Archives for 2012

Am I Under His Spell Part II

In my previous column, we started talking about the very REAL issue of trance in relationship with pathologicals.

Women have described this as feeling ‘under his spell,’ ‘spell bound,’ ‘ mesmerized,’ ‘hypnotized,’ ‘spaced out,’ ‘not in control of their own thoughts….’  All of these are ways of saying that various levels of covert and subtle mind-control have been happening with the pathological.  And why wouldn’t it be happening? These are power-hungry people who live to exert their dominance over others.

That includes your body, mind or spirit. Mind Control techniques are used on prisoners of war, in cults, and in hostage taking, either physical or mental. It obviously works or there wouldn’t be ‘techniques’ and bad people wouldn’t use it.

Mind control, brain washing, coercion…are all words for the same principles that are used to produce the results of reducing your own effectiveness and being emotionally overtaken by someone intent on doing so. The result is the victim’s intense attachment to her perpetrator. This is often referred to as Betrayal Bonding or Trauma Bonding.

This is created by:

•Perceived threat to one’s physical or psychological survival and the belief that the captor/perpetrator would carry out the threat.

•Perceived small kindness from the captor/perpetrator to the captive.

•Isolation from perspectives other than  those of the captor/perpetrator.

•Perceived inability to escape.

Mind control then produces dissociation which is a form of trance states. Dissociation is when your mind becomes overloaded and you need to ‘step outside of yourself’ to relieve the stress. Dissociation and trance are common reactions to trauma. For instance dissociation happens during abuse in childhood as well as adult traumas like rape. Prolonged mind control in adults will even produce trance states where adults begin to feel like they are being controlled. And they are…

If you have experienced mind control in your relationships, treatment and recovery for it includes:

* Breaking the Isolation – Helping you identify sources of supportive intervention; Self-help groups or group therapy also hot lines, crisis centers, shelters and friends.

* Identifiying Violence – As a victim in an abusive relationship, minimization of the abuse can occur, or denial about the different types of violent behavior that you encountered. Confusion about what is acceptable male (parental / authority) behavior is often common. Journal keeping, autobiographical writing, reading of first hand accounts or seeing films that deal with abuse may be helpful for you to understand the types of abuse you experienced.

* Renaming Perceived Kindness – Since abuse confuses the boundaries between kindness and manipulation, you may need to develop alternative sources of nurturance and caring other than the captor/perpetrator.

* Your Ability to Validate both Love and Terror – Because pathological often are dichotomous or have polar opposite behaviors such as kind and sadistic, there is often a split by the victim in
how they see the abuser. Treatment may need to help you integrate both disassociated ‘sides’ of the abuser, and will assist you in moving through the dream-like state in how you view and remember him.

In my next column, we’ll continue our discussion on other forms of trance states and spell bound conditions.

———————————————————————————-
Gender Disclaimer: The issues The Institute writes about are mental health issues. They are not gender issues. Both females and males have the types of Cluster B disorders we often refer to in our articles. Our readership is approximately 90% female therefore we write for those most likely to seek out our materials. We highly support male victims and encourage others who want to provide support to male victims to encompass the issues we discuss only from a female perpetrator/male-victim standpoint. Cluster B Education is a mental health issue applicable to both genders.
———————————————————————————

Am I Under His Spell?

Time and again women allude to the mystical  aspects of the pathological they are involved with. They describe it as “being under his spell,” “en-tranced with him” or “hypnotized by him” even “spell bound” or “mind controlled.”

Women aren’t exactly able to define what they are ‘experiencing’ or even accurately describe what they think is occurring but they do unanimously conclude that ‘something’ is happening that feels like it’s hypnotic’.

Beyond the ‘hokus pokus’ of hypnosis lies real truth about what IS probably happening in those relationships.

Trance happens to every person every day. It is a natural lull in the body when many of the systems are resting or a state we enter when tired. Blood sugar, metabolism and other natural body functions can effect the sleepy states of trance that we enter all day long.

You’ve probably heard of ‘Highway Hypnosis.’ This occurs when you have been driving and are so concentrated on the driving (or when you are getting sleepy while driving and watching those yellow lines) that you forgot about the last few miles and all of a sudden you’re aware you’re almost at your destination. Highway Hypnosis is trance or lite forms of self hypnosis. No one put you in that state of hypnosis — you went in it on your own.

Check in with most people around 2 p.m. in the afternoon and you’ll see lots of people in sleepy trances.

But pathology can cause people to enter trance states frequently. Pathological love relationships are exhausting and take their toll on your body through stress, diet, loss of sleep, and worry. While you are worn down and fatigued you are more suggestible to the kinds of things that are said to you in that state of mind. These words, feelings and concepts sink in at a deeper level than other ideas and statements that are said to you when you are not in a trance state.

If he is telling you that you are crazy, or gas lighting you by telling you that you really didn’t see him do what you think he did, or that the problems of the relationship are because of you…those statements said to you when you are suggestible stay filed in your subconscious and are replayed over and over again creating intrusive thoughts and obsessional thinking.

If he tells you positives when you are in trance states such as “He needs you and please don’t ever leave him” — those phrases too are stored in a subconscious location working you over without your knowledge. When it’s time to redirect your beliefs about him, disengage, or break up women feel like ‘old tapes’ are running in their heads.  It’s very hard for them to get these messages to stop activating their thinking, feeling, and behavior.

Women who are have strong personality traits in suggestibility and fatiguability are more at risk of trance-like states in which words, meanings, and symbols are more concretely stored in the subconscious.

