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

Moving Forward After Abuse and Gaslighting

Getting on with your life after existing in a day to day, ongoing altered reality, can be extremely challenging. Narcissists and other abusers influence the way you perceive yourself and the world around you .

Their goal is to control your perceptions, your feelings and your thinking process. This conditioning is a kind of brainwashing and uses similar techniques that cults use to control their flock.

Isolation from others that would support you, and give you a different frame of reality than the narcissiat wants you to have, is a go-to technique used by most abusers. It may not be obvious to you that they were doing it, or are doing this to you.

You may notice that you are unable to spend time with your friends or that you no longer have access to people that would spend time with you. The abuser finds ways to prevent you from inviting people to the house or interacting with them socially outside of the house .

Abusers are often jealous, envious, disruptive of your relationships. They create drama and chaos, in order to cause dissention, and discomfort to you and to others that would otherwise help you.

They may tell you they feel threatened by your friends or that you should not trust certain people.

Sleep deprivation is another go-to technique of abusers, to control you. When you are sleep deprived, you don’t think as clearly, and you don’t have the energy needed to combat the gaslighting and other mind control tactics that are being used on you.

You may not notice that they are intentionally sleep depriving you. There are a variety of ways they can do this and be unaccountable for it .

Gaslighting is often difficult to recognize and it is extremely dangerous psychologically to your mental clarity and mental well – being.

It can be out and out lying about things that have happened, or extremely subtle with no words at all. Conflicting realities can be presented with body language, and non – verbal expressions, or by lack of response when there should normally be a response.

You will start to feel like your ability to understand what is going on , has been altered. You might feel like your memory is not as good as you think it is.

The narcissist will mirror something back to you that does not seem like an accurate version of who you are, what your values are, or what your real personality is. You might feel like they seem to be perceiving you as a completely different person than who you believed you were.

This is because they want you to be confused. They want to break down your self esteem and your sense of who you are.

It is psychologically dangerous. Many of my clients experience depression, panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder, and even  suicidal ideations, after long term, on-going gaslighting.

To not be able to hold onto a reality about your own identity is terrifying. The constant interferance with your perception of reality leaves long term effects after you are no longer in the relationship.

If you are still in a relationship with, or have contact with the abuser that was gaslighting you, please be aware that it takes resilience and constant re-orienting yourself back into reality as you know it is.

The longer you are in a gaslighting situation, the more difficult it can be to re-wire your brain and to reduce the panic attacks.

Anytime something is associated with the gaslighting that your abuser did to you, it will cause an emotional flashback to how it felt at the time. Your fight or flight mode will kick in, because your brain recognizes it as a threat to you.

You will run into narcissists sometimes in your day to day life. You don’t have to be in a relationship with them, for something they say to trigger you. It happens to many people  who have been in abusive relationships. Try to limit the length of the interaction and amount of contact you have with anyone who does things that reminds you of the gaslighting that you went through in the abusive relationship.

Abusive relationships can be marriages, romatic or sexual partners, family, friends you lived with, or anyone who targeted your mind with cruel or malicious intentions.

All abusers do not appear to be disordered to others. Many of them appear to be good – hearted people or pillars of the community. They are pastors, therapists, social workers,l doctors , and lots of other roles where they can gain the trust of others.

They do not want to be exposed for who they really are, and that they have no real empathy for others. Posing as a humanitarian, an intellectual, a church member, an honest business man or woman, etc. gives them the cover story that they need. It creates a narrative for who they want people to think they are.

Once you have this realization that this person you trusted, was actually scheming against you, it can be a shock.

Even more so, can be the shock of the realization that there are a percentage of people walking among us, that look and seem like everyone else, but they are manipulators that sadistically target people with the intention of destroying them.

The recovery from on-going abuse is a process. You can get your proper perception back about who you really are. You can gradually reduce the emotional flashbacks, and navigate your life in a positive direction.

It takes time to get back on the right path for you. For many people, it takes re-wiring beliefs in your subconscious that go back to your childhood .

You are an independent, soveriegn individual person, with a unique set of gifts, skills and possibilities.

No one has the right to try to mislead or diminish your life. You have the right to mental clarity and to see things for what they are.

