her later in a conversation um some of my uh love language a lot of My love language is words of affirmation because I didn’t get words of affirmation as a kid you know what I mean I got a lot of criticism and reject so I’m very sensitive to words and I’m very sensitive to criticism and you know judgment from other people um probably from myself too but you know words of affirmation is one of my love languages and she like struggles with that one you know what I mean that’s hard for her that’s your attachment thing she say things like you know what and I never know like what’s actual words of affirmation and how much is a enough and when is you know is it once a day is it once you know every couple days what counts and I said yeah that’s how I feel about romantic stuff it’s the same thing like that’s not my love language I’m trying to do it I want to do it because I want to honor her and respect that part of her but it doesn’t hit that same spot for me so knowing what to do or how much or what counts is like I’m just I’m guessing a little little bit Yeah and and what I really hear you saying there at least when I’m speaking for Jason like I just told you right cuz this is what it would mean if I was in that spot what I have found for me is that what I’m doing there I’m frustrated that I don’t know how to feel loved that’s my frustration and I’ve been spending in my case the last 18 years blaming my partner for not giving it to me when I don’t even [  ] know how to feel it I don’t know how to receive it but I’ve been yelling at her you’re not giving it to me right right and what it’s taken for me in that moment is I have to learn how to love me so that I can teach her and that’s what I’ve been doing I suck at words affirmation but Billy I’m getting really good at it man I’m like complimenting myself and cheering myself on and every time I hear that criticism recognizing it raising my awareness around it and giving myself these affirmations and that process is leading me to understand what it takes for Jason for this [  ] Meats suit that I got stuck with to feel feel loved and from there I’ve been able to gently teach her when she yells at me or when sorry let me not put her out there she’s not running around yelling at me my wife is lovely right she’s awesome but when we get those moments those reactive moments I’ve been able because I’m affirming myself through it hey you’re a good dude having a tough moment man it’s okay it’s okay that your heart is beating fast right you know this woman loves you it’s all right I’ve been able to calmly say hey man when you’re doing that Kimberly Jason’s not feeling love right been trying to make that distinction bigger like we are different people and like this is what’s been going wrong you’ve been trying to treat me the way Kimberly feels good and it [  ] sucks for me and I’ve been trying to treat you the way Jason feels good and it doesn’t feel no so good for you and now I got to remember that’s not it but I had to teach me what it took and and like I realized in that moment damn I’ve been putting this on my wife for 18 years I’ve been expecting her to wake up and show me how to feel love and like I didn’t even have the ability to give it to me or receive it yeah and we we uh it came up in a different uh I was listening to a different podcast about something else but the guy was talking about like having like a lot of times guys won’t put requests or demands on their relationship they won’t even ask for things because as a guy you’re supposed to be able to take care of everything yourself and you’re not supposed to have any needs and but that also uh minimizes or limits your vulnerability in the relationship because part of being vulnerable is having needs and wanting the person you’re with to help you with those things and so uh the suggestion was to try to put some like requests what he called relationship requests into your marriage and it’s not anything like crazy it’s not like [  ] go rebuild the engine of the car or something dumb but it’ll be like hey I’m going to be busy this weekend would you mind taking care of this for me or would you mind helping with that or whatever and seeing how your partner responds to those things like to see if like are they really on your team or not right and uh you know it’s like wow like put request so I’ve been doing some of that you know and of course my wife of course is amazing and she’s like oh yeah no problem like and she does it but in my head asking for that stuff is like such a big deal you know what I mean asking for something silly like hey you know I’m working would you mind making me something to eat while you’re getting a sandwich or she’s even offer like hey would you like a sandwich and I’m like I feels so good like to have somebody [  ] care enough to like make me a sandwich nurture you we all need more nurturing yeah God I’m sitting there and thinking about that and just this idea of like that’s where the [  ] world went astray right we’ve all been parenting our kids for Generations that they shouldn’t be selfish or self-centered and they shouldn’t have to ask other people to do stuff for them and like what that does is it ruins the [  ] connection dynamic because Billy asks his wife to do something for him and Billy’s wife feels feels [  ] better cuz she likes helping people you know what I mean and then she asked for something back and Billy feels better because she already did the thing for him and that felt great to be cared about and now he wants to give some back to other people in his life and like that’s where it all comes from man like we all need to need people