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Welcome – Connecting With Everyone Struggling With All Invisible Illnesses

“Living in Stigma” connects with everyone coping with chronic pain, mental illness, and all invisible illnesses.

My blog Living in Stigma was launched in 2007 and originally dedicated to all of us struggling with mental illness.  I felt as if I was living in stigma with my own major depression.

Many forms of mental illness comprise of DepressionBipolar Disorder, Personality Disorders, PTSD, Eating Disorders, Alzheimer’s disease and much more.

I struggle with both mental illness and chronic migraines, and with news articles, social media, research and valued readers sharing comments and opinions on my blog, it’s a reality that invisible illnesses such as fibromyalgia, lupus, headaches, recurring back and leg pain, and so many more are also a vast portion of invisible illness stigma.  Continue reading “Welcome – Connecting With Everyone Struggling With All Invisible Illnesses”

Featured

STIGMA – And Mental Illness

What is stigma?

When someone appears to be different than us, we may view him or her in a negative stereotyped manner.  People who have identities that society values negatively are said to be stigmatized.

Stigma is a reality for people with a mental illness, and they report that how others judge them is one of their greatest barriers to a complete and satisfying life.  Society feels uncomfortable about mental illness. It is not seen like other illnesses such as heart disease and cancer.

Continue reading “STIGMA – And Mental Illness”

Maternal Narcissism ~ Mom, only wishing you could have said these words to me…

QPTSD5-28

Recalling my childhood, my mother seldom had any positive or encouraging words for me, mainly heartless or cruel remarks, only criticizing me for one thing or another spewed from her mouth. She was continually displeased, and only now recognizing that it would be impossible to accomplish ever pleasing this woman.

I was thinking the other day, what words would myself and perhaps others wish their narcissistic moms compassionately said to them.

Mom, if only you could have said:

~I know you don’t lie, of course, I believe you

~Always come to me when you’re upset or angry, I love you

~I’ll always believe in you, whatever your dreams are

~Let’s just have a girl’s day out once in a while, your choice, whatever you want

~You look so cute in those clothes

~Don’t focus on body image, it’s what’s inside

~You’re more important to me than anything

~I’m so damn proud of you.

~I love reading your stories/artwork/playing games

~You smell so nice and clean

~Don’t always spend time in your bedroom, we should spend more time together

~Your feelings matter and you have a right to your opinion, I’m not always right and remember, we all make mistakes

~You look like something is bothering you, want to talk about it?

~Let me take care of you when you’re so sick, how about hot tea? Or I’ll sit beside you or we’ll lay in bed together

~Sure, have your friends over anytime, they are always welcome

~You’re so precious to me, having a daughter is a blessing

~Anything you want to ask me, go right ahead

~I love the way you laugh

~I’m sorry, it’s my fault, not yours/my mistake sorry I made you feel bad

~You are worthy, don’t let anyone make you feel or tell you that you’re not

~Someone is going to be a lucky man to have you as his wife

~I want to just hug you, and keep hugging you, big bear hugs

~I’ve got the best daughter a mother could have

Written and copyrighted by Deb McCarthy/2019

(edited and reposted)

Women with Chronic Pain

This is my story about Fibromyalgia and Endometriosis: two conditions I have come to learn that most GPs struggle explaining, so it took me lots of research and paying attention to my symptoms before I understood the life-long illnesses and how they would affect me,

via Women with chronic pain — writersdistrict

Should I Tell My Boss About My Depression?

For nine years I struggled with depression, resulting in repeated hospitalizations, and scraping by on disability.  Life was bleak and meaningless, but long story short, I recovered enough to return to the workplace.

In the workplace, I was battling depression every so often,  yet managed to hang onto my position for six years without divulging my secret: mental illness.  There still remains a major stigma in the working world and taking a risk to discuss my depression, unquestionably would have cost me my job in the end, and so, I kept my trap shut.

It’s a personal decision, one that you may feel secure revealing, but what about the other person?  Can they be trusted, will they empathize, or will it bite you in the butt for yearly reviews/raise/no raise?

This article in CBC News (health) is interesting pertaining to this topic.
Mental Illness In The Workplace

Other related articles:
Stigma and Mental Illness
Depression:  Have You Ever Felt Handcuffed To Your House?

