Updated yet again on Apr 28 2017.
Stockholm Syndrome (Trauma Bonding) is said to keep those being abused, in the abusive relationship. They cannot leave their abuser.
I am posting this because I believe there is something to learn from the Rat Cage / Rat Park experiments.
I believe that victims of relationship abuse are stuck in the equivalent of an empty Rat Cage. They feel alone and not connected to anyone who cares about them. They may have been isolated from Family and Friends by physically moving to a different city. Abusers instinctively seem to know that if they can isolate someone, then they can control them and physically or mentally abuse them without outside interference. Again without a support structure, the victim is alone as in the isolated Rat Cage.
The drug in this scenario is the Abuser. Just as Rats isolated in a Rat Cage became addicted, so do the Abuse Victims. If the Victim does leave, then they could suffer from PTSD or worse. They will constantly think about the Abuser and often return to their Abuser, even after horrific physical abuse. In my opinion, this is highly similar to addiction.
Further proof of this concept comes from the same Rat Cage / Rat Park experiment. When the isolated and heavily addicted rats are moved out of an isolated environment into a Rat Park with lots of other rats and lots of stimulating things to do and play with, they lose their addiction.
Going further, Victims of abuse need to move into a Rat Park environment. They need to be among people who care. Friends and family who will morally support them. They need to also have fun. Being abused is “NOT FUN”. I suspect that once the victim is moved into a Rat Park type environment, then their addiction to the abuser could dissipate without symptoms of PTSD etc.
That brings up the lack of such a Rat Park environment for Abuse Victims. They should be surrounded by people who care, people who will try to help them. People who will talk to them. One common theme from Victims going thru forms of Therapy is that they cry their eyes out during the therapy sessions. They have no one to talk to. They feel that no one cares. Like the Rats in the isolated Rat cage. The Rats become addicted to the point of destroying themselves. Victims become addicted to their Abuser. For many victims this addiction destroys them. In my opinion, the Rat Park experiment shows the need to create a Human equivalent of a Rat Park for Victims of Abuse, so that victims can end their “Addiction” to their Abuser.
We have Women’s Shelters filled with women seeking help but percentage wise rather few “Helpers”. We have Therapy, which costs money that the abuse Victim may not have. No money, equals No Help. We have Public Housing, but with long waiting lists. We have legal aid for people convicted of a crime, but Victims of Relationship Abuse may not “qualify”. Society has a disorienting and disconnected patchwork of supposed help and so Victims cannot get away. It may not just be Trauma Bonding which is holding them back. As a society, we do not have an all inclusive support system, like a Rat Park human equivalent environment, to help Abuse Victims if they want to leave their Abuser, Heal and Recover. So they remain “stuck” in Abusive Relationships.
I have received email comments suggesting that it may be the Victim’s lack of confidence to express their feeling that could be at fault. A Victim’s typical inability to establish and enforce clear boundaries is in my opinion, a Learned Survival Mechanism. During early childhood, we learn how to survive in our home environment. Some kids are lucky and are born into loving and caring families. Other kids are not so lucky and have to adapt and learn behaviors to survive. That applies to Disordered Individuals also. One’s early childhood helps to form the future Adult. The work of the late Alice Miller readily comes to mind. I have referred to Abysmal Parenting or the lack of Parenting as being the primary cause of adult dysfunction. Many a Narcissist was not raised by their Birth Mother for example. On the other hand, when a Victim is physically being beaten Black and Blue, IMHO clearly the Abuser is at fault and “not” the Victim.
Video is courtesy of the Alice Miller YouTube channel
There was a video posted here of an English couple. The Husband gave his wife a couple of black eyes one night. The Police showed up and his attitude was as if nothing wrong happened. He called out to his wife and asked if she wanted to speak to the Police. Thankfully the Police had body video recorders running.
I have a friend who was isolated to a different country by a very Disordered Individual. Once isolated, the abuse became physical. One time she was beaten so badly that she ended up being hospitalized for months. It was not her inability to speak up for herself that is to blame. If you start to speak up for yourself to a very disordered individual, you could very well be beaten Black and Blue. IMHO the Abuser is at fault and they are totally responsible for their behavior. View the video in the link shown above. Getting two black eyes was not the Victim’s fault.