Women feel relieved to find out that they really aren’t crazy—it really DOES feel like she is under his spell because in many ways, she is.

More information on trance states in pathological love relationships is covered in detail in our book Women Who Love Psychopaths: Inside the Relationships of Inevitable Harm with Psychopaths, Sociopaths & Narcissists.

www.saferelationshipsmagazine.com

In my next column, we’ll talk about other ways that trance states can be effected in the pathological relationship.

———————————————————————————-
Gender Disclaimer: The issues The Institute writes about are mental health issues. They are not gender issues. Both females and males have the types of Cluster B disorders we often refer to in our articles. Our readership is approximately 90% female therefore we write for those most likely to seek out our materials. We highly support male victims and encourage others who want to provide support to male victims to encompass the issues we discuss only from a female perpetrator/male-victim standpoint. Cluster B Education is a mental health issue applicable to both genders.
———————————————————————————

EAA Life Preserver

The E.A.A. as Interactive PDF Download

NEW!

EAA Life Preserver

by: Susan Murphy Milano

Only $9.99

Add to Cart

 

(This is a digital download product)

Coming Soon

Evidentiary Abuse Affadavit APP coming soon

Healing the Aftermath Column, Jennifer Young, LMHC, Director of Survivor Services

Jennifer Young Bio Pic 2015Jennifer Young, LMHC, Director of Survivor Services

Provides phone sessions, tele-conferencing groups, and retreats. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of South Florida and a Master’s Degree in Clinical Counseling from Troy University-Tampa Bay. Her focus of study has been trauma and gentle healing techniques with a focus on women’s issues and disengagement from pathological love relationships.

To read Jennifer’s latest column, click HERE

 

Jennifer Young began her career over nineteen years ago working with single parents, helping them to achieve employment and education goals through the exploration of self-direction. During that time Jennifer dedicated herself to the prevention of domestic violence. This focus allowed for the development of a philosophy that included building strength through knowledge and personal power. Jennifer believes that there are four areas to examine which will lead to development of inner strength-security, empowerment, love and freedom or S.E.L.F. Through a deep examination and development of these areas she believes we can be our true and strong selves.

In 2009 Jennifer began her private practice and that same year took a position as a coach for the Institute for Relational Harm Reduction and Public Pathology Education. Jennifer spent three months training daily with Sandra on the concepts related to pathological love relationships and the model of care developed by The Institute. Following this intense mentorship, Jennifer has worked with over 200 clients through one-to-one coaching and leading support groups for The Institute. Through her work with clients, mentorship with Sandra Brown and continued learning in the area of personality disorders and their impact on others, Jennifer strives to assist The Institute clients with obtaining compassionate disengagement from their pathological partner.

Jennifer’s belief about healing and change can be summarized in the words of Anais Nin: “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

Jennifer has worked as a social worker, foster parent and as a volunteer legal advocate for victims of violence. She is currently a member of the Pinellas County Fatality Review Team and member of the Suncoast Mental Health Counseling Association.

To read Jennifer’s latest column, click HERE

Pathometry – Tools for Professionals, Sandra L. Brown, M.A., Director of Advanced Education Services

Sandra L. Brown, M.A. provides advanced training and The Institute Certification for Mental Health, Addictions, Law Enforcement, and Judicial Professionals in Psychopathology and Personality Disorders. She holds a Master’s Degree in counseling with a former specialization in personality disorders/pathology.  She is a program development specialist, lecturer, community educator, and award-winning author.  Her books include the award-winning Women Who Love Psychopaths:  Inside the Relationships of Inevitable Harm with Psychopaths, Sociopaths and Narcissists, as well as How to Spot a Dangerous Man Before You Get Involved, and Counseling Victims of Violence:  A Handbook for Helping Professionals.

To read Sandra’s latest column, click HERE

or Sandra’s latest column on Pathometry HERE

Sandra is recognized for her pioneering work on women’s issues related to relational harm with Cluster B/Axis II – Sociopathy/Psychopathy disordered partners.  She specializes in training professionals from various professions about pathological love relationships based on her books/products, and helps women’s organizations modify their survivor support services to include recognizing pathological love relationships.  Under her direction, The Institute has developed the Advanced Community Education Program for professionals in pathological love relationships, utilizing The Institute’s Model of Care Approach with our team of affiliated licensed mental health professionals.

Her books, CD’s, DVD’s, and other training materials have been used as curriculum in drug rehabs, women’s organizations and shelters, women’s jail and prison programs, school and college-based programs, inner city projects, and various psychology and sociology programs, and has been distributed in almost every country around the world.

Her collaborative research on Women Who Loves Psychopaths was presented at the Society for the Scientific Study of Psychopathy, as well as The Ruth Ginsberg Lecture Series, Women and the Law on Domestic Violence, and Domestic Violence Provider and Batterer Intervention Training, in which her unique focus on pathological love relationships has been featured.  Her exclusive insight into pathological love relationships is now regularly quoted as a resource in new books on this topic.

She is a writer for Psychology Today and has been interviewed in magazines such as Seventeen.  She has appeared in more than 50 television shows including Anderson Cooper’s daytime show, Anderson.  She has provided consultation to film producers regarding pathological love relationship dynamics based on her books.

Sandra’s previous work included the founding and directing of a counseling center, which was a multi-faceted mental health treatment center.  She also worked as a specialist in a women’s trauma inpatient hospital program.

