what does "I can get by on my feelings" mean?

In this text:

The histrionic personality, by contrast, adheres to core beliefs that people are there to serve or admire me and that I can get by on my feelings. 

what does "I can get by on my feelings" mean?

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3 Answers

  • 5 months ago

    get by means to survive or not fail (not succeed either, but not fail just the same).  It can be used to mean "I do enough" (I get by).  The apparent meaning is that the person ("I") can survive, do enough, just relying on using my emotions to control others.  It is not well written because there is no "I" that is actually declared.  The obvious "I" though is the writer, and clearly we don't care if the writer gets by or not, unless he is a histrionic personality, in which case he ought to have told us first so we could understand this sentence.  Presumably, the person meant by the pronoun I is actually supposed to be the person with a histrionic personality.  Most of us would expect the third person pronoun rather than the first person pronoun (I) in that sentence, in such a situation.  Otherwise, the statement ought to be in quotation marks so we know that it is the person who is speaking.  The histrionic personality says "My emotional outbursts work just fine in getting me what I want".

  • 5 months ago

    It seems incorrectly written to me. "To get by" means something like "to survive" or "to make a living." It sounds more like it's supposed to mean "nothing matters but my feelings" or "I have to act out my feelings."

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    Lv 6
    5 months ago

    It seems to imply that a histrionic personality believes one needs no other feelings but their own.   No other feelings matter.

    On initial read, that statement seems out of place (imo).   Histrionic personality disorder, but definition seeks out the validation of others in over the top fashion.  As such, it would seem to imply that how others feel about the histrionic DOES matter and therefore the statement seems askew.

    Ulimtately tho, the histrionic is self-centered.  As such, it would seem, when push comes to shove the feelings of others will take a back seat to one's own and therefore it could be asserted that the histrionic thinks they can survive on their own feelings, whilst those of others be darned.

    Hope this helps ?

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