ACoAs & BLAME (Part 1)

the BLAME GAME
TAKING RESPONSIBILITY

is a healthier way to live

PREVIOUS: ACoAs wanting revenge #2

SITE: “Blame – What’s the Use?” Psych & religious

PostSatir’s BLAMER Role


BLAME as a ‘social disease’
– by Carl Alasko
“Deeply embedded throughout our society is the destructive psychology of blame. We tend to view it as a necessary behavior, a way to seek justice, a synonym for accountability or responsibility. It is none of these.
In fact, blame is a four-headed beast that attacks our very spirit.

We can launch these behaviors separately or fuse them into an assault that can annihilate the intended target. Painful emotions can & do kill. Consider those who commit suicide when battered by just one of these toxic tactics – that of humiliation. Indeed, blame is so unrelentingly harmful exactly because its primary function is to injure.

• There’s also an unacknowledged psychological paradox embedded in blame that preserves its vampire-like longevity: Screen Shot 2016-06-01 at 4.04.05 PM.pngHuman beings are hard-wired to dump their uncomfortable emotions on to others. So blame helps reduce our anxieties by externalizing our fears & stresses.

Naturally this does not excuse or condone it, since humans are also capable of learning how to accept & deal with our inner ‘demons’.

We see how political candidates temporarily surge in popularity when attacking an opponent, which reinforces the ‘value’ of the tactic. Then the opponents responds in kind, & the cycle continues. This dynamic is also at the root of bullying, whether in school or on the street. The bully’s internal anxieties are relieved by debasing another person or group. Thus blame feeds the roots of every form of bigotry, sexism and racism.”

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ABUSE / cruelty: ‘Blaming the victim’ is holding someone responsible for pain they have or are suffering, especially when they did not cause it & had no way of preventing it.
Adult Blamers, in the present: the mental decision (conscious or not) to accuse someone of causing our suffering (even if accurate), WITHOUT acknowledging any possible part we may have in the source of our pain (like sticking around for it)

Damaged parents often blame their children & the whole world for their shortcoimages-2mings & life stressors (Your made me hit you! If it weren’t for you I could have…..). It’s only natural then that as children we take on the blame.
So we learned to:
• make ourselves accountable for what was not our responsibility, AND
not hold others accountable for their bad behavior, and/OR
• blame others for our troubles, the way our parents did

SELF-HATE is the result – incorrectly blaming ourselves when anyone hurts us, even though we have nothing to do with causing it.
ACoAs IRONY:
While pointing out other people’s shortcomings (as it affect us, of course), being hurt by them triggers our S-H, to deny feeling vulnerable.
But we have it backwards – we blame ourselves for the source of our pain to avoid holding our parents accountable for those original wounds.

Reality: We did not deserve being blamed as kids, & we don’t deserve our S-H now, which is simply agreeing with the Perpetrators. In many alcoholic & other unhealthy families, no one took responsibility for their abusive or neglectful ways, & certainly never for their thoughts & emotions.

• It’s imperative for ACoAs to identify when or if someone is actually doing something harmful, neglectful, abandoning – to us or to others. If we are not sure, we can start by making a list of all the ways & times various people have hurt us or our loved ones, & look for common threads.

This is a sincere effort to clarity what we’ve experienced, especially when at the hands of someone who is taking out their damage on us.
The legitimate motivation for this kind of inventory has to be the desire to identify & distinguish between:
• when we’re angry because of unrealistic expectations & assumptions, vs.
• breaking denial about harmful relationships we hang on to, so we can outgrow the addiction to abuse

NEXT: Blame #2

Anger – CATEGORIES : Ambivalent, Avoidant (#4)

hospital a.b.

I HAVE NO CONTROL
over how I react!

PREVIOUS: Anger Categories (Part 3)

 

 

OTHER Anger-EXPRESSIONS (cont)

▪️AMBIVALENT anger

It is natural to feel anger towards the person/people who caused our childhood trauma, but that anger can be complicated by the feeling of ambivalence  :
IF the ones responsible for the abuse also did good things for us. Such ambivalence can be very painful & confusing, leaving us in conflict. We can feel anger, hurt, frustration…. AND gratitude, love, longing, missing them….

OR
– we can white-wash them, excusing the perpetrator/s by telling ourselves they didn’t know any better, they didn’t mean it, they were under great stress….
This confusion & denial will make it harder to feel the legitimate anger we have about the neglect & mistreatment, so we end up emotionally numb (a type of dissociative state)

OR – presently are living with someone you care about & want to stay with, but you find ‘difficult’ because of their damage – which also happens to trigger your buttons. Can you love & hate someone at the same time? Should you be angry or grateful (to be with them) ?

▪️AVOIDANT anger
a. One meaning is when someone makes a habit of trying to deny feeling anger all together – having experienced the awful results of aggression growing up, &/ or Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 7.50.31 PMbecause of religious prohibition (anger=sin).
They’re afraid of their own anger & that of others. On the surface their communication is: “I’m fine. It’s fine. Everything’s fine.”
Even when there’s a raging volcano in their gut, all that shows is a happy face, with nary a flicker of irritation. This is not passive-aggression – this is buried aggression.

• Since anger is a natural human emotions & everyone feels it from time to time, the more someone suppresses it, the more it builds up, until it consumes them – often in the form of an Immune Deficiency or other illness. Long-term internalized anger damages self-esteem because it results in feeling too weak to assert their needs, which can lead to being scapegoated, depressed, paranoid, debilitating worry….

b. A second meaning is about distancing ourselves from the person who makes us feel angry – giving a phony smile, not talking to them, never looking them in the face, staying away from them altogether….
Giving others the cold shoulder or silent treatment can be:Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 7.50.39 PM
√ sidestepping confrontation, from not knowing how to proceed
√ a passive form of punishment for their offenses – supposed or real
√ a way to protect the other person from an outburst of our rage – which we’ll be sorry for later

• However, by not saying what bothers us as soon as possible (assertive anger), the option of working it thru is eliminated, since the person / group have no way of knowing they’ve caused an upset.
Their ignorance makes it more likely the ‘offender(s)’ will continue to be a source of aggravation. Of course, this applies to situations where there is at least the possibility of an improvement, but this can only happen if we at least make one attempt to communicate our anger & hurt

➼ In general, with both a & b styles, a chronic Avoider cannot escape accumulating a backlog of anger, which will at some point either explode or turn into long-term depression &/or illness

c. POSITIVE use : a third meaning is about ‘letting go’ of trying to connect with Co-dependents, Passive-aggressives or other Narcissists who can’t communicate directly & honestly.
EXP: We’ve tried 2 or 3x to ask the person or group for some satisfaction (‘Please stop ____,  Can we _____?, Would you be willing to_____?”) BUT
— there is no discussion or change, OR
— there’s a promise of change but never any follow-thru.

Then avoidance is our only option – rather than staying & staying – with the false hope that eventually we’ll get our needs met!
Obviously, there are PPT that are best avoided altogether since there’s no way to have a resolution or for the offender to change their ways.

NEXT: Anger Categories (Part 5)