Participants: Alanzo Smith, June Smith
Series Code: MGH
Program Code: MGH000074
00:30 Welcome to Marriage In God's Hands.
00:33 I'm Alanzo Smith and this is my wife, June.
00:37 June works with families.
00:40 She's a licensed clinician and she's going to talk to us about
00:45 an important topic, Rejection.
00:48 Well, maybe I should say we are going to talk about
00:51 this important topic, Rejection.
00:53 Now, nobody wants to be rejected.
00:57 At no point in one's life do we want to experience rejection.
01:02 Yet we all have experienced rejection
01:05 at one point or another, whether as a child growing up,
01:09 as a young adult, or as a married person.
01:13 Rejection is a painful thing.
01:16 Talk to us about how does one feel, what's happening to me
01:20 when I'm going through my rejection.
01:24 As the word suggests, you experience a
01:27 sense of abandonment.
01:29 You think that you are less than special.
01:33 And it just leaves you with a very low emotional ebb.
01:37 So it is something that pushes people in what we would call
01:42 the deep end, the far end.
01:45 I'm going to share with you some statements and I want you to
01:48 tell our listening audience whether you consider
01:51 these statements to be true or false.
01:54 For example, if someone is in a relationship that is not
01:57 going well and they feel like the person is about to
02:01 reject them, to abandon them, if they try harder and
02:05 really, really try harder, that might reduce their chance
02:09 of being rejected.
02:10 I would say that is likely to be false.
02:14 Because when rejection occurs, you're not the person doing the
02:18 rejection; you're being rejected.
02:19 So sometimes it really doesn't matter how hard you try
02:22 because it's not about you.
02:23 It's about what's going on in the mind of the other person.
02:27 If I'm in an abusive relationship
02:32 and I say to myself, "Well, if I hang in there,
02:37 if I stay and accept the abuse, this may lessen my chance
02:43 of being rejected later on.
02:46 You could say that you're caught between the devil
02:48 and the deep blue sea.
02:50 Because we're saying rejection is painful and if you're
02:52 about to be rejected and/or if you need to escape the abuse,
02:56 you need to leave, then that's what you're going to face.
02:58 But to stay in an abusive relationship...
03:01 To avoid rejection.
03:02 ...is just not what you want to do.
03:04 There's no reason that is justified to
03:07 stay in a relationship.
03:08 But because we're talking about rejection...
03:11 That is abusive.
03:12 Yes, to stay in an abusive relationship.
03:14 But what I'm getting at here is, to say that I will accept abuse
03:21 so as not to be rejected, something is wrong
03:24 with that concept.
03:25 That thinking.
03:26 But which is the lesser of the two evils?
03:29 I think both are equally hurtful, so that...
03:33 But I have to make a choice.
03:35 No you don't have to make a choice.
03:36 I would think if you are...
03:38 If I don't make a choice, I stay in the relationship.
03:40 Well, the choice is not to stay in the abuse
03:42 and the choice is not to...
03:44 You don't have a choice of rejection.
03:45 If the person is going to reject you, what choice do you have?
03:50 Now, what if one should say, the rejected person,
03:57 if they stay and fight more and fight harder
04:01 to keep the relationship, then it might work out.
04:05 Now, if you perceive that there is something that you should
04:08 be doing in your role in the relationship that you're
04:12 not doing, then you should do it.
04:14 But if you're having problems in your relationship
04:17 or if the other person, for whatever their reason is,
04:21 is going to reject you, again, you don't have much choice.
04:25 So I think that the point we want to make is that
04:28 reject is something that is done to you
04:30 and it is not something that you're causing to happen.
04:33 So I'm hearing you saying then that I should not have,
04:36 I should not take on this self blame
04:39 where I start telling myself, it's because of who I am,
04:44 why I am being rejected.
04:45 If was in a relationship and it didn't work out,
04:48 I start blaming myself.
04:50 If honestly I did not contribute to the
04:54 breakup of the relationship.
04:56 But often times, people tend to look at themselves and
04:59 see themselves as the problem when it's not necessarily so.
05:02 They're just trying to justify the rejection.
