abuse, abusive men, abusive relationships, domestic abuse, healing from narcissistic abuse, narcissistic abuse, Uncategorized

PTSD from Mental Emotional Abuse

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All people have needs to survive. We need to have proper shelter, food and health care. People need to feel safe and that their needs will be met.

 

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Maslow developed the hierarchy of needs theory in 1943. He stated that people have needs that must be met before other ones. The basic needs for shelter and safety must be met for all people.

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There is no room for fun, learning, socializing or self-actualizing without the basic needs being met first.

The person fails to thrive. All the things other people do are just not the priority. The safety is the priority and dominates the person’s thoughts and emotions.

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When someone is in a living situation where these needs are not met, they are left feeling vulnerable and afraid. The situation is unsafe and potentially life threatening.

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There are different types of domestic abuse. All of them involve the person being stripped of their self-esteem and being denied basic needs that every human has.

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There are men and women who experience violence against them in their own home. There are episodes of violence and there is a constant threat of violence.

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This threat forces the brain to be on alert and suspicious all the time. Your brain learns that it needs to be on high alert at all times, to search the environment for danger. 

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The brain is not designed to be in this state for a prolonged periods of time and damage can occur to the way the brain assesses the possibility and level of potential threats for years to come.

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There are domestic abuse situations which involve financial abuse. People are controlled financially and cannot take care of their own needs. This kind of abuse can keep the victim feeling trapped into the relationship, because they have no means to support themselves on their own. 

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I lived in an abuse situation years ago in which I had to go without heat for most of a very cold winter.

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My money was controlled and I was not “allowed” to purchase heating oil. I still fear the cold and fee post traumatic stress reaction when the winter season begins to make its way into my state.

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When a person is not taken care of and not permitted to take care of themselves, it causes a trauma.

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It is terrifying to feel that you are in danger of freezing, going hungry, going without medical care and any other basic needs. When someone denies you basic human needs it is frightening and creates a horrible feeling of vulnerability.

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Living in these types of abusing situations also causes severe damage to a person’s self-esteem. They may doubt their own ability to provide for their own basic needs for years after the original trauma.

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The feeling of being vulnerable and in danger is carried in the brain and in the nervous system.

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Any situation which is a reminder of the original traumatic abusive situation can trigger a post traumatic stress attack. The person will collapse under the weight of the fear and not be able to function normally.

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In addition to traumatic attacks (like severe panic attacks), the person can have a constant feeling of being unsafe. They feel that any minute something could happen to put them in a place of fear and danger.

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Most people have never been in a dangerous situation of violence of of being in danger of starving or freezing to death. They have never been in a situation where someone threatened to cause them to lose their job unless they were compliant.

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We have lived through an on-going situation of terror and physical and mental abuse. Being forced to go without basic needs is mentally abusive as well as physically abusive.

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It is also emotionally abuse to be shunned and made to feel like an outcast in your own home.  We need to be loved. You need to be accepted and supported by others. It is a survival instinct to be part of a family or tribe of some kind.

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How could the person we trusted and loved, allow us to suffer like that? They made us feel that we were at fault or that we did not deserve to be taken care of?  We did not deserve to be able to take care of ourselves.

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It is difficult for people to understand the post traumatic stress that can result from living in a domestic abuse situation. It can take years to feel safe again or the person may never feel truly safe

 

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..A person who survived domestic abuse trusted someone who violated them in the worst possible way. They treated them like they were not human. It is very hard to truly trust anyone again after that happens to you.

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It is a terrible thing to live with post traumatic stress disorder. It is sad that so many people do not understand how we feel. 

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We have lived through situations where there was a very real threat. In our minds, what is to keep it from happening again. Our good judgement?

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We feel like our judgement let us down already. How can we trust ourselves? With time you can re-wire the neural pathways that have been affected by the abuse.

 

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One of the things to understand is that it is not your judgement that let you down. You probably had a gut feeling that something was wrong, early in the relationship. But you were conditioned during your lifetime to ignore that intuition, especially if the evidence you perceive tells you that your gut reaction is not warranted.

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If you grew up in an emotionally abusive house as a child, then your feelings were not given any priority. Your thoughts and feelings were shut down. So you learned to discount them as an adult. 

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You have to learn to listen to your intuition and know that your feelings are there to guide you, as well as to protect you. Your feelings will warn you about predators and people that are unhealthy for you to be with.

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My hope is for awareness that will generate some understanding. I also pray that all of the many people suffering PTSD from domestic abuse are able to one day find peace and a feeling of safety.