we need people to do stuff for us so that it can feel good and we can feel cared about and then we can go out and care about others and do stuff for them and like all this conversation about how selfish everyone has gotten has [  ] taken us the wrong direction ction I feel like yeah and then when you look at like communities where there is a lot of like connection and and Community like within the culture like usually people have kind of roles you know and it’s like one person might be the Hunter and one person might be the farmer and one person might be you know better at taking care of the children and then they share what they have so not one of those individuals is supposed to do it all the guy’s not the hunter the farmer and the child care person like he’s good at hunting so he hunts and then relies on the rest of the community to meet those other needs and that’s completely healthy and acceptable but that’s not how we live now right and then you throw on to it the idea of the patriarchy and how we socialize and gender our children and like to be a woman is to emphasize the feminine qualities of like nurturing and empathy and compassion but to be a man is to remove feminine qualities it’s not really to be any certain thing it’s to have the absence of weakness and you know vulner ability and like all that ties into all this attachment how we’re getting it what we’re allowed to do if we’re allowed to have needs or feelings or [  ] anything it’s crazy yeah you know and then we get into this big place we’re at now I guess where everybody’s just sort of unhappy and it’s everybody else’s fault it’s interesting it is it is and see in a lot of that this might pivot somewhere else but like I’ve been working on you know raising our children to be different like luckily through the process of recovery Jen and I have been able to one take a lot of like principles and try to parent on principles more so than feelings which means a lot you know it means sometimes doing things that don’t feel right or that feel like uh this is not good but just trusting that the outcome’s going to be okay if I just deide the the principles um recently you know we was talking about this a little before recently my son uh had a conflict a schedule conflict between he plays Little League he wanted to sign up for fall ball and just to put him out there a little bit he’ll tell us things that don’t jive with his actions like he’ll be like oh I love baseball it’s my favorite thing I’m just I want to keep practicing and I want to do all this and go to college and play baseball and all this stuff but then he doesn’t really put what’s required in and that’s okay we don’t well he’s got different parts on part of him wishes he had the willingness to do all that right you know what I mean but then he’s also involved in his uh school and he goes to a really small school it’s a alternative school which we could probably do a whole podcast on that one day but it’s an alternative school and it’s called a free Democratic school and there’s like 30 some kids all different ages between like six and like probably 18 um anyway it’s a small community and he’s spent his whole life there from well he first started going there we were carrying him in in a baby carrier cuz our daughters went there so he’s known these people they’re like extended family to us it’s been the same staff the same teachers a lot of the same students as they’ve gotten older um and there was a thing at school and I guess he kind of volunteered for that and didn’t realize like oh I have this baseball game and this thing because he’s 15 it doesn’t keep a calendar um and I pointed out to him Wednesday that he had this conflict and he’s like oh well I might not want to go to the baseball game and I could tell he was like hesitant to tell me that because he knows how I am about sports and commitment to sports and um I didn’t put any pressure on him I just said well whatever you want to do you got to let me know so I can let your team know as soon as possible if you’re not going to be there you at least got to let them know you can’t just not show up or tell them Saturday morning that you’re not coming um we should let him know as soon as you make that decision so let me know and he’s like all right I’ll I’ll think about it then like two days later it’s like Friday he’s like comes to me and he’s like well I don’t know what do you think I should do and I was [  ] super hesitant because like I recognize through recovery that one my connection to sports and that competition weirdness is unhealthy you know and it’s not a good it’s not a good relationship that I have with a lot of that stuff and the pressure that I put on myself and kids and all that so uh I said well I think you should do whatever you think is right for you I said for me I would probably go to baseball I said because that’s a commitment I made you know school probably has somebody else that can do what you said you would do but talk to them see what they say if they really need you I get it I just got to let your coaches know and uh ultimately he made the decision to go do a school thing like and it’s like H it’s so hard though not to want to recreate what I’ve been conditioned to do and get someone to have all those same values because you know it’s fascinating yeah I see um I see this in my life too my my wife happens to be the more God there’s no [  ] way to talk about this stuff without sounding Shamy sometimes like I’m not trying to be negative here but

