The People Pleaser & The Master Manipulator, Finding Wholeness in a World That Lacks Love

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Today we will talk about two types of people:

  1. The people pleaser- always playing in line with what others want, in fear of judgement, rejection, feelings of shame, and feelings of unworthiness.
  2. Master manipulator- angry at what life didn’t give them, manipulating others to get what they want

Both operate from a spirit of lack.

This post may hit at the target at everything you’ve ever felt in your whole life.

I have been both but for much of my life I was a people pleaser. My mother often “made me” feel guilty or ashamed to be alive. My dad was supposedly cheating on my mother when she was pregnant with me so I often felt like I was paying penance with my life, subjugated to simply do what she wanted me to so that she wouldn’t feel so bad about herself.

I wonder how many of us feel this way? That we aren’t worthy to even be alive.

It wasn’t my fault.

The same spirit that accused and blamed me my whole life, even using my mom’s anger towards herself and her life circumstances accused me this week.

An airbnb owner (who happens to be pregnant) accused me of asking for too much when I asked for a quiet house on several occasions. Apparently the housemate was offended. Here I was thinking that we were all becoming friends when in actuality, they were talking behind my back.

She came home, exploding. She said I was selfish for expecting everyone to cater towards my need. I said “you opened an airbnb business, it was your choice, and I’m simply being honest”.

I knew that this was all the devil trying to accuse me.

I felt guilty when the owner stopped talking to me. When I said hi the other day she didn’t even look at me.

I felt my shoulders tighten.

Then it hit me. My mom does that when she is mad at me. She doesn’t acknowledge my existence as a way to punish me. I wonder if that’s connected with her blaming me for her pain, her pain of feeling abandoned by my dad, her pain of feeling neglected, unloved.

It’s not my fault though.

Finally, it’s not my fault. It’s not my fault. And it’s not your fault, however your parents punish you for their own feelings of unworthiness. 

I kept hearing God say “it’s not your fault. You didn’t do anything wrong, you were simply being honest and speaking up for your needs”. 

The owner’s accusation was a way to make me feel guilty for speaking up and wanting what I wanted.

Perhaps that is why most people stop asking for what they want or need- because they have a fear that people will reject, shame, judge or condemn them for their desires or opinions.

I felt a sense of responsibility to right the wrong- but I didn’t do anything wrong, I was only speaking my mind and truth.

Shame and guilt shuts people up.

Shame causes people to be silent. 

I realized that this wasn’t about me, it was about the owner. She was too stressed, working full time, managing an airbnb (her own house), pregnant.

Was it that I was being selfish or that she just wasn’t loving herself enough?

People who call others selfish usually don’t love themselves enough and aren’t “selfish” enough. They live out of a spirit of lack and often expect others to compensate for the lack of love they feel. 

In actuality, no one is responsible to love you. It’s your responsibility to love yourself first, to allow God to love you and then to speak up for what it is you need and want. Sure, in a relationship, in family, people do love you, but they do it out of what they are capable of doing. Most people don’t have ENOUGH love to give because they don’t realize they are enough in Christ Jesus.

People can only love you to the capacity they love themselves. If they “love” you above what they can give themselves, they are “sacrificing” themselves at the cost of loving you. And there is then a deficit. a shortage. When there is a shortage, people often feel bitter about the love they give you.

In truth, all of what I described is not love at all, it’s actually based out of fear. 

People sacrifice themselves at the cost of loving themselves because they fear that you will essentially LEAVE or reject them if they don’t sacrifice themselves.

But there is no fear in love because perfect love casts out fear.

So what would it look like to live in love? 

  1. Speaking up for how I actually feel, need and want without fear of judgement or rejection.
  2. There is no need for “sacrifice”, just love.
  3. Sure there may be compromises, but not compromises that are based out of fear.

The owner told me that it is in Malaysian culture to sacrifice to the point that they can’t take it anymore. But when I talked to two male Malaysians, they said “no, I don’t believe that” so I wonder if it’s mostly just with women….this theme of sacrifice.

I don’t need to sacrifice because Jesus became the ultimate sacrifice on the cross.

Sure, I have left everything to follow Jesus to share the love of Christ with people, but in truth, it’s not a sacrifice because I am following my heart and what truly gives me fulfillment. 

My heart is full when I love people, and when I allow others that I meet to love me. But I ultimately go to God.

God does not call us to sacrifice, he says come to me with a broken and contrite heart, this I will not despise. He doesn’t call us to be strong, He calls us to lay ourselves at His feet at all times. 

I found myself fighting this battle of shame and guilt through words and prayer.

“I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, there is no condemnation for those that are in Christ Jesus”. 

We battle with not enough, we battle with feelings of shame, guilt, condemnation- but in Christ, we are enough and we are righteous.

When you know you are enough in Christ Jesus, you’ll love with an open heart, one that is pure and without manipulation, guilt, witchcraft, control or a need to sacrifice.

When we sacrifice, we live out of a belief that there is lack, that somewhere God won’t fill the void if we don’t personally fill it. 

But in Christ, there is no lack. There is only an abundance of love. So if we are not able, say so. Christ is more than enough. God does not need us to be strong. God wants us to be weak and for Him to be strong for us.

Sow a seed- Your giving makes changing lives possible as I minister to and share the gospel of grace to people around the world! There is an ongoing need to fulfill the mandate the Lord has put on my life. Join me as I change and save lives! 

Thank you! 

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