Namaste,
Annie

abuse, abusive relationships, aftermath of narcissistic abuse, anti-social personality disorder, domestic abuse, emotional abuse, narcissism, narcissist, Psychopath, Uncategorized

What are the Traits of Narcissistic Personality Disorder?

Here are the nine traits of narcissistic personality disorder.

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1. Grandiosity –  This is an unrealistic view of oneself that they are bigger than life and better than others. They feel that they have a godlike, divine or extremely powerful purpose of being on the earth. Their very being is to be admired and obeyed. Nothing is more important than they are.

2. Arrogant and Domineering – think they are better than everyone else. They know more than anyone else. Controlling of others and dominating. They see others as inferior to them in intelligence, vision, looks, and everything else. They expect other people to admire and be in awe of them.

3. Preoccupation with Success and Power – They have a need to be powerful and have a cult of followers that admire them. They like to have a harem of sorts of people around them, as if they are a king or a queen. Their drive for success and power is due to their need for narcissistic supply and to get into positions where they have manipulate people.

4. Lack of empathy – an inability to care about the feelings of others or put themselves in someone else’s shoes in an emotional way. Actually narcissists and psychopaths have a cold empathy which allows them to understand your fears, weaknesses, hopes and dreams. They can take an inventory of you and then use the your feelings against you.

5. Belief of being unique – They believe that they are very special and that they are better than everyone else. They often think that they have a unique powerful purpose that sets them above everyone else and gives them an excuse to do whatever they want and take whatever they want.

6. Sense of entitlement – They feel that they are entitled to anything and anyone they want.   This includes things that belong to other people. It includes taking over the lives of other people and using people and then throwing them away like trash.  There is no appreciation when people do anything for them because they were entitled to it, in the first place.

7. Requires excessive admiration – they want to be admired and paid attention to all the time. They have no tolerance for anyone else being in the spotlight. Because they need to have their false self validated, they need people to pay attention to, talk about, admire and basically worship their false self. That way the illusion of the false self stays strong.

8. Exploitative – they will take advantage of other people for their own best interest. They will take more than they give, refuse to pay people for their services in a fair way …if at all, and use people up until there is nothing left of them

9. Envious of others – they are resentful when other people have things that they feel entitled to. They become angry when they see that other people have things that they do not.

abuse, abusive relationships, aftermath of abuse, aftermath of narcissistic abuse, domestic abuse, narcissist, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic abuse syndrome, Uncategorized

Adult Children of Abusive Parents – Two Cluster B Parents

Two abusive parents can come in various combinations of Cluster B personality disorders. If you grew up with two parents that were abusive, then you went through hell and there is emotional trauma that is still affecting you as an adult. 

The DSM designates narcissistic personality disorder as a personality disorder, along with a few others. Malignant Borderline personality disorder is often co-morbid with narcissistic personality disorder. But is has some extra characteristics including extreme mood disregulation and fear of abandonment. 

Psychopathy is called anti-social personality disorder in the DSM. It is extreme narcissism with some other characteristsics, including a disregard for the law and rules of society. Narcissism is on a spectrum, which has anti=social personality disorder at the far right side. 

Histrionic personality disorder is also a Cluster B personality disorder. It is narcissism with an obsession with sex. The histrionic is a female disorder, whereas the majority of psychopaths are male…but not all. 

Two people with a cluster B personality disorder sometimes get together for various reasons. Neither of the partners is equipped to raise children with kindness or compassion. They care about themselves and not the needs of the children. 

Depending on the combination of personality disorders, the couple may stay together or break up. Two narcissists can sometimes work together to each get their needs for narcissistic supply met. This is not a loving relationship, but a functional agreement.

Children of two narcissists will be subject to extreme manipulation and control by the parents. Both parents are abusive, in an emotional and mental way. One or both may be sexually inappropriate with the children. Often one parent will turn a blind eye to what the other one does to the child. 

Adult children of narcissists have C-PTSD from the years of on-going abuse. Covert abuse can damage the child as much or more than overt physical abuse. Adult children of parents that were covertly, mentally abusive don’t always know that they were abused at all. The damage is there, but the adult child of mental abuse does not know what is wrong with them. 

People with C-PTSD from abuse often have depression, and anxiety disorders. They may have problems with executive function, which is the part of the brain that helps us to organize,  manage our lives and other skills that most “normal” people use to survive. 

Day to day tasks can be difficult for people with C-PTSD. Sometimes people do pretty well surviving for years, and then suddenly have an emotional / mental crash, when the repressed trauma begins to bubble its way to the surface. 