she okay from Jason’s lens if I was doing the behavior she’s doing it means I’m a little too controlling personally um too many opinions about there being a right and wrong way to live or a right or wrong way to be it feels like to me um and maybe that’s just because I’ve been a guy who feels like I’ve been judged for not wanting to live like everybody else um but yeah I I feel like there’s there’s still like this this cue of danger for her children in my wife I feel like her body gets queued to Danger it says oh [  ] if this is the behaviors they’re an they’ll never make it in life and I need to [  ] pounce on it and fix it right yes that’s what it feels like for her and I guess for me I am very and and I say this the wrong way because she’ll be like their grades are bad they’re not doing assignments they’re not even getting to school in time and I’m like I don’t give a [  ] they’ll figure that [  ] out like you know you won’t keep a job long if that’s how you act like I don’t know it won’t take long you’ll figure it out you’ll want something you’ll go figure it out I don’t know I don’t in my mind my job there is to hold space for their struggle when the [  ] doesn’t work out for and just to be able to tolerate those feelings of frustration at the world just isn’t easy and doesn’t give you what you want that’s my job I think I’m not there to fix their decisions or make them make the right ones or like I learn when I do [  ] wrong and it doesn’t feel good I don’t learn when other people tell me what I need to be doing so I’m like I don’t want to try to tell anybody they’ll figure it out they’ll be fine they’re good kids and the more I tell myself that it’s that same words of affirmation right when I go into those moments when my son’s doing the thing I don’t want him to be doing or hasn’t listened or followed directions I’m walking through that room to tell him and I’m saying he’s a good kid you’re a good dad he’s [  ] 14 he doesn’t want to clean his room of course right like it’s not you didn’t want to clean your room at 14 it’s not a big deal if you need it clean go help him clean it like it’s just those reminders like I’m starting from a point of he will be fine and from there I don’t feel the danger of tampering with any of it I just trust if I just model and be a good dude he’ll just be a [  ] good dude that’s how it works right I I’m a [  ] chaotic frenetic [  ] depressed dude because that’s what the [  ] my parents were right why can’t I just be a model a calm loving gentle dude and that’s what they’ll be yeah I feel good with that but yeah I don’t know how to help my wife either and it’s interesting because I’ve I noticed that at work too with like employees being a supervisor of like people at work like they’re not all motivated by the same things they don’t share my particular values like not everybody’s going to go in there every single day and give it like 110% no matter what like they’re not going to come in because their shoulders hurting they’re going to [  ] call out and be like my shoulder hurts I’m staying home you know to me I’m like what the [  ] right you [  ] wols get in here and [  ] work like cuz that’s the [  ] I tell myself yeah exactly and leaving space for damn I I wish I took that good to care of myself yeah my shoulder hurts maybe I need to stay the [  ] you know what I mean like that’s what I’m trying to be when I’m doing those behaviors I’m trying to model for for the people I work with and my co-workers that like when I don’t feel well I don’t come yeah that’s well what I try to do now is look at the like look at an overall picture right each of us is an individual and we have you know assets and some of us have some Character defects and what are those things and then recognizing like I guess I look at Character defects and I don’t even know if I like that word so much we have things that we’re good at and we have things we’re not so good at you know and I guess they can head into the defects area if they start causing harm to myself or other people I mean can of people run around hurting co-workers and [  ] just I hate this language yeah right right right but you know they have things that strong qualities you know qualities they’re really good at and then some things that they might struggle with a little more but when you look at them as like overall all individuals it’s like all right well how well are they doing at the job overall and then what areas are they doing really well at and then what things could they maybe use a little like coaching on or help with that would make them better in those areas I’m trying to like manage more from that perspective than from this like judgy place of like you got a B and C right but you suck at d e and f you know and like putting these like grades or criticisms in that way um trying to like say it’s almost like by principles like all right we’re supposed to be working together to accomplish a thing or get done you know a goal which is to make money for the company um but can we do that in ways that we’re still like caring and compassionate towards each other as human beings you know and I don’t expect that out of them CU they’re old like hard ass men with their I’m sure uh traditional men’s values of like suppressing your feelings and all that [  ] so you know yeah but trying to bring a a different trying to live life not repeating the same conditioning that I’ve gotten my whole life being able to look at the areas where that conditioning from my upbringing or from society or whatever hasn’t worked and then trying to change that within the relationships I have whether it’s parenting whether it’s through my marriage whether it’s through uh you know being a supervisor at work like I think a lot of us get into this