The High Price Of Safety And The Icky Feelings Lurking In Your Subconscious

This is one of those risky topics. It gets into people’s un-comfort zones. Fact is, you’re uncomfortable whether I say anything or not. You just don’t know it. If your icky feelings are subconscious, this does not mean they don’t exist!

The stuff that lurks deep in your psyche drives your behavior. It manifests as various obsessions or compulsions, misguided anger, over-reactions to remarks or events others might see an innocuous.  In short, you get triggered. Because of this, it’s better you puke the stuff up and be rid of it. Better for you and better for the people around you.

I was working on a gal’s chart in one of my workshops. She was in a LONG TERM bad marriage.  The marriage was very bad. It had no redeeming features at all, save the woman had some degree of financial security if she were to stay put. Even that might have been an illusion.

She stayed put for a very long time and she may stay put forever simply because she is so averse to risking her security. I did not judge this. I’ve clung a situation for the safety factor at least once in my life, though far more in line with my nature to bet the farm.

The United States is in a precarious situation right now with so many relying on unemployment and/or food stamps and the like.  People get conditioned to having these things provided (like the woman in the story) and they come to think or believe that this is as good as it gets. Not only is it all they can have, they’re terrified they will lose this sustenance and it will lead to their demise somehow.

This fear keeps them bound, flying half-mast, you could say. They live on a tether and they stay there coming up with various justifications as to why it’s not possible to take the noose from their neck. They also get pissed off when someone like me says, “Hey, you could take that noose off, ya know!”  But I don’t know another way to see it.

The woman in the bad marriage may stay in it for the rest of her life. I said so, and she said so and perhaps she’ll have the opportunity. But for those who wonder what else might be out there, someone told me once that I could have this one (safe) thing OR I could have a life where the sky was the limit. I believe in myself so I choose door number two. You can do the same.

Two phrases come to mind when I think about this.  The first is, “Better the devil you know…”

I am not sure that is good advice. Better the noose around your neck..?

I say, better to live without a devil or a noose.

I also think of, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”

Compare the meaning of that with the origin, from The Phrase Finder


It’s better to have a small real advantage than the possibility of a greater one.


This proverb refers back to medieval falconry where a bird in the hand (the falcon) was a valuable asset and certainly worth more than two in the bush (the prey).

I thought that interesting so I called my husband for his opinion. He was taught to think logically, not with his heart. Be believes you should act on logic rather than how you feel or what you would like a situation to be. He also said he had to fight hard to learn this.

Logically speaking, the long-suffering wife knows what she can expect in the future if she does not leave her husband.

As for the food stamps and the unemployment, etc., the people who get this stuff know it is not sustainable. Their logic tells them it won’t / can’t go on forever but their hearts don’t want this to be the case and so the override their logic.

Saturn in astrology has to do with control and responsibility.  You either take control and responsibility for your life or you let someone else be responsible in which case, they also get control.

What is important to see is that it is YOU making the choice, once you are 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, etc.  If you do opt to take the safe route then there you’ve little reason or right to complain when you reach your destination.

Are you safe? Oppressed? Who is responsible?

48 thoughts on “The High Price Of Safety And The Icky Feelings Lurking In Your Subconscious”

  1. One time I married for money. What I learned… When you marry for money, you end up earning every dime. I it’s sort of the same when if you stay in a bad marriage for security, there’s still a price attached to it.

  2. Hi Elsa,
    This is a strong one!
    l´d say door #two as well, but it´s easyer to say then do, however if it´s so bad it´s worth trying door #2, it can´t get any worse…!

    l did some puking myself latelly and many people around me, IT´S LIBERATING!!!

