POSITIVE Responses to Painful Events (Part 2)

flowers 2 


PREVIOUS: Positive Responses – re events

REVIEW: Part 1: Events + Large Chart

POSTS : EMOTIONS – To Motivate

2. EMOTIONS Square

Healthy ACoAs are not afraid to feel, own & deal with our emotions. Es are a vital part of our self-protection & self-correcting mechanism, built in to our brain (the limbic system).  It doesn’t matter which ego state the emotions come from – they’re all part of us. As we learn to identify ‘who’s’ saying & feeling what (Ts & Es) – we can respond to internal cues more accurately

a. From the WIC (adapted child)
• These emotions will be left-over from our difficult childhood – abandonment terror, hopelessness, profound existential loneliness, rage, self-hate, even feeling suicidal – all based on actual experiences, PLUS internalizing those of our parents

b. From the Negative Introject
It includes all the dysfunction from their background, & their feelings towards us, including:
desperation, disgust, fear of abandonment, indifference, impatience, neediness  ……  emotions we absorbed & continue to carry – until they’re cleaned out.  We have to face our pain, but the thoughts & feelings of our parents MUST be given back to them! via repeated visualizations & statements

• “Dad, I love you but I can’t save you from mom’s cruelty. I tried to ease your pain, even taking on your covert suicidal feelings, but never could fix you. You chose her & stayed with her – it’s your marriage. You’re not my mate, so I give you back to her!”

• “Mom, I’ve been carrying your fear, helplessness & unfelt rage all these years, thinking it would help lift your burden. I’m sad that you’ve been suffering, but I know now it was an impossible task & not mine to deal with anyway. I’ve rolled up all your pain in a big black ball & now give it back to you. I have enough of my own to Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 9.34.34 PM.pngheal!”

c. From the Healthy Child  
• Our Natural Self, whether Introvert or Extrovert, is a combination of – amusement, amazement, anger, curiosity,  excitement, disappointment, love, joy, shyness, trust … and  envy, fear, greed, need, naiveté, selfishness, stubbornness ….  (PAC characteristics)

d. From the Loving Parent
• This is the missing ego state in all wounded ACoAs & so is the most important to develop, replacing the PP (pig parent / bad voice) : love, consistency, patience, persistence, sense of humor, tolerance, faith….. needed for positive self-care

NOTE : the Healthy Adult is basically emotion-free – primarily our computer mode, practical, rational & objective

i. I didn’t Cause it
Other people’s reactions to us speaks about who they are.
😻 Getting this truth into our cells is a core imperative !!! a requirement for peace of mind!  ONLY our co-dependence & narcissism says otherwise
ii. I can’t Control it
Being controlling is driven by anxiety – the fear of loss (abandonment) & the grandiose belief that we have power in powerless situations. (Serenity Prayer –  backwards). We can’t make others do or be what we want, only continue working on ourself
iii. I can’t Cure it
While some spiritual practices teach that we have all power, over everything – ultimately there are things in this lifetime we cannot cure, whether in ourselves or in others.  Focusing on the impossible is a waste of time & takes energy away from the many wonderful things we can accomplish!

Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 9.35.19 PMOTHER PEOPLE — Their reactions to our behavior can have something to do with us, directly OR indirectly IF:
a. about Them:
• we accidentally bump against a long-standing emotional ‘hot button’ in them (we ONLY create buttons in our own physical children)
• we inadvertently remind them of someone in their own damaged past
• we don’t go along with their narcissistic needs or expectations

b. about Us:
• when our unhealed rage &/or neediness pushes others away
• we keep asking unavailable people to be there for us when they can’t
• we consistently expect too much of others, including healthy ones
• we say or do something hurtful, disloyal, selfish…. from our damageScreen Shot 2016-06-22 at 9.38.02 PM

🔸 The things WE ARE responsible for can be worked on in Recovery, especially things we do / say that hurt others.
To heal we have to own it all, objectively, without self-hate, & be willing to make changes.
Reasons that others may legitimately be uncomfortable with us (our repressed rage, neediness, unavailability…) will lessen as we develop our ‘UNIT’ & progressively interact with others in new ways.