Recovery from gaslighting, verbal abuse, and on-going abuse from a psychopath, a narcissist or a narcissistic borderline takes a while.

It is an on-going, day to day process. Your brain will fall back into the narcissists reality because you were conditioned to be in that reality. It is familiar and what is familiar can seem safer to your brain.

But new realities are out there. New ways of perceiving yourself and your place in the world are possible for you.

Never give up on yourself . If you were not special, and if you did not have significant value, then the narcissist would not have bothered targeting you.

They are looking to take something away from their targets. They want to crush out the light that you have, so you cannot share that light with the world.

Namaste,

Annie – gentlekindnesscoaching.com

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emotional abuse, healing from narcissistic abuse, mental abuse, Uncategorized

PTSD and Retraumatization from Abuse

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psychopath image

PTSD is a term most people have heard, but often they do not really know what it means.

If you tell someone you have PTSD, it may be hard for them to know what you mean by that, unless they have it themselves or maybe they have a close friend or family member with it.

People with PTSD have trouble with relationships, but not for the reasons people think.

Once you have been traumatized, and then re-traumatized by triggering situations, you feel generally unsafe and there is a natural tendency to want to retreat…back up your steps and run for cover.

People with PTSD can be re-traumatized by people who do not understand, and by people who are more concerned with their own agenda than really understanding.

When someone with PTSD has certain triggers, and explains those triggers to someone, it is important that they are validated and respected. If someone wants to care about a loved one with PTSD, they need to really listen to that person, when they talk about what triggers them. 

*A person that intentionally uses your triggers against you is dangerous to your mental well being. 

But then there are people who just don’t want to listen to or respect your boundaries. Your perceptions are not of an significance to them. 

Everyone has personal boundaries, but people with post traumatic stress disorder can suffer severe re-traumatization when a loved one does not honor their trigger boundaries.

Some triggers cannot be avoided, such as loud noises that may occur independently from either person. However, talking someone into going to a loud dance club, or guilting them into going to fireworks, when it has been made clear that loud noises are triggers, is abusive.

People who have PTSD from the military, and people who have PTSD from domestic abuse have different causes for their symptoms, but some things are the same.

The fight-or-flight mode is activated by the amygdala. If the brain perceives a threat, even if that threat is not real, the amygdala will send chemicals into the body like adrenaline and cortisol.

 The feeling in the body of a “perceived threat” and a real threat is exactly the same. The same physiological responses occur, including blood pressure elevation, and feeling of extreme fear and the feeling that you have to act right away.

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ptsd bed

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Someone who had their jaw fractured by an abusive boyfriend, who suddenly stormed towards them in a fit of anger, may be triggered by someone coming quickly into their personal space, especially if that person is angry.

Once you have asked someone not to do certain things which trigger you, it is a terrible feeling when they still continue to do them. It feels very violating, and only serves to break the trust bond.

Relationships need to be based in trust. Intimate relationships, as well as friendships and family relationships have to feel safe. If one person does not feel safe, then there is a lack of understanding and a lack of trust.

Without both parties feeling safe, the relationship will break down. People with PTSD can find it difficult to trust again, after others have invalidated them about their symptoms.

Sometimes someone will disbelieve you, minimize your trauma, or accuse you of trying to manipulate them with your explanations about your trauma and your triggers. This is very painful and re-traumatizing.

People who have PTSD or C-PTSD from abuse were invalidated as part of the abuse process. Their emotions were minimized, disregarded and made fun of.

To have someone close to you minimize your PTSD, or disbelieve you is re-traumatizing. It gives  the victim into an emotional flashbacks or actual sensory flashbacks.

You can only tolerate being traumatized and re-traumatized so many times.

Soldiers that come back from war only to be disrespected by civilians, or invalidated and ignored by the Veterans Administration, are being re-traumatized.

It is a way of invalidating a person’s reality. This has negative effects on the person’s mental and emotional state.

People with PTSD can be perfectly good and caring partners and friends. They just need validation, respect and understanding.

But after repeated re-traumatization, a person feels isolated and too vulnerable to take a chance on trusting another person again. This leads to self isolation, depression, and often suicidal thoughts.