    Oanney in love

  3. I am very much oppressed by the situation involving my husband’s ex-wife and the very unexpected financial issues her decisions are costing me and my husband. Our plans to begin a new life together are unravelling quickly. Now she’s trying to secure a portion of my inheritance (for the kids she says) since Washington is a community property state and my husband legally “owns” half my inheritance. This money was supposed to be used to purchase our first home together and pay for my daughter’s university education. Do I walk out of my young (less than 1 year) marriage in order to “save myself” or do I stand and fight (Saturn in Libra conjunct my ASC and trining my natal Saturn in Aqua). I’m mentally exhausted. Some days look brighter than others but this week has been tough. I have visions of packing myself up and leaving the country, no forwarding address. Next spring’s conjunction of Jupiter and Uranus in Aries in my seventh house could mean legal fighting or it could mean freedom…

  4. I’m lucky in a lot of ways on this. This topic dominated my formative years and I saw – lived with, point-blank range – very specific examples of why NOT to take the “I have no choice except a bad choice/either way I lose” route. One suicide, one runaway turned lifelong drug addict, two extinction level events that destroyed families. I knew by 12 years old that there’s one way and one way only to move on: create an optimum goal, do not ever lose sight of that goal. Put everything you have into achieving that goal. And REAL freedom ultimately becomes yours.

  5. Saturn is really pushing me out… im trying to save some cash so i can finally leave my relatives home… in my early 30’s… my family is 2 much oppressing… im probably going to shift State, or even Country.
    Id like to stay with my family all the way, im Cancer with Taurus Vênus, i really value it, but…

  6. Which is to say (I never seem to be able to get all my thoughts out at once!) that the “trapped” energy doesn’t just sit there; it’s alive and can fester and then explode if its holder does NOT take the initiative to channel it constructively. I witnessed the various explosions and they also took most of what I had with them like a wave of fallout (like a super-mega-harsh Pluto transit – maybe it was, I have to go back and look!) But I walked away with a very clear sense in my head.

  7. My saturn return was all about finding the strength to leave my emotionally abusive ex husband, a man whom I had put aside my professional aspirations for, (he was intimidated by the fact that I tested better than him), in order to get him into and through medical school. I was doing it for “us”. Well, I finally saw that in order to stay, and enjoy the money and security that would eventually come in, a large part of me would have to die. It wasn’t worth it. I left, not even fighting for much support, and moved out here to make it on my own. It was terrifying–every fear that I had was brought up. And even though, 24 years later, I sit here, unemployed, not knowing where to take that next step, and I know that he is very very wealthy, I know deep in my heart, that I did the right thing. What I have learned about myself because I had the courage to leave, would fill volumes. I now know that I will never stay in a relationship just because I might fear being alone. I now know that I have wisdom and courage that had I stayed, would never have been accessed. I now know that, despite all the adverse messages from him, his family, his friends, that I can truly say from the depth of my soul, that I am pretty terrific, and no one will ever be able to take that away from me again.

  8. “there’s one way and one way only to move on: create an optimum goal, do not ever lose sight of that goal. Put everything you have into achieving that goal. And REAL freedom ultimately becomes yours.:
    Love this, Amandapam. I’ve printed it out and now have it taped over my desk.

  9. Hi Elsa,

    I married a “ruthless” career type when I was 24 years old and didn’t know any better. I crawled out the door (metaphorically) speaking 6 years later with my spirit intact but wounded. He had a LOT of money and I didn’t take one cent. I worked very hard and finally bought a piece of land and built my own house. I was working two jobs and weighed just over 7 stone, but what kept me going was the thought that I would ever have to go back “underground” to have a roof over my head. I earned every cent spent on luxury in that marriage. I could write books on it. My advice ? Get out that door, call your friends and family, ask for help, do what you have to do, otherwise, you are already the living dead in a luxury grave.

    All the best

  10. I suspect (actually know 1-family) who’s on Welfare but rather not be….. said the kids needed to be taken care of until a job could be found.

    Obviously I’m pretty sure Elsa was refering to people who aren’t like the Family I mentioned.

    Once businesses know what their expenses are going to be in Fy2011 , then they will adjust their operating expenses so they can remain in business.

    I just hope the new Congress will take a long hard look at itself….. and do the difficult thing. Cut it’s own budget , workforce , departments. In other words…. know what $$$’s it’s bringing in , and spend no more.

  11. For me the only choice is to take control of my own life. Sometimes I wonder if there is door #3. Since I am living my life I’d better take responsibility for it. No one else will. Logic trumps emotion always.