 

To read Sandra’s latest column, click HERE

or Sandra’s latest column on Pathometry HERE

Strategies for High Conflict Cases Column – Safety Director and Violence Expert

Susan Murphy-Milano is often praised as one of the most dynamic and engaging speakers of our day in the domestic violence prevention field.

As an expert in the area of intimate partner violence and the prevention of homicide, Susan has created specific tools and procedures which the abused need to safely leave a violent relationship.

To read the past column from Susan, click HERE

Her books, “Defending Our Lives,” “Moving Out, Moving On: When a Relationship Goes Wrong–A Step-By-Step Approach For Organizing Your Leave Ahead of Time” and “Time’s Up! A Guide on How to Leave and Survive Abusive & Stalking Relationships,” are considered the “bibles” of how to make the move away from abuse and deal with the many confusing situations surrounding violence prevention, stalking, break-up or divorce.

Susan witnessed her father, a decorated Chicago Violent Crimes Detective, brutally and violently attack her mother repeatedly. The threat “If you leave, I will kill you” turned into reality one awful night. Susan walked into her childhood home and found her mother murdered and her father dead in the next room. He had killed her mother, then committed suicide by shooting himself in the head. That day, Susan vowed to change the way the world looks at violence, both inside and outside the home. In the years since, she has delivered on that vow.

Her books and strategies are taught world-wide and used by law enforcement, domestic abuse advocates, social workers, attorneys, health care workers, human resource departments and domestic violence agencies. The comprehensive strategies and escape plans utilized by Susan have been successful and tested by time for over 20 years.

Susan uses humor, passion, and all her years of experience to motivate her audience to become more effective first responders, advocates and professionals in their work to stop family violence.

Susan’s quest for justice was instrumental in the passage of the Illinois Stalking Law and the Lauternberg Act. She has been prominently featured in newspapers, magazines, radio and television including: The Oprah Winfrey Show, Larry King Radio, ABC’S 20/20, Justice Files, E! True Hollywood Story, CNN, Sunday Today Show Profile, Woman’s Day, Family Circle, U.S. News and World Report to name only a few. She has frequently participated in guest media commentary panels on major news programs. She is a contributor to the online blogs Women and Crime Ink and the crime survivors blog Time’s Up.

Susan Murphy-Milano is with The Institute for Relational Harm Reduction and Public Psychopathy Education. She is an expert on intimate partner violence and homicide crimes. Susan is the author of “Time’s Up: A Guide on How to Leave and Survive Abusive and Stalking Relationships,” available for purchase at The Institute and Amazon.com.

Susan is the host of The Susan Murphy Milano Show, “Time’s Up” on Here Women Talk:
http://www.hearwomentalk.com/
and the syndicated The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth:
http://www.therothshow.com/

The Institute’s Susan Murphy Milano now writing for ‘Crime, She Writes’ blog in Forbes.com!

http://murphymilanojournal.blogspot.com/2011/10/introducing-crime-she-writes-on-forbes.html

To read the latest column from Susan, click HERE

 

 

I Got This…

By Jennifer Young

The focus of this series of articles has been your Super Traits.  The Super Traits are your temperament and character traits that are powerful components of who you are which carry positive and negative consequences.  The power that you have over these traits comes in the form of awareness.  Your first task is to acknowledge them and address the areas in your life of which they put you at risk.  The second task is to use these traits to your advantage.

Thomas Jefferson said, “Never trouble another for what you can do yourself.”  I think we can agree that these words are true for most of us, and a great way to live your life.  But, they could not be more inaccurate when talking about a psychopath – in fact they probably see these words and think…”suckers.”  The truth is, psychopaths are amazingly resourceful, and their greatest tool for being resourceful is you.

Resourcefulness by definition means that you are able to meet the needs of a situation and can develop the necessary means to accomplish a task.  Being resourceful is a highly valuable trait, so consequently those who are very high in the trait of resourcefulness (like women who have been in relationships with psychopaths) often have very successful lives…great careers, wonderful children, and a great circle of friends.

You are often the person that:

•    Others turn to in a time of need or struggle
•    Are able to find ways to get things done that others might have thought impossible
•    Find resources where there were none
•    Get help when others were turned down
•    Can rally any number of people to the cause

Most importantly, you have a great combination of inner and outer resources.  Your inner resource examples are creativity, intelligence, confidence, courage, or passion.  Your outer resources are people, money, or technology.  When used together – you can accomplish anything.

It is important to realize there is a difference in the resourcefulness of you and the resourcefulness of a psychopath.  The psychopath is resourceful off the backs of others.  The word that comes to mind is “exploitive.”

Thomas Jefferson’s words would be twisted into something like this – “Never do for yourself what you can convince others to do for you.”  In this way of pathological thinking, the psychopath’s view is a negative use of a positive trait.  You can easily be fooled into believing that your psychopath is so “resourceful” because he always seems to get things done.  If you stop and become an observer, you will see that there is a trail of destruction behind every step he takes.  Resourcefulness is part of his mask, so even you (as one of his resources) will be used as the mask.  As Sandra says, “He is sicker than you are smart.”  So, no matter how smart you are in using your resources, his resources of exploitation and diabolical behavior is stronger.  This exploitive and diabolical use of resources wins every time.