I believe that when one learns about the Red Flags and if one starts to see multiple Red Flags on a consistent basis then one is able to get a better idea of who one is interacting with. It has nothing to do with putting labels on people before they do anything wrong. If one does not take heed of those Red Flags and falls prey to an Abuser, then it’s too late. Yes, people are out there who abuse other people. Yes, there are people with Codependent Traits and lots of Empathy, who seem to be attracted to those who abuse. Those who will abuse others also seem to be rather attracted to those who have lots of Empathy and Codependent traits. People call someone an Abuser after they have abused someone. It is not a matter of innocent until proven guilty. They get called that label because they have abused their victim. All abuse is bad, but some abuse is horrific.
I’m posting this for everyone to think about it. The videos below give more details about Dr. Bruce Alexander and his Rat Park experiment. BTW that Rat Park experiment has been repeated many times, with the same results. So it has been scientifically proven.
Video is courtesy of the MinuteVideos YouTUbe channel
Video is courtesy of the Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell YouTube channel
Video is courtesy of The Agenda with Steve Paikin YouTube channel
Narcissists will try to Gaslight the victim that their actions were not abusive or that any problems in the relationship are totally the fault of the Victim. In the privacy of their shared home, the Disordered Individual will not give a 2nd thought to verbally and emotionally abusing their victim. But in public, their behavior changes to project a false image that are caring and loving, while the Victim is made out to be the abuser in the relationship. Crazy making is an apt description. Victims could end up with PTSD and Complex PTSD as a result of being exposed to long term Emotional Abuse.
Video is courtesy of the Kati Morton YouTube channel.
Laura has been through the emotional roller coaster of a relationship with a Narcissist. Her video offers many helpful insights.
She speaks about “now being able to spot” the Red Flags displayed by Narcissists and “understanding their Game“. IMHO that is extremely important. When one starts seeing multiple Red Flags on a consistent basis, then one has a much better idea of who (or what) they are interacting with. Knowledge gives one the power to make informed decisions, including whether to get into a relationship with a potential Cluster-B Disordered individual such as a Narcissist.
It was interesting to note that her Mother was Narcissistic. There does seem to be a connection between women who attract Narcissists and the fact that they were brought up by a Narcissistic Mother.
Video is courtesy of the LauraBlue YouTube channel
It confirmed how damaging Narcissists can be, when you hear this Victim of Narcissistic Abuse, speak about her negative self talk and feelings of “not being good enough”.
When you watch this video, note the Red Flags (like Love Bombing and Isolating the Victim and making the Victim dependent on the Abuser) which appeared “prior” to the physical abuse starting.
This video features Leslie Morgan Steiner, Beverly Gooden, Kit Gruelle, Mildred Muhammad who were Victims of Physical Abuse. They address why they had stayed in the Abusive Relationship. Kudos to these Brave Women for sharing their stories.
Video is courtesy of the Markay Media YouTube channel
Learn about and then watch for the Red Flags displayed by Disordered Individuals. The more Red Flags displayed, the more questions you should be asking about the individual displaying those Red Flags.
Click on this Link to visit the Why We Stayed Twitter page.
Click on this line to visit the Kit Gruelle website.
Click on this line to visit the Mildred Muhammad website.
Click on this line to visit the Beverly Gooden website
Click on this line to visit the Leslie Morgan Steiner Facebook page
In this TED Talks presentation Leslie Morgan Steiner explains “Why domestic violence victims don’t leave”.
Leslie Morgan Steiner says that she was in “crazy love” — that is, madly in love with a man who routinely abused her and threatened her life.
The video is courtesy of the TED YouTube channel
The relationship started out, by the Abuser Love Bombing her. She called it to Seduce and Charm the victim. Her future Abuser Idolized her and she stated that that he “believed” in her. Note that she uses the term “Soul Mate”. Watch for those Red Flags, they may be extremely important to your future health and well being.
Next the victim is isolated. She was moved away from her friends and family.
About a week before she married her Abuser, he choked her and bashed her head into a wall. When the bruises on her neck cleared, she went ahead and married her Abuser.
She got the “I’m sorry” story and that it would never happen again. She did get Abused again, and on a regular basis.