robot mode where we just even though what we’ve got doesn’t work that’s what we do anyway because that’s all we know well I God now we’re getting into expounding to the world and society and what the [  ] is wrong with it but like yeah I mean we’ve told everybody that okay most important thing for life to survive right but we’ve trained and conditioned our entire population that the way to work against the threat of survival that is always hanging over your shoulder is to work hard and make money right so that’s our number one priority over everything it’s it’s over the people in our families it’s over other people in our neighborhoods it’s over the wildlife and you know uh ecology and our environment like we don’t give a [  ] about life it is not important it is second class to making money because making money is survival and all of our [  ] decisions are based on that in the world and every time we decide based on money over people we hurt people and until we accept that we’re going to keep doing it and I don’t know where else to go from there we make decisions about how we have to go to work even though we can tell you scientifically it is way better for your child if you were the [  ] home with them all the time both parents we know this especially the first two years when it’s super critical do we give a [  ] no you know why cuz that would take money out of the workforce we can’t afford to give all them people money out of our pockets Jesus have you seen gas prices yeah we don’t give a [  ] about science we don’t give a [  ] about life and that’s where my whole Spiel with this change in me has started life is more important than anything else I don’t give a [  ] anything that comes between me and having good relationships with my kids I will do mental gymnastic and figure it the [  ] out because I that’s the most important thing to me not money not any of that other [  ] not buying more things not vacations I say that we’re getting ready to take a vacation I got very mixed feelings about it right it’s going to be a very expensive blur at the end of the week that’s not really what I want in my life anymore you know but yeah It’s Tricky man I I I don’t know how to you’re at work and you’re frustrated with those guys who are having hard days and maybe didn’t get enough sleep and maybe their kids going through something or their grandkid and they’re struggling and you’re mad at them because they’re not making money right that’s what it all comes down to cuz they’re not doing the job well enough to keep the company making enough money or more money sort of I mean there’s a bit of a tradeoff there like I mean there is a thing if if like to me like just to break it down to super simple terms like if I pay you to come paint my fence and say hey I need my Pence fence painted in the next 3 days and you go okay yeah I’ll take take your money and I’ll paint your fence in 3 days and then you’re like well I decided I’m not painting your fence in 3 days but I took your money so like there’s a you know what I mean there is a bit of a trade-off like if you agree to do something you should follow through on what you say you’re going to do obviously there are whatever you want to call it like real things like oh if your mom died well maybe I understand but if it’s just you wanted to go hang out the [  ] Wawa for 45 minutes you know but if you needed to hang out at the Wawa for 45 minutes because life doesn’t feel good I don’t know man I I I’m talking about some of our now now we’re get into real issues it’s like okay so you clock in and then you go to Wawa for 40 minutes and and and then go to your first job so I mean in my mind in my mind this is how it’s all working right and I get that I get that one thing I do need to point out before I even go into this Bal is uh yeah we all made agreements right but the only people writing the terms and conditions of the Agreements are the people in [  ] power so I didn’t get any [  ] say in the agreement Billy you know what I mean get to say no disagreement sucks let’s rewrite it to 20 hour work weeks cuz I would have they’re trying 32 hey I’m telling you I’m all for it look as soon as we go to a 4-day work week I personally am going to three I’m at four now and I’m like I need less than everybody else for sure okay so this is my understanding of what’s happening for each of us to the best of again I’m speaking for Jason because this is what I think is happening for me but I think this is what’s happening for all of us there’s a level of what we’ll call Feelgood in your body body right and it’s from zero to 100 and the closer you are to 100 the more options you have of what you can do when you face any given situation right from that calm nervous system of this place of a 100 when things happen I can see all the nuance and like probably a thousand different varieties of ways for me to handle it but as that number 100 of Feelgood comes down in my body I get less and less options on my menu whenever it’s time to order right so when I get to that WWA in the morning and the options are like start work right now or wait 45 minutes and I’m looking at my menu and my feel-good number is down at like 22 because that’s probably where we’re all at I’m like I don’t have the [  ] choice to start work right now the only option in my body is to stand here for 45 minutes at 22 feel good and then we’re all blaming each other and ourselves for not being better when we can’t understand that the environment or what I’m saying is the conditions of what we’ve created for life is actually so [  ] toxic that every decision we make is taking our feel-good number