05:04 Now if for some reason there was something you did
05:07 that may have contributed to the person's decision
05:09 to walk away from the relationship,
05:11 then if it's not something you can remedy and the person
05:15 has made that choice, the reality is the person has
05:19 walked away or is going to walk away.
05:21 It doesn't mean your life is over.
05:23 You can move on and live beyond a rejection.
05:26 Let's talk about some manifestations of rejection.
05:29 There are certain things that occur with an individual.
05:32 For example, depression is a likely one.
05:36 It's almost automatic that at one stage or another
05:40 an individual is going to get into a depressive mood
05:44 if they're being rejected.
05:46 When you're in a relationship, you are hopefully experiencing
05:49 acceptance and love and attention and affection,
05:53 and all that goes with a relationship.
05:55 And so when that's taken away from you, it depresses.
05:58 It pushes you down and your spirit is not buoyed up.
06:02 And yes, you really just don't want to deal.
06:05 That's what is feels like.
06:07 I have seen individuals who, because of their rejection,
06:11 they don't want to come out of the house.
06:13 It's like they have developed this social phobia.
06:16 They don't want to go to public functions,
06:18 they stay away from weddings, and those kind of a thing.
06:22 Social phobia is one of the manifestations
06:26 of being rejected.
06:27 When you are not feeling good about yourself
06:30 and when you feel like the world has turned,
06:33 you know, one of the things that happens in rejection is
06:35 a generalization of your emotions.
06:38 And so because you're not feeling buoyant and buoyed up,
06:42 you think that everyone else is seeing you through those eyes.
06:46 And so you don't want to be around people.
06:48 You withdraw, you isolate, you wallow in self pity.
06:51 And you just don't want to go into public places as much.
06:54 Is this where over generalization of the situation
06:59 might come into play here?
07:01 That certainly happens at times where the person projects
07:06 what they're internalizing to their externals or unto others.
07:12 And so they think that their lenses are viewed,
07:15 or other people are viewing them through their lenses.
07:19 You know what I have noticed also in working with individuals
07:22 who have experienced rejection is that they
07:24 catastrophize a lot.
07:26 They not only over generalize, but they catastrophize
07:30 and everything they see in this awfulizing manner.
07:33 "Oh, things will never ever get better. "
07:36 Some say, "I will never love again. "
07:38 They just, you know, everything is bad.
07:42 The emotions spill over because, again, you feel that way.
07:46 And your thoughts, of course, drives your feelings.
07:49 And if that's how you're thinking, then that's
07:51 what you're going to feel.
07:52 But then that leads you to self denigrate.
07:55 You beat up on yourself.
07:57 You're just never the wonderful person and special person
08:01 that you really are.
08:02 And you begin to think that you're not worth as much.
08:04 If not, you would not be rejected.
08:06 And I notice also that sometimes people see the world
08:11 in black and white.
08:12 Why is this happening now?
08:14 Why is the world, there is no gray area for them?
08:16 I think it's a function of the depression.
08:18 You know it's either, I'm going to be loved, or I am not good.
08:22 It's either, life is going the way I need it to go,
08:26 or it will never ever get better.
08:28 So it's difficult for them to see that there is hope and
08:31 that things will improve and there will be other chances.
08:34 And everything tends to be either one or the other.
08:37 Unfortunately, some people never recover from the rejection.
08:42 Some years ago in my ministry, I came home to find a letter
08:47 underneath my door and it read, "Dear Pastor, come quickly.
08:53 If you don't come, you will read about me. "
08:56 We went there and we found a young lady who,
09:00 because of her rejection, had just overdosed herself.
09:05 Luckily, we got there in time.
09:07 But the fact is, she wanted to commit suicide.
09:12 She wanted to end it.
09:14 Is that one of the signs, the manifestations,
09:19 of a rejected person?
09:21 That happens frequently where they give up on themselves
09:26 and they think that, "If I don't have what I want
09:30 or because I was treated this way, my life is over.
09:33 It's not worth living. "
09:34 And they mentally and emotionally tell themselves
09:38 and they feel these experiences, these emotions.
