Emotional Health as a Matter of Relationality

Many people I have talked to at any length about how feelings seem to control our world view have talked about a time or two where they had few or no people in their lives they could rely on to be there as a friend, as someone to just listen and witness the day to day struggles of human existance. Humans are, fundamentally, creatures of relationships. Even those of us who love spending time alone seem to benefit from having someone in our life we can trust enough to let tears out or to fall apart and to hell with what we look like while  we do it.

There are many different and equally valuable perspectives on maintaining or healing one’s emotional and spiritual self. We can gather together and break down the walls of enforced isolation, shame and unspoken grief.  Freedom from the shadows that drag us into listlessness, addiction, helplessness. There is power in a group that one person cannot find alone. Sometimes, we discover what works for us quickly, and we seem to heal and find meaning with the first therapist, friend, or group we connect with. Such occurrences are gifts. There are others who seek healing support from many different people, venues and helping modalities and some things seem to work for awhile, and then things just stop helping. This may be because we’ve gone as far as we can with this person or group. We may need a break and then return refreshed. Or something happens that helps us realize that we are in the wrong place doing the wrong thing for us.

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