PREVIOUS: ACoAs wanting revenge #2
SITE: “Blame – What’s the Use?” Psych & religious
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: Human 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 shortcomings & 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.
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