09:40 And yes, they give up on themselves, and they have
09:42 either the ideations of committing suicide or they
09:45 actually move on to develop a plan to commit suicide.
09:49 It is said that suicide is the eleventh cause of death
09:54 in the United States.
09:56 And the statistic is there around the world as well
10:00 that suicide is very high.
10:02 But what we have discovered, research is showing that
10:04 a lot of these individuals who go on to commit suicide or
10:09 who have the suicidal ideation, they went through some
10:12 form of rejection.
10:14 How they feel, there's some rationalization for suicide.
10:19 You know, it's amazing how this happens in relationships.
10:23 But even in, you would say, common friendships
10:27 or in schools.
10:29 You send your child to school, the child doesn't fit in
10:31 for whatever the reason is, and the child experiences rejection.
10:34 And that could lead the child to become an isolate
10:38 and then respond negatively.
10:41 We had the incidence in the Virginia Tech shooting
10:44 and in the Columbine shooting.
10:46 All of these school shootings that have occurred recently,
10:48 that was actually what really happened to these young people.
10:51 The research on their families showed that the students felt
10:56 they were rejected by their peers
10:57 and they were bullied or made fun of, and social outcasts.
11:02 And they turned their rage outside and eventually
11:05 tried to hurt who they perceived to be the source of their pain.
11:09 I actually dealt with a case like that where the young man
11:13 was at school and they called him a misfit and weirdo
11:18 just because of how he dressed.
11:20 And as a result, he told himself that he was going to get even.
11:24 And he went home and went on the internet and researched
11:27 how to commit the perfect crime.
11:29 And actually attempted to carry that out.
11:33 So many young people resort to that when they feel rejected.
11:37 And what tends to happen here is that they perceive
11:40 this deep emotional hopelessness.
11:44 And in their minds, "If I am going to be treated that way,
11:47 then I am going to revenge society.
11:49 I'm going to revenge somebody else. "
11:51 And/or they will turn the rage in and they hurt themselves
11:55 because now they think, "I am not worthy.
11:58 I'm not worth living. Live is over. "
12:00 "So people are better off without me and the world is
12:03 better off without me because I have caused pain,
12:06 I have caused hurt, I have this... "
12:08 They see themselves as nothing and they conclude that,
12:12 "Well, society is better off without me, so I will end it. "
12:17 But I want you to speak to our listeners out there.
12:20 Is society ever better off? The world ever?
12:23 Is that a conclusion that an individual should make
12:27 on their own life?
12:28 That's what we call an irrational idea.
12:30 When you are upset, when you feel rejected or you get
12:33 depressed and you get sad emotions, it's a natural
12:36 response to people who feel pain.
12:39 But no, it is never a good thing or ever a good thing
12:43 to think about taking your life.
12:46 Your life is a gift from God.
12:48 God loves you even when everyone else rejects you.
12:51 So yes, you should never ever. Suicide is never an option.
12:56 We're talking about rejection.
12:58 And we have a lot more to say on this topic.
13:01 It's very important.
13:02 What are the steps that you should take if you are rejected?
13:05 Possibly, you were in a relationship and
13:09 it did not work out.
13:10 You're hurting at this moment.
13:12 You are feeling pain. Maybe you're crying.
13:13 Maybe at this moment, you're listening to us, you're crying.
13:16 What can you do? How can you survive?
13:19 How can you pick up the broken pieces and move on?
13:22 We're going to talk about all of that when we come back.
13:24 So make sure you stay with us because we want to
13:27 continue this discussion.
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14:08 Welcome back to Marriage In God's Hands.
14:11 Alanzo and I have been talking about rejection.
14:14 I'm sure many of you have experienced this
14:18 or know someone who has.
14:21 We are saying that rejection is painful.
14:26 No one wants to be rejected.
14:28 Yet we all have experienced rejection
14:30 at one point or another.
14:32 If you have been rejected, if you're experiencing rejection
14:36 right at this moment, what might you do?
14:38 Here are some steps that we want to share with you.
14:41 First of all, we are saying you must believe in yourself.
14:47 You can't self blame.
14:50 You have to believe in yourself.
