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This is Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay Click HERE on this line to find essays via Your-Key-Words. {Most frequent wordstarts of each essay will be put here.} ========================================================== %JACK AND JILL FALLING IN LOVE ADDICT CODEPENDENCE 880906 Jill does not want to make the mistake of being selfish. Jill believes that to be good one must avoid being self-centered; must be giving, generous, kind, self- sacrificing, etc. Jill believes that to save one's own life one must be willing to give one's self in service. Jill is not confident of her own self-worth. She has low self esteem. Jill does not believe she is worthy of acceptance in intimate relationships. Through service Jill is trying to achieve acceptability, self-worth, self- esteem, and a sense of personal integrity. Jill is trying very hard to live in keeping with her beliefs about how one should be a good person. Jack believes that to be good and acceptable one must be in control of some significant processes. Jack sees important people who are respected because of all that they can control: subordinates, business processes, corporate relationships, human behaviors, etc. are all under the control of respected people. Jack wants to be respected; wants to respect himself. Jack does not respect himself because he is not in control of much. Jack is trying to gain control so he can respect himself. Like Jill, Jack is not confident of his own self- worth. He has low self esteem. Jack does not believe he is worthy of acceptance in intimate relationships. Through achievement of control Jack is trying to achieve acceptability, self-worth, self-esteem, and a sense of personal integrity. Jack is trying very hard to live in keeping with his beliefs about how one should be a good person. Jill sees that Jack is not in control of his life and needs help to survive. Jill sees Jack as in need of her help. To achieve self-respect Jill needs to have Jack need her help. Jill sees Jack as she does, because what she believes about herself, mis-leads her to perceive Jack as needing her help; to compensate for his inability to take good care of himself. Jack cannot take care of himself. Jill sees herself as able to take care of Jack. By trying to take care of Jack who needs her help, Jill tries to fill her need to achieve self-esteem through volunteer service. Jill insists on being of service to Jack for self-centered reasons. Jill's sacrificed service is selfish service to meet a self-centered need. Jack needs to achieve control of something or somebody in order to achieve self-respect. Respectable people are in control. Jack has not had much luck controlling his own life and destiny. Jack sees his opportunity in Jill's need to be in his service. If Jill is thoughtlessly in his service, then Jack can be in control of Jill. Jack and Jill make an unspoken deal to help each other in their self-centered efforts to meet their own needs. Jill works on achieving self acceptance by giving herself in self-less service to compensate for Jack's inability to take care of himself. Jack works on achieving self-respect by being in control of Jill, who needs to be in his service to feel good about herself. In the beginning each feels good about the deal, because in the beginning there are mutual benefits and self-esteem grows. Jack and Jill have fallen in love. They each feel fulfilled in each one's need for each other, and find fulfillment in relationship to each other. Jack and Jill feel good about themselves by virtue of their relationship to the other, but only by virtue of their relationship to the other. Each needs the other desperately, because by themselves they have no basis for self confidence. Their relationship is compulsive and very intense. They are "in love", they think. Jack gains self confidence in controlling Jill. Jill gains self-esteem in being of service to Jack. Each encourages the other to do what each can do well, and a positive feed-back loop leads each one to become more and more extreme in what they do best. Service and control grow until they can no longer be tolerated. Jill grows to resent Jack's growing needs and demands. There are limits to how much service Jill can provide! When Jack's needs demand more service than Jill can provide, Jill becomes resentful and angry towards Jack. Yet, Jack is Jill's ground of being a good person. Jill needs to serve Jack to be a good person in her own eyes; yet Jill can not serve Jack well enough to meet all of his growing needs. The deal has turned sour, and Jill cannot fulfill her needs to successfully meet Jack's needs. Jill cannot feel good about herself, because she is failing to meet all of Jack's needs. Her self esteem drops. Jill remembers how wonderful things used to be when she first started to help Jack. It was the only time she has felt good about herself. She tries hard to recover those wonderful days by trying harder to be of selfless service to Jack! The cycle of intensification of effort continues. Jack's growing needs make him more and more dependent upon Jill's services. To control Jill he must need her help. Jack gains self-confidence only in his ability to control Jill through his increasing needs. To overcome Jill's growing resentment Jack needs to exercise a higher level of control. The only way Jack knows to control Jill is through presentation of a growing need for help. In his program of gaining self respect through control of Jill, he becomes more and more dependent upon Jill. Such growing dependency is inconsistent with self respect through being in control. Jack can not respect himself: because he cannot be in control of his own life, as he tries to gain self respect, through controlling Jill, through his growing needs for her help. Jack resents the extent to which Jill controls his life by providing services which he needs in his efforts to control Jill. Jill is trying to prevent Jack from doing himself in: when he drinks too much, gambles, uses drugs, has affairs, etc. These are ways Jack has found to intensify his needs for help. Jill has intensified her techniques for manipulating Jack, to keep him from self- destruction. Jack resents Jill's manipulations and efforts to control him. He gets very angry and violent. His anger and violence test Jill's ability to save him from himself. Each needs the other compulsively! In their efforts to meet their own dishonest needs both Jack and Jill do violence to each other through manipulative efforts. Neither Jack nor Jill is taking responsibility for their own life. Neither is doing for themselves what only they themselves can best do for themselves. What each is doing, is being done for self-centered dishonest reasons. Each is trying to control the other in an effort to achieve personal acceptability. Each has lost control of their own life, because they are trying to control other lives. Each can regain integrity in their own life by letting go of their attachment to each other, letting the other assume responsibility for their own life. They need to detach from their compulsive entanglement in each other. When Jill has learned to take care of her own basic needs she will be able to love Jack. Until Jill has learned to take care of her own self, she is unable to take care of Jack. When she has learned how to take care of her own self, she will no longer need to take care of Jack to feel good about her self. She will feel good about her self, and will be able to love Jack with integrity without trying to control him. When Jack has learned to take care of his own life and manage his own affairs with integrity he may be able to accept and fulfill responsibilities in ways which will merit the respect of others. One person cannot achieve respectability by trying to be in control of others, when one is not in control of one's own life. When Jack has learned to take care of his own basic needs he will not need to try to be in control of other people as a way of earning the respect of other people. Jill's responsibility does not extend to doing for Jack what is Jack's responsibility to do for himself. Jack's responsibility does not extend to controlling Jill. Entanglement of responsibilities leads to disintegrative relationships. Disentanglement is essential to healthy relationships. Wisdom involves knowing the character of healthy responsibilities and relationships, and seeking them and their fulfillment with one's whole being. (c) 2005 by Paul A. Smith in (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================