aftermath of narcissistic abuse, domestic abuse, emotional abuse, narcissistic abuse syndrome, Uncategorized

C-PTSD from Emotional / Mental Abuse

girl crying 2

image from Pinterest HERE

Trauma during childhood and teenage years leaves fractured pieces of yourself, existing in time. As you begin to accept those child parts that feel abandoned, you will begin to realize that time is not as linear as we have been programmed to perceive it.

.

All of those parts of you exists now. You can reach out to them and bring them into yourself to integrate those fractured parts, so they do not feel rejected and abandoned.
This will help you to be more in the present, so that you can think more clearly and see what you want and what you can do with your life.
.
C-PTSD (Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) is caused by being in on-going emotional / mental abuse from people that you feel entrapped with. There is no way to leave the situation, when you are a child and you are stuck in whatever situations your parents put you into.
.

Emotional abuse and other kinds of abuse cause emotional wounds.

.

These emotional wounds are not able to heal while you are still in the abusive situations. Usually children are so used to the way they are living that there is no real frame of reference to know that you are being abused, or the degree to which the abuse is.

.

Wounded children feel abandoned in time, and there is no proper integration of these child parts into the whole. It is like there is still a wounded child inside of you that is waiting for someone to rescue them. Doing inner child work can help the fractured parts to become integrated.

.

If you have C-PTSD from childhood trauma, abuse, or chaotic events, your may have fractures and wounds in your subconscious. This can cause depression, anxiety disorders, OCD and other kinds of mental illness.

.

The feeling that you do not belong anywhere and that you are out of place can come from the fractured child parts feeling abandoned. They need to be accepted and nurtured.

.

I am working on some hypnosis audios for healing the wounded child and helping the fractured parts to integrate. If you want to get updates about the audios, feel free to follow the Facebook Page,or to sign up on the contact page at theGentlekindness coachingweb site.

Advertisements
abusive relationships, narcissism, narcissist, Narcissist psychopath, narcissistic abuse, Narcissists, scapegoat, scapegoating

The Scapegoat of the Narcissist

SCAPEGOATING IS A TERM THAT IS USED FOR THE ONE PERSON IN A DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILY THAT IS TARGETED BY THE ABUSIVE FAMILY MEMBER FOR RECEIVING THE MOST AGGRESSIVE ABUSE.

 Usually this person is targeted by the abuser because of their resistance to going along with the narrative of the narcissist.

If you were the truth teller in the family then you pointed out when boundaries were being crossed and when the other people were being mistreated. You were the one that probably defended siblings who were being abused. You may have tried to draw the abuse towards yourself in order to protect younger siblings from getting the brunt of it.

Very often the main abusive parent has Narcissistic Personality Disorder, although there are other personality disorders which cause people to abuse their children, like Malignant Borderline Personality Disorder. 

The narcissistic parent us the focal point of the family because they demand that their needs and desires are primary. The needs of the scapegoat are ignored. They are labeled as the troublemaker in the family. Things they say are often  used against them.

Fault for most every problem in the family ends of being dumped onto the scapegoat. The narcissist projects their own faults and personality disorder into the scapegoat. 

The scapegoat is the one that can see that something is wrong with the narcissistic parent ans their behavior. The narcissist wants everyone in the family to pretend that everything is normal and their abusive behaviors are not abusive. The scapegoat angers the narcissist by being able to see through the false reality they create.

If you were the scapegoat child then your accomplishments were ignored or minimized. You were compared to other family members and the narcissistic parent would see to it that your accomplishments were seen as less than the other children’s and their own. 

Family decisions may have been made without you in family meeting that you were intentionally not invited to. Yet you were still expected to go along with the decisions that narcissist made without expressing any dislike or negative feelings about anything.

You were emotionally punished for any resistance to what the narcissist wanted to do, even if it was harmful to you or others in the family. 

As an adult the narcissist probably gossips about you and talks about you behind your back. They twist around the reality of things you say and do, in order to give a false image to others about you. You are called selfish behind your back anytime you tell the narcissist “no” or try to set  healthy boundaries for the preservation of your mental health.

YOUR MENTAL HEALTH IS NOT ONLY CONSIDERED UNIMPORTANT,  BUT IT IS ATTACKED INTENTIONALLY BY THE NARCISSISTIC PARENT IN ORDER TO UNDERMINE YOU.

