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.
This young woman was in an emotionally abusive relationship. Long-term exposure to stress could cause numerous Anxiety Disorders, along with feelings of Exhaustion and Depression.
Video is courtesy of the Healing from Bad Relationships YouTube channel
Narcissistic Abuse is the Narcissist’s gift that just keeps on giving and destroying the potential for a life which the victim “could have lived”.
Superb Video by Kim Saeed. Narcissistic Abuse could result in Complex Trauma.
Kim details six steps which could help one to deal with the Trauma caused by Narcissistic Abuse. Highly Recommended.
Video is courtesy of the Kim Saeed YouTube channel
Click on this link to visit Kim Saeed’s website called “Let Me Reach”.
Click on this Link to visit Kim Saeed’s Twitter page.
Click n this link to visit the facebook page of Kim Saeed.
Breaking the Codependency Myth: The Power of The Trauma Bond by Shahida Arabi “Free” by Alice Popkorn via Flickr. Creative Commons License. Ever had a victim-blamer claim you were “codependent”? That you in some way deserved the abuse, or that it was your fault? Let them know: codependency was a term historically used to describe […]
Copyright Shahida Arabi. Our thanks go out to Shahida Arabi for allowing this to be shared here.
Pathological mind games. Covert and overt put-downs. Triangulation. Gaslighting. Projection. These are the manipulative tactics survivors of malignant narcissists are unfortunately all too familiar with. As victims of silent crimes where the perpetrators are rarely held accountable, survivors of narcissistic abuse have lived in a war zone of epic proportions, enduring an abuse cycle of […]
Lisa A. Romano wrote:
“If you’ve loved a narcissist, you may feel completely exposed and turned inside out. The pain is unlike any breakup you’ve ever experienced because it feels like these people have been able to infiltrate every cell of your being. Even though intellectually you may feel you need to end the relationship, on a cellular level you seem shaken to your core.
Symptoms of narcissistic abuse are shock, betrayal, confusion, depression, rage, anger, irritability, low tolerance for noise, and mindless conversations. You may find yourself wanting to be alone. You don’t feel like anyone could ever understand your pain. You may have trouble sleeping, eating, or thinking straight. Sometimes we experience physical symptoms, like upset stomachs, hair loss, and various other stress related acute responses.
Loving yourself after Narcissistic Abuse can be challenging, but its essential.”
Video is courtesy of the Lisa A. Romano Breakthrough Life Coach Inc. YouTube channel
The hardest to bear is when others do not believe you when you share what the Narcissist did to you.
Most people will never understand that which they have never gone through.
They can thank their lucky stars, that they have not experienced the abuse and devastating betrayal of a Narcissist.
Quote: “Dear Narcissist, “this feeling of being nothing that often dominates me… comes largely from your influence.”.” Quote by Franz Kafka from his “Letter to his Father”.
Copyright 2016 https://uniquelynarcissistic.wordpress.com
Feel free to share under Creative Common License Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International.
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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”.
Quote “What was always incomprehensible to me was your total lack of feeling for the suffering and shame you could inflict on me with your words and judgments.” by Franz Kafka from his 1919 Letter to his Father.
The above framed quote is actually a photo – JPG file.
Copyright 2016 https://uniquelynarcissistic.wordpress.com
Feel free to share under Creative Commons License with attribution to “Uniquely Narcissistic”
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Narcissist Abuse Survivors Aren’t Sick. We’re Injured.
Video is courtesy of the Annabel Lee YouTube channel
Complex Trauma: Understanding and Treatment
Video is courtesy of the FOCL Online YouTube channel
Quoting from the text which was posted with this video:
“Historically, when someone has experienced trauma that has a lasting impact, they have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In recent years those who work with trauma victims have advocated for an additional category: Complex Trauma. Therapeutic work with those who have experienced either multiple traumas or Repetitive and Chronic Trauma”
In the video the presenter speaks about the abuse of Children and suffering multiple traumas. That the same Multiple Trauma Stress, can also “injure” an adult. For example, the victim of Narcissist Abuse becomes “marinated” in the Repetitive and Chronic Trauma.
Between the Traumatic Events will be “reward” type of events. The victim is cycled between reward and Trauma/Punishment events. That sets the Victim up for Trauma Bonding to occur. The emotional injuries alter the victim.
When one leaves an abusive relationship, the injuries do not disappear. Nor does the Trauma Bond break. The victim’s day will be filled with thoughts of the Abusive Narcissist.
The Victim will wonder if maybe the Narcissist was right and it was their own fault. The Narcissist would never admit to being at fault, always shifting the blame back to the Victim. There is an old saying that “If you tell people a “Lie” often enough, it becomes the “truth”.
Flashbacks are common.The inability to shut off the Flight or Fight response when a situation is not harmful. In my opinion, Complex Trauma can develop in both children and adults who have experienced Multiple Trauma or Repetitive and Chronic Trauma. I believe that Trauma Bonding can also be found in adult victims of abuse who have developed Complex Trauma.