Herein lies the risk:  You will use all of your resources trying to “fix” or “help” him.  You’ve got the resources to do it – the connections, the know-how – and in most cases, the means to fix things.  Add to your resourcefulness a little bit of oxytocin, and you’re toast.  That’s because we are compelled, as humans, to bond with those we love.  Oxytocin does that for us because as humans we need to be bonded to others.  Part of bonding and maintaining a lasting relationship is being resourceful together – “I’ll help you, you help me.”  The problem is this is a perfect fit for a psychopath, because they view the world as “suckers.”  In most cases they are energy exploiters and look for others to do their work, or they exploit because it’s fun to watch others do what they have directed them to do.

So now, you have created a cycle – he’s broken, you fix, he says thank you, then he breaks again, you fix, he says thank you, and so on.  This cycle is one of the reasons you stay so long, because you are always in between him “breaking” and you “fixing.”  He never fixes himself – but you are on a mission – “I love him, and this what you do for someone you love.”  So, years have passed, nothing has changed with him, but you are completely exhausted.  Your resources are tapped out.  You have no more creativity, you feel dumb (nothing has worked), have no confidence, and your courage has turned to fear.  Those outer resources are probably gone too – the money, the friends – all of it.

But herein lies YOUR benefit:  Your resourcefulness can become a real problem for a psychopath, and isn’t that what you want about now?  When you are ready you will, and can, outthink him.  What I know is that “he is sicker than you are smart,” BUT only until you get smart.

You have the ability to be confident enough to make real changes.  Let’s face it, you have been courageous for a big piece of your life – you’ve been with a pathological partner, and that takes a form of courage.  So, those internal RESOURCES are exactly what is needed THAT CAN BE USED FOR GETTING AWAY.

How do those resources look in action?

•    You will call everyone you know to get the truth and get help.
•    You will call ex’s, you will tap phones, and you will search computers.
•    You will put the pieces together, stop doing for him and begin to do for yourself.

Once that final pathological event happens that produces eyes-wide-open reality, it will be your resourcefulness that lifts you out and moves you on.  Not sure your traits can hang on long enough to be a benefit for you?  The good news is your traits are hard-wired in you.  They are not going away.  So even though at the end of the relationship it feels as if he has drained you and your resources are depleted…he has not.  Your ability to be resourceful is still there because it has always been one of your strongest traits.

You can begin by accessing your internal resources.  Strengthen them by exercising your creativity, by challenging yourself and taking those steps to live pathology-free, and by massaging your courageousness.  While you’re at it, you can also engage your external resources by reaching out to old friends and co-workers, re-engage at work (to build up your financial resources), or stepping out and doing something you’ve always dreamed about.

My favorite idea for the rebuilding of resourcefulness is reaching out to those friends and family who always told you he was the problem.  You can bring them back to you as a supporter by telling them they were right.  If an old friend or distant family member was once a valuable resource, then humble yourself, call them and tell them your story, and get your resource back.  Step by step you will begin grabbing hold of one of your best traits – your own resourcefulness to rebuild your life.

What Will You Do?

In May, 2012, Vicki Bolling lay dying in her front yard, shot three times by her husband. The local news reports say that the death of Ms. Bolling was no surprise to her sons. According to news accounts, her sons report that she suffered years of physical and emotional abuse that included threats, manipulation and intimidation. She was married for 30 years. Her son, John Stevenson, is quoted as saying “She is the only one in the world who could love a monster.” (Tampa Bay Times, May 10, 2012)

We know that she is not the only one…we know that loving a “monster” is possible. For women that love psychopaths, love and monster often exist in the same thought. The problem is, someone who has never been in the midst of this level of psychological trauma may not understand…they don’t understand why women stay…why women don’t see how bad he is. This lack of understanding of the power of pathology is killing women.

Domestic homicide is preventable. The mission of the Fatality Review Committee in Pinellas County, Florida is to convey that message. It is the responsibility of the Pinellas County Fatality Review Committee to bring to the table members of the community who share a vested interest in uncovering patterns related to local domestic homicides. In the last twelve years, the team has reviewed 103 cases. Cases are reviewed only after those cases have been finalized in the criminal justice system.

Domestic homicide, both locally and nationally, does not occur in a vacuum…there are warning signs and in a community, there are trends. Our report, published in May 2012, outlines the seven trends in our community for domestic homicides.
1-In 89% of cases there had been no contact with the local domestic violence center. Domestic homicide is preventable when victims reach out to domestic violence centers for safety and resources.

2-In 89% of the cases there had been no referral to a batterer’s intervention program. Domestic homicide is preventable when perpetrators connect with batterer’s intervention programs and their underlying behaviors and beliefs are addressed.

3-In 88% of cases there was a male perpetrator and female victim. Domestic homicide is preventable when our society shifts to the belief that all people are of equal value and control over others is no longer the standard.

4-In 85% of cases there was no injunction for protection filed. Domestic homicide is preventable when victims are encouraged to file injunctions for protection and have access to information and safety planning to assist in the process of leaving.

5-In 76% of cases substance abuse was a contributing factor. Domestic homicide is preventable when those who have a substance abuse problem are assessed for issues related to violence, both perpetrators and victims.

6-In 68% of the cases the perpetrator had a prior criminal history. Domestic homicide is preventable when criminal history is identified as a pattern of behavior and the information is made openly available to victims and during domestic violence court hearings.

7-In 69% of the cases friends, family, coworkers and/or neighbors were aware of previous violence. Domestic homicide is preventable when everyone in the community takes a stand against violence; stop asking why she doesn’t leave and start asking what you can do to help her leave.

These trends mean something. A “trend” refers to the idea or awareness of repeated, connected events. It’s not a black and white predictor but rather a clue to a potential. Trends are used in many areas of our lives. Many follow financial trends or housing market trends; some look at trends related to medical issues and even trends in our environment. Those that use trends take advantage of facts and information found in the reality of our lives…trends don’t rely on the maybe’s of the past but rather the truth that exists in the past.

