ACoAs being “RIGHT” (Part 3a)

IF I’M THE ONLY ONE WHO’S RIGHT
everyone else is worthless!

PREVIOUS: Being Right (#2)

SITE: 38 (
unhealthy) Ways to Win an Argument w/chart

• ‘The art of being right” = some of those 38 ways explained

DEFs:
▶︎ Right = A belief or action conforming to facts or truth. What is most favorable or desired
❖ Self-righteous = Convinced of one’s own righteousness (being perfect, therefore superior, even when well-hidden from most others), especially in stark contrast to the actions & beliefs of others. Being narrow-mindedly, moralistic. ~ Webster’s dictionary

REMINDER: BR comes in various degrees of intensity. You may have a touch of it, or it may run your whole way of interacting with others.

ACoA addicted to Being Right (aBR)
PAST: We suffered thru an abusive, controlling & neglected upbringing, Constantly forced to give up our way of thinking, doing or feeling around a Right-ist – we reacted as kids by fighting, fleeing, freezing or appeasing, (see Part 1) depending on our personal preference, which became our long-term style.
In general, being flooded with fear & anger temporarily diminishes the capacity to use the frontal cortex, which is needed for thinking, decision-making & self-control. Over time this has had long-term physical & mental consequences. As childhood victims of a Right-ist, we gradually became less able to express ourselves, seemingly less competent & articulate (brain-freeze). We may have seemed stupid, making the bullying Right-ist even more convinced of their superiority.

• With some oppressive authority figures, BR was dangerous because it showed them up & was considered ‘arrogant’, slowly forming our belief that we don’t know anything

• With others, a way to survive & avoid punishment was to always get it right, prove it without mistakes & to justify ourselves – forming the assumption that we must know everything.

🚦Double bind: Some of us were constantly told we were ignorant / stupid / unteachable – while at the same time expected to take care of them as if we were adults trained in several professions!

NOW: Always having to be right can be used as a protective cover, giving us a sense of stability & control. Projecting our scary childhood onto the whole world, we assume everything is still & forever unsafe, thus the assumption we need to be perfect – to prevent further danger.  Still desperate to please so we won’t keep getting abandoned, we wobble on the fence between these 2 false beliefs (know everything, know nothing), inevitably falling off, inevitably feeling miserable. This original dilemma has left us with rage & S-H, alternating between rebellion & paralysis.

• Many grew up with one or more severe narcissist – who always had to have their way. Then some of us took up the Right-ist mantle & carry it forward, tromping on others as we were tromped on. (See Right-ist characteristics – Part 2)

— SUBTLE but pervasive – perfectionism is aBR in disguise. We can keep this obsession better hidden, but the obvious result is decades of procrastination

— BLATANT: Wanting & insisting on getting our own way – most or all of the time – is the narcissism of the False Self, a common character flaw of wounded people (the majority!). We will push & push to get others to see that our way is the not only correct – but the only possibility.

As ‘dedicated’ Right-ists we negate or prevent input from others, no matter how logical. We’re so caught up in this defensive strategy that we’ll argue our point endlessly, trying to manipulate everyone in our life, even other people’s thoughts – especially in situations that are truly & totally beyond our control, such as with the active addicts we love (See “The Serenity Prayer backwards“)

• Feeling superior (aBR), we may not even realize our anxiety is temporarily relieved when we get our way: “I knew I was right! Now that you’ve got that straight, we can go on.” It calms us – our security blanket in our unsafe world. But it’s a false solution because our damage is still lurking in the background, waiting for someone or something to set it off. Unhealed, we’re driven by old, deep terror.

• But like any addiction, having to BR is very stressful – always vigilant, afraid to make a mistake, never truly safe, never comfortable.
While outside it shows up in the form of false pride – the need to feel important or better than everyone else, inside it’s driven by inadequacy & shame – which we may not even be aware of! Especially if we need to be seen as innocent, good & all-knowing, we’ll use charm & manipulation, alternating with anger & intimidation to force our agenda on others.