14:52 And you must believe in your God.
14:55 That is the first step you must take when you're
14:58 experiencing rejection.
15:00 If your emotions are getting the better part of you and
15:03 you feel sad, and depressed even, get help.
15:08 This is not likely to just go away by wishing it away.
15:12 Call someone, reach out, get a counselor,
15:16 a pastor, someone to talk to.
15:18 Now June, sometimes people feel like they have to
15:25 run after the person.
15:27 Sometimes people feel that, "This rejection is too intensive
15:32 and so I will do anything to get back the individual. "
15:36 Is this a good thing?
15:37 Should you ever run after someone begging and
15:39 pleading with them, "Please come back.
15:41 I'll do whatever you want. "
15:42 Should we? Should one do that?
15:44 I think it depends on the relationship.
15:46 For example, if it's a marriage and there are children,
15:49 and there are deep emotional investments,
15:52 and there's a slight misunderstanding,
15:55 and the person, you know, one party decides to walk away,
15:58 maybe some negotiation might open up their irrational
16:02 thoughts and get them to see that the decision they're making
16:05 is not the right thing.
16:06 But if the person has totally cut loose and the divorce
16:09 has occurred and they have moved on, then you need
16:12 to move on as well.
16:13 Trying to run after them and keep this going
16:16 is only going to prolong your pain.
16:18 The quicker you put closure to that and accept the reality
16:21 of what happened, the faster your healing will occur.
16:26 What if it's not a marriage but, you know, we were lovers.
16:30 We were looking towards engagement and marriage.
16:33 Or maybe we were even engaged and, you know,
16:35 the whole stigma of breaking up and what people will say
16:39 and all of that thing.
16:40 Should I take the position like I say to my spouse,
16:43 "Okay, I'll do whatever you want?
16:45 Part of what broke up the relationship, they wanted
16:47 me to compromise certain values.
16:50 I decided I would not compromise and they decided to walk away.
16:54 And I said, 'Okay, don't walk away.
16:55 I'll do what you want. '"
16:57 That is not recommended.
16:59 It is not likely that you are ever going to be happy
17:02 when you're compromising your values.
17:04 So you have to decide which is more important.
17:07 Is it better for you to do what God wants you to do
17:11 and stay faithful to God, or to run after this person
17:16 who promises you a castle?
17:19 So no, I think to put yourself in a vulnerable place
17:23 is only setting yourself up for further rejection.
17:26 I was just going to say too that we should talk about the
17:28 psychology of compromise.
17:30 Because if you have to compromise certain values,
17:34 certain things prior to the marriage, then when
17:39 you are married, don't think you will not have to
17:42 continue to compromise.
17:43 And where does it stop?
17:44 There's a psychology behind it there.
17:47 So if you can't stand for them now, you won't stand for them
17:52 after you're married.
17:53 And you will still have more problems.
17:54 You never compromise on principles.
17:57 Steps to take when you're experiencing rejection denial.
18:02 Stop the denial.
18:05 Accept the reality of your given situation, whatever it is.
18:09 If it's over, it's over.
18:11 If the person said they are finished, they're finished.
18:13 And I don't think we're trying to minimize people's pain.
18:18 Because rejection is painful.
18:20 Rejection brings tears.
18:23 Rejection brings brokenness and heartache.
18:27 So we're not trying to minimize your pain, but we're saying
18:31 we can't keep you in the pain.
18:32 We can't keep you in that stupor.
18:34 You have to rise above the pain.
18:36 You have to pick up the broken pieces and move on.
18:39 So what we are saying is that God loves you even though
18:42 your lover has rejected you.
18:44 And life exists after a rejection.
18:48 So you might, as I said, feel sleepy, you don't want to
18:52 get out of bed.
18:53 You just want to cover yourself away from society,
18:56 from your friends.
18:57 You shut off your phone. You don't want to make contact.
19:00 That's not what you want to do.
19:02 You want to do quite the reverse.
19:04 Receive love from others.
19:06 Reach out for support from the people that are still
19:09 significant in your life.
19:10 Even if a lover rejects you, your mother is still there
19:12 or a friend that you may have other than your lover.