What is powerful about trends is their ability to provide safeguards as well as hope. Trends help us connect missing pieces to prevent poor choices and they help us highlight information that will lead to improved choices. If we are open to it, they translate into the framework for prevention.

Prevention in the area of domestic homicide is risky. The risk comes because of the severity of getting it right or getting it wrong…human life is at stake. But I believe we must move through the risk. By “move through” I mean acknowledge it…learn from it and then see what follows. So, beyond acknowledging the risk lies a focus on prevention.

The trends that have come from our local review of domestic homicide highlight many areas that need more focus. The realities of these trends are not unlike acknowledging the realities of pathology. Identifying patterns of behavior in one person and accepting the reality of who they are can help prevent continued pain. We have to begin to call it as it is…we have to pay attention to the facts and the patterns of behavior.

So, what will you do? I invite you to be an observer-begin to pay attention to the people around you. As you observe the behavior of others do so without judgment…without including your “opinion” about who they are…leave out the morals that might have been handed to you or the input of society that doesn’t fit for you. Observe the behavior as it is…look for patterns… and when you uncover a pattern that violates who you are…or violates the boundaries of someone you love….do something.

As part of the mission of the Institute we ask you to spread the word about the power and impact of pathology. Share this report with those in your community that are invested in saving lives. Talk to them about the trends and patterns and about pathology. Domestic Homicide Fatality Review Teams are active in many states and communities…what can you contribute to the conversation? If your community is not talking about dangerous relationships then you can be the start…do something.

Finally, if you are experiencing physical and psychological abuse, please consider creating an Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit.

To learn more, visit www.documenttheabuse.com

To read the full report “Preventable: A Review of Domestic Fatalities in Pinellas County, Florida”, click here: http://www.largo.com/egov/docs/1337974149_814671.pdf

What We Believe About Pathology and Relational Health

“Some of the most disturbing realities are not that pathology exists, but that so little public pathology education for the general public exists.”
                  -Sandra L. Brown, M.A., The Institute

The Problem of the Unrecognized Face of Pathology

We live in an age where ‘Positive Psychology’ has ingrained a mantra into society’s psyche – which is:

If you think it

(i.e., the narcissist/psychopath needs to change his behavior)

Then you can make it happen

(i.e., your relationship will be successful when he changes)

That may be true when you are with a person who has normal psychology.  But it’s a long way from being true for those who have pathology.

For many years, people have thought that if they focused hard enough, loved long enough, tolerated more, and carried a positive attitude, their partner would somehow become unaffected by the personality disorder – even the psychopathy they bore. People believed this because they were often told this by professionals – all under the guises of different therapy approaches and theories.

For years, people who had gone through traditional forms of couples counseling came to us bearing the scars from not only the pathology in their partner who abused them, but by the wrong application of couples counseling therapy.  When there was the pathology of having no conscience, no lack of remorse, impaired insight, or low impulse control in a partner – traditional forms of counseling proved unsuccessful.  What occurred were often techniques in Mirroring, Love Languages, Communication Building, Intimacy, or Spiritual Reflecting for a partner who had no insight and lacked empathy for what his partner had experienced.  Equally prevalent, were ideologies that ‘the pathological came into my life to heal me,’ or ‘this is a spiritual manifestation for me to grow by,’ or ‘he is in my life to heal my issues from early childhood.’

Equally damaging, lack of public information often occurs through women’s organizations that lumps problem behavior in one category (abuser) and leave the impairment of pathology out of the equation.  People are then forced to conform to theories that do not fit their dynamics in order to get help, and miss the crucial ability to understand which disorders hold hope for change, and which do not.

There is emotional, physical, and relational danger in applying pop psychology principles to something as aberrant as pathology.  Trying to ‘attract’ the ‘positive’ to the relationship so the pathology is transformed leaves people ignoring the traits of pathology that can seriously harm them.  It is no wonder we are not further ahead in being able to spot abnormal psychology in others and avoid it.

The truth is, nothing impacts non-pathological people as much as being in a relationship with someone who is pathological.  Add to that the lack of understanding of how pathology manifests in relationships, and the manipulative behavior of those with pathology – and  you have partners, families, and children who are devastated almost as much by the lack of information, as by the destruction that happens at the hands of the pathological.  Without the education of ‘what’ the disorder is, ‘how’ it came to be, ‘whom’ it effects, and ‘why’ it harms others – partners, families, and children live in the shadows of unspoken confusion and pain.  This also bleeds over to family court, mediators, social workers, and judges who also do not recognize pathology, or care to understand it, leaving cases in limbo and in danger labeled as ‘contentious’ or ‘high conflict.’

Many who have found The Institute’s programs and products have said, ‘This is the first time anyone has ever explained this to me in a way I could understand.’  I have seen that when people finally found information that described their partner’s pathology, the awareness often gave way to crying, and then to anger.  It was the information they wanted that was out there all along, but was not easy to find, or was sometimes not easy to understand or explained in layman’s terms.  Equally as frustrating is such poor and inaccurate training generated out of generic approaches to pathology in graduate schools which leaves professionals with the inability to spot pathology in others, and a total loss about how to treat the survivors.  Consequently, the mental health field has done little to train the public about what pathology is, the limitation of wellness it implies, and what it looks and acts like in relationships, because they themselves do not know.