However, all we end up doing is alienating others by being high maintenance, or taking psychological prisoners of the insecure. In the process we sacrifice our own well-being.

NEXT:  Being right #3b

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ACoAs being ‘RIGHT’ (Part 2)

IF I’M NOT RIGHT,
then
who am I?

PREVIOUS: Being Right (Part 2)

SITE: Addicted to being right

QUOTE: “People who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do.”   Isaac Asimov

⬆️ IMAGE designed & assembled by DMT

 

WHAT’S WRONG With Being ‘Right’?
Unhealthy (mild): The narcissist in us (& every ACoA has one) will think or say “If I can see this so clearly, why in the world can’t you? // If I can do that task, what’s your problem? // If I love that, I assume you will too. If not, why not?!”
This attitude makes no sense at all. Even identical twins are different in some fundamental ways. One person is not automatically better or more correct than another – just different. (See “Symbiosis & ACoAs #3“)

Unhealthy (severe)
Addicted to being right (aBR)
NOTE: This character defect (cognitive distortion) applies to those adults we grew up with, AND to those of us who have copied them, as well as anyone we’re ‘stuck to’ as adults who is like that

A Closed System – The state of a person or thing being isolated from its surrounding environment.
ONE: This applies to anyone so rigid in their opinions that they can’t let in anything which differs from their own determined ‘correctness’

TWO:  2 people, a Dominant (D) & a Submissive (S) personality, who interact in an ongoing feedback loop, constantly exchanging limited, often distorted, info – characterized by coercion/compliance, co-dependence, sameness & symbiosis

Such a system discourages a feeling of concern, equality, or desire to change in the D, & disallows autonomy, questioning, rocking the boat, separateness, speaking up or taking a stand – for the S. (MORE….)

GROUPS: (family, academia, church… )
Such groups discourage change, differences, disrupting the status quo, equality, independence, objecting, questioning, or taking a stand.
They tends to promote factions, gossip, immaturity, repression, secrets & triangulation. It makes members reactive & anxious, even if this is hidden from each other. They don’t feel safe to question or disagree, for fear of disapproval, punishment or rejection. (MORE…)

🔒 At the extreme ‘right’ we find the ‘Right-ists’.

RIGHT-ists are in a world of their own, extremely self-absorbed & arrogant – which makes most others frustrated & angry when having to deal with them. To them, the accuracy or importance of whatever point they’re pushing is not as relevant as their need to be agreed with. Their rigid thinking is used in a power struggle to bring everyone else to their knees – psychologically, mentally & emotionally.

NOTE: Some right-ists camouflage their compulsion by seeming concerned for others’ well-being, sounding reasonable or just giving ‘helpful’ suggestions. But all the while they’re trying to control their environment – to make it conform to their world-view.
One hint: they consistently make suggestions, give advice & offer help – unsolicited & often unwanted by others. DO NOT be taken in by the presentation. If your own opinions & needs are often or always ignored or over-ruled – you’re dealing with a sneak-narcissist.

EXP: When ranting about anything she thinks is wrong – with a person or in the world – one woman heads off any logic, comment or disagreement from her long-suffering husband with the command: “Just say YES!”
Sadly, unhealed insecure co-dependents have a tendency to attach themselves to such narcissists, believing that being told what think & feel is a way of being taken care of (loved). NOT!

Re. SELF. THEY:
• need the world to revolve around them
• are rigid & controlling, so they don’t work well with others
• lack empathy, have no patience with others & are often snide
• experience opposing or simply different opinions as a direct threat to their sense of well-being
• can become quite aggressive in order to eliminate the threat to their (secret or unconscious) weak self-image

Re. OTHERS. THEY:
• can’t imagine that other people actually have different needs & opinions from their own (NPD = “Put a sweater on, I’m cold”)
• may push their good info from ‘good intentions’, without considering that they’re boundary invading, discrediting another’s process & being arrogant (“others NEED me”)
• alienate others without realizing it, OR of they do, they’re puzzled as
to why, & then assume it’s the other person’s fault
• regard other people’s ideas or viewpoints as inferior or worthless, often losing out on wonderful opportunities & relationships
• can end up isolated & deprived of love, affection, companionship…. unless they find a passive person who uses the ‘Right-ist’ to think for them!

