ACoAs & Emotional Immaturity (Part 3)

putting things off  

no matter what it takes! 

PREVIOUS: Emotional Immaturity (# 2)

REMINDER: ACRONYM Page for abbrev.

QUOTE:  “Jealousy is a disease, love is a healthy condition. The immature mind often mistakes one for the other, or assumes that the greater the love, the greater the jealousy. In fact, they are incompatible. One emotion hardly leaves room for the other.” Robert Heinlein

Listed elsewhere are some the CDs (Cognitive Distortions) which are the mainstay of the immature (WIC) way of ‘understanding’ the world. CDs CAUSE:
— inappropriate behaviors or inactivity, from flaws in our logic. A form of B & W thinking, always leading to false conclusions
— can cause misreading & then misinterpretation of social cues, so we ignore the cues completely or react badly to them by projecting our assumptions on to others
— stuck in flawed beliefs about ourselves (S-H) & others (judgmentalism)
— not taking seriously any point of view different from our own

— addicted to adrenalin, drama & various forms of dangerstimulus hunger
— have poor impulse control, including an inability to delay gratification (“I want it now, now, now”- even Recovery!)
— demand instant results from ourselves & others, so have poor follow-thru. Our promising beginnings end in failure for lack of persistence, so our gifts & skills are often wasted
— have superficial values and are too concerned with trivia (appearance, social position, money & possessions, sexual desirability…)

— don’t look beyond ourselves, still having the child’s delusion that the world revolves around us, so can’t have satisfying relationship
— have a great need for what we want & demand immediate fulfillment of desires. Shout & command to be catered to, feeling we can’t bear to wait    Screen Shot 2015-08-02 at 9.02.05 AM
— are usually artificial and inconsiderate, tactless and selfish
— secretly believe that we’re somehow special, so demand constant attention, sympathy & unearned respect, to make up for the S-H & trying to avoid any sign of weakness
— fish for compliments, and have unreasonable expectations of others
— extremely competitive, a poor loser, perfectionistic & refuse to play or work if we can’t have our own way

— fear, distrust, anger & anxiety are our basic emotional reactions to life
— whenever we feel out of control we act inappropriately
— want the whole world to be safe for ourselves, so try to make everyone & everything conform to their view of what’s right & wrong
— try to force others to be just like ourselves, or our ideal
— can’t stand others having separate needs & wants different from ours
— obsess about how to get others to think like us, resort to all sorts of unhealthy behaviors to get our way, often times at the cost of our once-loving relationship

— experience the world as so threatening so hide our fear by subtly invalidating others (undermining), double talk, guilt, acting weak & incompetent, playing on other’s sympagrudge-holdingthy….
— highly self-absorbed, unsympathetic, passive-aggressive (covert hostility)
— hold onto unexpressed resentments, while our real intentions & behaviors are hostile: the con man, the gossip, the martyr, the two-face
— pretend to have emotional stability which is we don’t actually have
— not able to face reality as an adult, we tend to LIE quite often, as a defense mechanism, even about small things, especially when not necessary. We gradually forfeit the trust of friends, family, and co-workers

Opposing people & ideas – we’re emotionally rigid, insist there’s only one way to think about or do things – our way (or the highway)
— experience the world as being against us, feel unseen & unheard, which can lead to constant debating, arguing, fighting
— OR compulsively isolate, avoiding reality, especially when frustrated
— see everything in B & W (too much or too little, all or nothing)

Oppositional – compulsively take the other side of an opinion or event, even if we secretly agree with it :
— because of a froppositionalagile ego (False Self, WIC), we’re afraid of loosing ourselves if we agree with  someone, instead of having real boundaries
— a way to keep others at arm’s length emotionally
— tend to have great difficulty with any form of real or perceived authority
— resist taking advice & help, even when desperately needed

NEXT: Emotional Maturity – General


3 thoughts on “ACoAs & Emotional Immaturity (Part 3)

  1. I gain so much from your posts, Donna. I’m writing today, though, just to mention that I found Robert Heinlein’s moralizing thoughts on jealousy to be non-useful. I’ve been trained to ignore, suppress, condemn, and I would say, even go so far as to deny my jealousy, and that’s gotten me in trouble a number of times. I don’t recognize jealousy in myself, and I don’t recognize it in others. The latter has led me into situations in which I experienced aggression that I could have avoided if I’d been more aware of how jealousy (and envy) work. I have been working hard not to denigrate myself anymore for jealousy or envy, but to learn from these emotions how I need to take better care of myself. I figure that if I know these feelings in myself, I will more readily recognize them in others. I have really benefitted from Karla McLaren’s take on these feelings, and her idea that they help us navigate our social reality if worked with properly (jealousy warns us of dangers to intimate connections, coming from another or from our own insecurities, and envy alerts us to potential unfair distribution of resources).. Here’s an article she wrote about a “sad, anxious, and jealous” child:


    • Sibylle, thanks for your comment.
      Having read my blog you know I’m a champion of having all our emotions. I’m familiar with Karla’s work & Heinlein’s comment is accurate – jealousy is not a sign of loving another. The bottom line is that envy (between 2 people) & jealousy (between 3 people) is about feeling powerless to get one’s own needs net – not necessarily wanting the object of envy or jealousy itself. And when others try to take what is ours, our deep rooted WIC abandonment fear kicks in.

      I do not judge the jealousy itself. It’s a clue, as you say – to our own insecurity & sense of helplessness. The more we provide for our own needs, the less jealousy – but of course we have be able to feel it first. Many of us were taught such emotions we bad or evil & we suppressed them. All Inner Child emotions are legitimate – but not all are to be acted on – only validated.


      • Hi Donna, thanks for your reply. no of course I’m not suggesting anyone “act out” on jealousy. I think I felt sensitive to the Heinlein comment because I have spent years working on becoming a more loving person… and in my sometimes misguided efforts, really denied the emotions of jealousy and envy for a long time. I think that true self-love includes, as you say, the acceptance of all emotions.


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