They use techniques like gaslighting and triangulating to break you down. You end up looking like the one who is at fault in the relationship because the narcissist lies to the other family members about you.

Even though the abusive parent is the unstable one, you are often made out to be the one that is mentally disordered.

Your behaviors are taken out of context and re-framed by the narcissist to appear illogical, irrational or selfish. By the time to are able to tell your side of the story to anyone, it is too late because the narcissist got to them first and has been spreading a smear campaign against you.

At times you may be shunned by the narcissist or by the entire family, because the narcissist tells them that they should not speak to you.

However when someone is needed to step in during an emergency you are often the first one they will call and expect to drop everything to help. You are expected to be the problem solver and the one to offer assistance, even after you were made to feel inadequate in the past.

RESPONSIBILITY IS NOT EQUALLY ALLOTTED OR EQUALLY SHARED.

The scapegoat is always expected to do more than anyone else without complaining, and they are expected to do the work that no one else wants to do.

There is never any thank you or credit given to the scapegoat for doing things for the family. In fact there will be a big deal made over a little thing that the golden child did for the narcissist, while your contribution and efforts are minimized or forgotten…until the next time they need something from you.

Scapegoating is a reflection on the person refusing to take responsibility or be held accountable, not the person being blamed. The scapegoat also provides a buffer against reality to support the family denial. The scapegoat carries the lion’s share of the blame, shame, anger and rejection so narcissistic mother can maintain her patterns of dysfunction while continuing to appear normal. 

The scapegoat is punished by several methods. Shaming, ignoring, minimizing accomplishments, undermining, abused, rejected, singled out for blame.

scapegoatsofanarcissisticmother.blogspot.com

The narcissistic parent will tell people that they have done many things for you and that they gave tried to be supportive of you. They will tell others that they have been a good parent for you and that you do not appreciate their efforts. They will sometimes go so far as to claim that you are abusive to them and play the victim themselves.

THE GOLDEN CHILD IS THE SIBLING THAT IS PUT ON A PEDESTAL BY THE PARENT AND EXPECTED TO MAKE THE NARCISSIST LOOK GOOD.

The parent claims the credit for the accomplishments of the golden child. The golden child will remain in the favor of the narcissist as long as they succeed and accomplish the things that the narcissist approves of. 

THE RULES FOR THE GOLDEN CHILD AND THE SCAPEGOAT ARE NEVER THE SAME.

The scapegoat will be punished for things that the golden child is not punished for. The golden child will be praised for things that are ignored or undermined when the scapegoat accomplishes them or tries to accomplish them. 

The narcissistic parent will undermine the scapegoat and at the same time say to them “I am doing this for your own good.”  They disguise their cruel, undermining, manipulative tactics as loving guidance. 

There are many tactics that the narcissistic parent will use to undermine the scapegoat. The family often becomes blind to the tactics of the narcissist against the scapegoat. They do not see that the scapegoat is being attacked and undermined.

Some adults choose to break off contact with the narcissistic parent for their own mental preservation. Others are shunned by the narcissist and sometimes the entire family.

If you choose to continue interaction with a narcissistic parent, you have to learn how to maintain boundaries and not allow anyone in the family to violate them. Most likely this will anger the family members who are not used to you maintaining the same boundaries that they expect you to respect for them.

They feel entitled to be treated with respect and to be able to set boundaries about their time, their emotions, their relationships, etc. But they do not often respect your right to set the same exact boundaries for yourself.

You are not seen by the narcissist as a real person that has the right to your own thoughts, feelings, ideas or a right to personal boundaries.

YOU SHOULD PRIORITIZE YOUR MENTAL HEALTH AND YOUR LIFE AND MAKE ANY DECISIONS ABOUT INTERACTING WITH YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS BASED ON WHAT IS BEST FOR YOU.

If they have never been happy with anything you have  done by now, then what are the chances that continuing to try to please them will gain their appreciation and approval?

domestic abuse, domestic violence, life, mental abuse, mental health

Abused Children and Teenagers Have Trouble Identifying Red Flags of an Abuser

Many people that tend to end up with abusers more than one time, were abused in some way as children. This could have been physical, sexual or mental abuse. It is possible that behaviors that you consider acceptable in your family, are actually abusive and you still do not identify them.

