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That part of our mind which deals with higher order thinking (IE rational thought, mathematics, critical thinking, reason, etc) shuts down. YOu might be able to recognize when it possibly happened to you in the past. There was a momentary feeling of euphoria, followed by an almost audible "pop" within your mind. Right afte this, you might feel extremely clear headed and or lighter. However, this is not a healthy place nor one which you mind wants to stay in. You are now in a more primal state where your "psyche" is highly vulnerable. This is a form of a trance state where your mind is highly suggestible.
Thanks, you actually completed something I forgot to put into my post. This "shutting down" is actually a survival mechanism. It is meant to alow our "instincts" to kick in so that we can get away from danger. Too much thought in times of danger can lead to becoming dead. Acting, or rather survival reactions can and do saves lives.
The thing with abusers, we don't even know we are fighting for our survival, its usually so covert.
PsychDoc66 wrote:Once they are gone from our lives on a physical level and we are in recovery from their abuse, it takes a tremendous amount of work to release their "programing" from our minds.
It takes time to get their "thoughts" out of your head, be patient and kind to yourself durring the time of healing.
Be well, their "brainwashing" can and will be "bleached" out of your mind sooner or later and you will be more than back to normal. You will become stronger because of it.
magnum wrote:I am interested in the mindfulness you talk about. I have days that come like waves and then torrid waves, like tsunami type thoughts. I think my episodes can be hormonal too.
I would love some insights like mindfulness to ride this tsunami of emotions.
One thing I want to add for Defender is to remember that Ps and Ns are extremely skilled observers. What they lack in indepth social skills they make up for observationally. They can, and do spend alot of time planning and plotting about a "target". They are also capable of spending lots of time just watching the "target", noting things as small as how someone likes to stand, how they eat, how they walk, how they talk......
They also throw out "clues", they will often inject something confusing, or offensive, say a compliment with a putdown on the end of it, into their initial charm offensive. If the "target" misses it, or accepts it, then they can gauge their chances.
I feel like, that our 'physiological' response to them (the N) often impedes our healing... at least at first b/c we don't understand or even realize what's going on within our own body. By Physiological I mean and equate it with the same or similar sense of addiction (regarding the chemical responses of our body, and in these situations in particular - chemical alterations that occur in the brain, or even more specifically, the 'pleasure seeking' areas of our brain - the nucleus accumbens, the ventral tegmental area and the hippocampus. Link to more info re: the brain response: http://thebrain.mcgill.ca/flash/i/i_03/ ... r_par.html ).
Early on in the r/s - we get an unbelievable high from the pedastle (sp?) they put us up on; the positive attention and feedback; promises; and the ideals/values/belief system that they mirror back to us = when they idealize us and make us feel like the only woman on earth; like the best thing that ever happened to them, their dream come true. In such a state, our brain naturally releases endorphins, dopamine, serotonin, etc... the 'happy' chemicals. Those chemicals are EASY to love; and therefore easy to want to 'get back to' (i.e. we continue to try to find ways to get back to that state - much like a cocaine addict is always wanting to get back to that initial 'perfect' high).
THEN we have a VERY intense emotional/psychological injury with the D&D that also leaves an deep impression on our psyche. This sparks anxiety, depression and triggers bizarre behavior and reactions from us that we don't even recognize or understand. Anxiety and depression, I feel, is the "fog" that prevents us from 'seeing the forest for the trees' - that keeps our focus on them and off of our own recovery. Eventually (for some), anxiety/depression lifts and you do FINALLY begin to see that they are not 'normal' or 'healthy' in any way - and that they actually have some pattern of behavior that backs this up (even if anxiety or depression doesn't 'lift' you can rationally understand those things; but you can't fully process them, or the 'big picture'). It's easy to get caught up in shame and self-depreciating self-talk like "how did I not see it?" It is very easy to get caught up in a very negative, debilitating cycle of self abuse if you're not careful. Those that are 'stuck' in obsessive thinking and can't progress most likely are having anxiety/depression that is not being properly treated. I personally do not feel that a person can really 'move on' if they are experiencing anxiety and/or depression... as these are physiological states as well (both alter brain chemicals - decreased serotonin and/or dopamine to brain receptors) and have a direct effect on a person's ability to focus; they contribute to 'cognitive distortions'; they make us feel 'helpless'; they cause many to withdraw and internalize.
