I came to see Paul because my husband left me with 3 children all under the age of 5. I wouldn’t give hope of getting back together despite seeing how his behaviour wasn’t caring, I would always think it was my fault and craved a hug and let him spend time with me when he wanted. Each time feeling worse after.
Over time I came to realise that I was replaying the same behaviours with Paul as I did with my dad from when I was a child and also with my husband.
I was scared to say what I thought or have my own opinion. I continually asked Paul for the answers because as a child my dad would withdraw and shut down from me when I disagreed with him.
Paul would never give me an answer and always invited me to find my own. At first I was polite as I was with my dad, then angry and eventually sad and able to work through the pain of my earlier life and spoke to my dad about how I felt. I realised it was he who needed to control me to feel ok.
From that time onwards, I started to value who I was. I no longer put up with how I was being treated, set down some rules and was able to work through the loss of my marriage. Also for the first time in my life felt good about who I was. I started to recognise what I could offer to a new relationship when ready.