One of my friends puts up with extreme control by his family, as an adult of 45, and he has no idea that it is not normal. He actually feels like they are helping him. They talked him into leaving his career and his house, in order to move back home and live with them.

They promised him that they would financially support the small business he wanted to start, if he moved back home with them. I tried to warn him against this, knowing from past experience that the family does not approve of martial arts, which is the business that he wanted to start.

Also their past track record was that they made false promises, in order to get him to do what they wanted him to do.  But they lured him in and he moved all the way across the country to move in with them. Once he had given up his house and his job, the family “changed their mind” about he;ing him start the business.

These are narcissistic lies that lure the victims in. They will make false promises to get you into a vulnerable position and then they can control you. They want you dependent upon them, so that you have no independence.

Now that he was living in their house, and had no job, he was basically a prisoner to their commands. They forced him to go back to college at 45 years old for the degree that they wanted him to get.

They managed this by  by threatening to throw him out of their house, if he did not follow their new rule that “adult children living in their house must be going to college. Narcissists make up the rules as they go along and change them, as they see fit.

Since he had no job anymore and no where to live, he agreed to what they demanded and went back to school. They also “suggested” that he concentrate on his studies and not get a job.

This only made him more of a prisoner in their house, since he has no income.  He has no money of his own and is basically their narcissistic supply, for when they need something.

This story is actually about my ex husband and his family.  This is the type of narcissistic family that I married into and the reason that I ended up no longer married and living in poverty with my daughters. I have lived with the abuse of this family and unfortunately am still affected by it,

They have  caused us financial devastation, loss of authority over our children, unacceptable living conditions (when forced to live under their roof)  and other more sorted abuses.

I could tell you stories of going without food, money and basic necessities, while living under their roof and while they were living a rich life. The stories are complicated and were calculated and manipulated by them, in order to keep me powerless.

They have taken my transportation away before, and left me with no food, while their son (my husband) was allowed to go travel to California to “sew his oats” or some such crap. It is too much to describe now.

This is the type of narcissistic abuse that kept putting us back into poverty during our entire marriage. Every time we were beginning to get on our feet, they would manipulate him in a similar way to the story I told you. I could not understand why he would believe them every time they lied.

I never had any say about decisions. The lack of having your own voice in any relationship, is always a red flag ! If you see this happening , take a step back and look at what is happening, before you get sucked further in.

The family was and is, always in control. I am still living in poverty because of their narcissistic abuse. They have deliberately interfered with him working many times and this of course ended up affecting my child support…or lack thereof… many times.

But us you asked him about his family, he would tell you that they are not abusive, not overly controlling or narcissistic. He thinks they are just having good intentions and helping him. He does not attribute his parents’ constant boundary crossing of our marriage, as a reason for our inevitable divorce.

He was brought up with this level of controlling narcissistic behavior and was brain washed by two narcissistic  parents who work as a team. One is a somatic narcissist and the other is a cerebral narcissist. This can be a very dangerous combination, when these personalities work together as a team, to get their “supply.”

If you have been drawn to narcissists or other abusers over and over, then there are ways you can review your past to identify the abuse that occurred. Look back at how you were treated.

What things were you made to feel were normal, but you actually felt violated by them. What things were you told not to talk about? What verbal or emotional control tactics made you feel disempowered?

I was also abused growing up and into early adulthood. I will talk more in the next post about my own problems identifying red flags, due to the lack of boundaries growing up.

If you were demeaned and minimized when you expressed your thoughts and opinions about things, then you probably have trouble expressing your thoughts about things in your relationships. You also will tolerate your partner making fun of your ideas, or  arguing with them in a way that demeans you.

If you are in the same patterns of abuse that you have grown up with, then your brain will automatically go into the same mode that it used, when it had to protect you as a child.

If you were denied independent behavior and choices as a young adult, then you may not be used to making your own choices and decisions. Exerting your independence against what the other person agrees with, may cause you extreme anxiety.

Anything that triggers bad memories and feelings for you, is going to something that you are going to try to avoid. We all want to avoid pain.  People that were abused while they were growing up, will try to  protect themselves from feeling the pain that they felt as a child.

If the way to protect yourself from punishment and retaliation growing up was to just go along with what you were told and not to make waves, then you are primed for people to control you.

If you were not allowed to learn independence as a teenager and young adult, then you may feel “normal” being controlled by a partner. Or you may be like my ex husband, and feel “normal” letting your parents interfere with your  major marital decisions.

