Triangles, or, why do I feel so confused?

Interesting and challenging patterns arise in our lives when we find ourselves in an unpleasant pattern repeatedly with an individual. “What just happened? How did I get into that mess again?” we wonder. It’s possible you just got triangulated!

It’s the love-me-or-leave-me game translated to “if you’ll agree to let me be, even though I’m being antagonistic, everything will be fine. If not, I’m going to act like you’re my enemy and make you feel crazy.”

Coming from a lover, parent, sibling, co-worker or friend, it doesn’t seem to make sense. You scratch your head, you try to do better, and when you get back hostility or feigned innocence, you probably try harder.

Better advice is to quit trying, even though you’re not ahead. For some reason you’ve been dreamed up to play out a role that isn’t yours. You’re wearing a face not your own — possibly the other person’s parent, ex-, or someone he or she has unfinished business with. (Hence the idea of a triangle–someone is present whom no one can see.)

You may feel like what you say is intentionally misconstrued, and that this person has turned on you. You may feel like there’s nothing you can do right, or somehow they’re in a bad mood, or whatever. And there’s probably a gram of truth about it that you want to dispel–yes, you did disagree about something, but you don’t hate her. Maybe where you come from disagreeing is seen as a normal part of life (as it is, in case you’re wondering.)

In other words, there’s not much you can do to change the situation without compromising, unless they come out of the trance they’re in with the unseen third party. Meanwhile, I encourage you to take some distance and reckon that there may be more invisible traps in the future with this person until her issues from the past have been worked out. Try to keep you head clear and take care of yourself, setting boundaries with love (or not), staying connected or not, and learning an important life lesson.

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