Evolutionary psychology tells us that our subconscious brain feels threatened by the potential that we would be completely isolated, shunned or thrown out of the social circle.

A Little Evolutionary Psychology

In the past, humans lived in social survival groups called tribes.  Being accepted and included by the tribe was critical for survival. Being shunned would have meant death !

Our primal brain  (called the reptilian brain) perceives rejection by the tribe to be potentially life threatening.  When we are feeling a similar kind of threat, it triggers the fight or flight response in our limbic system of the brain. The amygdala becomes active and send all kinds of alerts and chemicals into the body.

Technically, we could survive living alone and isolated these days, but we were not meant to live in isolation… especially isolation due to “mobbing” or “scapegoating” by the tribe.

This is one of the reasons that scapegoated family members, suffer such severe mental and emotional trauma.

People with PTSD need to feel that they will still be accepted by the Tribe (family, community…whatever applies to the situation…).

They need to know that their personal reality will be validated, even though it may be very different from that of other people. The experiences someone with PTSD has endured may seem strange to people that have not ever had that kind of trauma in their reality.

Isolation can cause death by suicide or “failure to thrive.”

Self isolation will almost always cause severe depression. But being re-traumatized is just as bad, and the brain will try to lead people away from that pain.

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psychopath bed

Our primal brains are designed to take us away from danger, or perceived danger….and towards pleasure. But the “away from danger” is the priority.

Re-exeriencing the feelings of danger, fight or flight chemicals and physiological responses, is not something that anyone could tolerate on a regular basis.

We were not built to feel in danger all the time. Being in a state of hyper-arousal all the time depleats the immune system and causes mental disorders.

People with PTSD need understanding and validation.

They need their loved ones to be sensitive to their triggers, and to pay attention to what the person asks and needs. 

Otherwise. the relationships cannot continue in a way that is safe for the PTSD sufferer. The person with PTSD will shut down and crawl inside of themselves. No healthy relationship can be sustained without safety for both people. 

 

abuse, abusive men, abusive relationships, aftermath of abuse, aftermath of narcissistic abuse, anti-social personality disorder, dating a narcissist, dating an abusive guy, emotional abuse, gaslighting, healing after narcissistic abuse, healing from domestic abuse, healing from narcissistic abuse, malignant narcissistic personality disorder, mental abuse, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic psychopath, Narcissists, overcoming narcissistic abuse, Psychopath, PTSD from domestic abuse, red flags of a narcissist, Uncategorized, victim of narcissist, women abuse, women in history, women's history month, women's issues

Victim Blaming and Re-traumatizing Abuse Victims

Being in an intimate relationship with a psychpath awakens your reality to a darkness you never knew existed. You always knew that there were serial killers and rapists in the world, but you never knew they could be hidden behind a charming exterior.

You consented to being close to the person they presented themselves to be. But you never consented to being intimate with someone who carries darkness within them.

When you hear people say that you chose to be in a relationship with an abuser, it is confusing and re-traumatizing. They make their point by saying that you had free will and walked into the relationship with open eyes.

They do not understand the mind manipulatiin of a psychopath and how your reality was very different at the beginning of the relationship than it is now.

Not only do you have to come to terms with the cognitive dissonance of the two different realities…the person you thought you were sleeping with….and the person you were actually sleeping with……

You now have to listen to this other proposed reality that you went into the relationship with an abuser with open eyes and free choice.

Only two kinds of people would say this to you….Pathological narcissists….and very closed minded judgemental people who think they are better than you, because of course…it would never have happened to them!

The narcissists that post comments like this on the youtube blogs of survivors are sadistically gaslighting the victims. They are intentionally twisting your reality,  which they are fully aware has already been twisted by one of “their kind.”

Victim blaming is most often instigated by pathological narcissists. Other people may believe their lies because they are being manipulated by the narcissist. So the very people saying that no one can have their mind manipulated….are having their own minds manipulated….and their beliefs fed to them by a narcissist.

 

#women's history month, abuse, abuse red flags, abusive relationships, aftermath of abuse, anti-social personality disorder, battered women, emotional abuse, gaslighting, healing after narcissistic abuse, healing from domestic abuse, malignant narcissistic personality disorder, narcissistic victim abuse syndrome, overcoming narcissistic abuse, Uncategorized

Domestic abuse and Partner Abuse

Being in a partner abuse situation, or living in domestic abuse is a lonely experience. You can lose your sense of self and your confidence in your perceptions.

