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Stan Islavski

Where Did It All Begin?

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Lately, I've been struggling with determining why I have difficulty being happy and showing it. My 1-year old son is an incredible joy to be around. But when he does something funny or cute, I catch myself stifling my reactions to him... especially when other people are around. And it's not just with my son - it's with other things too.

So I keep thinking back to my earliest memories, trying to figure out where exactly I was taught that "being happy is wrong." But I just can't put my finger on it.

I'm just looking for thoughts or questions I can ask myself that perhaps I haven't asked yet. All input is appreciated.

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I've been wondering that lately as well. It almost feels like a sin for me to smile, but I've found I judge myself almost instantaneously after every reaction I make. It's a horrible habit, and very very irritating. But I love kids because they always smile and it makes me smile back! So its a great thing you have a son who brings you joy!

Edited by SySt3M

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Hi Stan,

How do you feel "inside" when your son does these wonderful things? If you are stifling your reactions to him, then I assume you feel joy, but work really hard to suppress these feelings. This might not be a case of being taught that "being happy is wrong", as much as being taught whether openly or subliminally that expressing any type of emotion was not looked upon favorably. Did your own parents express pride, happiness, or even negative emotions toward you? I think expressing emotions makes us feel vulnerable. If we can hide emotions, we feel "safer", or then we don't subject ourselves to pain or hurt. At least this is what I've learned about internalizing my own feelings over the years.

Sincerely,

MaddieLouise

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