Patterned Interactions: Part III

Finally. This group is neither interested in getting other folks to approve of them or assert themselves in the lives of others. This group appreciates an independent viewpoint and inward focus.

They retreat into themselves and rely on their own strength to get through challenges. They sometimes lack confidence that they can make a difference and may search for solutions but fail to take action on what they learn. They are detached. They can sound condescending when talking to others. Their inner anxiety and vague suspiciousness makes them self-protective. They over-analyze. Although they are perceptive, their need to isolate is a problem. One word description? Withdrawn.

Of course, Substance Use Disorder and other life problems can turn passive people aggressive; quiet people loud; loud people silent; aggressive folks catatonic. BUT before we started developing habitual, mostly unconscious ways of reacting to the world, each of us had a favorite way of relating: aggressive, withdrawn or ambivalent, or dependent on others. Our patterns precede our using or dysfunctions, so we will explore those deep-rooted preferences before we get further into the weeds of our inventory!

As you review your list of chronological feelings and your reactions, look for the pattern that most fitsyou. Remember - think of your way of being before you started using:

1. Do you move against people? Have some people told you that you were too aggressive?

2. Do you move toward people? Are you eager for approval? Do you care A LOT about other

people’s opinion of you?

3. Do you move away from people? Do people stress you out? Do you spend a lot of time in

your head?

As you can imagine, each one of these styles has both unique vulnerabilities and strengths associated with them. Give that some thought and journal about your ideas on the subject.