Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Holy crap and other revelations

I discovered today, via the Internet (www.coping.org/control/fixing.htm), that I have a problem. I am a chronic "fixer", which is evidently symptomatic of someone with control issues. Just great. I know self-diagnosis on the net is sketchy, but many of these hit all too close to home. I've pasted things below that I feel are relevant to me. I have to tell you...this left me doubting myself and certain situations I've gotten myself in.

The need to fix is...
  • Compulsively driven behavior to rescue or help another person, place, or thing to be the way you believe it "should be.''
  • Seeing another person, place, or thing as "in need'' and the automatic response pattern to this message.
  • Inability to maintain emotional detachment from a person, place, or thing that is hurting or in trouble. You proceed to fix them even if this means that they are hindered from personal growth and accepting personal responsibility for their own actions.
  • Drive to feel "needed'' or "wanted'' which leads you to become overly involved and overresponsible in your relationships with persons, places, and things.
  • Result of a pattern of getting approval and recognition from others for "helping'' in the past with the belief that this is the only way you can have meaning in life.
Negative effects of the need to fix...
  • Run the risk of developing a series of relationships with people, places, or things who become overly dependent on you.
  • Will be unable to remain emotionally detached when you run across a person, place, or thing which appears "helpless.''
  • Will never take care of your own needs because you will have successfully avoided focusing on self by diverting your focus to fixing others.
  • Become guilt ridden if people, places, or things which you are trying "to fix'' don't get "fixed'' and instead get worse.
  • Will increase in your low self-esteem as you lose yourself in "fixing'' others.
Irrational thinking behind "fixing"...
  • When you have the resources materially, emotionally, intellectually, and energy-wise, you should always be ready to share these with others less fortunate than you whom you perceive to be in need of help and assistance.
  • You should never stand by and not get involved when you see someone hurting and in need.
  • You are rewarded in so many ways for the sacrifices you make to help others and it is a straight path to heaven if you give to others without any hesitation.
  • You must die to self if you are to gain eternal reward. To be focused only on solving your own problems is so selfish. Therefore, you are sure to gain a higher eternal reward if you dedicate your life to helping others no matter what are the physical or emotional costs to yourself.
  • What will others think of you if you don't offer help to someone who is obviously in need?
This is just the tip of the iceberg evidently. To read more of the symptoms, "fixes" for fixing you, etc. go to the website above.


  1. Anonymous11:12 AM

    Hey!! I started posting on LJ again.....I'm SOOOO excited. Not really. Just a head's up. You can read it and wonder just what the hell is wrong with Rebecca for spending time with me.


  2. Anonymous12:34 PM

    It's going to be ok Serena. It could be a lot worse, believe me.


  3. Yeah, you could want to break things all of the time. Think of the mess.

  4. Anonymous4:33 PM

    Dude -- Sounds like you've got a little bit of the OCD going on. I can certainly relate as you know having previously been the AR "fixer" and presently providing a home to 5 rescued ducks (and now the mama has 6 more eggs). Why worry about it? Help people when you can and if people take advantage then they're the buttheads, not you. Yes, I know, it is a problem to constantly try to do things for others but isn't that called "networking" in DC?


  5. Thanks, Anne. I was in a bit of a mood that day, but it does give me insight that may at least help me to pause and think before "helping" someone. Of course, what a bummer to think what I think of as a calling as really self interest. It kind of reminds me of that Friends episode where Phoebe gets upset because she realizes doing good things for people makes her feel good and is worried it's all about just making herself feel good : )