The efforts of The Institute are to bridge the gap in public pathology education to both survivors and treatment providers.  One of our bridges in public pathology education is for survivors and is achieved by providing the best and most up-to-date recovery options for their unique aftermath symptoms.  The second bridge is our approaches for victim service providers in the fields of mental health, criminal justice, nursing/medical, pastoral, addiction, and law enforcement.  Our products for service providers, as well as our face-to-face trainings, have equipped professionals in many fields from many countries with the tools they need to help heal the aftermath of pathological love relationships.

An M.D. said to me recently, ‘I consider pathology and it’s untaught concepts to be the number one health crisis in this country.’

We couldn’t agree more.  We hope that the work of the many professionals who are involved with The Institute will be the part of the solution to the unrecognized face of pathology and it’s victims.

Monthly Special

DVD 1 Understanding Destructive and Pathological Relationships + our good friend JL Vallee’s latest book ‘Severed Soul’ a survivors own story about recovering from PTSD.
Normally priced $39 + $15 = $54, NOW $43 + s/h

DVD 1 Understanding Destructive and Pathological Relationships

Core training for understanding the basics of psychopathology related to personality disorders (especially narcissists, sociopaths, and psychopaths) and the impact on personal relationships with them.

This training includes:

  • The unknown facts about pathology in our culture
  • The frequency of pathology in others
  • Why a pathological doesn’t change
  • The cause of personality disorders in others
  • Genetic Transmission of pathology
  • Pathology and its connection to child abuse and neglect
  • The pathological personality types and relating behavior
  • Relationship dynamics with a pathological person
  • The partner’s aftermath of symptoms

** If there was ever just one DVD to understand pathology for yourself or others, this is the ONE! A teaching tool worthy of being in everyone’s lending pile

Add to Cart

Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Happiness

Happy 4th of July! With all that flag waving and potato salad,
I couldn’t help but think about ‘Independence Day’ — the day that women
cut the cords of dependency and exit dangerous and pathological relationships.

Your emotional and physical ‘Independence Day’ is the beginning of recovery.  It’s the day that you ‘come to’ and say:

* How did I get here?
* Is this REALLY my life?
* Where did the real me go?
* Look how much this has cost me to be with him
* Look what it’s done to my friends/family/children
* You know what? I’m not CRAZY!
* I don’t believe his lies any more
* I’m sick of feeling this way
* I am tired of hearing about how everything is my fault
* I am sickened by my own staying

Your ‘Independence Day’ is the day you pick up and read some insight-oriented material that makes you snap out of the trance you have been in within
the relationship. It’s the day you read a book, listen to an audio, call a counselor, or pack your bags. It’s the day you pray ‘God help me get out,’ change the locks on your door, or leave his bags at the curb. It’s the day you book a retreat, go back to church/temple, confess your sick relationship to others.

Independence Day symbolizes freedom…not only in this country but in ourselves. The freedom to heal. The freedom to choose differently. The freedom to gain insight from someone other than a pathological individual we have been involved with. The freedom to end what is unhealthy.

Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Happiness are aspects of a healthy life that
can’t occur within pathological and dangerous relationships. There is no life in that! It has all been sucked out of you by the pathological personality that is needy, defiant, deviant, or insatiable.

There is no Liberty–he runs the show, your thoughts, your needs, your dreams. There is no Pursuit of Happiness–only his. All pathologicals have an agenda that include their own perverted entitlement. Your happiness is only an accident if it happens while he is pursuing his own.

People fight to keep us free. Shouldn’t you fight to keep yourself free? Independence isn’t the opposite of dependency. It’s the absence of self negation where you respect your own uniqueness, self, and life path and that you live first for these values.

Independence isn’t selfishness. It isn’t some prescription for alone-ness. It’s the foundation of boundaries, self care, emotional and relational health.
Independence allows and builds inter-dependence–the structure that allows us to mutually care for one another without pathological suffocation. Independence is most assuredly, your recovery.

If we can help you out of your dangerous relationship, please avail yourself to our book, ebooks, other products, phone sessions, and retreat programs. Your success out is our success.

Default Settings in Patterns of Partner Selection

If you use a computer you are probably aware of the ‘default settings’ that come on your computer or in various software programs on your machine.  A default settings is

“The controls of a computer hardware, software, device, equipment or machine which was preset by its manufacturer.”

Items on your computer that are preset are often the country you are in, the time zone, etc. There are also types of ‘presets’ you can choose yourself such as what company ISP is your home page, which printer you assign to your computer, and so on.  These selections become ‘default’ settings once you have selected them.  Your machine is now set to automatically defer to those choices every time the machine needs to.

But our computers are not the only things that are set on default. Just like a computer ‘hardware’ or ‘software’ can come ‘preset’ by its manufacturer, so can our own internal computer—our body and psyche.

Our hardware is our genetics that come hardwired into the development of our brain (and body for that matter). This can include propensities and proclivities to certain traits such as high or low serotonin in our brains, high or low empathy, and other genetic DNA that ‘presets’ our internalized computer.  Just as we have seen the impact of the pathologicals own hardwired symptoms, we too come hardwired with our defaults that want to ‘lean’ us to these preset settings. Our default settings could be set to attraction to stocky dark haired men, or blonde and blue eyed, or black men or maybe your physical default is not all that particular about the physicality of your partners. Maybe your default is set to other parameters such as humor, charisma, or spirituality.

