saying yes instead of no

He asked me if I wanted to meet him at a certain restaurant near where I work for dinner tonight.

Well, I don’t.

But I said, sure.

Why don’t I give myself a voice?  Why don’t I say, well, no, not really, no, I don’t want to meet you for dinner?

Why do I protect his feelings, but not protect my feelings?

And maybe the bigger questions are – although the “whys” may help in the process to the bigger questions –

How do I change?


WHEN do I change?

I have a friend in another country who says something to the effect that if you like the way things are going, then keep doing the things you are doing.  But if you don’t like the way things are going, then do something different.

A few minutes ago, I was thinking – what is one thing that I could do different today?

And you’re all saying, “tell him no!”

Maybe I’m not brave enough for that yet.

But I’ll see if I can come up with one thing to do different, so maybe my life will start to be different.

This entry was posted in covert abuse, divorce, emotional abuse, family, marriage, passive aggressive, passive aggressive behavior, relationships and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to saying yes instead of no

  1. givemeaboxofchocolates says:

    I had to learn to say “no” and discovered that my PA didn’t really care anyway. That hurt for awhile, but then I went out to dinner by myself and discovered I could have a good time on my own. It’s refreshing to learn to like yourself and let him be who he is. It’s really that simple.

  2. ChickenLadyMovedToTown says:

    Can you try to dissociate yourself from the emotion involved? That really helps I’ve found to merely “shut down” on him. Also, use your gift of motivational speaking too to encourage yourself. Talk to yourself like your talking to your best friend. You’ve got what it takes to do this:)

  3. Sofia Leo says:

    He has trained you to never say no to him. He has trained you to push all of your feelings down into the pit of despair in your heart. He has trained you to disregard your feelings in favor of his. This didn’t happen overnight, and you can’t change overnight, but you CAN change.

    If saying no outright is too hard, say, “not tonight,” instead. Set another date, even if you know he’ll find a reason to change it later (it always has to be HIS idea, right?) If nothing else, push the time back a half hour – every little step will make you stronger.

  4. WritesinPJ's says:

    Really love the comments so far!

    givemeaboxofchocolates: “It’s refreshing to learn to like yourself and let him be who he is.” (This is an ongoing lesson for me, since I got used to habitually giving energy to him)

    ChickenLadyMovedtoTown: “Talk to yourself like your talking to your best friend. ” (okay, that’s something I often need to remind myself of)

    Sofia Leo: “This didn’t happen overnight, and you can’t change overnight, but you CAN change. ”
    (this reminds me to be patient with myself)

    My thought is that with passive aggressive abuse, there is ALWAYS price to pay. The darn price tag is invisible, so you’re never sure of how much you’ll end up paying for something. Effective training, indeed.

  5. marsocmom says:

    I agree with all the posters! Somehow, you need to push back. Perhaps you would prefer a different restaurant, like you are really in the mood for Mexican tonight. Or that you are kind of tired, and would like to go out a different time. I suppose I’m trying to give him the benefit of the doubt, since it SEEMS that he is trying to be nice, but like PJs said, the price tag is invisible. Use it to your advantage somehow! Me, I’m always up for any reason not to have to cook dinner.

  6. Jane D. says:

    “Not today” or “maybe later/next week/next year/next millennium” are the gateway nos. You can start out with these and work your way to a full scale no later. Use a pleasant voice, and just walk away after using these softer nos, no explanation needed.

  7. newshoes123 says:

    You are changing dear. You’ve made it this far, you are able to tell him other things, so no will eventually come. Don’t be so hard on yourself but keep working at it.

    Be ready for the extra “abuse” when you do though, it will escalate and you will pay more. But in the end, worth your very own respect.

  8. JR says:

    I read this somewhere and for some reason it made me feel… Better? I say it to myself many times a day. Thought I’d share.

    He didn’t pick you because you’re weak, stupid or just an easy target. He picked you because you have all of the good qualities he desperately wants and knows he can never really have.

  9. paescapee says:

    Hi. I believe that we persuade ourselves that we really don’t mind acquiescing as we know that a ‘no’ will attract a spiteful consequence from a pa relationship. This causes a constant state of tension within as parts of us are pretending to say yes and other parts are upset and frightened. A good start, I feel, to be honest at least with ourselves in acknowledging our true feelings privately (maybe in a secret journal) which might calm down the internal tension and build strength and courage to confront the real external problems further down the line.

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