One of the interesting things that came up in my second session with the counselor was the subject of dependency. We were discussing how someone could take my optimism or “idealism” (I hate that word…makes me sound in the clouds) and infer things about me that they find negative or “offensive.” She understood (without my saying) that by leading with the positive, it allows me to calm myself and get back in the moment in a way that I can figure out what needs to be done without the panic or anxiety. It’s perspective. Then she said that someone else can see it as not dealing with the situation at hand (I’ve had that argument before), which leads them to think that they would have to look out for me and make sure that things get done. This would be off-putting to someone as it may make them feel as if I would be dependent upon them.
I had two reactions to this, one positive and one negative. The positive reaction (which was the first one), was understanding. Oh! Now I get why MensHealth may have such an issue with me being an optimist (which made no sense to me before). I can see how someone would have a problem with optimism if they saw it as a precursor to dependency. No one likes a clingy, dependent person. Yes. I get it. The second reaction was “wait; so you think I’m dependent?!” No sir and no ma’am. Mama 2blu 2btru didn’t raise a dependent! You better recognize!
Let me share something with all of you in blogland; I am a very self-sufficient person. I pay my own bills like any self-respecting adult person. I make goals for myself and strive to reach them. I haven’t lived at home or accepted assistance in a long time. In fact, part of the reason I’ve been through so many things is because the last resort for me is to ask for help. I’ve been taught since I was little that I could do it, that I would have to do it. So for someone to even the hint that what I envision when someone says “dependent” should apply to me was just…
I see myself as a help meet. I would be able to be supportive of someone else, to add to any relationship that I am in. I strive to have symbiotic relationships, in which both people are helping each other. I don’t want anyone to see me as dependent any more than I want to seem independent. It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around someone thinking that my looking on the bright side in unfortunate situations first is a red flag that I may become dependent upon them.
I’m still processing all of this and what I think about it, but I’m interested to know what you all think about it. What is your definition of “dependent”? What are red flag behaviors of a dependent person to you? Do you like the cling? How do you feel about us “head in the clouds” optimist types?