While we don’t ask why we have blue eyes or why we are attracted to tall dark and handsome, we often ask ‘why’ we have too much empathy or too much relationship investment not understanding that these settings come hardwired with us when we are born. A fact not often understood is that some emotional traits are as hardwired as other genetic DNA.

Our software is the programs that have been added into and onto our machine that tell the machine what to do. These software programs also impact our default settings but in a different way.  Software are the messages you learned growing up as a child. These messages about relationships, men and women’s roles in relationships, what power you do or do not have, the impact of choices, violence in the home, addictions in parents are all data and information that is stored on your computer in the software ‘programs’ that run your computer.  From your software the machine (your body, your external life) is run from the programs of your software.  So messages about how ‘all relationships are’ or about what you ‘can and cannot succeed in’, tell your machine what choices to make from the software you have.

Software programs other than childhood messages can also come from religious impact, education, and your own experience within relationships—each compounding the existing software message or conflicting with existing software messages. These messages are also loaded onto your software as programs that impact choices which impact your life.

Hardware (hardwiring) preset defaults such as hyper empathy combined with software loaded defaults such as super trust or high tolerance messages (such as ‘don’t get divorced no matter what’) combine in unique yet entrapping ways that cause some people to be more ‘at risk’ of Pathological Love Relationships than others.

We have had heard the arguments of ‘nature versus nurture’ especially regarding pathology. We know some of the Cluster Bs are born that way, some are made that way from their social environments and some are both—born that way and then bent that way further.  The same is true for you, the Super-Traited partner of Cluster Bs.

You come into the world with a proclivity towards certain hardwired traits within your temperament that are so strong as to make your ‘bent’ towards attraction to, and tolerance of, pathology extremely high.  Into your world with your ‘bent’ you are exposed to lifelong messages that either encourage your bent or try to bend you away from your existing proclivities.

Families with healthy boundaries and healthy relationships model the exact programming that sets a child’s default on a different setting for partner selection. But families who themselves have selected pathological partners, who have the same hardwiring propensity for tolerating pathology, flip the child’s software default switch to tolerance, minimizing, renaming, and accepting pathological behavior.  This is largely done through role modeling these behaviors or what we call learned conditioning.

A genetic hard-wired proclivity with a software default program that supports pathological partner selection starts the process of the continued pattern of having pathological partners well into adulthood.

In computers, default settings serve the purpose of ‘minimal user interaction required’ which puts the setting defaults to the most commonly selected options. This is exactly what it does for you as well. “Why do I keep picking these kinds of guys over and over again?”  Your default was set early in life and has not been changed. When left to your own programming, your default will automatically select the most pathological partner. Your hard-wiring is already ‘bent’ in that direction and is supported by your software programs to do so.  It is so automatic, so autonomic, that just like the computer ‘minimal user interaction is required.’

By the time women contact The Institute, they are so exhausted by the lifetime of the pathological energy-sucking relationships that they are ready to do what it takes to stop this.  Simply stating “I am NEVER going to do this again. I am going to pick differently in the future” doesn’t register to your software program. It’s still set on the default pattern of selection it has been set on for years.  If you could look at the software settings internally it would look like this:

x  Narcissistic
x  Cheater
x  Pathological Lying
x  Charming and deceitful
x  Helps me ignore my red flags
x  Induces fantasy thinking of how my future MIGHT be
x  Honeymoon cycle followed by D&D (Devalue & Discard)
x Intense, intensely pursued
x Hypnotic, I can’t think or choose differently while with them

These might be some of the traits you are repeatedly selecting through your software default program.

In software programs, it’s noted that ‘Using defaults will tend to increase errors, as users may leave incorrect default settings selected.’

Hmmmmm… yeah. Can we agree that’s true? The difficulty in Pathological Love Relationship recovery is that women read a book or go to a counselor and talk about the pain of the relationship but never get down to the reprogramming of the software.  Hardware comes as it is and will always be there and you will always be ‘bent’ in a direction or proclivity for these relationships. BUT you can put in different software programming that will let you pick from a NEWSET of default choices and not automatically ‘defaulting back’ to what you have always chosen. You have to choose differently in order to get a different outcome.

Only a few times a year do we offer these ‘software reprogramming’ events that we call retreats.  By popular demand we have added one more for all of 2012 which is Sept 2-7 in beautiful Brevard, NC – The Land of Waterfalls.  2013 retreats (if offered) have not been set yet.  Please avail yourself to this opportunity. We have filled the first house and had so many other requests we have added a second house and only have ONE slot remaining in it.  Information about the retreat is on the website and an application. Fill it out and email it to us at saferelationships (at) yahoo. We will review and contact you to let you know if it was accepted into the program. We cannot comment on your placement without an application. Cost is $625 for accommodations, group sessions, and nature outings.

Controls of a computer hardware or software (or of a device, equipment, or machine) as preset by its manufacturer. Some types of default settings may be altered or customized by the user.
Ads by Google

Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/default-setting.html#ixzz1y96c3FZm

———————————————————————————-
Gender Disclaimer: The issues The Institute writes about are mental health issues. They

are not gender issues. Both females and males have the types of Cluster B disorders we

often refer to in our articles. Our readership is approximately 90% female therefore we

write for those most likely to seek out our materials. We highly support male victims

and encourage others who want to provide support to male victims to encompass the issues

we discuss only from a female perpetrator/male-victim standpoint. Cluster B Education is

a mental health issue applicable to both genders.
———————————————————————————

An American Tragedy: A Serious Diagnosis And No Health Insurance

http://www.forbes.com/sites/crime/2012/06/21/an-american-tragedy-a-serious-diagnosis-and-no-health-insurance/

What Will You Do?