  12. I’ve always left if the situation restricted my freedom. I’ve always made myself responsible for my own life and have been called “selfish” by my last 3 boyfriends. It used to get to me…but now I realize that it was always for the better. I dont’ want to end up resenting them! My saturn is in libra in the 5th house

  13. @amandapm: wow that is just how I am feeling right now! I just couldn’t focus it into words..but that is how my life feels…cool!!

    @ruth: I don’t know why I feel compelled to reply to these but maybe some of these replies hit home and I know that I like it when others relate. ruth you have done a lot of work and now it’s time to enjoy. Life is to short! Good for you! I left too and though we are still friends, and it was hard to do…I feel like I have liberated myself from an oppressive situation and won’t ever go back…Best of luck ruth!!

  14. Oh man, Anna. What your husband’s ex is doing is morally and ethically wrong. Do you have a good lawyer (I really hope so)?

    Hearing about things like that makes me very angry. I’m dealing with a similar situation; my father and I were not close because he’d been abusive most of my life, and when he got ill my uncle’s (father’s brother) stepdaughter, who hadn’t been in contact with my father since the 70s, decided to start sucking up to him in hopes of taking advantage of the situation, to manipulate him into leaving her and her husband his money. She’s caused a lot of problems in the name of greed. He died close to two years ago, and she wasn’t named in his will — I was the sole heir. I won’t say any more about it, because I’m still dealing with the situation, and it is extremely stressful and yes, oppressive. You definitely have my sympathy and hopes that you are able to prevail.

    Re my own life, I am strongly considering moving out of the province after my father’s estate is settled, going back to finish my degree, and rebuilding my life from the ground up. Much work to be done.

  15. I really like this topic and the proverb.
    We are only opressed by ourselves. We are in complete control of our lives.
    It reminds me of the tarot card 8 of swords:
    -feeling restricted.
    -being fenced in by obstacles.
    -staying in a limited situation.
    -feeling trapped by circumstances.
    -experiencing few options.
    -being blind to freedom.
    -feeling persecuted.
    Here in this card she is barely blindfolded and wrapped in a loosley tighed restraint. She can get out of her circumstance but she is blind to her freedom. She is responsible for her predicament and she is further responsible for staying in it.
    When people stay in their own oppression they go by this saying: “You get use to hanging if you hang long enough.”
    I though am in a in-between state of relooking at a part of me I feel may be oppressed and if so, I will cut it off and leave. I don’t want to be blind to my freedom. =)

  16. Reading all of these comments has been helpful beyond words. I do take responsibility for my sense of oppression. I know/hope things will work out well because the law is on our side but it doesn’t matter who wins–because my stepkids will lose either way. It’s a complicated situation that is getting worse every month. I think Saturn in Libra going through my first house–and my husband’s seventh house–wants to teach me a lesson I ran away from too many times before. I do have choices, I do have freedom. However, I need to remain responsible for the choices I made (marrying a man with a messy financial situation caused by a bi-polar ex) and and find a solution that doesn’t threaten my freedom/my future. The tarot card description by Bretagne describes me and my situation perfectly right now. Thanks all.

  17. sh*t…’teh interwebz’ ate my long, detailed comment to Anna.
    Reader Digest version…
    Someone is misinforming you, Anna. Almost all kinds of Separate property held prior to marriage and/or bequeathed to a sole individual is NOT joint/community propery in WA state.

    BUT as soon as you “co-mingle” your property (ie buy a house, put it in a joint account, etc) it transforms magikally into community property and is subject to be treated as such legally. So, you’re smart to hold off on any such plans until you’ve got this issue resolved.

    Before you invest in a new identity and plan tickets–you may wish to invest in a session or two with a seasoned Family Law/Estate attorney. Good idea for a new marriage with a blended family in any event really.

    It sounds to me like someone is counting on your ignorance to stirr the pot and bluff you into (or out of something to their benefit.

