A 30-Year Abuser Speaks Out.
You speak about how your abuse manifested--please share with my readers some ways emotional abuse manifest and how to recognize it.
We abuse because something traumatic happened to us during our past (normally under the age of 13), that froze our ability to develop emotionally. Our childhood trauma can prevent chemicals from being released into our brain that enables us to think abstractly as we mature; so we walk around as an adult on the outside yet a child on the inside.
Emotionally I thought, reasoned and acted as a child. I was scared to death in my 'world' as I progressed through life as an 'adult' and took on adult responsibilities. Think how a small child reacts when something doesn't go according to their expectations, they get angry and throw a temper tantrum, right? That's exactly what I did when my expectations weren't met, I threw an adult-sized temper tantrum.
I used anger and manipulation to control my surroundings because I didn't know how to operate in them as a normal adult would. I scrambled to control whatever portion of my world I could, just to feel safe. I was in a constant survival mode to try to cope with my world and surroundings.
Yet, at the same time, I put on a mask to appear as if I had it all together. After all, I was in an adult body. I had to keep everyone at a distance from me emotionally, out of fear they would peer beneath my mask and expose my inner-child. Anger was the tool I used to keep people at a distance from me.
You talk about codependency--share how you see codependency manifest and what can someone in a codependent relationship do to awaken to that relationship challenge?
It's important for your readers to understand as I answer this, I do not buy into the notion that a victim of abuse somehow 'enables' the abuse by their behavior. An abuser abuses because they are broken--nothing a victim did "turned on" the abuse and nothing they do will stop it.
In general terms, a codependent is relying on someone else for his or her happiness. Their thinking and focus centres around the other person and they begin to react to that person's external cues rather than their own internal cues. Normally, a codependent has a hard time with setting personal boundaries. Emotional abuse starts subtly and progresses to full-blown control and manipulation over time. It's these subtle progressions that a codependent has a hard time recognizing as their boundaries become more and more transparent.
If someone reading this interview or my book notices in their mate any of the patterns of abuse on a consistent basis, an alarm needs to go off. More than likely, they are in or are headed for an abusive relationship. The mere fact they were unaware of the situation until an external cue (this interview) was presented to them is hopefully a wakeup call to what is going on in their own life.
Here's a fact--the abuse will NOT go away on its own. If one mate thinks they need to 'try harder', or 'do more things right', or 'love a little more', they run the risk of slowly being suffocated in the quicksand of abuse at the hands of their soul-sucking mate.
I would suggest this person immediately get professional help if they have the option, or at least get some good books on codependency and setting boundaries. Chances are, something happened in their own childhood that caused codependency roots to grow. The only way for them to heal is to get at those childhood roots and remove them.
As weird as it sounds Chuck, as time goes on, manipulation, control, and abuse all become 'normal' to the abused. That's the goal of the abuser and they are very good at what they do.
Source: http://chuckgallagher.wordpress. com/2013/02/21 /emotional-abuse-silent-killer-of-marriage-an-interview-with-austin-james/
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|Title Annotation:||Austin James|
|Date:||Mar 1, 2014|
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