(edited and reposted)

PTSD – The Trauma Tree

I thought this was an excellent infographic explaining all forms of PTSD and displaying the horrific impact it has on a person in the future. 

Trauma Tree - this is a good graphic of how symptoms can grow from trauma and ignoring the issues. With good therapy, coping skills and support these symptoms can be more controllable:

Source: http://eyemovementdesensitizationandreprocessing.com/emdr-side-effects/

Fibromyalgia is more than pain — Brainless Blogger

Time for another post about Fibromaygia for Awareness month. Fibromyalgia is more than widespread pain Primary symptoms Primary symptoms are the areas used to diagnose someone with Fibromyalgia because they happen to a degree in all of us. Chronic widespread pain Yes, there is chronic widespread pain. It is often the symptom people think of. Yes, […]

via Fibromyalgia is more than pain — Brainless Blogger

Depression – Have you ever felt handcuffed to your house?

 

In our darkest moments, we can still, see some light. cherished79 com  'Living in Stigma'

Yes, it felt as if I was handcuffed to my house.

Sounds dramatic, but I was at the time.

For countless years, and at times even today, depression with its dark, unforgiving black clouds still hover over me. Eventually, I recovered from those darkest days.

Recalling the arduous years of major depression, I was housebound and felt isolated from the world.  Blackness overpowered my life; dark and muddy, depression was unrelenting, and the massive hands took hold of me demanding each full minute of my day.

Days upon days were devoted to gazing out my living room window and enduring life in the house, rarely venturing further than the end of the driveway.

Appointments with my family doctor or psychiatrist developed into an enormous production; quizzing what to wear, panicky about riding the bus or mixing up route times, and what to review with my doctors.

Continue reading “Depression – Have you ever felt handcuffed to your house?”

The Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers

Replace daughter with son and I know this mother... A "mothers unconditional love" does not exist within all mothers. This I know for sure. Some are too self-absorbed to truly love anyone.

Unfortunately, I am the daughter of a narcissistic mother, and the words above describe my mother to a tee.  Going “No Contact” with her in 2013 was difficult at first but the wisest decision I have ever made.

(I will be writing future articles on PTSD and emotional abuse relating to parental narcissism, as it crushed my soul and ruined my life for countless years.)

Deb

Dr. Karyl McBride’s Website

Other Links on here:
How PTSD Impacts Our Lives
Unloved Daughters and Problems with Friendship

You Know You…..and chronic illness

(I originally wrote this poem years ago, but it took a lengthy healing journey in therapy to finally reach the point where I felt strong and believed in myself).

******************

YOU know you are strong inside despite what mental or chronic illness has dealt you.

YOU know you are doing the best that you can, with what life has handed you.

YOU can pat yourself on the back right now, for a job well done. Mastering and surviving each day with an illness, in my eyes, is a full-time job.

Only YOU will know when it’s time to return to the working world; if that’s your goal. It’s alright to be coached and nudged, but you are really the best judge.

Only YOU know the blackness felt during depression – how the thick black mud swallows you up and is unforgiving.

Maybe YOU don’t know how very precious you are, and that you didn’t ask for this illness, and didn’t choose to be ill, and that mental illness is not a character flaw.

YOU will find society’s thinking and attitudes on invisible illness stigma still remain, but with education, perhaps people will alter their opinions and/or judgment.   

But YOU know YOU, and that is all that is important.

(Edited and reposted)

Written and copyrighted by Deb McCarthy/2019

How PTSD Impacts Our Lives

Been there, done that.

I’m unsure of the author of the above infographic, but I thought it showed a few examples of some regrettable symptoms of C-PTSD.

For me, to this day I experience triggers and flashbacks!  Recalling my childhood, should I spot a man who has dirty fingernails it will literally send me back fifty years with horrid memories. My abuser/neighbor used to work underneath the hood of his old car daily and always had dirty hands and filthy, greasy black fingernails.  It makes me want to vomit recalling him placing his hands on me.