Reality becomes confused due to gaslighting and emotional abuse of the partner.Your self confidence is crushed and you do not feel like there is any possibility for life outside of the abusive relationship you have become “trauma bonded” to.

You can develope Stockholme Syndrome and feel like you need to defend and cover for the abuser. Living in fear of angering the partner, you become careful of what you say and do.

Isolation is a typical tactic of abusive partners to control their partner and keep them from getting support. You may not even realize that your abuser has intentionally isolated you. You just don’t invite people over anymore, and you feel you have to ask permission to visit anyone.

You are not alone. The methods of abusers are nearly identical and equally terrifying. There is a darkness permeating your soul that you cannot explain.

You need to get support and information about types of abusive personalities and the tactics they use. You can find support that will give you strength and more clarity about what is happening.

Most areas have women’s shelters. They can offer you counseling about getting away and how to do so safely. It may take you time to build up a savings account in your name, but do not stay if you feel you are in danger.

Men have more trouble finding support. Most women’s shelters cannot help you if you are a man living in an abusive relationship. Human services in your area may have resources they can refer you to.

Primary care physicians and local psychiatric services may also be able to guide you toward resources for a place to provide counseling for safe escape.

Living in abuse requires lots of support for you self esteem and mental health. You need help while you are still living there. You will also need help for PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) after you leave.

 

 

abuse, abusive relationships, aftermath of abuse, aftermath of narcissistic abuse, dating an abusive guy, domestic abuse, domestic abuse blog, domestic abuse meme, domestic violence, emotional abuse, gaslighting, healing from domestic abuse, healing from narcissistic abuse, mental abuse, narcissism, narcissist, PTSD from domestic abuse, PTSD from mental abuse, Uncategorized

Pinterest Mental Abuse Blog

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abuse, abusive relationships, aftermath of abuse, aftermath of narcissistic abuse, domestic abuse, domestic violence, emotional abuse, gaslighting, healing after narcissistic abuse, healing from domestic abuse, healing from narcissistic abuse, leaving an abuser, malignant narcissistic personality disorder, mental abuse, narcissism, narcissist, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic abuse syndrome, narcissistic victim abuse syndrome, Narcissists, no contact, no contact from narcissist, no contact with the narcissist, overcoming narcissistic abuse, PTSD from domestic abuse, revenge on a narcissist, Uncategorized, women abuse

No Contact Includes Un-friending Them

no contact stop checking facebook

image from lawsofmondern man tumblr blog

It is extremely tempting to keep checking on what your ex is up to. They count on this and will intentionally pose for pictures that will bother you, and then post them on their facebook page. They want you to see them havint a great time with the new target.

The narcissists gets fuel (narcissistic supply) from knowing that you are jealous of their new partner. They will intentionally take that partner to places and activities they told you they would  not do with you. This is to rub salt into your already painful wounds.

For all you know they dragged the person to those places and they did not really want to go. You know how powerful the narcissist is at manipulating. If course the partner is going to smile for the pictures, because they do not want to look bad on facebook.

You are being mind controlled by the narcissist. They want you to think that this time the relationship is real, and that you missed out because you were  not good enough for them. But it is all the same game.

The pathological narcissists works in cycles. They repeat them over and over again. The idealization and devaluing….the triangulation of the new target with the ex lover. They gain lots of narcissistic supply from triangulating you with the new partner,because they are causing jealousy in both of you.

They are mentioning you to the new partner. Your name will likely come up from time to time, just so the new target knows they have to stay in line, if they want to keep the relationship. The narcissist will tell lies about you in any number of ways. They may tell the new partner that you are still interested in them…or that you were better at something that they are.

This is all part of garnering fuel (narcissistic supply). You are playing into their hands, just the way they planned, by checking on their facebook page and other social media. In order to heal, you have to go No Contact for real.

Checking their pictures and activities is still a passive form of contact. You need to heal and regain your identity. Unfriend them and let them stew about that. It is the best way to get back at them.