19:15 Reach out to these people who wish you well.
19:18 If no one else, call your pastor.
19:21 Talk to a spiritual advisor who can assist you in reframing
19:25 and putting your mind back in the right place.
19:27 So I'm hearing you saying then, don't allow your
19:32 life to go down.
19:33 Don't allow yourself to...
19:36 You start to starve yourself, or you over eat,
19:41 or you don't want to take care of yourself anymore.
19:45 You don't feel like buying a new dress or a new suit,
19:49 or whatever it is, you don't feel like doing anything.
19:51 You don't put yourself together when you're going out in public.
19:54 It's strange too because I think that this is the time
19:59 when you should start looking good.
20:00 This is the time when you should fix yourself up.
20:02 Because if somebody turns their back upon you or rejects you,
20:06 you should not throw yourself away.
20:08 You're still someone of worth and value.
20:10 The reality is, it's the natural response to a rejection.
20:13 When depression sets in, that's how your mind
20:17 and your emotions work.
20:19 But what we are saying is, you have to fight against that.
20:22 Provide some time for mourning.
20:25 There is appropriate mourning after a relationship.
20:27 If it ended and it was meaningful and significant,
20:30 as John Bob has said, it is like a physical amputation.
20:34 You have lost something very physical that was real.
20:37 Your emotions, your mind, and everything was invested in this.
20:40 So you provide a time for mourning.
20:43 But you then put that in a safe place
20:46 and move on after a period of time.
20:48 Because your life goes on.
20:50 Now think about it.
20:52 The person who rejected you, quite likely for somebody else,
20:55 has moved on.
20:56 And he's not doubt, or she's not doubt,
20:59 happy doing whatever they're choosing to do.
21:01 Why should you sit and think about hurting yourself
21:04 or cutting yourself off from your lifeline?
21:07 That's just irrational thinking.
21:09 So after your period of mourning, which shouldn't be
21:11 very long either, you know, that creates dysfunction,
21:14 move forward.
21:16 There comes a time after you have done all of what
21:20 you're saying, that one has to insulate himself,
21:25 insulate herself, against rejection.
21:29 What might be some of these insulations?
21:34 One of the things that happens in relationships,
21:36 sometimes we have what we call controlling individuals.
21:39 And they cut you off from your network of supportive friends.
21:43 And that's not a good thing.
21:45 Because God forbid they should walk away from you.
21:49 You're left with no one.
21:50 So we encourage individuals to bond with people.
21:54 God gives us wonderful people in our lives.
21:57 Treat them well.
21:59 Establish these networks.
22:00 Build a relationship, we call it a scaffold, around you.
22:04 So God forbid something like this were to happen,
22:06 there are people there who can hug you and reach out to you
22:10 and give you hope and give you meaning in your life.
22:13 Another thing you can do when dealing with rejection
22:17 is to establish a reason for living.
22:21 Look at your life and say, "Okay, this has happened
22:25 and it's painful, but do I need to go on living?"
22:29 The answer is "yes," you need to go on living.
22:33 And then you say, well if you have children
22:36 or you have a child, you say, "I have to keep living
22:39 for my child. "
22:40 You may have a mother that is depending on you.
22:44 "I have to go on living for my mother or my father. "
22:47 You may have a career that you're doing well in.
22:50 "I have to go on. "
22:51 Establish a reason for living.
22:53 Do not see the world as falling apart.
22:57 Something has happened.
22:58 Something horrible, something painful.
23:00 We're not taking that away from you.
23:02 But we're saying, life goes on and so do you.
23:05 You have to keep moving on.
23:06 When you are rejected, you do get to a point
23:11 where your self worth and the confidence you have in yourself,
23:15 the self efficacy, is shot and you feel less than special
23:19 or even less than capable.
23:21 So here's a competent person who goes to work and functions
23:25 and is able to perform and produce effort, feeling like,
23:30 "I am not worth much. "
23:33 And they are likely to fall apart.
23:36 So in order to remedy this, you have to stimulate,
23:40 re-engage, your thinking to appreciate the value
23:45 and the strength that you have.