10 Different Types of Personality Disorders

You will find 10 distinct types of personality disorders listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition, (DSM-V). The different personality disorders are put into one of three clusters based on similar characteristics assigned to each cluster:

Cluster A personality disorders – odd, eccentric

Cluster B personality disorders – dramatic, emotional, and erratic

Cluster C personality disorders – anxious, fearful

It’s common for people to receive a diagnosis of more than one of the personality disorder types, most commonly within the same cluster. As we explore further, you’ll begin to see how the four common features come together to manifest in the different personality disorders.

Personality Disorder Types

Continue reading “10 Different Types of Personality Disorders”

The Dance of Acceptance — Untangled

Here I go again; the dance of acceptance. I have a pattern of every so often “forgetting” that I live with PTSD. I’m not sure if it’s mental gymnastics that I perform with gold medal perfection, or that it’s normal when living with a chronic illness to experience fluidity of acceptance. I deal with and […]

via The Dance of Acceptance — Untangled

MENTAL ILLNESS: Should I Apologize for being Depressed?

shutterstock_Quotestrong4-1 (1)

An odd question. However, this thought has crossed my mind countless times over the years, forever questioning what my life would be like without mental illness.

_____________________________________________

Where would you be if it weren’t for mental illness or depression?

In the mid-1990s, mental illness first tossed me into a life of bleak, depressive despair, feeling hopeless and helpless, coupled with hospitalizations, countless medications, and ineffective ECTs.

I found myself apologizing for being ill, but why? Apologizing for an illness?

I felt guilty for my deteriorating attitude, the considerable burden I placed on my husband, absence and imperfection at work and primarily failing myself.  The slightest bit of self-confidence achieved throughout the years coupled with the status at my current job dwindled now appearing threadbare.  I was losing myself.

Depression focusses on the negatives.

For one, I kissed my livelihood goodbye. As a well-paid accounting supervisor, enjoying my job and colleagues, I imagined a lengthy career with this company, but, unfortunately, due to the constant absences caused by the illness and hospitalizations, I had no alternative but to leave my position.

Government disability followed after a lengthy two-year wait.  You discover swiftly how to become thrifty.

Back then, both hubby and I lived on comfortable salaries and jetted off to balmy climates once or twice per year; it was a routine. I was able to afford fashionable apparel, household furniture or other articles on a whim without fussing over budgeting our money. Peculiar how you take vacations for granted, as of today we haven’t been on an actual vacation in almost 20 years. (Not a priority actually).

Positives

Luckily, I worked through some issues in therapy, medication was stabilizing my depressive moods, and I was capable of returning to the working world after nine years absent.

The job I accepted was a call center position (collections), but with a prolonged absence from working for nine years, it was a daunting, rocky road in the beginning.  I was appreciative that this company gave me a chance at employment even with a spotty resume.

I survived six years with this company, only to find myself ill with depression and severe migraines, leaving me with no choice but to accept long-term disability.  But at the same time, I wouldn’t have realized the enormous extent of stigma in the workplace.

I have progressed to the point that I’m no longer hospitalized and can function daily. Extensive psychotherapy has resolved the heaps of painful issues that have been haunting me most of my adult life.

I envisioned participation in the writing field in some capacity. It has forever been a passion of mine since I was a child, jotting daily in my diaries.

It’s doubtful I would have been invited to appear on a radio show, speaking engagements, ghostwritten articles for other bloggers, or requested articles as a guest writer discussing mental health, depression, bipolar, etc.

I also wouldn’t have this fantastic blog (since 2007) that has allowed me to express my feelings about my experience struggling with PTSD and depression.

If not for mental illness, I’m uncertain I would be the compassionate, understanding, and accepting person that I am towards others now. I have enormous patience when speaking with anyone struggling with mental illness or other invisible illnesses. Also, a thirst for knowledge on subjects related to medical information, and if not afflicted, I may not have researched.

I continue to struggle with depression on an odd day with frustration, regrets, and tears – but that’s not unexpected, I suppose. We’re courageous, but must forge onward, and be strong.

We’re in this together, you and I, and we must never apologize for our illness.

(edited and reposted)

Written and copyrighted by Deb McCarthy/2019

 

Women Have Heart Attacks Too!

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Ladies, go with your guts. The chest pain you may experience could be a heart attack and not indigestion, a panic attack or just in “your head”. Don’t be afraid to show your face in the emergency room just because you are a woman and the facts have shown that men usually suffer from heart attacks.