If we can begin to see what is appropriate and what is not appropriate in how others treat us, then we will begin to understand the red flags of a potential abuser, when the flags wave themselves at us.

abuse, acoa, battered women, child abuse, domestic abuse, domestic violence, health, healthy relationships after domestic abuse, mental abuse, mental illness, narcissist, PTSD from domestic abuse, women abuse

Abuse and Insomnia

People that are in an abusive domestic household are very likely to develope insomnia. There is a tremendous lack of feeling safe. In order to sleep, we have to feel comfortable and safe.

We are aware that we are vulnerable when we are asleep. We are vulnerable to physical attack. We cannot see someone coming towards us. We also cannot protect our home, our possessions, our cash and credit cards, etc while we are sleeping.

For those people with children in the house, they also can’t protect their children while they are asleep.

People in these situations are forced by real safety issues to adjust their sleep routine. They may sleep in the living room with the lights on. They may create some kind of makeshift blockade for the person to be slowed down by , on the way to the bed.

I used to hide my purse in a different place each night before I went to sleep. I also used to pile things in front of the couch I was sleeping on to create a barrier. I always slept with the light on.

These behaviors become a routine that makes us feel safer. It is not surprising that the routine will be carried on, even when we have left the danger behind us.

To this day, I sleep with my purse right next to the bed. I cannot sleep if it is in the kitchen, even if I am alone in the house. It causes me too much anxiety to sleep, even though I rationally know that no one is going to steel my money.

The feeling that my money could be stolen and my personal items thrown out all over the floor, is an extremely unsafe feeling.

I spent an entire winter in New Jersey with no heat once, because of financial abuse of a domestic partner. He thought his beer and cigarettes were more important than filling up the oil for the heat.

These behaviors are not something you should feel ashamed of or stupid about. Of course you are an intelligent person who knows that the abuse is in the past.

You know that these behaviors are no longer needed. Or are they? If you still need these routines in order to feel safe to go to sleep, I would say go ahead and leave the lights on, sleep on the couch or whatever. It is more important that you sleep.

You went through an extreme trauma and your brain needs to heal. Your brain is trying to protect itself from more trauma. If forcing yourself to put the purse in the kitchen is going to traumatize you, don’t do it.

If you still have the feeling of being unsafe when you sleep, try to think of ways that you might feel safer. I don’t care how stupid someone else might think it is.

The therapist might tell you to force yourself not to keep the same rituals you had when you were being abused. It really depends. It is the lesser of the evils.

If the behavior is not hurting anyone or yourself then it is ok to continue it for as long as you need to. The need for sleep is far more important than forcing yourself out of safety rituals before your brain is ready to handle it.

Sleep deprivation is dangerous to you. It is far more important that you can sleep than almost anything else, including what some therapist tells you.

Insomnia causes severe sleep deprivation. Your sleep cycle is disturbed. You will eventually not be safe to drive. Your job will be in harm’s way because you will be in danger of oversleeping and cannot focus at work.

Give yourself a break. First things first. Your brain needs to heal from the trauma. You need sleep to heal.

Sleep first, feel better, feel safe, then worry about having odd behaviors.

Find ways you can feel safe. Keep someone on the phone with an open line while you are going to sleep, sleep with teddy bears, sleep on the couch or in your child’s room with them. Buy extra locks for the doors.

Talk to someone at bed time about how you feel about sleeping. Write your feelings down on paper or on wordpress. Sleep with your clothes on if you need to. God knows , I slept with all of my clothes on for months after I got out of my abuse house.

I slept in everything but my shoes.   Keep in mind, I was sleeping all alone in my room .

There was no one dangerous or abusive living with me anymore. But my need to feel covered was a strong need of my brain in order to feel safe enough to sleep.

These things can’t be rushed. Your brain has the job of protecting you by alerting you of danger. When the brain becomes traumatized by being on alert too long, it gets kind of sick.

It can’t just shut off. It still feels the need to protect you by letting you know you might be in danger. Let it slowly get used to the idea that you are ok now.

Trying to force yourself out of trauma will cause you more trauma. Be kind to yourself. Do the best you can to make yourself comfortable and safe, so you can sleep.

If you still can’t sleep at night then try to get some sleep during the day. Sleep deprivation will inhibit the brain’s ability to heal from the trauma.