NEXT: Being Right (Part 3a)

ACoAs being ‘RIGHT’ (Part 1)

IF I DON’T INSIST
no one will pay attention!

PREVIOUS: Psychopath Red flags #3

SITE:
 Why is it so important to be right?  

QUOTE: “Everything that is in agreement with our personal desires seems true. Everything that is not puts us in a rage.”~ Andre Maurois

What does ‘being right’ (BR) mean?
a. OK : Generally refers to having accurate information, knowing the right way to do something, or being sure of who we are, what we want, how we feel… It can be about:
Assertiveness: being accurately sure about a subject or a person (“I know what I know”) & not afraid to stand by it
Justice: fighting for what is just & right, especially in the face of opposition, but not for personal gain or to feed one’s ego
OR
b. NOT OK : Trying to force others to see our point of view & see the world exactly the way we do. It can be from:
Narcissism: needing others to agree with us (“I’m right & you’re not”), in order to preserve the False Persona we’ve carefully crafted to cover up feeling insecure & vulnerable 
Symbiosis: the need/demand that others are just like us (“agree with me”) in order to not feel alone & abandoned
🚫 BOTH are being out of touch with one’s True Self

SO – it’s important to know when it’s legitimate to be right or not
Al-Anon tells us to ask ourselves “Do I want to be right or do I want to be happy?” It’s a choice between getting our way (at any cost) OR having peaceful encounters with others.
This Q. is addressed to those of us who are co-dependents & addicts, since it would be a rare issue for healthy people. We can also say that Right and Happy are really not opposite ends of a spectrum. Instead it’s about the right/freedom of others to have their own point of view, AND being OK/safe with their right/freedom.

● The Q. comes up when we are having a disagreement with someone & feel an internal pressure (from the PP or the WIC) to get them to do something our way, to understand our point or to agree with our opinion – in order to feel connected. This can only happen if we still have a great deal of unresolved abandonment fear. Remembering the co-dep Triangle (Rescuer-Victim-Persecutor), even victims can become bullies when terrified & desperate to not feel but off.

● It’s a tricky Q. for us to answer because:
— some of us go along with whatever others say just to ‘keep the peace’ but really it’s to not have the other person be angry or leave us
— some of us never agree with anyone for fear of being swallowed up & disappear (used as a false boundary)
— other can manage disagreements in some situations (casual friends, co-workers….) but not in others – when we are attached to a person or position (lover, job…) our WIC desperately feels it needs.

The Brain Is Hooked on Being Right
In situations of high stress, fear or distrust – like being wrong, ignored or laughed at – our brain chemistry (cortisol….) makes ‘decisions’ about how best to protect itself. We default to 1 of 4 responses:
appease –‘make nice’ by simply agreeing
flight – revert to or hide behind group consensus
freeze – mentally disengage, or shut up
fight – keep arguing the point, which is the hardest on relationships, & unfortunately the most common

Fighting is partly due to other neuro-chemicals. When we argue & win, our brain floods with adrenaline & dopamine, making us feel good, dominant, even invincible. It’s understandable that we’d want to repeat those feelings. So the next time we’re in a tense situation, we fight again, & over time will get addicted to being ‘right’.
BUT if we are getting high from being one-up, then the other person / group is one-down & therefore diminished.