My story occurred in August 2018:

My chronic migraines strike daily, and I suffered a horrendous two weeks of these excruciating headaches, and measuring on the unintelligible doctor’s pain scale of 1-10 the pain was nothing short of 10+ each day.

However, migraines had nothing to do with what was to follow.

Seated on my recliner chair attempting to ease the throbbing migraine pain, I suddenly felt an unusual kind of aching; surrounding my chest area above my left boob.  It wasn’t an intense or stabbing pain, but similar to somebody wrapping and pulling a massive bandage across my chest becoming more and more agonizing.

As my upper left arm and shoulder gradually began to feel terrible pain, it was now radiating down my left arm and behind my shoulder blades. Also, breathing was becoming difficult.

What the hell was this?  I was puzzled.

I’m aware from health research that pain felt on the left side of the body can signal a heart attack, but as a healthy female, with no prior heart problems or family history of heart attacks, I was questioning the ‘heart attack’ theory.  Besides, the pain wasn’t overly “painful” compared to my migraines. Continue reading “Women Have Heart Attacks Too!”

PTSD – Secrets Who Are We Protecting?

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I’ve written many posts about my PTSD (childhood sexual abuse); which was a ‘dirty little secret.’  Have you ever held on to secrets for years and years?

Also, who are we protecting?  The abuser?  Our parents or caretakers who were supposed to be caring for us?  Why were we supposed to be the ones to “keep the secret”?  We did nothing wrong.  Seems so unfair and convoluted, doesn’t it?

As I recollect my past, at around eight years old, as my friends and I freely played in our front yard, the evil predator would either sit next door on his veranda, relaxing, puffing on his cigarette or in the driveway repairing whatever under the hood of his old car.

I felt panicked for both my friends and me, wanting so badly to warn them of this sexual deviant and express to them of the sexual abuse at the hands of this man, yet at the same time felt compelled to “keep the secret.”  I had a secret; an ugly little secret, to something that I didn’t cause – or did I?

There was the distressing apology, forced by my parents to blurt out and recite with sincerity to this predator for abusing ME.  That sincerity was met with confusion and bewilderment while apologizing to this revolting man, wondering how I wronged him in the first place.  All kinds of feelings swished around: hate, helplessness, and frankly, I was humiliated.  My parents, warning me, never to tell anyone about this.

Continue reading “PTSD – Secrets Who Are We Protecting?”

Narcissistic Parenting – From the ‘roots’ up

A Narcissistic Parent will drench fresh water on their golden child s plant daily yet merely permitting the scapegoat child s plant to receive tiny sprinkles of water on the odd day forever shadowed by the sun Deb McCarthy

I learned this bit of wisdom from my therapist during one of our many sessions discussing my narcissistic mother.  She explained it very clearly how a parent has children (plants); she waters some and helps them grow and flourish, yet the others who aren’t so lucky receive less attention and ignored.  I now understood how my mother cared and treated my brother vs. myself.   Do any of you feel this way?

(This was very popular when first posted in April/2017, being one of the favorite quotes I wrote about narcissistic mothers.)

The “Everything Happens for a Reason” statement is Crap

Opinion

I think about this statement often, and when someone utters these words, it pisses me to no end. 

What precisely does it mean, and why do people say it? Are they so narrow-minded, wrapped up in religion, or in another world?

Does it mean when there is a world disaster, a plane crash due to a mechanical issue, a school shooting, childhood sexual abuse, people diagnosed with an illness, cancer,  kidnapping, serial murderers and rapists, riots, war veterans killed or any other horrible occurrence, it happened for a reason? Please explain.

For me, it goes way back to my very ill years struggling with major depression and my mother once commenting the ever so “everything happens for a reason” words. Really, mom? You mean the sexual abuse, which led to therapy, which led to depression, which led to hospitals, a myriad of meds, which led to suicide attempts, countless ECTs, which led to losing my career, almost foreclosure on my house, hubby losing his job, losing friends and let’s include the horrible migraine headaches etc. What exactly do you mean?

I don’t believe people recognize how much these words can sting, it’s almost a “whatever”, said in a flippant moment. IMO, just support that person, show comfort and most of all keep your trap shut.