Trauma Bonding, in my opinion, kept her in the relationship. Listen to the language which she uses to describe her Abuser.
There is something else which kept her in that Abusive Relationship. That was her “Silence” about it. I know that statement may not sit well with some readers. Listen carefully at the end of the video, where Leslie Morgan Steiner clearly states that the end of her Abuse started when she “started talking about it”.
She talked to the Police about it – very very important first step. She talked to the neighbors about it. She talked to all her friends and family about it. The key is that she “Talked About It“. She let people know that she was being Abused and people helped her. If someone does not know about your abuse, then they cannot help you. “Talking about her Abuse to others”, helped to break her bonds to the Abuser
Talking about your Abusive Relationship to “everyone” Is the Major Message of this video. No one deserves to be Abused. Abusers program those being Abused “Not to Tell“. When one stays quiet about being Abused, they are giving power over themselves to the Abuser. Abuse is about having power and control over someone. Abusers want those being abused, “to keep their mouths shut”. As soon as one tells others about being abused, their Abuser loses all of his or her power and control. Saying something about being Abused could help to set the Victim free.
Click on this Link to read a prior post about a female being turned into a Human Torch because she dared to leave a Disordered Individual. She was burned alive because the guy “didn’t accept being abandoned”.
Note also the major Red Flag indicated by the abuse that her Abuser had apparently received from his Step Father from the age of four. Major Trauma suffered by an infant and a young child is IMHO a Major Red Flag that such an individual could be a Disordered Adult.
Those Red Flags could be extremely important. Learn about them and then watch for them. The more Red Flags that show up, the more questions should be raised about the individual displaying those Red Flags
Click on this link to visit the official Leslie Morgan Steiner website.
Click on this Link to visit the official Leslie Morgan Steiner Facebook page.
Developing Complex PTSD Symptoms due to Narcissistic Abuse.
I believe that Victims of Narcissistic Abuse may end up with their natural Fight or Flight response having difficulty to fully shutoff. It keeps going off, when there is no danger. Then there are the Flashbacks.
Heart Breaking to listen to. If you can relate to things discussed in this video, please seek out Professional Medical Help, especially from a Medical Professional who has worked with Abuse Victims and PTSD.
It’s long dark tunnel and hard to find your way out of it. A trained and experienced Medical Professional could be the answer to helping you getting your life back and finally exiting that dark tunnel where that Narcissist had locked you in.
Video is courtesy of the Running from Chaos YouTube channel
Recovering from a Heroin Addiction is said to be easier to do, than to recover from Abusive Relationship with a Narcissist, if Trauma Bonding has occurred.
Video is courtesy of the Sacha Slone YouTube channel
Sacha Slone discusses brain chemicals which could help keep the Victim of Narcissistic Abuse conditioned to remain in the relationship, not unlike a Drug Addiction. The biochemicals in the brain may also help create Trauma Bonding or Stockholm Syndrome.
The helplessness is learned, over time, using the Biochemistry created by using Reward and Punishment. Victims are trained to become dependent on the Narcissist. People outside of the abusive relationship can never understand why the Victim cannot leave such a relationship.
Victims of Narcissistic Abuse remain in abusive relationships. Victims of Narcissists, will often defend the Narcissist.
Trauma Bonding happens. It is also referred to as the Stockholm Syndrome. This informative video goes into more detail about Trauma Bonding and the Stockholm Syndrome.
Video is courtesy of the familytreecounseling YouTube channel
Leyla Loric gives some personal insight about “Getting back on track after Narcissistic Abuse“.
The hardest step is for one to leave an Abusive Relationship. The Emotional Pain remains and one has to learn to move on. It will not be easy. Many end up with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Seeking Help from Health Care Professionals who specialize in PTSD could help deal with the emotional trauma and recurring flashbacks.
The key to remember is that the lessons learned will help protect one from becoming sucked into a relationship by another abuser.
Christine Louis de Canonville mentioned something important during one of her seminars on Narcissistic Abuse Victim Syndrome. That was: after becoming involved with a Narcissist you become primed and other Narcissists will pick you out of crowd and try to target you.
Video is courtesy of the Narcissistic Abuse Victim Syndrome YouTube channel