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Emotional Bank Robbers

Where do you invest your love?

Is it time to change banks!!

I realize I have invested my entire life to emotionally bankrupt people. So much so that I have very little left energy wise, friendship wise, hobby wise, love wise, life wise ..

The moral – the more you invest (income, job, heart, home, time, effort, etc.) the stronger your need to justify your position. If we invest $5.00 in a raffle ticket, we justify losing with “I’ll get them next time”. If you invest everything you have, it requires an almost unreasoning belief and unusual attitude to support and justify that investment.

Studies tell us we are more loyal and committed to something that is difficult, uncomfortable, and even humiliating.

The initiation rituals of college fraternities, Marine boot camp, and graduate school all produce loyal and committed individuals.

Almost any ordeal creates a bonding experience. Every couple, no matter how mismatched, falls in love in the movies after going through a terrorist takeover, being stalked by a killer, being stranded on an island, or being involved in an alien abduction. Investment and an ordeal are ingredients for a strong bonding – even if the bonding is unhealthy. No one bonds or falls in love by being a member of the Automobile Club or a music CD club. Struggling to survive on a deserted island – you bet!

Abusive relationships produce a great amount on unhealthy investment in both parties. In many cases we tend to remain and support the abusive relationship due to our investment in the relationship.

In many cases, it’s not simply our feelings for an individual that keeps us in an unhealthy relationship – it’s often the amount of investment. Relationships are complex and we often only see the tip of the iceberg in public. For this reason, the most common phrase offered by the victim in defense of their unhealthy relationship is “You just don’t understand!”

I invested everything in my family .. I realize I actually have nothing else.. Nope it’s just them and my chronic ill health and depression (Hmmm – well there’s a link..)

They have high energy and get their returns everywhere (Yep they’re Emotional Bank Robbers). They don’t even need me – no wonder they find it so easy to give me ‘the silent treatment’ or shun me if I step out of their circle!!

So today I joined a couple of groups to meet new people and I made some decisions … First to change banks and start investing my love and time in new healthy people and projects .. somewhere where I get a return!!

I spend a lot of my time in an emotional prison and it’s torture. It’s a cycle of bullying, neglect, ostracizing, minimizing and rejection. So painful.

Two, essential!!! Avoid them with Low and for some NO Contact and gain back my power and energy.

Three – gain my returns (life, health and energy) by doing thing that bring me JOY. Joy would be a nice return instead of the heartache and depression I receive from my family..

Fourth, I am still deciding what role my family will play in my life.. ‘Low Contact’ or ‘No Contact’. My ex husband and daughter are a definite NC. My daughter nearly kills me with emotional bullying. I’m not sure what can heal it. Maybe time apart and her growing up and me getting busy!!  No amount of communication or counselling can heal a bully unwilling to take any responsibility for her cruel actions.

My son is LC – Birthdays, Christmas  etc..not sure about the rest (sisters, brother, Mother, Father..).

Just don’t feel I can play the nice understanding guy to them anymore. Maybe as I get busy with healthy people and joyful activities my huge investment with them will decrease.

At this stage I am taking space from them. I’ve got a feeling things will naturally grow apart without me saying any harsh words.

Just the act of getting stronger will either make them respect me or reject me. My children I feel will respect me, the rest of them I feel will reject me. In all reality I was never accepted from my birth as part of my family..

And sadly they like me weak.. and the unhealthy family dynamics won’t work with me strong..

So I’m keeping busy and looking forward!

It’s been hell but I’m getting.. well somewhere.

It’s fricking taking forever ?? :o)

Love & baby steps,

SG x

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The Pain of Ostracism

For those I know working at dead end jobs who are verbally abused by customers and ostracized by management...

BY
Ostracism or exclusion may not leave external scars, but it can cause pain that often is deeper and lasts longer than a physical injury, according to a Purdue University expert.

“Being excluded or ostracized is an invisible form of bullying that doesn’t leave bruises, and therefore we often underestimate its impact,” said Kipling D. Williams, a professor of psychological sciences. “Being excluded by high school friends, office colleagues, or even spouses or family members can be excruciating. And because ostracism is experienced in three stages, the life of those painful feelings can be extended for the long term. People and clinicians need to be aware of this so they can avoid depression or other negative experiences.”