23:47 And go within yourself, and by God's grace,
23:49 pull out the best that you have.
23:51 Because the fact that a person walked away from you
23:54 doesn't mean your life is over.
23:55 You still have your talents, you still have your competences,
23:58 and you can pick up the pieces.
24:01 "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. "
24:06 You know as you say that, it's quite apropos for us to
24:11 tell our listeners that some of them need to
24:15 reconnect with their faith.
24:17 Unfortunately, but it is true, that sometimes the relationship
24:20 you got yourself in, you drifted away from God.
24:25 You drifted away from that spiritual connection
24:30 that you had with God.
24:31 And the fact that you're being rejected does not mean that
24:33 God is chastising you.
24:35 So don't stay away any longer.
24:36 Go back and reconnect your faith and re-establish your faith
24:40 with Him, because He will never leave you nor forsake you.
24:44 It's interesting that you said that because I just had a
24:47 conversation with a young woman last week.
24:49 She was 24 years old and she was rejected
24:52 by her boyfriend of six years.
24:54 And they met out of high school.
24:57 And here was this relationship going on,
24:58 she has now finished college.
24:59 And just at the point when she thought that, you know,
25:02 they could move to the next step, he turned his back,
25:05 as it were, and she claimed, dumped her.
25:07 She was devastated, depressed, and suicidal.
25:11 And that was exactly how she responded.
25:14 She just cut herself off from God,
25:16 cut herself off from going to church.
25:18 She felt like, "How could God allow this?
25:20 I followed His precepts by finding somebody
25:23 who was of my faith.
25:25 I did all the right things.
25:26 And now look at what has happened. "
25:28 And thank God we had a conversation.
25:30 At the end of it she realized that,
25:32 "God loves you just the same. "
25:34 In fact, He desires only what is in your best interest.
25:38 And she was able to re-think her position and start
25:42 reconnecting again.
25:43 So it's a natural response sometimes for young people
25:46 to think that God made this happen.
25:49 And so they revenge by staying away from God.
25:52 Never a good decision.
25:53 Think positively.
25:56 Tell yourself that it will get better.
25:59 Tell yourself that, using the words of the poet,
26:02 "It's better to have loved and lost than never
26:04 to have loved at all. "
26:05 You know, take that for what it's worth.
26:07 But the idea is, move on with your life.
26:10 There is tomorrow, by the grace of God.
26:12 There is another day, by the grace of God.
26:15 Think positively, be optimistic.
26:17 See your best self as having a better tomorrow.
26:22 So don't panic, stay in control, all is not lost.
26:26 And if you can't help yourself, then get help.
26:28 Now there are problems that will arise.
26:31 You may have to relocate, you may have to find another job.
26:34 You may have to find another place to live.
26:36 But the reality is, those are problems that can be solved.
26:39 Whatever it is, stay in control.
26:42 Take charge of your life. Move on.
26:45 And remember, God will never reject you
26:49 and will never forsake you.
26:51 You know, we have been talking to you about rejection.
26:54 And the ultimate form of rejection comes when we
26:58 reject our covenant God.
26:59 I want you to understand the pain that comes,
27:02 as a human being, when you are rejected by your spouse.
27:07 And then take that and translate it into the pain we cause God
27:11 when we reject Him.
27:12 Some of you listening to me right now,
27:15 you have rejected God.
27:16 You have walked away from Him.
27:18 You have turned your back upon Him.
27:20 Rejection is painful.
27:22 Rejection is never ever a nice thing.
27:25 And just as how you do not want to be rejected,
27:28 so too you must not reject your heavenly Father.
27:31 You remember when the people rejected God.
27:35 Samuel thought it was him.
27:37 And God said, "No Samuel, they have not rejected you
27:40 as being king over Israel.
27:42 They have rejected Me. "
27:43 Let us not find ourselves in that same trap
27:47 as the children of Israel.
27:49 Let us accept God as our loving Father.
27:51 Let us serve Him.
27:53 And if you are experiencing any form of rejection,
27:55 take it to that God.
27:57 He will give you the strength,
27:58 and yes, He will give you the comfort.
28:01 Have faith in God.