Survival and coping strategies taint our perception in adulthood – they have us feeling sorry for another, even when they have caused us great harm. The sympathetic feelings we give to someone else is often triggered by our own (discarded) sense of fragility. This reflex is automatic if you’ve been with someone who is personality disordered.
Rather than feel your anguish and licking fresh wounds, you will find ways to forgive (but you are constantly obsessing and can’t forget)
This person is not necessarily the most good-looking or brilliant in your dating history, yet your obsession with this one has you trapped in maddening confusion. This is our clue about early childhood experiences which is uncannily being duplicated in this dynamic
Every child is in love with their parents. They see that parent as God who is entrusted with their care and protection. When this god is rageful, critical, abuse or ignores them, it frightening and confusing to a small child which forces her to split off the dangerous, injurious parts of mother or father in order to remain attached.
A child does not automatically stop loving a parent when they are crazy or cruel. What she does instead is compartmentalize or box up those bad behaviours and divorce them from the parent so that they can remain in love with Mom and dad. That is exactly what we do with our abusers.
Every woman who stays with an abuser has learned to discard or shutdown various emotions since early childhood, and this has left them unable to distinguish between healthy endeavours and harmful ones
The abuser re-awakens intensely positive or negative emotions – but one thing we are sure of is that we’re feeling…