NEXT: Being Right (Part 2)

RED FLAGS from Psychopaths (Part 3)

 

ALL OF THEIR CHARM
is a lie, but hard to resist

PREVIOUS: Psychopath RED FLAGS #2

BOOKs: “Psychopath FREE”

 

 

3. GENERAL  (cont.)
• Physical — Psychopaths need very little sleep – maybe 4-5 hrs a night. They’re always on the go, searching for new stimulation
— Research indicates they have a poor sense of smell – have a hard time identifying something or knowing the difference between smells
— They seem to have little or no body odor, maybe from frequent showers, carrying deodorant or a change of clothes – all to make a good impression

No startle response – they have a total absence of anxiety, fear & worry – where there would be in a ‘normal’ person. They always seem to be calm, rarely stressed or nervous. This may be the result of decreased activity in the amygdala (emotion center of the brain)

No boundaries – they invade personal space, standing too close. Research shows that ‘cold-hearted’ (inter-personally aloof) people prefer less distance between themselves & others. It may be a subtle symptom of aggression, as in “In your face”

Lie & make excuses – about everything, even when it’s not necessary, & can make up lies faster than you can question them

Hating – they’re obsessed with humiliating anyone who is successful, kind & cheerful, like delighting in breaking up friendships & marriages

Thirst for attention & adoration is obsessive & insatiable. You thought you were the only one who could make them happy, but now you feel that anyone with a pulse could fill the role. They will drain you dry, but no one can fill the void in a psychopath’s soul


4. REACTIONS (Results in you, the ‘Receiver’ of P-A)
Denial – You feel on edge around this person, but you still want them to like you. You write off most of their questionable behavior as accidental or insensitive, because you’re insecure & in constant competition with others for their attention & praise

•  No fighting – you’re afraid that any way you disagree with them could be the end. Normal couples argue to resolve issues, but psychopaths make it clear that unpleasant conversations will jeopardize the relationship, especially anything to do with their behavior. You apologize & forgive quickly, otherwise you know they’ll lose interest

Research – You find yourself playing detective, looking for answers to a feeling you can’t quite explain. It’s never happened in your other relationship, but suddenly you’re checking their old emails, cell phone texts, search logs, old Facebook pages & pics, about their ex…..

Explaining (a) – You desperately ask them to imagine how they’d feel if you treated them in a hurtful way, but they just stare at you blankly. No adult should have to be told how they are making other people feel. But psychopaths can’t seem to put themselves in your shoes, or anyone else’s either.  If it doesn’t bother them, why would it bother you?

•  Explaining (b) You find yourself trying to get across the basic elements of human respect to a full-grown adult. ‘Normal’ people understand the fundamental concepts of honesty & kindness, but not a psychopath. They don’t have a conscience.

Insecurity – During & after the relationship, you’ll spend a lot more time in front of the mirror. (Thank You to “ckwanderlust” for their valuable insights)

.• Crazed – After being around a psychopath for a while, you’ll feel insane, exhausted, drained, shocked, suicidal & empty. You’ve torn your entire life apart for them – spending money, ending friendships, searching for some sort of reason behind it all. None of it worked & there is no sane explanation. Psychopaths are hollow, deliberately using people & then discarding them like soiled clothes.

It’s not you! Their treatment was never about you! What you’re responsible for is staying with someone who mistreated you. That you can change – but never them!

KNOWLEDGE – If you’re wise enough to be on the outside looking at the psychopath, you may be the only one who knows that something’s seriously wrong with them. But no one will listen. Psychopaths are able to maintain superficial friendships far longer than ‘intimate’ relationships.
Friends, family, co-workers will think he/she is great, even though they’ve been taken advantage of, even outright scammed. Unfortunately, ‘victims’ won’t object because they’re strategically distracted with shallow attention & praise – often on social media.
All you can do is say what is true & then let go!

