“A truly strong person does not need the approval of others any more than a lion needs the approval of sheep.” – Vernon Howard
There are purveyors of affection and belonging that ply their wares on the corner of our mind and emotions. Like the dealers who sell illicit and addictive substances, they, with great subtlety, offer tidbits of friendship that draw the lonely, hurting, or naive soul into their game. Society today generates many deformities of social maturity. Single parent families, domestic abuse, molestation, and apathetic parenting leave many souls thirsty for belonging, for approval, and for a sense of family. This “drug” of approval is not an illegal sort, it is nonetheless, just as deadly.
Once the hook is set through approval, and acceptance is feigned in the “family”(the group or persons the searching heart wished to belong to), pressure is exerted to perform the will of the those who possess the “fix” of affection. The “addict” is drawn further away from their own independence and individuality and is conformed to the will of the “dealer”. Eager for approval, the walls of inhibition are broken down and the victim finds their choices of right and wrong becoming choices of the lesser of two evils. Gangs operate this way, drawing in the young, unwary, and inexperienced souls, transforming them into soldiers ready to obey their command. In a sexual relationship the same effect is accomplished. The end result is the dissolution of individuality and the creation of an extremely unhealthy social interaction that ends in the destruction of the victim, either physically, through death, emotionally, through heartache, or through social isolation and imprisonment to a partners will.
To break free from this cycle and bondage, the victim, the “addict”, must exert his/her individuality at any cost. The victim must stand on their own beliefs and moral decisions. Depending on how deep their involvement may be, this could be a costly and life changing act. When the victim is in too deep, it may well cost them their life to escape the hold of that “family”. But, breaking that hold is a must, an imperative, for without that break, there exists only a life of imprisonment and eventual misery and regret as the suppliant gives away their life for the selfish goal of another. Be careful my friends that you don’t find yourself in this hidden addiction of belonging. Choose your friends wisely and be sure to stand on your own ground.