Your identity is who you are
Identity has been a common theme on the path to happiness, trueness and fulfilment. When I began my detox from drugs, sex, bad people, alcohol, life and so on, I didn’t ‘t and still don’t know how to completely fill what I felt was the hole that I had filled with these activities. It felt like I had left one persons body into another. It felt like that I was trying to stride from the black to white, with no shades to grey. Today it still feels like I’m living in someone else body.
And so I asked, who am I, really?
For six years I’d been circuiting around and around on a scene where I could cake my face in drugs, kill my liver with whatever alcohol I could find and physically fill the holes in my body with whatever penis was available.
It is often said that people fill metaphorical holes in their needs, personalities, wants, desires, with substances, people and other stuff that isn’t good. In essence, these holes are all the things we aren’t in our identities.
Ego as identity
Ego, as part of the therapy I have received, is often a topic of discussion. Ego can drive us to a self-centred reality, far, far away from the reality we are actually living. This gap between reality and our ego self often comes from a deep sense of self-worthlessness.
Next time you see a pathological sociopath with a self-esteem level in the cosmos, see them as a sick person. They can’t experience or live in reality for they are acting from a damaged self-esteem and worth; and are deeply unhappy, with themselves and their lives.
The reality is that our ego must own every dimension of our reality, in short, a healthy ego acts on what we want, our reality and our values. This then forms the basis of our identity. This identity comes from three places:
- Our Child (ID) – what we want
- Our Adult (Ego) – who we are right now and the reality we live in
- Our Parent (Superego) – what we think about and how we judge, everything
What I have learned from my therapy is that our child and parent can become damaged. We can speak from the adapted child and the punishing parent. What we need is the natural child and nurturing parent, as per the diagram above. Our natural child and nurturing parent act on what we want, are firm about our beliefs, and self-compassionate when things go wrong.
I am who I am because of everyone
Our identity comes from everyone around us. We can create the adapted child and punishing parent when our experience as children falls short of what we need.
The adapted child is the jealous child who has experienced trauma, pain, hurt and acts from a place of worthlessness, and whose needs haven’t met. These are the children (and adults) that are jealous of everyone around them and experience emotional pain. These children develop unrealsitic expectations of themselves and of their reality, as they just want to cope with that emotional pain. This child develops from the negative experiences we have with other people from our childhood to teen years.
Children in themselves are innocent, caring, loving, curious, but if you have not been bought up in a nurturing, caring, environment, with your needs tended to, you become damaged and sick.
The punishing parent is the voice in our head that casts moral judgement over everything. When we do something wrong this voice tells us that we are bad, naughty and instils a sense of shame. This labels everything as good or bad and casts moral judgement over every action in our lives. The parent voice in our head develops from the parents and role models we experience from our childhood to teen years.
When acting from the adapted child and punishing parent our ego, is not able to really establish our true identity. This is because we are operating from a system that is deeply unhappy.
I often experience identity crises.
Because of the moral experiences from parents and role models as I child, what I developed was a moral system based on:
- A deeply religious childhood, with religious addicts as parents,
- A moral system from God,
- Society’s view on what it is to be a man and a boy,
- Society’s views on ethnicity,
- Society’s and religious views on hetero-normative sex,
From whatever information I had available to me as a child. These were far from who I actually was. As a non-binary gay male, my morality is in conflict with what I actually want. And so I develop a deep sense of shame over who I am.
The other part of me, is what I actually want. The things I loved as a child were playmobil kitchens, musical instruments, papier mache, planes, trains, drawing, dreaming, acting, singing. I didn’t follow any of these wants. I let my head rule and I followed a logical route to money and to the city, I went for prestige over love. I did the least possible for the most gain.
Because my reality became so far from what I wanted and actually believed, I self-medicated.
To move past my damaged identity, I must act on my true wants and my true moral system, and where there is conflict make appropriate judgements. When you have lived in a warped reality for so long its really hard. This weekend, for the first time, I decided to go to a leather fetish party, have a massage, have a pedicure, eat some ice cream and have sex. I splurged cash against my moral judgement. It didn’t help that I bought a new leather harness and leather short-shorts. It’s an investment anyway.
I had more sex with people than in the past year. I actually loved this weekend.
To really find our identities and be happy, we need to listen to what we want, what we think about it and live with it.
I ask myself how much would I invest to be happy? And the shame of getting the credit card out lessens.