I sometimes act and think as if my well being depends upon others. ~ vincenzo ©

What is important for friends to know about me?

I have an overbearing sense of responsibility toward others. I enjoy honest and meaningful connection where noble values prevail.  I learn most from those who are honest about their struggles. I find myself needing solitude in order to appreciate the company I keep. I am selective when it comes to showing my playful and humorous side. I need a high level of independence in a relationship.  I am open to new experiences when I don’t feel rushed or pressured.  If I don’t have my own space to retreat to and recharge, I get fatigued and irritable.

As far as my temperament goes, it is artistic and colors the way I see the world. I seek beauty in the commonplace. I align creativity to my spiritual calling.  It’s a side of me few take time to get to know.  I seek substance over style. I shun doing things in a run-of-the-mill way. 

I am called to attend to what is invisible to most, in a culture that has little or no understanding of the calling to spiritual and creative attunement.  My faith can be summed up in the Incarnation.  God descended to earth to show us humility, grace, servanthood and serendipitous wisdom. The teaching and challenges I have received for the past years at church have been lightweight and repetitive: so I have been searching greater depth to the Christian life.

Having a low threshold for sensory stimulation, I want to develop greater coping strategies. I have an aversion to loudness, triteness, small talk and ready-made scripts.

I admire literary authors and how they delve the subterranean currents of the human heart.  I never tire exploring the forgotten world of classic literature. I am skeptical when it comes to convention, the media and consumerism. Writing (as well as Classic Literature) is intimately connected to my spiritual walk. Since my youth, it has been a way of exploring my faith and personal growth. I admire how authors view life through an inner lens. I enjoy reading classic literature over contemporary appreciating how authors infuse feeling into words, creating word pictures through the five senses.

Heightened sensitivity has occupied a prominent place in my head and heart.  As a boy, I’d often gaze at the reflection in windows or mirrors to look at my face. Although I could vaguely recognize or detect it, invalidation permeated my environment. Little by little the emotionally toxic world sowed self-doubt within my sensitive nature. I tried to decipher what triggered the contempt. Why were only some children targeted while others favored? Was it my dark skin, my slower speech or my hesitancy?

When growing up, resources about emotional issues were scarce. Internet was still in its mother’s womb. In order to survive, I grew up out of touch with my emotions. By example, I learned to express pain as little as possible. To complicate matters, communication was minuscule in my family of origin. Thus, I felt unworthy, though I pretended none of the antagonism was having any effect on me.

Self-esteem comes with healing. A background full of pain, anger and sadness often creates dependency without realizing it. When Christ’s love becomes a reality, you begin to feel less compelled to seek approval, and yet it takes time to process insecure attachment, especially when it is the driving force behind all your endeavors.

~ vincenzo ©

“From the first moments of life, our being strives to be in harmony with our surroundings and with each other.” ~ Dr. Sharon Keller

I know what it is to want to belong and yet be unable to. When you face the tears and ongoing agony of a long term unnamed condition, you value every insight that comes your way. I remember being a socially receptive child, but as I grew older, I began feeling more out of place without knowing why. I put on a facade, yet below the surface, I couldn’t make sense of the loud, hard-hitting, competitive climate that prevailed each day.

I adopted a cool detached persona in order to survive. As a loyal people pleaser, I found it exhausting to keep in step with boisterous community standards. There was no escaping the commotion: The desire to be left alone, the necessity of down time, the strain of trying to make sense of social dynamics – made daily life a painful boot-camp existence.

Without a plan of action, having a highly-sensitized temperament is debilitating. It adversely affects your relationships when your heightened emotional responses include unresolved codependency issues.  Without meaning to, you approach love from a place of scarcity.  From a subconscious level, this insecure attachment interferes with your strong need for connection.
~ vincenzo ©

solitary

Is finding online love better than no love at all?

I have been on my own for several years with my ups and downs. In real time I feel secure when meeting someone new. I can observe gestures and actions, listen to the texture of the voice and decide whether that someone might make a good match before deciding to step out. However, the rules vastly change when it comes to interacting online.

A close relation once recommended I get to know a lady a few years ago and so we began to correspond with each other. We chatted daily and eventually talked on Skype, but without the visual aid of a web camera. I did not own a computer at this time, so I relied upon a nearby internet cafe. This went on for a period of 3 or 4 months. We had developed a regular pattern of communication and all seemed a matter of course.

The day came when we finally met face to face as she picked me up at the airport and an unexpected dread filled my heart. Weeks of preparations and anticipation made the anticlimax more striking.  Until that moment, it never occurred to me we could possibly be mismatched. I blindly relied upon my close relative’s recommendation without question.  For someone who usually explores the terrain before advancing, this was not a great feeling.

Even though I already knew what I needed to be said, I stressed out for days pretending everything was fine. Days later, I worked up the nerve to sit down with her and confess my misgivings. The news devastated her as she felt we were the perfect match.  I felt sickened with remorse for having awakened her feelings. Alas, our dream vacation ended even before it started. It is most humiliating and disagreeable having to turn someone down after communicating at a distance for months.

The problem with online communication is you run the danger of fashioning a person after your own fancy, only to discover you lack the necessary chemistry or compatibility needed to advance further. What then?

Looking back, I believe online contact with stranger needs be treated as starting point while establishing strong limits. It is wise to keep the exchanges light, keeping the intervals of contact brief and spreading them out over a long period of time until you decide to meet face to face. Even though your intention may be to establish limits with someone in your head, what really determines the degree of attachment or involvement is the frequency and amount of time you as a couple interact together. You may call it a friendship or whatever you like, but the pacing is what determines the true emotional state.

Too much, too soon is a sure sign of codependency. It sends the message that the relationship is not only advancing too abruptly, but that the couple may have formed an additive attachment to each other. ~ vincenzo ©

Imagination is an invisible friend you can believe in.  ~ vincenzo ©

Although sensitivity is not always akin to emotional instability, cultural bias often makes no such distinction.  Therefore, the highly sensitive person may confuse the former for the latter, placing greater confidence in the social mirror than his own perspicacity.

~ vincenzo ©