2. CONCLUSIONS – OUR THINKING (cont)
💦 IT’S ALL ME (cont): It’s my fault, I’m bad, dumb, weak, lazy….
☁︎ Our Core emotion is FEAR
i. As OVERT Victims – Some of us see everything thru the ‘hopelessness’ lens. Not just the world being against us, but the whole universe. When disappointed, many ACoAs will say “I guess the universe (or God) doesn’t want me to have that!”
NO, it’s not that.
Instead, maybe we:
• are’t ready yet to receive it (unconsciously blocking OR we need to do / become something else – first)
• are impatient – some things need repetition or just take longer
• asked for the impossible (expecting a narcissist to ‘see’ us)
• have to keep trying & not give up so fast
• had a legitimate goal but our timing was off. Try later
• stay with totally inappropriate people (bad, or just not for us)
• used a self-defeating approach, or didn’t have enough info
• went to the wrong place or person for our need
📌 Jordi is learning the bass guitar & decides to try out for a band, but is not asked to join. He thinks it means he’ll never be able to be a musician & stops practicing
📌 April is an artist with talent but not much training & low self-esteem. She needs an income so she takes a job in a real estate company, but hardly ever makes a sale. Eventually she leaves, convinced she’s a failure & will never do anything well
✳️ Behind the helpless victim stance is the WIC’s demand to be taken care of (‘Unrealistic Expectations’), so we keep waiting. It’s easier to think we’re worthless & unworthy than to do the hard work of becoming our own Loving Parent/ Healthy Adult (UNIT)
REALITY: just because we’re in pain doesn’t mean we caused it! We may have contributed to the outcome, but not necessarily.
• Sometimes people just step on our emotional toes, & don’t even know it!
• Many times there are life-stresses & unforeseen events we have no control over
• Sometimes bad things happen to good people, which has nothing to do with us, so it’s arrogant & immature (the WIC) to think we did
ii. As COVERT Victims
Functional ACoAs would never think of ourselves as victims (heaven forbid!) – the caretakers/ rescuers, rage-aholics/ bullies, over-achievers… but whenever something goes wrong for us, we end up in our own version of a mental hole.
We’re secretly suspicious that somehow we’re responsible for the painful situation – after all – didn’t we do everything right? our way? What did we miss?
Even accomplished professional ACoAs say they’re afraid someone will eventually find out they’re ‘a fraud’!
• We really don’t have permission to get our needs met, since one Toxic Rule is “You have to struggle but never get there.” Yet we do try anyway (Heroes are such hard workers!), always falling short of our deepest desires
EXP: ACoA Hero-types put much effort into being ‘superior’, both to make the family look good, & to cover our deep-seated feelings of powerlessness & vulnerability. As kids we were expected to be perfect! Anything less is our failure
Some definitely want a long-term relationship, others a cherished career, others to be rich…. & most ACoAs desperately want our family to love & treat us well. When we’re disappointed in any of these, we find it hard to not be mentally confused & emotionally devastated
✒️ One way to check if we’re still functioning as (secret) victims, no matter how hidden, is to make a list of all the:
▪︎ unkind names or phrases our family called us, and any that we now apply to ourselves – lazy, over-sensitive, selfish….. (CD: “Mislabeling”)
▪︎ perfectionistic ‘shoulds’ we use in hopes of making ourselves take actions we’re resisting – “I should have known / done that…”. (CD: “Shoulds”).
❣️ When we change our negative thinking AND do emotional release work, that sensitivity & powerlessness diminishes (but doesn’t totally disappear), & then our suffering lessens.
NEXT: CONCLUSIONS (Part 2a)