Edited and reposted

Written and copyright by Deb McCarthy 2019

This was a desperate connection that you can NEVER return to. — After Narcissistic Abuse

NEVER forget that this was a desperate connection be it a friendship, a family connection or what we believed was love. We can NEVER return to the chaos, manipulation, betrayal, blame, fear, pain, rejection, etc., EVER AGAIN. From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with […]

via This was a desperate connection that you can NEVER return to. — After Narcissistic Abuse

How Graphic Design Has Helped My Migraines

As you have noticed, it appears that I have deserted my very own blog! 

I suppose this is accurate, but you see, I’ve been on a bit of an adventure, and spreading my wings too thin.

I’m delighted I kept this blog open and sincerely thank everyone who continues to read all of my earlier postings while leaving comments that I’ve neglected.  I genuinely apologize for that.

In early fall 2017, I began writing articles for a site called Virily.com (they pay writers for their work) and thoroughly relished writing quizzes of all things.  My writing has steered me to various spheres, but I’m new to inventing a quiz!

What was most exhilarating was realizing an old passion; art design!

When I was on Virily, a blogging friend revealed that she designs for a site called “Redbubble.”  This miffed me, but as soon as I heard the word ‘design,’ I needed to investigate.

Redbubble.com is a ‘print-on-demand’ (POD) marketplace whereby a designer or artist uploads an image of their design to appear on a multitude of Redbubble products.  They sell merchandise such as framed prints, apparel, mugs, pillows, duvets, cellphone cases and laptop sleeves, clocks, tote bags, etc. via online shopping.

All production, shipping and customer service is their responsibility, therefore, you don’t have to carry your own inventory and uploading is free.  They pay you a percentage of each sale.

Continue reading “How Graphic Design Has Helped My Migraines”

Mental Illness is Not an Invisible Illness

Working as a speaker and writer in the mental health field, I hear a lot of things over and over. Stigma, for example, comes up a lot, as do various analogies for different diagnoses. Obviously, I don’t agree with everything I hear, but sometimes…

Source: Mental Illness is Not an Invisible Illness

Have Migraine Headaches or know someone who does? – Take this Quiz!

What do you know about MIGRAINE?

What do you know about MIGRAINE HEADACHES? - Virily

I’ve just created a Quiz on Migraines!  Hope you will try it out!

https://virily.com/virily_quiz/know-migraine-headaches/

Deb

 

Rocks for Cancer Patients

What a wonderful and compassionate idea. This would be very soothing for someone experiencing a treatment, and I’m sure it made their life a little less painful if only for a few moments.

The project began about four months ago and I don’t foresee an end in sight. The blue wire basket sits on the table by the pharmaceutical window at the cancer center. It holds painted rocks with inspirational saying written on them in paint pens. Some rocks have hearts and flowers drawn on them because I […]

via Rocks For Cancer Patients — The Blogging Meetup

How much do you know about Sjogren’s Syndrome?

What exactly is Sjogren’s Syndrome?

What is Sjogren's Syndrome?

I’ve never heard about this illness, have others heard or experienced this syndrome?

Could Vitamin D help ease your Chronic Pain?

Vitamin D Deficiency & Chronic Pain

Pain from Vitamin D Deficiency? Yep, it's a real thing and a serious problem. www.easy-immune-h...

It was mentioned by my family doctor that taking Vitamin D can help with brittle bones and may ease chronic pain.

Here is a link to Medicine Net.com which includes comments by people who have taken Vitamin D for various issues, including pain.  Sounds positive and I will give it a try myself.

Personality Type INFP – Yes, I’m a little odd!

It’s a peculiar feeling knowing that other people share the same personality trait as yourself. Odd, yet comforting in a way!

Personality tests: https://psychcentral.com/quizzes/personality/start.php
https://www.16personalities.com/free-personality-test

I Found My Personality

It's REALLY hard for me to sit on my tongue. Push my buttons enough though, something's gonna come out

It’s exhilarating (perhaps I’m a bit dramatic) to discover that there are 16 Personality Types and one type that illustrates your traits. My scores, after undertaking two different tests, both conclude that I’m an INFP Type Personality, with their qualities so ‘dead on’ to my own.  It’s almost spooky!