NOTE: These Red Flags have been updated, based on survey responses from more than 1,000 survivors! Qs which also include info on Arrogance,  Covert Gossiping……

NEXT: Being ‘Right’ #1

RED FLAGS from Psychopaths (Part 1)

grating sound
NOTICE HOW OUT OF TUNE

they are with the rest of us

PREVIOUS: 

SITE: Movie Psychopaths – Most & Least realistic 


BASED ON: “30 Red Flags of Manipulative People”

You will find that many of these Red Flags are contradictory – which is part of the psychopath’s bag of tricks. Don’t be fooled, because if  you believe their initial con-job, then they can keep you off balance, & you stay hooked.

★ We always need to be awake for what people are telling us about themselves – in all relationships. One Red Flag to look for is:
Always be suspicious of anyone who comes on too strong, too attentive & complimentary, too easily ‘attached’ – almost as soon as they meet you, even if some of what they say about you is accurate. They simply don’t know you yet, so all their sweet-talk is a form of manipulation & narcissism. It’s creepy!

Healthy people are not taken in by this – they can ‘feel’ such a person’s inappropriateness, whether from neediness or as a self-serving hook. They take the time to slowly get to know others, allowing the process to unfold the truth. This is especially important for ACoAs, who are looking for a symbiotic, instant attachment – but which makes us vulnerable to being used & then thrown away!

1. RELATIONAL Manipulation
Declare you are their soul mate – in the beginning: psychopaths will tell you how much you have in common, they just can’t believe how perfect you are for them, let you do all the talking…. so you’re enchanted

Flatter your deepest insecurities, mirroring your greatest fantasies, playing whatever role is necessary to win your heart. EXP:
— If you’re self-conscious about your looks, they’ll say you’re the sexiest person in the world
— If you have a need to be entertaining, they’ll say you’re the funniest most interesting person they’ve ever known….

Over-emphasize emotions, verbally, but not ever show any themselves. Make passionate statements like “I’ve never felt so happy in my life”, but in a robotic, detached voice – like an alien trying to imitate human feelings

Bait & Switch. After the initial seduction & idealization phase, they stop the compliments & flattery, then undermine your self-esteem by being degrading & belittling

Ultimate hypocrite. Psychopaths expect you to be their perfect mate, demanding total fidelity, respect & admiration – while they cheat, lie, steal & use you emotionally

Withhold attention. Once you’re hooked they suddenly become withdrawn & physically uninterested – without any obvious reason or explanation. They act bored, like it’s a chore to be intimate, completely annoyed that you expect to continue the passionate relationship they started.
It make you desperate & needy, ensuring that you’ll always be the one to initiate contact

Provoke emotional reactions – deliberately setting you up. EXP:
— call you jealous after blatantly flirting with their ex on social media
— call you needy after intentionally ignoring you for 3 days straight…..

Non-reactive – they’re cool, calm & collected & want you to feel inferior or over-sensitive for having normal human emotions & reactions

Insult you in a joking but condescending way, subtly minimizing your intelligence & achievements, such as smirk any time you try to express yourself

Controlling – They tell you what to of, say & feel. The try to ‘fix’ you up, obsessed with your appearance, making comments about what you’re wearing  & how you look, always picking at you, pointing out flaws that don’t even exist

Teasing you becomes their major style of communication – “just joking”! If you point this out, they call you hypersensitive, paranoid & crazy

• Silent treatment: If they stop talking to you for several days, it’s to show their displeasure because it was your fault for expecting too much from them, for ruining their plans, for not being available when they wanted you…. & they’ll play the victim as an excuse for not telling you

Spotlight – always shining it on your faults and ignoring their own. If you point out their mistakes, they’re quick to point the finger back at you.
EXP:
— If they’re 2 hours late, they remind you that you were once 5 minutes late to your first date
— If they’ve forgotten to keep a promise, they remind you of the time you didn’t buy the milk you said you’d pick it up for their breakfast…..

Gaslighting. Psychopaths blatantly deny their own manipulative behavior, ignoring clear evidence when confronted with it. They get angry if you try to disprove their denial / delusions using facts

NEXT: Red Flags, #2

DEALING with P-As: Managing (Part 5)


I’LL DO WHAT I CAN
but it’s not all up to me!