Once you come out of the fog, there's STILL the temptation (for some) to info-seek (been there, done that). This is where the physiological /addiction kind of comes in. Whether we realize it or not... we became addicted (at some point) to the way they made us feel during the idealization phase (those endorphins, dopamine, serotonin 'happy feeling' chemicals). A part of us longs to feel that way again. Even though we may have come a long way, progressed alot, developed more positive/healthy self-esteem, have recovered a good bit from the injury and KNOW these people are toxic - that 'longing' kinda 'sticks' with us .... and for a while (and/or most recently) those feelings were strongly associated/paired with the N (pre-D&D). BUT each time we N-Dip, it's a reminder of the injury. All of a sudden, it makes you feel like - even though you've taken 6 steps forward - with that one N-Dip it can feel like you've regressed 2, 3, or more steps (depending on how intense, anxious and compulsive the info seeking was). You feel like crap again, blaming yourself, beating yourself up for it, etc... NOT WORTH IT. When you feel that nostalgic 'longing' - THAT's when we need to learn to re-direct that into positive/productive energy; honing our mate-selection skills instead of N-dipping which is counter-productive.
The kicker is... we don't even realize all of this is going on internally within us. We may THINK that because we are healthier and stronger emotionally now - that we can 'handle' any bits of new info re: N. THESE PEOPLE HURT US ON A VERY DEEP LEVEL. There will ALWAYS be some sort of reaction (hopefully and/or someday, indifference - which is STILL a reaction).
Generally speaking, "happy feelings" greatly outweigh "bad" ones. I mean, honestly... who WANTS to feel bad? Only a sadist (or is it masochist) seeks out painful events. With time, space and NC - those negative effects of the N-induced PTSD subside to a great degree. Although we can think back and remember how horrific it felt during that time, we don't really 'hang on' to those horrific feelings like we do the 'happy feelings' (nor do we seek out the horrific feelings like we do the happy ones, but when you N-Dip it is a PERMANENT by-product ... something that, I think we have to learn and N-Dipping does just that - it teaches us these people are very harmful to our psyche, our spirit, health and wellbeing). Hopefully... eventually, the negative effects will take over after being paired with the N - so that whenever we see or hear of them, we don't feel those 'good' feelings anymore; but rather the toxic feelings that KEEP US AWAY from them.
We hang on to good feelings, and memories that evoke those good feelings in everything - not just with the N's. When loved one's pass away ... do you remember or hold on to all the things they did 'wrong'?? no... you remember, usually, the things they did right - unless they were an utterly horrible person, in which case, when you learned they passed, you might give them thought for a few minutes and then move on with life. Someone who was truly 'good' makes a deep impression in your life. We hold on to the GOOD. It's harder to let go of than the bad - which is why i think sooooooo many of us put up with such bad behavior from the N's before opting out.... we keep enduring the bad BECAUSE of the memory of the few, sporadic/intermittent 'goods' they did that made us feel great. Those 'goods' are usually intense too - I remember actually feeling butterflies with some of the things exN told me. Intensity plays a very significant role in the addiction.
I am reminded of learning 'conditioned learning' in Psychology back in college. You pair and object (in our case the N - how great to think of THEM as the object for a change, LOL)... anyway, you pair an object with a strong positive feeling or 'reward' - and you eventually learn to feel that feeling each and every time you see that object (or anticipate the 'reward'). Initially, you need the consistent pairing to solidify the conditioned learning (meaning the reward and object MUST consistently be seen or experienced 'together' in order to make the association) - but later, it is actually STRENGTHENED if it is not consistent, but rather periodic and intense. --- interestingly enough, this latter portion is very similar principle used in SLOT MACHINES / gambling addiction. If you didn't get some reward every so often, no one would play... there would be no addiction to gambling b/c there would be no 'gamble' - you'd simply just be giving your money away with no expected or given reward.
