I wish for time to reply to everyone as fully as you all deserve and as fully as I'm able.
Ron, why would I disagree with you? Both conditions apply. You're good to point out my omission. I was trying to apply a corrective to the current idealization of the rugged individualist, not deny it a place.
Falling rain, if things go wrong, it's helpful to think that each of you contributed a good fifty percent. If you can actually ask and get a good answer, it's really useful to find out what the other person thinks you did wrong. Don't try to defend yourself or say you didn't do it, even if you didn't do it. You're not there to win a fight, you're there to prevent the next one with somebody else. Try to see it from their point of view. Anyway, that's it for now. This is more than anybody's going to read.
I hurt my back not because of the mat, which was doing its job perfectly well being a mat, but because I was not paying respectful attention to myself as well and exceeded my own capabilities at the time. I also, I suspect, probably disrespected the mat by expecting it to do more than it was capable of doing. I need to put air in my tires, which will show respect for my car and the people who built it, and will probably help me keep out of an accident as well. It's a lesson I haven't finished learning. I need to respect the rules of this forum. I work on that one as well. I need to be forthright and honest or my own metaphysical or psychological tires go flat.
Yes I still have a bad back. As you can deduce, I have darn well earned it the hard way, and only by paying attention to the altar and the mat and their current incarnations keeps things from getting worse. Sometimes they get better, when I'm careful.
TomMark, I love talking with you. I don't know people who control their feelings. Feelings are like a windstorm.
You can talk back to them, and sometimes that helps, because it's a way of actively building an additional point of view that's as rational or as plausible as the feeling is. That's why friends are a help, too. Or you can watch them go by and pin tails on them with little tags, so you'll know what your nefarious little or big brain is doing. You can pay attention to your breathing or you can pay attention to the tasks you need to be accomplishing. There are all sorts of ways of dealing with them, but suppressing them is one I've never seen work.
I've never seen a person control the kind of person they fall in love with, either, no matter how terrific their parents have been. You'd think it would be possible. You'd hope it was possible, but in practice, mostly it doesn't happen that way.
I could tell you TomMark, only fall in love with folks that won't leave you and who will love you back as much as I think you deserve; which is a lot. Sounds like great advice, doesn't it? Is it possible other people may have given you advice remotely like that in the past?
People have things they are trying to work out when they fall in love. They have business to deal with with their lovers that has to do with how they think other people are supposed to be treated and how other people are supposed to treat them, and they will selectively pick out people who have traits like that or will act in such a way as to bring those traits out in the other person or they will distort what they see from the other person to fit the model they have in their head.
It is enormously difficult to actually see and hear what is going on in a conversation between two people in a room if you are not one of them, and almost impossible if you are. It's a really big help if you have a truly wacky sense of humor that you're able to allow other people to understand and share.