It is common for adult victims of abuse to be lured by narcissistic predators. There are certain characteristics of a survivor of abuse, that attract predators to prey on them. Low self esteem makes it easy for the predator to invade the victim;s boundaries. A desensitization to abuse makes it easy for the abuser to confuse the victim into rationalizing the abuse. 

The first step to recovering from C-PTSD from childhood abuse is to recognize abuse…and to call abuse “abuse.”

Recovery from abuse requires re-wiring the neural pathways of your brain. Growing up with narcissist means years if conditioning and brainwashing. Many of the beliefs that you hold deep in your subconscious are false. Negative feelings about yourself and your capabilities come from brainwashing from the narcissistic family. 

Getting therapy of coaching can help you to sift through the abuse, and to identify what false beliefs you are carrying. If you are being held back in life by mental tapes that keep playing in your head, these messages can be changed and your brain can be re-wired so that you can be your authentic self. 

There is nothing wrong with you. You have great self worth. Understanding the true value to your authentic, natural self can help to get your life back on track. Any therapist or life coach you work with needs to have an understanding of narcissistic abuse and narcissistic abuse syndrome. 

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If you are interested in coaching for overcoming narcissistic abuse and C-PTSD from abuse, you can check out the gentlekindness web site. There is a contact page where you can send me a message to let me know you are interested in setting up coaching. 

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Visit the site here..http://www.gentlekindnesscoaching.com/

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You can also get more information and connect with other victims at the facebook  page here….https://www.facebook.com/gentlekindnesscoaching/?ref=bookmarks

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I have videos about abuse and abuse recovery at my YouTube channel here.https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJw1QUDzb59PbWTcnGjGJ7g/videos

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abuse, abuse red flags, abusive relationships, domestic abuse, emotional abuse, narcissistic abuse, Narcissists, Uncategorized

Red Flags You are in an Abusive Relationship

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There are  red flags that may help you to identify early on that you are with an abusive personality. If you are seeing a few of these characteristics then you need to assert some boundaries with them and see how they react.

If they fight you about having simple personal boundaries then you need to realize that you may be in an abusive relationship. 

Tell them you have to go sleep early one night because you have a lot to do the next day. If they do not accept this, then there is a problem.

No one should give you guilt or shame you that you are not good to them, when you are doing simple basic things to take care of yourself.

It is not normal for someone to threaten to leave you or call you a bad girlfriend if you want to do things for yourself like take a class, do an extra assignment for school or work, or spend time with family or friends.

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You should never feel manipulated by guilt, shame or fear. People that love you do not inflict fear or threats in order to get you to comply.

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Here is a list that I have come up with from research and also from personal experience. There may be things that need to be added. Feel free to leave any ideas in the comments.

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Keep in mind that narcissists are on their best behavior at the very beginning of the relationship, called the idealization phase.

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Many of these red flags will not come up until the “honeymoon phase” is over in a couple of months. The best ones to look for early on are the ones that I put near to the top of this list.

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Love Bombing and Pushing to be in a Serious Relationship Right Away.

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Constant texting, calling, stopping over (calls you the second you get out from work or during work/ calls you while you are trying to get ready for work/ calls you first thing on your day off and wants to be on the phone, texting, or see you all day on every day off you have / calls while you are out with friends and you told them you would be busy with friends/  texts you when you said you would be at the gym….never ending constant contact)

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Angry or very upset when you do not respond to texts and voice mails right away.

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Never taking responsibility for their action – things are always someone else’s fault.

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Chameleon-like changeable personality – a different personality for different people and situations.

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They are always right and never make a mistake.

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They hate to be told they could have done something better or differently.

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Jealousy and Ownership of You.

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Isolating you from family and friends(discouraging you from spending time with them/  getting angry when you do/ saying that those people are interfering somehow in your relationship/ telling you that relatives that you have known for years are out to get you and you did not realize it).

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Need to control your schedule.

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Never apologizes or does so in a sarcastic,  fake way.

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Need to know where you are at all times.

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Telling you what to wear and how to look.

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Control of the money ( you need to check with them before you spend your own money/  they question how you spend your money/ shame you or make you feel guilty over spending your money on yourself)

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Criticism and disrespect  of women (this may not be directed at you at first  since they put on their mask and are on their best behavior during the idealization phase – observe how they treat other women who they have nothing to gain from)

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Making you account for your whereabouts.

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Making you ask permission or clear your activities with them.

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Name calling and demeaning.

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Complaining that the women at work do not treat him with respect.

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Excessive monitoring and making you check in all the time.

