PREVIOUS: Manipulation & Needs (Part 1)
REMINDER: See ACRONYM page for abbrev.
ACoAs MANIPULATING OURSELVES
While we think of ourselves as victims – which we were as children BUT are no longer – we are now victimized internally by our Negative Introject as well as our damaged Adapted Child, who desperately clings to the old ways. Fed by the PP & constantly reinforced by the WIC, Self-Hate carries a powerful energy – to prevent us from being able to S & I, in order to have a better, more satisfying life.
Even in Recovery, some of find it very hard to shift out of paranoia, self-destructiveness, hopelessness & procrastination. These & many other ‘character defects’ are expressions of our WIC, who is looking for parents to take care of her/him, & is adamantly opposed to having our own positive UNIT be that caretaker! (inner parent & adult). In truth, the WIC only wants the original parents – to love us unconditionally.
A kids, because we were continually around addicts, abusers – Wounded Children themselves – in our most vulnerable years, we had no choice but to absorb their distorted view of us, themselves & the world. Most of what they passed on to us are manipulations – anything to not look at themselves or take responsibility for their words & actions. Sadly, we are doing exactly the same thing – which many of deny & are insulted at the very suggestion.
Program & others Personal Growth modalities tell that all Recovery & emotional maturity is “an inside job”, yet many of us keep focusing outside of ourselves. So, while we only think of Manipulation as something done to others, for us as ACoAs, the most intense manipulation is internal, coming from the PP who controls the WIC, who in turn constantly tries to convince our rational self of what the PP is saying. The PP is especially loud when we try to take the power away from it – to take care of ourselves, by loving our Inner Child (wounded & healthy parts) in all the ways our original family never could.
PP’s Manipulation (Negative Introject)
Everything the WIC believes originally came from the people we grew up with. Now the PP is in our head, continuing the barrage of lies. To keep us attached to the toxic family system, it uses every dirty trick in the book to paralyze us. It’s made up of the ‘us/we’, a composite of the adults who programmed our thinking & outlook on life.
It says to the WIC:
— you’re crazy, over-reacting, too sensitive
— you don’t know what you’re talking about
— you can’t do it without us, you’re too weak
— WE NEED you, only WE count, we’re suffering
— you don’t really feel that way
— you’ll be sorry when we’re gone
— you’re ungrateful – look at everything we’ve done for you
— it was never that bad, you’re just being a dram queen/king
— you owe us, we did the best we could
PROBLEM: Physically an Adult, but still emotionally immature:
1. We believe these manipulative lies, so we consistently, persistently don’t counter the lies the WIS & PP are selling, perpetuating our S-H
2. In reality we do have intuition, we’ve accumulated a great deal of knowledge & experiences, had moments of clarity, have very real choices & opportunities…. which the WIC ignores, forgets or completely negates
3. There have been a few people who have helped us along the way, we have had a few pleasurable moments, there have been a few opportunities to heal & grow, but we undervalue or deny them completely! And for some us – there have been more than a few. Yet we let the underlying Toxic Messages keep winning out.
It’s important to remember that we all have an Inner Parent, but for us as ACoAs & addicts, one part of this Ego State (voice) is usually contemptuous & cruel, while another part may be kindly but weak, both sides neglectful in important ways.
“Introjections involve attitudes, behaviors, emotions & perceptions that are usually gathered from influential or authoritative people in one’s life. They are neither digested nor analyzed; they are simply adopted as a part of one’s personality as concepts that one considers should be believed or behaviors that one thinks ought to be followed.” (MORE…..)
• Freudian: Introjection is “The internalization of authority” – the demands & expectation of our parents, & so by extension society, which become part of our personality structure. This creates a conflict between externally imposed rules & our own repressed, socially unacceptable, desires & needs. However, (except for psychotics / sociopaths / malignant narcissists), the super-ego provides an endless self-policing process, to reinforce family restrictions long after the original authority is changed, unavailable or gone.
• Object Relations Theory: D. W. Winnicott said that when we use the defense mechanisms of projection or introjection …. we (temporarily) hand over omnipotence to another person, letting them be our manager – even tho they may never be aware of it!
NEXT: Manipulating OURSELVES (Part 2b)