When a person is ostracized, the brain’s dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, which registers physical pain, also feels this social injury, Williams said. The process of ostracism includes three stages: the initial acts of being ignored or excluded, coping and resignation.

Williams’ research is reported in the current issue ofCurrent Directions in Psychological Sciences. The article was co-authored by Steve A. Nida, associate provost and dean of The Citadel Graduate College and a professor of psychology.

“Being excluded is painful because it threatens fundamental human needs, such as belonging and self-esteem,” Williams said. “Again and again research has found that strong, harmful reactions are possible even when ostracized by a stranger or for a short amount of time.”

More than 5,000 people have participated in studies using a computer game designed by Williams to show how just two or three minutes of ostracism can produce lingering negative feelings.

“How can it be that such a brief experience, even when being ignored and excluded by strangers with whom the individual will never have any face-to-face interaction, can have such a powerful effect?” he said. “The effect is consistent even though individuals’ personalities vary.”

People also vary in how they cope, which is the second stage of ostracism. Coping can mean the person tries to harder be included. For example, some of those who are ostracized may be more likely to engage in behaviors that increase their future inclusion by mimicking, complying, obeying orders, cooperating or expressing attraction.

“They will go to great lengths to enhance their sense of belonging and self-esteem,” Williams said.

If they feel there is little hope for re-inclusion or that they have little control over their lives, they may resort to provocative behavior and even aggression.

“At some point, they stop worrying about being liked, and they just want to be noticed,” Williams said.

However, if a person has been ostracized for a long time, they may not have the ability to continue coping as the pain lingers. Some people may give up, Williams said.

“The third stage is called resignation. This is when people who have been ostracized are less helpful and more aggressive to others in general,” he said. “It also increases anger and sadness, and long-term ostracism can result in alienation, depression, helplessness and feelings of unworthiness.”

Williams is trying to better understand how ostracized individuals may be attracted to extreme groups and what might be the reactions of ostracized groups.

“These groups provide members with a sense of belonging, self-worth and control, but they can fuel narrowness, radicalism and intolerance, and perhaps a propensity toward hostility and violence toward others,” he said. “When a person feels ostracized they feel out of control, and aggressive behavior is one way to restore that control. When these individuals come together in a group there can be negative consequences.”

Williams is a professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences in Purdue’s College of Health and Human Sciences.

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I Come From A Family Of Emotional Bullies

My father, 2 sisters, ex husband, adult son and daughter are all emotional bullies. It’s ‘my way or the highway’ with them. Over the years I have been repeatedly emotionally bullied, rejected and ostracized by my ‘loved ones’. You become use to it because since birth it’s always been your family’s way  .. it’s ‘normal’ to you.

Bullying causes emotional disorders in it’s victims – so if you suffer from depression look into whether you are a victim of emotional bullying in your family or intimate relationships. The bullies always consider you the poor little weak one in the family (but actually you are the strongest one..)

It was a light bulb moment to recognize I come from a family (a whole pack) of cowards/ bullies (bullies are always cowards incapable of addressing their own fears)..

I can’t believe what they have put me through. But I do know I am braver and stronger than any of them, and I’m pretty sure they know it too..

Bullies run in families. If one of your parental ‘role-models’ was a bully or a coward there is a chance you could become either one and carry on that family ‘role’.

My family ostracized me as a pack. I use to view them as the people I loved the most in the world but I now see them as a pack – yep a pack of cowards!

I have exposed them. It will be interesting to see who comes forward to makes some changes… so far no one has. My father hasn’t replied and my daughter told me she never wants to see me again.

I am so fine with that.. I get to live a life free of abuse with or without them. I also get to free myself of chronic heartache and depression.

I deserve to be treated with love and respect.

From now on it’s ‘my way or the highway’ regarding my family. If they push my boundaries and try to emotionally bully me they can hit the road..

I will choose my health, emotional stability, well-being.. well my LIFE over my family any day.

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Love & baby steps to you,

SG x