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Extreme sense of entitlement.

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Unrealistic, and unreasonable  demands.

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Lack of sympathy and empathy.

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Not interested in anyone else’s side of things.

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Accusing you of cheating when you are not.

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Blaming you for things that do not go his way.

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Excessive need for control in the house.

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Manipulating your friends and family to take their side in arguments.

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Getting angry if you have a different opinion than they do.

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Making you feel stupid and less intelligent than they are.

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Being disrespectful to you in front of your family and friends

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Visit my gentlekindness facebook page for narcissistic abuse and find out more about healing and overcoming narcissistic abuse

abusive relationships, devaluation, domestic abuse, mental abuse, narcissist, narcissistic abuse, Uncategorized

Hoovering

The loneliness after leaving an abusive relationship can be overwhelming. This feeling, combined with the chemical addiction to the relationship often drives people back to the partner.

Narcissists know this all too well. They have played the game many times before. They know just how long to ignore all of your texts and your calls.

Even if you are the one that chose to leave, the abuser is a master at hoovering you back in. They know the pain you will suffer from the withdrawal from them.

The hoovering usually occurs between 3 and 6 months after you have stopped hearing anything from them. They may even have paraded their new prey on facebook for you to see, but this new partner will not stop them from wanting one more go at you.

If you think they hurt you the first time, you are in for a higher level this time. If you left them, they will be sure to punish you fully, and then discard you in the cruelest possible way.

If they discarded you the first time, make no mistake that they will escalate the devaluation phase, before discarding you like the garbage they think you are.

The narcissist’s skill of cold empathy (cold reading), will enable them to woo you for a time. They will give you their honeymoon phase ( idealization phase) one more time…and make you think that they now appreciate the real you, more than ever.

Buy when that first glimmer of darkness crosses their expression, and their eyes glare at you…like predators do…your gut will tell you that you have made a mistake…you are in danger.

That feeling of danger will frighten you, and you may try to tell yourself it is in your imagination. After all…your view of reality hasn’t been that good lately. Has it?

You haven’t been remembering things quite the right way recently. Have you?

Who are you to question this person who was so gracious in taking you back?

This person who…changed their ways just for you….gave up the other women because you are the only one who understands them.

Or do you?

There is something dark surrounding you….pressing down on you….

It must be that you are mentally unstable. After all….he mentioned his concern about your mental health just the other day…

abusive relationships, aftermath of abuse, domestic abuse, gaslighting, mental abuse, Uncategorized

Narcissistic Victim Abuse Syndrome

The aftermath of an abusive relationship can seem more painful than the abuse we actually withstood during the relationship itself. The darkness of the predator looms over us, both in our conscious minds and in our dreams.

Weird nightmares awaken us in the darkness of the early morning hours. The shadow of the psychopath seems to be palpable and real. It is as if they have burrowed their wau deep into our subconscious brains.

In many ways that is true. The gaslighting has affected our subconscious. Cognitive dissonance has created confusion, as our brains struggle to sort out who we were actually in love with….the false image that never really existed?    or the person that actually inhabits that body that slept next to us at night?

You feel violated….raped…like your emotions and your soul have been violated in a crime.

It is an invisible crime. No one can prove it ever happened. The evidence is left in the form of PTSD, depression, nightmares, anxiety and often times  suicidal thoughts.

It would not surprise me if a good percentage of suicides could be attributed to some form of narcissistic abuse. That is… if anyone knew what they were looking for.

Even the victims often have no idea what has happened to them.. Why their brains are no longer functioning the way they used to. .. Why they have lost their motivation to live.. to work….to socialize. ..  to take care of themselves….

It is a “failure to thrive” syndrome. The narcissistic has stripped their victim of their dignity, their self esteem, their sense of self….and their confidence in their ability to perceive reality properly.

Narcissistic abuse Syndrome is….

PTSD

C-PTSD

Depression

Anxiety

Hopelessness

Confusion

Loss of ability to prioritize oneself

Suicidal thoughts

Nightmares

And difficulty finding anybody….including therapists…who can understand or help at all

Lack of validation of your trauma

Executive function problems

Fight or flight responses

Emotional flashbacks

Desperation.

This is why it is so important to spread awareness and to validate the victims. The tendency to want to self-isolate is strong.

Some level of solitude is needed for introspection, but too much isolation can be destructive.

The psychopath infects the victim with a virus-like program to self destruct. They want to leave you broken and crushed.

You are not alone. None of it was “all in your head.”

Share your experiences with people who will validate you. Having your story disbelieved by people willonly re-traumatize you.