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Disappointed Needs

Updated: May 11, 2022

When we are in a state of acute anxiety, it can feel tempting to demand instantaneous comfort from another person. If we do this too often, demanding more than they can easily give, we can end up making our problems worse. When we are in pain, we can forget that our own feelings are not necessarily known, or even felt, by other people. We may want them to feel responsible in some way and hold them to account. Unfortunately often they are too busy with their own problems.

Disappointed neediness is often the root of our anger towards others. It is infuriating when it seems we are not given what we feel entitled to. If we were too badly disappointed by our caregivers in our early life, we may carry unconsciously a festering grievance. Without realising, we could expect others somehow to make up for this. Acknowledging and accepting this lack is powerful. It is certainly something beneficial that can come from therapy. Left unacknowledged, it can lead us to behave in ways we may not understand. We may continue to expect compensation and rescuing from others that they don’t give. We feel let down, disappointed and subsequently enraged. Therapy helps mourn and let go of what was not possible or available in the past. This means something new can happen. We may be surprised when we are shown compassion. It can be valuable to remember that the world owes us nothing. Anything extra is a gift. Life may not be a rose garden, but it doesn’t mean there aren’t roses!

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