What I am about to tell you is in no way blaming my parents for what happened to me growing up; they did what they did to the best of their ability at the time; I did not come with parenting instructions; but I needed to understand this identity to be able to function in the world and be able to get in touch with the real me and start to FEEL again.
I mentioned in a previous writing that both my parents were perfectionists; my mother was particularly controlling; she also had a big complex about her weight and had rejection issues. When I was born I was wanted; she had produced the only grandson among all the girls in the extended family; now she was the center of attention.
Growing up as a young child during the second world war was not easy; we lived on a 100 acre orchard which my grandfather owned; we had our separate house; but mother was a city girl and did not like the country life all that much. I was an inquisitive child and ventured out quite a bit and was quite rebellious; very normal for a young child. I did not do what I was told very often; I soon learned that when I was being myself and being a normal child that got into things and made a mess around the place; I got a hiding or scolding; mother had a pretty good temper when she was challenged. In the early days children were seen and not heard; you spoke when you are spoken to; otherwise be quiet. Also it was OK for a man to get angry; but he was not allowed to show any emotion; whereas for a women it was OK to show emotion but was not supposed to show angry.
So I learned that when I was being good I was loved and when I was being NORMAL and myself I was not loved or accepted. It is called CONDITIONAL love; I was not loved unconditionally. So I developed this PERFECT identity to be accepted by my parents; while I was doing nothing and being inconspicuous and not getting into things with my curious mind; I was loved; but when I was being myself I was not accepted and either got scolded or a hiding; “I got plenty of hidings”.
Now there were 2 identities; the accepted me; (perfect identity) and the (real me); my true “soul” self. Growing up I soon learned how to gain more acceptance by my peers; I used to work in the orchard from about 4 years of age till we left when I was about 9 years old. I was 6ft tall when I was 12 years old so I was treated like an adult at a very early age. I was praised for my ability to work hard; so I learned to be a workaholic very young; once again to be accepted; i was praised for being a great worker. Perfectionists are very aware of their surroundings and the people around them; so they spend a great deal of time monitoring everything; this is where the control comes in; and it is also very trying.
Over many years of living as this “perfect identity” i developed a lot more personalities to this identity; I become totally detached from my true self; I could put my arms around my children and give them a big hug; but I could not FEEL any depth to my affections; it was horrible; there was a vacuum there; the identity had no feeling.
It was after a workshop I did on personal growth in my early fifties when I broke this identity and started to feel again and got back to living my true self (free of this identity). The experience was indescribable and life changing and I am so grateful to the person who helped me back to life again.
Obviously there is a lot more that can be said about this perfect identity but I think you get the idea. The perfect identity is just one of many identities we develop to cope emotionally in the world; we develop what I call a FALSE SELF to show the world; a mask we hind behind; but it is not the REAL you.
The interesting thing about identities is; they are hard to detect by the person who is running them; they think that the identity is the real person and not something that they created to cope emotionally.
Well I will leave it at that; hope you enjoyed my writing and as always any comments are most welcome; wish you all the Joy and happiness; LOL Murray