    Note that I’m not a lawyer nor should you rely on this advice as actionable. It’s worth slightly less than you paid for it. ;D

    Seriously though, good luck with your situation.
    Regards, CP Griffin

  18. My father died last year and my inheritance came through seven months ago, shortly after my wedding. The money was bequeathed to both me and my new husband (all of my siblings and their spouses received equal amounts). I put aside $10,000 each for my stepkids for their college education. These term deposit accounts were opened in the Seattle bank where my husband and I opened our first joint account. I placed a very large sum of money (most, but not all of my inheritance) into a term deposit under both my and my husband’s name at our Seattle bank. This money was going to pay for our first home and for my daughter’s 4 years at UBC here in Vancouver. The ex found out about the inheritance via a casual conversation with her former cousin-in-law (my husband’s cousin). She wants her kids’ education money in her name and she wants a portion of my husband’s share to be placed in a trust fund “for the kids.” She also now wants my husband to pay off the mortgage on the family home and take his name off. In other words, she will own this $300,000 home which she never paid for (she did not work during their marriage and is still unemployed five years after their divorce) and my husband makes the mortgage payments plus pays child support. He also pays for music lessons, braces, clothes, school supplies, etc. The plan was for him to pay the mortgage for 2-3 years until she found a secure job. At that point they would sell the house and split the proceeds. No job for her yet and she won’t agree to selling the house. Tells the kids that their daddy and stepmother wants to kick them out of their home and that we’re depriving them of money that belongs to them. The ex is on disability because of her bi-polar but her condition doesn’t seem to stop her from having a full social life and racking up the credit card debt. I could go on but this is enough to share. Our lawyer says she has a small chance of getting something given her weight issues, illness, lack of job versus my husband’s suddenly improved financial status due to my well-paid job, significant savings and now the inheritance. I don’t mind increasing child support payments and helping with the kids’ education but I draw the line at giving that woman control of my money. My dad worked so hard and so have I. In any case, our plan to buy a house once I move to the States early next year is on hold because the joint account holding the inheritance money and the education accounts have been frozen until this thing is settled. Our court date is next February.

  19. Sorry for the long email and too much information. I can’t talk to my family or close friends about this yet. They would be horrified. My husband and I messed up by moving money to WA without seeing a lawyer first or setting up a pre-nup AND given my prior knowledge of psycho ex-wife I should have asked my father to bequeath the money solely to me.

  20. wow, Anna, that is tough stuff. it’s so good that you can come on here and vent- it’s a safe place to get your thoughts in order and get some feedback from others who may have been in similar situations. but don’t beat yourself up about “should have”- you and your husband have a strong union and the ex will have to deal with the blunt end of saturn in libra eventually.

    as far as choice goes, i’ve always opted for door # 2. i’ve proven to myself many times over that i need risk, challenge and growth to be happy. plus, i have no earth in my chart, so “keeping my feet on solid ground” had never been a reality.

  21. I am so, so sorry. That is awful, Anna.
    Damn–I’d really hoped that I’d handed you something useful/empowering. Instead, I shook some salt on the wound… 🙁

  22. I would be planning my escape. Mercury in scorpio. Developing new talents. Saving money.

    What ever happened to REALITY? WE are PEOPLE and WE CREATE the STRUCTURE! By god this pisses me off.
    Deal with the reality and you can leave.

    Or stay because someone told you it’s as good as it gets and there’s more to fear out there which is a MYTH. Out there is a just a different juggling of in here.

    When this pluto in cap started some people killed their families and themselves due the fear. Now the rest of us are dealing. That is the reality. Dead is dead. The rest is fear that drives us. I’m more afraid of the fearful than I am to have to share my resources or working a lesser job to get buy etc.


  23. (((((((Anna))))))))

    (sorry about my own rant.. seems inappropriate now although some of the feelings are still hot.. i think it’s definitely difficult for those in legal battles with people I consider voids – don’t work and how they get buy is to live off others)

  24. No worries, CP. I appreciated that you took the time to respond to my situation with some advice. We’re leaving the whole mess in our lawyer’s hands for now. Like amandapm suggested, I need to stop feeling oppressed and use “trapped energy” (in my case, rage!) to work on a long-held dream I had been putting off “until my life was more settled.” LOL. There’s no time like the present. New Moon in Scorpio hitting my natal Neptune tonight!