With various personality traits, I often considered of myself as an oddball; unique from others who rarely mull over or sense things the way I do, or perceive the world and people.

I’ve been in therapy for some years (PTSD) and have discussed the way I operate day to day, and now there is a name for it!

I write better than I talk.

A few of my odd ways:

View original post 274 more words

Quote – PTSD – Narcissistic abuse from mom

NARCISSISTIC MATERNAL ABUSE

My mother was uncaring and ignored me for most of my life...and wonders why I ve abandoned her now that she s elderly? cherished79.com blog "Living in Stigma"

I wrote this quote referring to my narcissistic mother. She fails to recall the days of ignoring me, criticizing or showing no empathy, nor caring about me the way a mother should. Her emotional abuse has had an enormous impact on my life, and I remain in psychotherapy to this day.

Now she is elderly, feels isolated and displays signs of illness questioning “Why don’t you ever visit or come over for lunch because it’s lonely every day in this apartment?”. Hmmm, I wonder why?  Typical narcissist, not recognizing their own personality.

I finally went NO CONTACT three years ago as I was tired of her never-ending abuse.  Best decision I ever made.

Unloved Daughters and Problems with Friendship

image: QuoteForest

While reading this article below, I immediately thought of myself and the difficulties I’ve experienced throughout my life with friends.  For me, I believe it’s been a huge trust issue and becoming over-sensitive during many of my friendships. 

At times, due to a phone call or an e-mail not being returned, I interpreted this as my mother disregarding me when I was younger, and now friends not giving a hoot about me either.  Many other traumatic instances during my childhood came into play, thus losing many friendships.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This article on PsychCentral.com written by 

While rarely mentioned, one common legacy of an unloving mother is the daughter’s diminished ability or total inability to form close and sustaining friendships. This is a significant loss since friendship plays an important role in many women’s lives: our girlfriends are often the people we turn to in times of joy and trouble, when we need company or support, or we just need someone to truly listen.

Unloved daughters often have trouble forging these bonds or maintaining them; the emotional isolation they felt in childhood is often replicated in adulthood when they find themselves with few or no girlfriends, or women they can actually trust.

Why is that? Our mothers are the first females we know in close proximity and we learn, for better or worse, not just what it means to be female but how females connect and relate. As children, we absorb the lessons our mothers model through their behaviors, accepting them as normal—we have nothing to compare them to, after all—and these become the unconscious templates for how we believe women act and relate in the outside world.

Even though we’re unaware of them and their influence, we carry these scripts when we go out into the world as children, adolescents, and adults, and make friends with other girls and, later, women.

As the daughter of a jealous and withholding mother, I was cautious and wary as a girl when it came to friendships, especially in adolescence. Looking back, it’s clear that I viewed all girls as potential competitors who, if I let them, would somehow get the upper hand and hurt me.
Another women, now in her fifties, confides that “My own neediness and insecurity trip me up with friends. I always end up, somehow, being the pleaser with other women. I give 100% and they give 10% and I end up feeling used.”
Joan Crawford and adopted daughter, Christina, wearing matching outfits in 1943

The internalized voice of the mother—telling you that you are unlovable, unlikeable, unworthy, inadequate—can become especially shrill when you’re in the company of other women, whether they are neighbors, colleagues, acquaintances or even girlfriends you actually long to be close to.

Gleaned from many conversations, here are four pieces of the maternal legacy that directly affect female friendships.

 Lack of trust   

A loving and attuned mother models live in a world in which people are trustworthy and that extending yourself—leaving yourself open and vulnerable to another person—has great benefits. The unloved daughter learns the opposite and, even worse because her mother never acknowledges her behaviors, the daughter not only distrusts other people but her own perceptions and feelings.

In friendships, she may be dismissive or wary or in need of constant reassurance and proof that her friend is really on her side. Either way, how she acts—even though she may want and need the friendship desperately—effectively sabotages it.

  1. Unable to heed boundaries

Absent the validation of self a loving mother provides, unloved daughters have difficulty recognizing what constitutes a healthy boundary; they may vacillate between being overly armored and being much too clingy. While this is partly a result of the daughter’s lack of trust, it also reflects her ongoing unfulfilled need for love and validation. “I think I exhausted my friendships when I was in my twenties and thirties,” one daughter, 48, reported. “It took me a long time to recognize that my friends needed space and that, sometimes, my constant demands for their attention were too much. Therapy helped me see that all I was doing was focusing on my needs without understanding the give-and-take friendship requires.”

