Being a cycle breaker is often exhausting because it takes energy to stand up and do something different from what has always been done in the family. You might notice ‘looks’ being passed between family members or eye-rolling as you express things against the grain or things as you see them.
There are often comments, that, when boiled down, ask, “why can’t you just be more like us?” When cycle breakers emerge, the resistance is usually overt AND covert. Overt in the things that are said to you, and covert in the things said behind your back. Both forms of resistance are exhausting for the cycle breaker. The overt form requires constant explanations; they hear you, but they disagree with you, so you get into a headlock. The covert form of resistance can be in the form of gossiping or recruiting other family members to be on their side behind your back, causing further isolation that is not helpful.
There are many subtle ways the cycle breaker is shamed in the family; I hope the list above helps you spot some of the behaviours. A big thank you to my Instagram community for adding to this list.
As a cycle breaker, the best thing you can do for yourself is to get support from people outside of the family. One way to do this is through my Relationship Cycle Breaker course, where we address these issues and more.
To all the cycle breakers going through this right now…I see you.