  25. Anna,

    Sorry to hear your plight. Sounds like you didn’t have a prenup. You can instruct your lawyer to write a postnup or a living will.

  26. This topic requires sensitivity. Often the comments seem to suggest we are all the same and should be able to act in our own best interests, or love ourselves first,as some put it. I speak from experience when I say that most often people caught in these situations suffer from low self-esteem, most usually a result of childhood physical, sexual and/or emotional abuse. They truly do not believe they deserve a good life of their own choosing. It follows that they cannot see a future of their own making. To offer them help of a meaningful nature, one must try to identify the cause of their disbelief in their own worth.
    In the case of long-term unhappiness in adult relationships, I recommend reading Lundy Bancroft’s book, ‘Why Does He Do That?’ Lundy explains how and why others cannot appreciate the dilemma one finds oneself in, articulates why the abused spouse/significant other is NOT responsible for the behaviour of the abuser, and, in the case of heterosexual unions, the fact that he – Lundy – is a man acknowledging that society helps to create and bolster the male abuser, is of immense reassurance to women who tend to feel total responsibility for the failure of their marriages.
    Yes, we all have to take responsibility for ourselves, eventually, or we will not survive, but judgments have no place in assisting women to learn they are of value and lovable for themselves.

  27. i’m feeling this dilemma deeply, i almost cried reading this but am just too numb from being dejected 90% of my day.

    saturn transiting my 11th house of dreams and aspirations. my mercury in libra is supposedly logical, but isn’t it possible to rationalize every option out there? isn’t the heart necessary to clinch the deal?

    i’m trying to finish off a going-nowhere relationship that’s lasted 6 years. trouble is the guy and my son are close, and i’m being held emotionally hostage, afraid to be the source of a lot of heartache. but going back to same-old-same-old makes me want to do something DRASTIC and DESTRUCTIVE. i think i am a shell of a person and can’t make any straight decision.

    i’m sorry for the self-pitiful post. but this is the venom poisoning me from the inside out. i just pray it all works out, eventually.

  28. I can go either way… I’ve spent too much time in comfort zones, and I’ve cut the rope (one time, falling into something that eventually turned into a comfort zone, but was good for several years).

    I’ve been wanting to leave another comfort zone for a while now, but am not entirely ready to be free of the rope. I need some sort of balance there, but I also know that it will be more difficult (and possibly embarrassing, the longer I wait).

  29. Bretagne – I mentioned the Eight of Swords to someone just yesterday. It’s one that has come up for me when I’m feeling stuck (but haven’t had the courage to bite the bullet and just try something). I’m ashamed of that, at my age.

  30. i’m tossing the dice that sacrifices and dependencies now will pay off in the future and allow me to pay back what i owe, multifold.

  31. I’m the “Angela” above. I’m working on it, but sometimes life gets you down when you’re trying. Still, I’m working on it.

  32. Literally standing in front of those doors. Frozen in fear. Don’t know if dreams are just Neptunian witchcraft or if they can be tangible things. Neptune and I don’t get along usually.

    “You’re stuck.”

    Gee thanks, I already knew that. Thanks for reminding me in the moment of crisis.

    Natal Moon in Sag, SR Moon in Taurus. Security is big on my mind.

    Too much to think about.

  33. Every choice has its pros and cons. I try to figure out what I truly live for, then follow that and sacrifice the rest. From a certain point of view every choice is a wrong one, and my list of losses confirms it. Libra stellium Mars Venus Moon Pluto. Today I’m living on my own, employed, single&alone and have just started visiting a psychoanalist. Straining my budget in order to progress. There will be more choices to be made. Each will have a price, but hopefully also a benefit.

  34. What about an illness leaving you disable and you have to duck your head and take the help?

    Where do you start to take back the control of your own life?

    Neptune is transit my 1st house; I don’t know where to begin. With all the activity coming up in eclipse season I don’t want to miss out on the energies. While I was able to work, I worked and worked hard. I can see both sides of this.

  35. What about an illness leaving you disabled and you have to duck your head and take the help?

    Where do you start to take back the control of your own life?