PREVIOUS: Dealing with PAs – #4

SITE: Confronting P-A behavior
 re. resistance to being confronted = #4

 

OUR RESPONSES
Set limits, set consequences – & then follow through.
CRUCIAL: Identify the P-A’s dysfunctional behavior, & then state what it will cost them to continue it – with you. It’s a powerful tool – throwing down the gauntlet. It says you’re not the pushover they’re used to dealing with. Their maneuvers are basically a power struggle – with the whole world, but especially against anyone they see as an authority figure – in relation to themselves (spouse, teacher, family member, church, governments….) . So you can’t let it pass.

One of the biggest mistakes Receivers make is to be much too lenient. Once you give in to the P-A’s pattern, you’ve lost the game they’re playing. Ignoring or going along with their tactics, or taking on their responsibilities, is enabling & encourage them to continue.

Although you don’t want to provoke an angry confrontation, you also don’t need to be the P-A’s punching bag. Make it clear that you won’t tolerate being mistreated. It’s your right to set boundaries. This is equally true about their language & their non-actions, all of which are forms of abuse & therefore damaging to your relationship, & to work outcomes. For most people it takes practice to be assertive, & sometimes even courage.

Offer one or more serious/important consequences. Said simply & calmly, it may make them think twice about their automatic reactions & perhaps encourage them to modify their behavior – shifting from obstruction to cooperation. READ  7  types of power that encourages positive change.

Make sure the punishment fits the crime. Because P-A patterns are so frustrating, consequences/punishments can quickly go overboard (like screaming “I’m never ever talking to you again!” in the heat of the moment). Taking a time-out for yourself can help to come up with the best response. AND – you may need to talk to someone you trust to give you another perspective – or just a word of encouragement to stay strong. There’s nothing weak or shameful in getting support.

EXP
: If this problem has gone on for too long – decide: Do I just need a break, or is it time to end the friendship altogether? / Is this person  needed in this job, or should I fire them?….. OR – If someone is habitually late to meet you at an agreed upon time – after the 3rd or 4th time Let them know that from now on that you’ll only wait 15 min. & then leave. Don’t keep waiting.

So no matter what their reaction is to being called out, as an Rs you need to stand pat about how much you’re willing to take going forward. Follow through on the limits you set – to let the P-A know you’re not willing to pay the price for their acting out.
If possible, give the P-A a chance to help solve the problem at hand, asking them for constructive, practical solutions to improve or fix the situation (at work or at home). BUT if all you get are complaints & criticisms, don’t agree or disagree. Just say that you’ll keep what they said in mind, & go back to the point

Reinforce appropriate/good behavior – with the goal of increasing its frequency. It can be: punishing bad responses or rewarding good ones – which are harder so notice. So be on the lookout for positive changes – which include expressions of true emotions & any unhealthy tactic not done.

Decide when to detach or avoid the P-A completely. If you’ve given them every chance to ‘correct’, spoken to them reasonable, given them options &/or consequences – AND nothing changes – it’s perfectly reasonable to spend a lot less time with them or end the relationship. Sometimes this can be very difficult & painful, but you have to put your own well-being first. (Self-care)
However, if it’s a casual acquaintance – it’s easier to just avoid them.

What can help you deal with a P-A you care deeply about is to focus on their best qualities. Make a list & add to it if/when you see positive changes. Sometimes reinforcing the best in others will give them a reason to improve themselves.
NOTE: This does not apply to active addicts or other narcissists. Their S-H won’t allow for compliments & their acting-out can not be reinforced or excused.

NEXT: P-A

Passive Aggressives – Review for ACoAs (Part 3)

not Pass-Agg 

WHAT A CONCEPT:
Honest doesn’t mean hostile. 
Pleasant doesn’t mean passive!