  1. Over-sensitivity

All unloved daughters have trouble managing negative emotions—they have difficulty self-regulating and are prone to rumination—and, if their mothers have been dismissive, combative, or hypercritical, are always vigilant and self-protective. A friend’s comment or gesture that wouldn’t even appear on a securely-attached daughter’s radar can be totally misunderstood and blown out of proportion by an insecurely-attached one. These can be small things—an unreturned phone call, a late invitation, an offhand remark—that become triggers and flashpoints.

  1. Feelings of rivalry
Unfortunately, the unloved daughter’s lack of trust, difficulty with boundaries, and over-sensitivity may be compounded by feelings of rivalry, especially if her mother has been jealous of her or if there was another favored daughter with whom she competed unsuccessfully for her mother’s approval and attention. While unloved daughters who are only children tend to idealize the relationship of sisters—think Little Women—the reality is much more complicated.
As Deborah Tannen writes in her book You Were Always Mom’s Favorite: “These two views [of sisters]—someone who sets you straight and someone who twists your words so they boomerang back and hurt you—represent the potential best and worst of sister conversations.”

It’s often hard for the unloved daughter to acknowledge her feelings of competition because the culture tends to look away from or minimize rivalry between and among women. Thinking about sisterhood is so much more pleasant, even though the word frenemy has been around since the 1950s when it was coined to describe politics, not rival girlfriends.

Susan Barash Shapiro’s book Tripping the Prom Queen paints a more realistic picture of the complexity of female connections.

Alas, the loneliness of childhood may be unwittingly extended into adulthood unless conscious awareness is brought to bear on a daughter’s reactivity

Source: http://blogs.psychcentral.com/knotted/2016/02/unloved-daughters-and-the-problem-of-friendship/

Related posts:

https://cherished79.com/2017/05/14/mother-do-you-deserve-a-card-ptsd-survivors-of-abuse/

https://cherished79.com/2017/06/01/the-narcissistic-mother/

 

What is Biofeedback Therapy? for Migraine and Chronic Pain etc.

I was never aware of this type of therapy so thought an interesting topic to include for information. It especially received my attention when it mentioned chronic pain such as migraine/headache treatment. 

Biofeedback therapy involves training patients to control physiological processes such as muscle tension, blood pressure, or heart rate.

These processes usually occur involuntarily, however, patients who receive help from a biofeedback therapist can learn how to completely manipulate them at will.

Biofeedback is typically used to treat chronic pain, urinary incontinence, high blood pressure, tension headache, and migraine headache.

The three most common types of biofeedback therapy are:

  • Thermal biofeedback – which measures skin temperature
  • Electromyography – measures muscle tension
  • Neurofeedback – measures brain wave activity

Biofeedback is particularly effective at treating conditions brought on by severe stress. When a person is stressed, their internal processes such as blood pressure can become irregular. Biofeedback therapy teaches these patients certain relaxation and mental exercises which can alleviate their symptoms.

Therapists can measure a patient’s performance by attaching electrodes to their skin and displaying the processes on a monitor. Eventually patients learn how to control these processes without the need to be monitored.

During a biofeedback session, electrodes will be attached to the patient’s skin, which sends information to a monitoring box. The biofeedback therapist reads the measurements and through trial and error singles out mental activities that help regulate the patient’s bodily processes.

Sessions are typically less than an hour long – most people will begin to see positive results after 8 sessions. However, some patients may need a as many as 50 sessions.

The remainder of this post @

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/265802.php

 

Do you know How to leave a Narcissist?

This is an excellent site flyingmonkeysdenied.com for articles on Narcissism and PTSD.
I found this post “How to Leave a Narcissist: Four key things to expect (step by step)

How to leave a narcissist.

Step one — understand walking away means planning to lose not only their half of the money and personal possessions, but also what they own.

Know they will do whatever it takes to destroy you socially, financially, psychologically, physically, and emotionally — more so if THEY were 100% at fault for the demise of the relationship (not less).

