The Antilibidinal Ego: Self-Protection Following Trauma

If as a child we suffer severe interpersonal trauma in the form of rejection by a primary-carer or similar experience,  a part of us may ‘split off’ (dissociate) and act as our protector in order to prevent us from becoming the victim of yet further psychological damage. Fairbairn referred to this dissociated part of ourselves …

Physical Abuse Leading To Self-Hatred And Inability To Feel Empathy.

When a child is physically beaten by the very people who should be protecting him/her (i.e. his / her parent/s), it can cause him or her to develop feelings of great psychological conflict. In an attempt to resolve this conflict, the child will frequently rationalize the abusive behaviour of the parent by telling him/herself that …

Depression : Anger Towards Parents Turned Inward?

656-word article“ “Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.” ― Mark Twain The idea that depression is the result of our anger towards others (such as our parents) who have hurt and betrayed us being turned inwards towards …

Self-Defeating Personality Disorder And Its Link To Childhood Trauma

Self-defeating personality disorder (also sometimes referred to as masochistic personality disorder), whilst not included in the current edition (fifth) of the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), is still frequently referred to by mental health professionals to help explain various aspects of behaviour. To be considered as suffering from a self-defeating personality disorder, …

Body Dysmorphic Disorder : Its Link To Childhood Trauma

  Studies (see below) suggest that those of us who suffered traumatic childhoods are significantly more likely to develop body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) than those who were fortunate enough to have experienced relatively stable and nurturing childhoods. I briefly summarize two of these studies below : Study One : A study conducted by Didie et …

Self-Acceptance More Helpful To Mental Health Than Self-Esteem.

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We have already seen that most frequently because how they were made to feel about themselves by parents/primary care-givers whilst growing up, one of the most painful, demoralizing and soul-destroying symptoms those with borderline personality disorder (BPD) must strive to endure is irrational feelings of self-hatred, self-loathing and self-disgust. (If you would like to read my …

Unloving Mothers : Their Effects On Their Children

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What Are The Effects Of Unloving Mothers? The need of the infant for his/her mother’s love is one which is profound and fundamental. If this love is withheld by a cold, unloving mother, or is inconsistent and unreliable, the emotional consequences for the child can be devastating, adversely impacting on the rest of his/her life, particularly …

Why Do People Self-Harm? Six Possible Reasons.

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In a previously published article I wrote about a specific type of self-harm known as compulsive skin picking disorder and how, in the most serious cases, it can necessitate skin grafts to repair the severe damage done to the flesh. In this article, I want to look at the possible reasons why some people are driven …

False Core Beliefs : Their Childhood Roots

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  By the time we are adults, most of us have developed entrenched, deeply rooted, fundamental beliefs about ourselves. Psychologists refer to these as our CORE BELIEFS. Once established, they can prove very difficult to change without the aid of therapeutic interventions (such as cognitive behavioural therapy, or CBT). A traumatic childhood, especially one that …

Feel Guilty About Enjoying Yourself? Stop Self-Sabotaging.

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A profound sense of guilt and of worthlessness can develop within us if we experienced significant trauma during our childhood as has been written about extensively elsewhere on this site. One way in which this can manifest itself is that it can make us feel guilty and undeserving about experiencing good things in life such as …

Childhood Trauma Leading to Intense Self-Criticism

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If we suffered significant childhood trauma it is likely we were not instilled with an adequate sense of self-acceptance or self-assurance when we were young. Perhaps we were made to feel inadequate and inherently flawed as individuals. Such feelings can extend well into our adult lives, or, without therapy, last the whole of our lives. …

Childhood Trauma Leading to Self-Hatred and Intense Self-Criticism

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  ORIGINS OF SELF-HATRED: Following a childhood in which we had the experience of neglect, abuse, abandonment or a combination of these, it very frequently follows that we grow up to become intensely self-critical and even consumed by feelings of self-hatred. Indeed, these are both key symptoms of clinical depression and also of complex post-traumatic …

BPD and the Science Behind Self-Harming Behavior

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Those who sought to stigmatize the very serious and distressing psychological condition known as borderline personality disorder, or BPD, used to like (and perhaps still do) to put forward the theory that self-harming behaviour in those suffering from BPD is ‘merely attention-seeking’ (ridiculous when one considers the stark and brutal fact that one in ten …

Overcoming Guilt Caused by Childhood Trauma

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If we have been mistreated as children, we may well grow up with a pervasive feeling that we are irredeemably ‘bad’ people (click here to read my article on why this happens). This can lead to what has been termed ‘neurotic guilt’ ; this occurs when we feel a sense of shame about ourselves and …

Childhood Trauma: How The Child’s View Of Their Own ‘Badness’ Is Perpetuated.

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Do You Ever Ask Yourself The Question: Am I A Bad Person? When a child is continually mistreated, s/he will inevitably conclude that s/he must be innately bad. This is because s/he has a need (at an unconscious level) to preserve the illusion that her/his parents are good; this can only be achieved by taking …

How Self-Esteem Is Damaged And Key Elements That Help Recovery

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Our Self-Esteem: Branden’s (1994) 6 Key Elements. Branden (1994) identified six key foundations upon which the development of a healthy level of self-esteem is built; these six building blocks of self-esteem are as follows: THE SIX KEY FACTORS THAT UNDERPIN A HEALTHY LEVEL OF SELF-ESTEEM: 1) Being consciously engaged with the present 2) Being accepting …