down we’re making a left where our DNA is saying make a [  ] right and it doesn’t feel good and then we’re all blaming each other for not being good enough this isn’t what human life is supposed to look like we’ve been in touch with uncontacted tribes we know what [  ] humans do based on their DNA and what it calls for Action wise all this other [  ] we do doesn’t fit in with it and we can’t accept it I don’t know what else to say about it like yeah and I guess for me like that’s where recovery is come in like it’s taught me like when I Feelgood is at 22 I have some tools in a toolbox of things that I can try to do to get that number back yes but Billy what if I sat here today and I can’t say this because I don’t know it but what if I could like somehow show you the history of your feel-good and even though you’ve thought it’s been pretty high it’s never been above 43 wouldn’t that blow your mind today to be like oh [  ] no wonder I couldn’t do all that [  ] because that’s what I happen but yeah now that’s what I think’s happening hypotheticals but yeah I got yeah and I can’t prove it but when we start this is what I did I can’t prove it but I started looking at it like that and I started basing my decisions on life based on that and my Feelgood has gone up a [  ] ton so that’s what makes me say I think there’s something to this yeah right you know maybe I can try to give this to other people because it’s I feel a lot [  ] better than I’ve ever felt in my life yeah but just to Circle this way back around to all like the marriage and all that stuff so you know here me and my wife been together for 20 something years we both have a lot of recovery um you know or a lot I don’t know a lot we have a lot of time I don’t know that we have that much recovery we have a long time um but it’s taken all that time like she’s like man I wish we could have figured this out like way sooner or way earlier and I’m like I don’t know if I could have processed it or handled it way earlier I mean maybe like it’s easy to say oh yeah if I’d have learned all this in our first year you know our marriage would be way better but it could have been like maybe I wouldn’t have known what to do with this [  ] information I’m been like this is [  ] and I couldn’t even have heard it you know I just don’t know and I can’t live on the hypothetical but you know what I can see like now today is that it took me getting to this place to have the ability um with learning tools to like hey I’m responsible for how I feel when I’m feeling all this anxiety and you know chaos and sort of ADHD [  ] in my head like I had to learn other skills like exercise and meditation and you know therapy like I needed all those skills to get me to a place of like oh okay well now I feel good enough for safe enough to dig deep into some of this childhood [  ] and to allow myself to recognize uh some of the maybe uh small te trauma I’ll call it of like being raised in a household where nobody like physically beat you or any of that stuff but your mom was pretty [  ] overbearing and you weren’t allowed to feel and you weren’t allowed to you know you might not recognize that as trauma but that over years and years of time of no one caring about your feelings uh that has an impact you know and and to be able to sit with that um like it took me to be where I am at with myself now to be able to recognize that for what it is it took me I feel like what really set all this off was the right questions right people asking me stuff like when do you have fun well I [  ] don’t that’s a problem right um it took having a few of the right supports in my life man like some really really solid relationships that just felt like I could do the darkest ugliest stuff in my soul and those people would find a way to love me and understand like that that feeling of security really [  ] helped me to like spread my wings a little and be more vulnerable and take more chances and stuff like that um and this is where I feel like I’ve gotten to and I keep wanting to describe this somewhere so maybe here’s the place and I keep feeling like people are going to look at me like I’m crazy when I say it but whatever I I generally went through life I was going through [  ] didn’t feel good and what I would do is turn towards myself and judge the [  ] out of me why the [  ] can’t you just do this stuff in a way that feels okay for you everybody else is out there [  ] doing it what’s wrong with you that you can’t just do the [  ] right and now the change has been honestly I I accept that the way this [  ] meat skin suit or whatever that I was gifted I accept the way it feels about this life it [  ] hates it it doesn’t like it it doesn’t doesn’t like anything about the way the world is designed in fact this body thinks it could design the [  ] world and the way we live way better than the way it is and it hates it and it’s all disgusting and gross and [  ] yucky and we got to go be at work for all these [  ] hours when all we want to do is be around the people we love and it’s got this disgusting [  ] that comes out of your nose and your ass and all this like I hate it all right but I accept that okay I’m a guy that [  ] hates this stuff how can I since I’m stuck here doing it best take care of myself and make it as fun as possible I don’t give a [  ] what people think about it anymore I hate this [  ] life I’m going to make it as enjoyable as possible for me and that just feels wonderful to me and I feel like it sounds weird but I don’t know that’s my standpoint now that’s what I’m trying to operate from [Music]

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