PREVIOUS: Passive-Aggressive ACoAs (Part 2)

SITEs:” Emotionally Volatile People
• “Difficult People & how to Handle Them

 

REVIEW (cont.)
3. CAUSEs of the game
ACoAs – from our family, school, religion…. we were NOT allowed :
• to be angry, to the point of not even knowing we are!
• to know what we wanted, how we felt, what we preferred (being too much of an individual got smashed – so it left us confused)
• to ask for anything (don’t bother them)
• taught to never put ourselves first
AND
• always had to always be perfect (no mistakes) – so better not choose anything
• no matter what we did, we were punished, so we couldn’t win
• safer to not be too visible (in a dangerous family, & later in abusive relationships)
taking any risk was discouraged, made fun of, punished (so now we can’t risk ‘failing’& being disappointed)

4. EFFECTs of the game
a. Negative BenefitsWE DON’T:
• have to figure out who we are, what we want & need
• have to disobey any of the toxic family rules
• have to admit we’re angry, even raging, underneath
• have to stand up to the ‘control freaks
• have to make a mistake & deal then with the consequences
• AND we get to blame others when something goes wrong
• & maintain the illusion of being nurtured (taken care of by others)

b. Negative Consequences:
• we are dis-empowered, loose self-esteem, stay a victim, are infantilized, stay mute, don’t risk anything
• always feel scared of losing people (FoA), of being disapproved
• increases our Self-Hate & Loneliness

• never get what we really want, unless by accident or by luck
• lose out on many opportunities to grow, to be heard, to have fun
• always feel scared of losing people, of being disapproved of
• make other people mad at us, a lot! for forcing them to carry all the responsibility & then getting blamed

4. HEALTHY
a. General: We need to identify
• all the ways we were hurt as kids, including the specific messages we got & still obey, like ‘don’t feel’ , ‘don’t talk’ (Toxic Rules)
• prevent the Wounded Inner Child from running our life BY growing a Healthy Adult & Loving Parent  who then can make executive decisions about how to own & express our needs
book-end with the IC, to outgrow living in the past. If done consistently, it will teach the IC the difference between what’s possible & real in the present, vs the way it was in our dysfunctional family

b. For Passive-Aggressives – we need to:
own our resenpassiveagrro3tments, anger, rage, bitterness, which are hidden
• learn safe ways of discharging our rage & healthy ways of expressing it to others, when it’s needed
• practice saying what we need, want, like, prefer – to find out that nothing bad happens to us or others
• stop looking for other people to be in charge of our lives, tell us what to do, make our decisions & choices
• keep a safe distance from anyone who is easily provoked to anger

Practice making ‘I statements’ every day, silently to yourself, so that it becomes easier & easier to say out loud:  “I want… I need… I don’t like… I’d rather…  that’s not for me… ” UNTIL it’s second nature!

c. For Volatiles – we need to:
• find out what’s under the rage: the reality of child abuse & neglect we lived thru, and the pain it created
• accept that the rage is legitimate, but our actions are not always healthyScreen Shot 2016-06-17 at 10.24.27 PM.png
• work on getting our rage out in safe, appropriate places (therapy groups, 12-step programs, doing rage-work at home, drawing, writing…)

own our Inner Sadist: make friends with it, but don’t ever let it act out
• learn calming techniques (bio-feedback, meditation, prayer, visualizations…)
• become safe enough to feel what’s underneath – grief, sadness, loneliness, hurt, sorrow, vulnerability
• keep a distance from P-As, who try to pull us in by their surface charm & ‘interest’ in us

Practice comforting & mentally holding the IC, so he/she doesn’t feel so alone with all it’s pain.  Give ourselves permission to cry – it is not a weakness – no matter what our family taught us!  Crying clears out toxins & releases pent-up emotional stress. It’s very necessary!

Realistically, while P-As can definitely work on having permission to express anger & rage, it’s usually up to the V. to STOP the game, stop reacting to / expecting (anything) from the P-A. Maybe even have to leave!

NEXT: Qs – Are you P-A?