"When we float in our loneliness, we're likely to get water in our face. We might feel like we're drowning in our loneliness. We might attempt to fight the current, to exhaust ourselves trying to swim away from our loneliness. Our last instinct is to lay back, let the water support us, and look around us at our loneliness.
And we'd better do it or we really are going to drown. We can feel ourselves flailing and failing, sinking. Or we can lay back and discover what it feels like to float. Feel our bodies, get to know what and who the water of our loneliness is supporting. Feel our hearts still beating in the loneliness. Feel our emotions. They are our guides.
Adrift in my loneliness I discover the boundaries and shores of me."
THURSDAY, JANUARY 3, 2008
AM I UNDER HIS "SPELL"?
Time and again women allude to the mystical aspects of the pathological they are involved with. They describe it as "being under his spell," "entranced with him" or "hypnotized by him" even "spell bound" or "mind controlled."
Women aren't exactly able to define what they are 'experiencing' or even accurately describe what they think is occurring but they do unanimously conclude that 'something' is happening that feels like it's hypnotic.
Beyond the 'hokus pokus' of hypnosis lies real truth about what IS probably happening in those relationships.
Trance happens to every person every day. It is a natural lull in the body when many of the systems are resting or when we are tired.
You've heard of 'Highway Hypnosis' when you have been driving and are so concentrating on the driving or getting sleepy while driving and watching those yellow lines that you forgot about the last few miles and all of a sudden you're aware you're almost at your destination? That's trance or light forms of hypnosis. No one put you in it -- you went in it on your own.
Check in with most people around 2 p.m. in the afternoon and you'll see lots of people in sleepy trances.
Pathological love relationships are exhausting and take their toll on your body through stress, diet, loss of sleep, and worry. While you are worn down and fatigued you are more suggestible to the kinds of things that are said to you in that state of mind. These things sink in at a deeper level.
If he is telling you that you are crazy, or you didn't see him do what you think he did, or that the problems of the relationship are because of you...those statements said to you when you are suggestible stay put in your subconscious.
If he tells you positives when you are in trance states such as "He needs you and please don't ever leave him" -- those phrases too are stored in a subconscious location working you over without your knowledge. When it's time to redirect your beliefs about him, disengage, or break up women feel like 'old tapes' are running in their heads. And they could be right about that!
Women who are high in suggestibility and fatiguability are more at risk of trance-like states in which words, meanings, and symbols are more concretely stored in the subconscious.
You aren't crazy---it really DOES feel like you are under his spell!
THURSDAY, JANUARY 10, 2008
AM I "UNDER HIS SPELL"? - PART II
We started to talk about the very REAL issue of trance in relationship with pathologicals in the last post.
Women feel 'under his spell,' 'spell bound,' ' mesmerized,' 'hypnotized,' 'spaced out,' 'not in control of their own thoughts....' All of these are ways of saying that various levels of covert and subtle mind-control have been happening with the pathological. And why wouldn't it be happening? These are power-hungry people who live to exert their dominance over others.
That includes your body, mind or spirit. Mind Control techniques are used on prisoners of war, in cults, and in hostage taking. It obviously works or there wouldn't be 'techniques' and bad people wouldn't use it.
Mind control, brain washing, coersion...are all words for the same principles that are used to produce the results of reducing your own effectiveness and being emotionally overtaken by someone intent on doing so.
•Perceived threat to one's physical or psychological survival and the belief that the captor/perpetrator would carry out the threat.
•Perceived small kindness from the captor/perpetrator to the captive.
•Isolation from perspectives other than those of the captor/perpetrator.
