Lies the Vacillator Believes.
OK, all you Vacillators; your turn. This is so important, because the lies we are about to discuss are at the core of what makes your life so miserable. To be free from these lies is to be free indeed. There are several major faulty beliefs that are at the core of the vacillator style.
- I can find someone to give me the consistent connection I missed as a child. Then I will never have to feel the abandonment I experienced as a child.
- Disappointment is intolerable and I must escape it with anger, blame and idealizing.
- At my core, in quiet moments, I believe I’m a bother and a nuisance.
Let’s see how these believes run the life and relationships of the vacillator. All vacillators experienced some level of abandonment as a child and experienced connection as unpredictable and inconsistent. It’s like eating three bites of a meal and really beginning to enjoy it and suddenly someone takes the plate away. I’m still hungry! I’m not satisfied. When will I get fed again? I’m waiting for another good meal, but I’m afraid someone is going to snatch it away again. Maybe there is something wrong with me. Maybe I’m doing something wrong or I would get fed more. Maybe I’m a bother and not important enough to be fed.
Get the picture? Inconsistent connection promotes a belief system that ends up at, “I’m a bother.” Disappointment begins the downward spiral. It’s an old feeling and a slippery downward slope from, “You are leaving and I’m still hungry for love and attention. I hate this feeling. Now I have to wait until you are ready to feed me again. I hate you for making me feel bad, unlovable and hungry.
Vacillators feel like they found their soul mate when they are dating. Lots of time, attention and intensity. Ahhh! No more hunger. Lots of satisfaction. Then real life sets in. Problems. Disappointments. Waiting. So the triggers begin and over time, the vacillator will feel disgust and contempt for the person making them feel unlovable and like a bother.
So what is the truth? What are the solutions? First, no one can make up for the wounds of your childhood. There is no perfect spouse that will never step on the trip-wire that sends off your triggers. The childhood wounds must be recognized and grieved and they will lose a lot of their power. In the dark, unrecognized, these wounds constantly dictate your behavior. It’s either all good (I’m getting attention and I’m not triggered) or it’s all bad (I’m disappointed, devastated and I hate who ever made me feel this way).
The lie is, I can find someone who will never make me feel these bad frustrating feelings. The truth is, I can understand my wounds and grieve them so they begin to heal. When as a vacillator you are triggered, disappointment feels like devastation. You don’t need to fix your spouse, church, pastor, and friend so they behave differently. You need to identify the wound and ask for comfort for the childhood memories that drive the triggers.
Idealization is the way vacillators keep from having to feel the childhood pain. The grass is always greener somewhere else. Move. Leave. Run. Get out. Be done. Then the pain goes away. Temporarily; until you are back in a relationship and real life sets in.
Face the childhood pain or live the painful cycle of up/down, good/bad elated/devastated. Vacillators rarely cry and that’s a huge problem. They are too embroiled in the anger that others make them feel “bad”. That’s easier than grieving the childhood wounds.
Now let’s talk about this core belief. I’m a bother. If you are a vacillator and you have not recognized this, go deeper, it’s there lurking at the bottom of the trigger. It’s the most painful feeling you try and avoid. You use anger and blame to cover and escape this feeling because it’s so painful. You say you want connection, but the truth is vacillators want connection without having to be vulnerable. To feel the childhood pain is vulnerable. Unless, as an adult, you risk going to the childhood wounds, cry and allow others to learn to comfort you the cycle of idealizing and devaluating will remain.
Last, you are not a bother to God. He created you, loves you and is the healer, redeemer and restorer. He needs your cooperation to give you the healing He longs for you to have.
- No one is perfect enough to never trigger my abandonment injuries. My feelings are more about the past than the present.
- Anger and blame keep me from dealing with the painful childhood feelings I am afraid of acknowledging and feeling so they can be healed.
- I can learn to be vulnerable, ask for comfort and grieve the painful childhood events.
- I am not a bother. God desires me and longs for connection with me.