PREVIOUS: Fam. Inventory – Purpose (#3)
See ACRONYM Page for abbrev.
2. NURTURE (cont)
🔸Early impressions (cont)
a. Not enough stimulus – (Part 3) Dysfunctional homes force on us too little or too much
b. Too much stimulus, without emotional & physical relief (down time). An overload of stress & tension – day in & day out, for years – is typical for children in alcoholic & narcissistic families, generating fear, fear, fear! from:
☀︎ too much noise, rage, fights, yelling, bickering, cruelty, teasing
☀︎ constant DO-ing, moving, losing, high expectation….
☀︎ mental & physical illness, drunkenness, suicides, hospitalizations, crippling poverty…..
This left us with a lifetime of anxiety & low resilience, making it hard to bounce back from the normal difficulties of daily adult existence
Being in hi-stress environments has become the life-pattern for many ACoAs, & eventually several things can happen to us:
➤ the frontal cortex chemicals responsible for good feelings get burned out, leaving only the neural pathways related to pain & unhappiness, which shows up as numbness, depression, difficulty learning & thinking clearly….
➤ become ‘addicted to excitement – “adrenalin junkies, drama queens” – keeping the pot stirred, causing problems unnecessarily, always looking for the next high (not always chemical), most often in bad relationships
➤ slowly shut down on our emotions (pleasant and painful ones), which can eventually manifest as nervous breakdowns, recurring suicide fantasies, immune deficiency diseases, insomnia, panic attacks, & the ever-present depression
EXP: If we started out talkative, lively, smart, friendly, doing well in school…. but by age 13, & often much earlier, we became withdrawn, sullen, difficult, hiding, staring into space…. (not counting injury, illness of birth defects) —> this ‘unexplained’ shift is a blatant sign that something was very wrong with our home life – rather that with us!
PRESENT PARALYSIS : Whenever we’re triggered – so emotionally overwhelmed, hysterical or panic-stricken, AND stuck in a CD loop that we can barely function – it means we’re completely in WIC mode – & the UNIT (Healthy Adult / Good Parent) has been silenced!
Something in the present has freaked us out & we’ve slipped back into a mental & emotional state we genuinely did live in as kids. It may FEEL real to the WIC, but is not about current reality – because we’re no longer a child & do have choices we didn’t back then.
The sooner we can catch this regression & see it for what it is, the sooner we can do something to pull ourselves out of it – journal, call someone, pray, do a gratitude inventory, go the 12-Step meeting …. and comfort the WIC. It’s imperative to bring your Good Parent back online
• When we get into a regressed state – and done extensive Family Inventory work – we can more quickly figure out what old painful button just got pushed, & what toxic rule is operating.
This can short-circuit the downward spiral into S-H & depression.
Even if we’re currently living in difficult circumstances that we can’t get out of it easily or quickly, we can work on developing the UNIT every day. Eventually we’ll begin to see new options & then try them out, leading to improvements in self-esteem & sometimes even to a better environment
SO: How can everything we seem to have ‘messed up’ in our life be our fault (S-H), when we were pre-programmed to be dysfunctional? Without deep FoO work we’re just following our training. We are not stupid, f–ups, idiots or crazy!
You decide: Either you’re born permanently defective – OR you were wounded & can Heal & Grow. One or the other- it can’t be both. It’s up to you to choose!
🖤 IF you’re convinced you’re hopelessly defective, there’s absolutely no point in therapy, Program, books, spiritual disciplines…. It’s a waste of time
💖 BUT if your background twisted, suppressed & wounded your True Self, then you can use that knowledge to very carefully crawl back from the far edge of the self-destructive limb you’re about to fall OFF of, back to the fork in your Tree of Life, & this time consciously choose a stronger life-giving branch to climb UP.
To Recover we have to stay on the path, no matter how long painful & frustrating. LOVE HEALS!
NEXT : Inventory overview