•Perceived inability to escape.
Mind control then produces dissociation which is a form of trance states. It's when your mind becomes overloaded and you need to 'step outside of yourself' to relieve the stress. Dissociation and trance happens during abuse in childhood as well or adult rape. Prolonged mind control in adults will even produce trance states where adults begin to feel like they are being controlled. And they are...
Treatment and recovery for mind control includes:
* Breaking the Isolation - Help the client identify sources of supportive intervention; Self-help groups or group therapy (group needs to be homogeneous to needs), also hot lines, crisis centers, shelters and friends.
* Identifiying Violence - As victims in abusive relationships minimize the abuse, or are in so much denial it may be necessary to ask directly about the different types of violent behavior. Many woman (and children) are confused about what is acceptable male (parental / authority) behavior. Journal keeping, autobiographical writing, reading of first hand accounts or seeing films that deal with abuse may be helpful to clients.
* Perceived Kindness - Encourage the client to develop alternative sources of nurturance and caring other than the captor/perpetrator.
* Validating both Love and Terror - Helping the client integrate both disassociated 'sides' of the abuser, will assist her in giving up her dream-like state in how she sees him.
Next week, we'll continue our discussion on other forms of trance states and spell bound conditions.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 17, 2008
AM I "UNDER HIS SPELL"? - Part III
The past two weeks we have been talking about trance states, dissociation, hypnotic suggestion, mind control... all ways the pathological controls your mind, thoughts, feelings, and ultimately your behavior.
This is not hocus pocus stuff. Trance states, dissociation and hypnosis are all normal parts of the way our body and minds respond to certain conditions. The only argument is if these pathologicals KNOW they are doing it to others! My answer would be yes: they are masters at noticing what works on other people. So to that degree, they tweak what works.
Additionally, many of you may be aware of the seminars, books, websites and now TV shows about 'seduction' and the techniques that are taught men about coming in under the radar in seducing women through hypnotic methods. My guess is that the pathologicals are teaching their findings to others... passing on the horrid knowledge of their own disorders and how to covertly attract women subconsciously into sexual relationships. Appaulling? You bet. Just one more big WAKE UP CALL to women -- pay attention and guard your minds.
Trance, mind control and hypnotic suggestion also are based on one's own level of 'suggestibility'. This is related to how responsive you are to the suggestions and opinions of others. The more responsive you are, the more suggestible and more easily you are mind controlled or hypnotizible.
A women's suggestibility is often influenced by her own biology. Women who are highly cooperative and value how others perceive them are likely to be more suggestible.
Also, women's fatiguability highly influences her suggestibility.
Almost all women report high levels of emotional, physical, sexual, financial, and spiritual fatigue with pathological relationships. They take a toll on her -- wearing her down until her emotional reserves that would normally not give in, are repressed.
At that time when her fatigue level is high, her suggestibility is also high. Tired and spaced out, it's easy to get controlled by him.
Messages that are told to her during tired and spaced out times are recorded deeply and yet often subconsciously. "Can't get him out of your head?" is very real.
The women who participated in our research survey on 'women who love psychopaths' showed us just how suspectible you group of women really are to sugggestibility, fatiguibilty, and the resulting mind control. Almost all of the women experienced some form of trance, hypnosis, mind control of 'spell bound' symptoms.
Women must understand that 'staying in the relationship to figure it out' or 'see what happens' or 'wait til he works on himself and gets better' is absolutely risky for you. Your ability to be controlled covertly by him is significantly higher than other females.
Until women really understand their 'at risk' temperament traits and how they affect her choices in relationships and TOLERANCE in relationships, she remains significantly likely to either not leave or pick the same way the next time around...
Ladies, hope and healing are available. For the first time, we really UNDERSTAND the dynamics involved in what you have lived through. The research has opened up incredible insights into your temperament and your relationship dynamics. Now specific and uniquely targeted treatment can begin! Please, let The Institute be part of your recovery!
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