At the risk of upsetting my friend, I am sharing our texts from just now. Moving on in recovery/therapy can be difficult because of deeply rooted lack of trust.
Him: I have a real challenge in understanding how I view the people in my life
I know part of it is I have not been able to trust anyone enough to experience the feeling of being wanted.
Me: Ya, you are like a feral cat.
Sometimes I am like a stray cat. I was put outside to not bother things in the house. It was assumed that I could find my own things. I kept coming back to the door. Sometimes I was let in and loved on. Sometimes not. Sometimes I disappeared for a few days. Coming home sometimes they were glad, other times I was a bad cat. Maybe they kept me locked inside for a few months, maybe they looked for another home for me.
They kept moving. They always took me with but it was a shock everytime. And every time I had to look for new hiding spots and danger. I remain domesticated, approachable, even wanting/hoping to be an indoor cat someday; but weary, skittish, street smart.
I very much believe people behave the way they do because at one point they found it was best to behave that way. Changing behavior in the present requires trust in the present, the new behavior, and hope.