In May 2012, Vicki Bolling lay dying in her front yard, shot three times by her husband.  The local news reports say that the death of Ms. Bolling was no surprise to her sons.  According to news accounts, her sons report that she suffered years of physical and emotional abuse that included threats, manipulation and intimidation.  She was married for 30 years.  Her son, John Stevenson, is quoted as saying “She is the only one in the world who could love a monster.” (Tampa Bay Times, May 10, 2012)
We know that she is not the only one…we know that loving a “monster” is possible.  For women that love psychopaths, love and monster often exist in the same thought.  The problem is, someone who has never been in the midst of this level of psychological trauma may not understand…they don’t understand why women stay…why women don’t see how bad he is.  This lack of understanding of the power of pathology is killing women.

Domestic homicide is preventable.  The mission of the Fatality Review Committee in Pinellas County, Florida is to convey that message.  It is the responsibility of the Pinellas County Fatality Review Committee to bring to the table members of the community who share a vested interest in uncovering patterns related to local domestic homicides.  In the last twelve years, the team has reviewed 103 cases.  Cases are reviewed only after they have been finalized in the criminal justice system.
Domestic homicide, both locally and nationally, does not occur in a vacuum…there are warning signs and in a community, there are trends.  Our report, published in May 2012, outlines the seven trends in our community for domestic homicides.

1-In 89% of cases there had been no contact with the local domestic violence center.  Domestic homicide is preventable when victims reach out to domestic violence centers for safety and resources.
2-In 89% of the cases there had been no referral to a batterer’s intervention program.  Domestic homicide is preventable when perpetrators connect with batterer’s intervention programs and their underlying behaviors and beliefs are addressed.

3-In 88% of cases there was a male perpetrator and female victim.  Domestic homicide is preventable when our society shifts to the belief that all people are of equal value and control over others is no longer the standard.

4-In 85% of cases there was no injunction for protection filed.  Domestic homicide is preventable when victims are encouraged to file injunctions for protection and have access to information and safety planning to assist in the process of leaving.

5-In 76% of cases substance abuse was a contributing factor.  Domestic homicide is preventable when those who have a substance abuse problem are assessed for issues related to violence, both perpetrators and victims.

6-In 68% of the cases the perpetrator had a prior criminal history.  Domestic homicide is preventable when criminal history is identified as a pattern of behavior and the information is made openly available to victims and during domestic violence court hearings.

7-In 69% of the cases friends, family, coworkers and/or neighbors were aware of previous violence. Domestic homicide is preventable when everyone in the community takes a stand against violence; stop asking why she doesn’t leave and start asking what you can do to help her leave.

These trends mean something.  A “trend” refers to the idea or awareness of repeated, connected events.  It’s not a black and white predictor but rather a clue to a potential.  Trends are used in many areas of our lives.  Many follow financial trends or housing market trends; some look at trends related to medical issues and even trends in our environment.  Those that use trends take advantage of facts and information found in the reality of our lives…trends don’t rely on the maybe’s of the past, but rather the truth that exists in the past.
What is powerful about trends is their ability to provide safeguards as well as hope.  Trends help us connect missing pieces to prevent poor choices, and they help us highlight information that will lead to improved choices.  If we are open to it, they translate into the framework for prevention.

Prevention in the area of domestic homicide is risky.  The risk comes because of the severity of getting it right or getting it wrong…human life is at stake.  But I believe we must move through the risk.  By “move through” I mean acknowledge it…learn from it, and then see what follows.  So, beyond acknowledging the risk exists a focus on prevention.
The trends that have come from our local review of domestic homicide highlight many areas that need more focus.  The realities of these trends are not unlike acknowledging the realities of pathology.  Identifying patterns of behavior in one person and accepting the reality of who they are can help prevent continued pain.  We have to begin to call it as it is…we have to pay attention to the facts and the patterns of behavior.

So, what will you do?  I invite you to be an observer – begin to pay attention to the people around you.  As you observe the behavior of others, do so without judgment…without including your “opinion” about who they are…leave out the morals that might have been handed to you or the input of society that doesn’t fit for you.  Observe the behavior as it is…look for patterns… and when you uncover a pattern that violates who you are…or violates the boundaries of someone you love….do something.

As part of the mission of The Institute we ask you to spread the word about the power and impact of pathology. Share this report with those in your community that are invested in saving lives.  Talk to them about the trends and patterns, and about pathology.  Domestic Homicide Fatality Review Teams are active in many states and communities…what can you contribute to the conversation?  If your community is not talking about dangerous relationships, then you can be the start…do something.

Finally, if you are experiencing physical and psychological abuse, please consider creating an Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit.  To learn more, visit www.documenttheabuse.com
To read the full report “Preventable: A Review of Domestic Fatalities in Pinellas County, Florida”, click here:   http://www.largo.com/egov/docs/1337974149_814671.pdf

———————————————————————————-
Gender Disclaimer: The issues The Institute writes about are mental health issues. They are not gender issues. Both females and males have the types of Cluster B disorders we often refer to in our articles. Our readership is approximately 90% female therefore we write for those most likely to seek out our materials. We highly support male victims and encourage others who want to provide support to male victims to encompass the issues we discuss only from a female perpetrator/male-victim standpoint. Cluster B Education is a mental health issue applicable to both genders.
———————————————————————————

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/crime/2012/06/21/an-american-tragedy-a-serious-diagnosis-and-no-health-insurance/