    Neptune is transit my 1st house; I don’t know where to begin to take back my own handle on the situation. With all the activity coming up in eclipse season I don’t want to miss out on the energies. While I was able to work, I worked and worked hard. I can see both sides of this.

  36. Some people are naturally inclined to bounce back, take care of themselves, and be able to handle extreme uncertainty. (Like you, Elsa.) Others are…not. Some just sink, or flounder and drown, especially if nobody is helping them and they can’t do it alone. I know I don’t believe in myself to think that I could manage on unemployment indefinitely–I don’t see evidence in myself that I could manage that, especially after seeing what others go through. If you’re going to sink and not swim, then it’s probably not a great choice to quit and try to swim (especially if your best is doggy paddling once in a while).

    I haven’t been in a bad marriage, but this reminds me of a friend of mine who’s been married for 30 years to a guy that she is generally unhappy with. Is she going to leave after 30 years? I doubt it. Financial security is one issue (he’s the breadwinner and she can only get puny secretary jobs), but I think inertia is another one. She keeps moving the goal lines of “I will put up with it this far and no further,” and she will say things like “but I love him,” and if anyone ever says that, there’s no hope in my experience. “But I love him” seems to translate into “I will put up with anything.”

  37. I’m neither safe nor oppressed. In the past I’ve been unsafe and oppressed! I wouldn’t go back for anything.

    I’m responsible for every decision in my life. Saturn in libra conjunct Jupiter.

  38. Avatar
    Southern Cross

    This is a really good post. The reason I say this is because I know a woman in exactly the same position, in a ‘very bad marriage’, but she won’t do anything to help herself. She said she should have left her husband 15 years ago, but pleaded, “Where would I go; what would I do?” I have to confess at that point I began to lose respect for her, because she had an army of social services to support her, a willing lawyer to help to get her life together, yet she did not take up their support. I had befriended her about 2 years ago, and began to smell something was not quite right. Thing is, she was hoping to piggy back onto my own relationship, in the hope it would bolster up her failing marriage. I viewed this as manipulation, because it would have simply dragged us down to her misery and circumstances. Not wanting or able to avail oneself of help is one thing, but to drag other people into the mess is another.
    Somehow recently she has become cognizant of the fact she has to do something radical to pull herself out of a maelstrom, because people, friends have distanced themselves from her. Financial security has a lot to do with why she stayed with this guy, but I foresaw this shitstorm coming from way off, and politely distanced myself. It provided some real meat of insight and knowledge. Some people are just better at taking care of themselves. Whether it is because he has destroyed so much of her personality already, or a ‘blind spot’ is open to question.

    1. financial security is not worth it if the man is abusive and cheating and making you unhappy. there is a “fight” inside of us, to get up and fight the oppression, because there’s that feeling that you are better than this and want a good life before you die. That all was worth something. it is sad though. because there are many wives (of course husbands too but majority are wives who are dependent) but my mother had a best friend who was equally the breadwinner and was a lawyer, but she stayed with an abusive man. We couldnt understand it. She was devastated that her abusive husband was the one who left her in the end, and made her broken! I asked my mother, why is aunty __ (because all her good friends were aunties, close to us growing up) really so broken and sorrowful? wasn’t he the one who was cruel and abusive? and took all her money? My mother couldnt understand it either. but i guess, in this case, the heart wants what it wants even if he is a criminal and a joke. Sometimes, it’s just so strange. What he did to her isn’t love.

  39. I stayed in a safe relationship for a long time even though I wasn’t happy. I guess that’s my Venus in Capricorn (in 10th) keeping me secure. I am much happier now, now that I feel I’m responsible for everything in my life. Yes, the feeling of security is not the same, but I much prefer this to the feeling I had before.
    But I would like to add that it takes bravery to step outside of your comfort zone and many people are not that brave unfortunately. We all get pushed outside of our comfort zones and then see how we like it there.

  40. This sums up a large portion of my life. I refused now to believe that I’m too old to do anything. But my adulthood is extremely slow in coming. I’m having a Neptune transit and I’m still easy to trigger. I’m still amounting to nothing and responding to stuff by sitting on the fence. And getting triggered. I am not too old. But fuck if I am doing anything or picking a path.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Scroll to Top