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Letting Go (Again!)

By Phyllis Stein
November 30, 2012

Being triggered by someone can be challenging, but Inner Bonding allows us to find out what is underneath and finding that can be another gift to our inner child of the very thing that he or she has always wanted.

I thought I had completely let go of my ex-husband.  Really!  I hardly thought about him.  No imaginary conversations.  No contact for almost 18 months and no desire for it, even though he lives two blocks away.  And then there was a party a few weeks ago, a large party in a community center with a lot of people I know, and I did not go because I knew that he would be there.  The thought of going and potentially even making eye contact with him, even the thought of being there and being aware that I was avoiding him was deeply triggering.  My little girl was screaming, “No!!”  So I skipped the party.

At the same time I was baffled by the intensity of my reaction. My first hit was that being around him felt like visiting someone who was abusing their child or their dog, helplessness and heartbreak and if that really happened, a desire to never go back there.  Was this a core feeling?  I was not sure.

I wrote to Margaret and asked her if this was just how I was going to feel around him, aware of his deep self-abandonment and heartbroken.  “No,” she answered, it has to be something deeper or you would not be taking it on.

I probably spent another week at least struggling to understand.  Somehow, I am guessing because of something someone else posted on the Inner Bonding site, I finally saw that this was about addiction.  I had been addicted to something I was getting from him, something I was willing to accept a lot of bad treatment for during our time of post-marriage friendship.  My little girl was afraid that the old addiction would be triggered and I would do it again. What was it?

Suddenly, I heard his voice.  I was saying “I don’t want to bore you with the details” and he was responding, his little boy almost wiggling with excitement “No, no, tell me, tell me.”  And I remembered how it had been, the person, even after we were not longer married, who knew me best, the person with whom I had shared so much, the person who really was interested in my life, except that person does not really exist anymore. 

I imagined meeting him at another party.  As he started to say “Hello,” I imagined that I was with my little girl and I was saying to her, “Tell me, tell me.  I am really interested in what you have to say.”  And something astounding happened.  In my mind, he suddenly faded and then deflated like a blow up toy when you open the valve.  Incrediby, he had become irrelevant.  The addiction was  literally broken by giving my little girl what she really needs.

I am not longer willing to flatly declare that he and I are done with our karma, since I have been wrong too many times, but I do know that my little girl is no longer panicked at the possibility of interacting with him.  My happy little girl says "Inner Bonding rocks!!!"



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