Source: Family Systems Theory In Relation To Narcissistic Families (Part Eight) – Societal Emotional Processes
Month: July 2018
Why do abused children of narcissists often become afflicted with cognitive dissonance?
Children of narcissists are continually told one thing, only to experience the opposite. They may be told how loved they are, only to be abandoned when sick. They may be promised a special gift, only to be told when the gift is asked after, that they were never promised the gift.
The child becomes confused and anxious about the parent. They begin to suffer from cognitive dissonance; a very uncomfortable, whole body feeling, which completely takes over the child’s mind and body. Of course, the child often turns the feeling back onto themselves, and blames themselves for the abuse, in an effort to remain attached to their abusive parent.
An alienated child is in a double bind. As an example, a child arrives home smiling, eager to report about the great time spent with dad. Unfortunately, the mother never recovered from the divorce. She certainly does not want to hear about her former spouse. As the child starts discussing the good time at dads, the mother’s emotions begin to fester. She yells at the child. Next, she walks over and holds the child tightly. She glares into the child’s eyes, informing this just seconds ago happy child, that she does not want to hear about time with daddy. The child, startled, starts to cry. In turn, the mother acts concerned, at least for the moment. After that, she places her arms around the child, giving an affectionate hug. All is well– at least for a moment. The hug temporarily soothed the child. The mother realized the hug worked. Consequently, to gain back the unholy alignment she desperately craves, she appears teary eyed. As her eyes water up with tears, she looks at the child and says, it is okay to talk about time at dad’s house, but that it hurts mommy very much to hear about dad. Mother then smiles, and states, “hey lets go buy that $100 doll/ truck you have been wanting.”
Double binds are often utilized as a form of control without open coercion—the use of confusion makes them difficult to respond to or resist (Wikipedia).
Abnormalities in the inflammatory system are linked to many brain-based disorders, including but not limited to, MDD and bipolar disorder (BD). The impetus to consider inflammation as potentially relevant to the pathoetiology of domain-based psychopathology (eg, anhedonia) and/or mental disorders, is provided by a confluence of factors.
Depression is a leading cause of illness burden and disability worldwide. People with major depressive disorder are at increased odds of not meeting recommended physical activity levels (> 150 minutes per week).1 Structured physical activity may also reduce symptoms in patients with depression.2There is some evidence that physical activity may exert protective effects on the risk of incident (ie, new-onset) depression, but no previous studies have used meta-analyses to quantify this association.
Several Quora users noted that intelligent people are flexible and able to thrive in different settings. As Donna F Hammett writes, intelligent people adapt by “showing what can be done regardless of the complications or restrictions placed upon them.”
Recent psychological research supports this idea. Intelligence depends on being able to change your own behaviors in order to cope more effectively with your environment, or make changes to the environment you’re in.
They understand how much they don’t know
The smartest folks are able to admit when they aren’t familiar with a particular concept. As Jim Winer writes, intelligent people “are not afraid to say: ‘I don’t know.’ If they don’t know it, they can learn it.”
Winer’s observation is backed up by a classic study by Justin Kruger and David Dunning, which found that the less intelligent you are, the more you overestimate your cognitive abilities.
In one experiment, for example, students who’d scored in the lowest quartile on a test adapted from the LSAT overestimated the number of questions they’d gotten right by nearly 50%. Meanwhile, those who’d scored in the top quartile slightly underestimated how many questions they’d gotten right.
So, what does this quote mean and why should I write about it? Though I wasn’t able to ask Mr. Williams what he meant by it, my years of counselinginterprets such as being too smart for one’s own good and not letting go of one’s pride and ego in order to be humble enough to accept help, advice and guidance from others. Please understand that I’m not implying that Mr. Williams had an ego problem or didn’t try with great diligence to eradicate his addiction issues, I’m only inferring that one’s ego, self will and stubbornness may hinder one’s ability to proceed on a healthy recovery track.
I once had a friend whose life was being ruined by a powerful and irrational fear. He went to see his doctor about the physical tremors that he had become convinced were the first stages of a nasty terminal condition. The GP recognised the illness as hypochondria but he decided the usual treatment would not work. You see, my friend was too intelligent for cognitive behavioural therapy.
Now before readers who have themselves tried and benefited from CBT protest, let me explain that I tell this story because it reveals several things about how fraught the concept of intelligence is. In many ways, my friend was very far from intelligent. Most obviously, why on earth did he not consider the possibility that nothing more sinister than his huge caffeine intake was giving him the shakes, which did indeed turn out to be the case? And if he was so smart, why the obviously irrational fear in the first place?
When the GP diagnosed excessive intelligence
Do you have issues in your life you may need help working through? Are you an intelligent person with ambition, but lack motivation? Have you done lots of research on self-development, listened to hours of podcasts on psychology, and heard recommendations to go to therapy, but still aren’t going? You may be too smart for therapy.
When it comes to lessons, therapy tends to be a two-way street: Clients learn from their clinicians — everything from coping with painful emotions to building healthy relationships. Therapists, too, learn from their clients — everything from how to conduct therapy to how to approach their own lives.
We asked six clinicians to share the eye-opening insights they’ve taken away from their most challenging clients. Below, they reveal their lessons, which include wisdom they’ve gained early on in their career and insights they learn every day.
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