Expect zero help financially, physically, or with moral support; offering closure or remuneration to a victim is something a Narcissist resists, noting that even the process of grief will be interrupted repeatedly in order to make sure a target does not have it.

Step two — Plan you budget based on your own ability to produce income — not theirs.

Understand if you set your budget based on what you yourself can cover that you will never end up short; conversely, if you expect alimony and child support and rely on a dime to pay your bills that you yourself will have given them a highly effective manipulation tool to harm you directly each and every month a payment arrives late or never comes in.

Step three — Prepare to have your heart broken as they will perpetually strive to estrange children, family members, your entire emotional and social support network, and friendship circles from you with bonus points for their own ego if they can throw a home-town very public smear-campaign into the mix. Continue reading “Do you know How to leave a Narcissist?”

PTSD ~ When a child comes to you…

Make your own photo about LISTEN to the child BELIEVE them VALIDATE their feelings and PTSD Childhood Sexual Abuse ... on PixTeller

If my parents had of believed me when I was eight years old, I wouldn’t have been in therapy for 20 years healing from the impact of their ignorance.   Thank you, Mom and Dad

Is your doctor always running late? Does 10:15 become 11:15?

doc

Doctor’s appointments, do you really ever get in @10:15?

I doubt it. Success in seeing your doctor at the scheduled appointment time is like a crap shoot, and typically not my luck. I’m forever on time, I don’t know why she never is and I keep forgetting to bring my camping gear to set up for the day.

You recognize a dilemma when the receptionist slides the plexiglass window and smiles, “Hi Deb, she’s a little backed up this morning, we’ll call you soon”. ‘Backed up a bit, call you soon?’ “Backed up” in my experience translates to at least a minimum of 1 hour or more.

I detest these ‘backed up’ doctors, people are trapped in the waiting room fearful to leave for even a snack or pee break in the event your name is called. I think to myself, “Why did I take all morning off work, run like an idiot for the bus, not grab a coffee or something to read on the way, all so I wouldn’t be late for this appointment. Why do they book every 15 minutes, when they’re never on time?

After you have called everyone you can think of (most are at work or waiting at their doctor’s office), play scrabble or crossword on your phone or delete old contacts and your cell is frantic for a charge…your name is called. Yippeee! Now you are escorted into a smaller waiting room to wait and wait and wait some more!

~~~ Article written & copyrighted © by Deb McCarthy

 

The Fog Between My Fingertips

BLACK DEPRESSION

Hollowness, loneliness

Black hole

No light at the top

Drowning

No one saving me

Why?

No future

Just black dreams

Despair

Feels like a prison cell

Handcuffed

Black fog

Feeling the fog between my fingertips

Nothingness

Empty

No treatments working?

No doctors helping?

Why?

What kind of life is this

Black death sentence

Written & copyright by Deb McCarthy

 

Guest Post ~ A Little Piece of Me

 

My guest poster today is J.E. from her blog “This is My Silence”. (Trigger Warning)

 Hello, I am J.E., 23 years old, and a PTSD survivor.

 I’m married to a wonderful man who has been my rock and encouragement throughout those days when I didn’t believe in myself, nevertheless, he believed in me.  I’m also delighted that I’m a working mother of two children (‘superheroes’), as the joy I see in their faces every day provides me with every reason, now realizing how past abusive years has an enormous impact on your life.

Writing is cathartic for me, and I’m using my healing journey to perhaps healing others.  “This is My Silence” is my first blog, and here is my story. 

https://thisismysilenceblog.wordpress.com/


A Little Piece of Me

Typing and deleting, typing and deleting.   As I am sitting on my couch, I’ve come to a realization that this is now my second draft and remain struggling with a conundrum.  It’s challenging to write about your journey, even though you may have memories floating around inside your head, writing them down on paper (computer) is difficult.

So, Where is my beginning?

I lay my jars of memories around me and search, and peering into each jar I take a moment to remind myself to breathe for a moment after each one.  As I continue my search, slowly opening and closing each jar, I come to a standstill, noticing that every single one of these memories speaks my story, but only one conveys the beginning of my life. So I will begin like this:

Continue reading “Guest Post ~ A Little Piece of Me”

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