NEXT: Positive Responses (Thinking)

11 thoughts on “POSITIVE Responses to Painful Events (Part 2)

  1. Very helpful topic. I am a notorious “mind-reader”, in the work place its helpful like during negotiations.

    The problem is that I am often “right” in guessing others reactions/predicting behaviors…and I try not to do this but its so hard to ignore….I want to be with people more genuinely, not predict or manipulate the interaction. But then I ignore my instincts, and feel I come full circle, my initial “instinct” was correct.

    This leads to great frustration for me. As an example, a new friend wants to join me in an activity I already “know” is not suited for their personality, but I give them the benefit of the doubt based on their word, set up the event, they repeatedly cancel for other “reasons” then I confront them and they acknowledge their discomfort or lack of interest. Arghhh! 🙂

    Just a silly example but I struggle with this. I look forward to your next post!

    Cheers, Kira


  2. Hi Kira,
    Mind reading & your highly tuned intuition are not the same! Mind reading is when we project what’s in our subconsc. onto another – like
    • our self-hate becomes they don’t like me
    • our FoA becomes – they don’t want me there
    • because I ‘love’ them, I just know they feel the same way too

    Intuition should be listened to as much as possible – don’t ‘give the benefit of the doubt’ when you know someone well enough to know their pattern. That’s our denial!
    But ‘knowing’ something about another person does not mean we have to act on it – IF it does not involve us. If it does, then stick to your guns!
    Happy New Year!


  3. Your response clarifies my comment, I see my intuition becoming “real” so I suspect my mind-reading to be true/real as well! LOL

    I really like the way you are able to break down ACoa thought phenomena?!:), and that you add examples. Its such a funny thing – I am told I am successful, confident, blahblah. and yet the truth is I struggle to understand so many simple things, interactions. I guess that means my poker face is still holding, ha.

    Happy New Year to you and yours as well! Kira


  4. It’s said that ACoAs get their MSW’s first & their birth certificate later! I was once told (in my 20’s) that I couldn’t be considered a genius because I didn’t know simple things. I know that doesn’t make actual sense, but I understood it – I didn’t have any common sense or the logical underpinnings of reality – back then. But I’ve made up for it since, so maybe I’ve finally become the genius I was born to be! LOL


  5. I like your posts as well. I also suffer from this not understanding “simple things” (interactions with people, how the world really works, mind reading, etc) and get very black and white thinking about stuff. Very tough to change this mindset but I’m working on it. I often do the mind reading thing and project my self-hate onto others and I definitely wasn’t taught to ask for help or for clarification about simple things that others understand or, seem to, anyway. My main work lately is dealing with shame and self-hate and so this topic was helpful to me. Thank you.


    • I’m glad it helped. Have you also read the posts on shame & self-hate?
      The depth of our negative training day in & day out as kids makes it imperative to have the same amount of healthy training in reverse. That’s why I read everything I could, did the IC 2-handed writing, made program calls – while going to 3 or 4 12-step meeting every (week) day for the first 2-3 yrs of recovery – & spent the weekends in bed – recovering from all the pain that came up – but it was worth it! Now lots of meeting can be done by phone & online as well as in person.

      The hard work payed off – so never give up! The most precious reward of all was when my Inner Child said “You’re the only one who’s ever loved me”!
      “Thanks, Little One.”


  6. I’m slowly working my way through your blog posts so probably haven’t read much on shame or self-hate yet – I only found your blog recently. I do dialoguing out loud with my IC and my critic. Thank you for all the great posts!


  7. I find your blogs/posts really helpful and a form of revision for the therapy and training I underwent several years ago. I am enjoying reading some of these as they come through to me in email. So much of what you write resonates for me.

    The mind reading is especially useful and I have to work really hard at listening to, acknowledging what I am “reading” and not using it in a way that will cause Games and discomfort. Having my daughter now living nearby again is pushing those buttons a lot.

    Thanks and have a good day.


  8. “Any reason people are uncomfortable with us (our repressed rage, our neediness, our unavailability…) will diminish over time as we develop our Healthy Adult & interact with others more & more from that ego state. It’s an ongoing process which definitely works.”

    I love/need/want comments like these. It helps me have a clear direction of where I am going.


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