Posts Tagged ‘aloneness’

Abandonment and Outer Child

January 19, 2011 1 comment

Abandonment has everything to do with Outer Child patterns – how they developed and how to overcome them.

If you want to overcome your most deeply entrenched self-defeating patterns, you must heal your abandonment wounds.

No, you don’t need 500 hours of psychoanalysis. You just need to learn how to use the program’s power tools – easy-to-perform exercises that you incorporate into your daily life. They are like physical therapy for the brain. As you practice them, you see change – and heal from the inside out.

I developed Outer Child (along with fellow psychotherapist Peter Yelton ACSW) when I was writing my first book on abandonment, looking for ways to help people overcome the aftermath of heartbreak and loss – those pesky patterns of behavior that interfere in our relationships.

Outer Child’s strong connection to abandonment is because most of Outer’s patterns were born during earlier times of loss, rejection, hurt, disappointment, self-doubt, disconnection – in short – abandonment. Outer’s primary role is defending (over-defensively) against the insecurity and fear seeping out of your old wounds. In fact, our most automatic, knee-jerk defense mechanisms, especially the maladaptive ones, are driven by abandonment fear.

This subliminal but ever-present fear not only triggers Outer to act out in our love relationships, but the residual insecurity causes Outer to take everything to the extreme – sleeping, watching TV, drinking, spending money, cluttering, procrastinating. For example, hoarders report that what motivates them to surround themselves with so much stuff is the subliminal fear that they’ll be left all alone with nothing and no one to care about them.

Learn more about abandoholism – the infamous Outer Child pattern of being attracted only to the available. Pre-order TAMING YOUR OUTER CHILD: A Revolutionary Program to Overcome Self-Defeating Patterns

Hurts So Good?

July 28, 2010 2 comments

So many of you write about the pain you feel when someone you’re attached to turns out to be emotionally unreliable. So why is it so hard to leave these types of relationships?

It seems that negative attractions can be more compelling than positive ones.  Traumatic bonding, a highly prevalent condition of human relationship, has an addictive biochemistry of its own.  Fear and pain are powerful reinforcers — powerful enough, in many cases, to turn even the strongest into Pavlov’s dogs, salivating for someone we know is no good for us.

The animal kingdom offers many examples of this.  For instance, when a researcher steps on the toe of a duckling, it follows him more closely than before.

The hazing ritual involved in joining a fraternity is based on this principle.  Pain and humiliation inflicted upon the pledges increase the loyalty in the fraternal bond.

So what are the signs that you are involved in negative attraction?

  • You lose emotional control over your life as your partner constantly violates the trust of your relationship.
  • You feel desperately needy because your partner has been withholding of love and unreliable.
  • Your partner hasn’t treated you with the respect you know you deserve, and yet you keep going back for more
  • You feel addicted to your partner though you know he or she is only bringing you down.

How to Cope

Each one of us has a bottom, and it’s up to us to realize when we’ve reached that bottom.  Then we have to take action to regain control of our lives.

An addictive relationship is a lot like alcoholism.  You can’t just have a little “sip” of your partner without wanting the whole relationship.  And yet your partner is not willing or able to give you that, so you spend your entire life craving something you can’t have.

If the relationship is really destructive and damaging your life, you will probably have to abstain to regain control.  Yes, that may mean breaking away from your relationship, finding closure, letting go, moving forward.  Friends can help, but if you’re still stuck, get professional counseling.

In a negative attraction, it’s the boundary between reason and emotion that becomes blurred.  Only you can put an end to the addictive pattern and create a healthy boundary.  Sometimes it takes grit. Be tough as nails and act according to your own better judgement.

When Your Relationship Ends: Do You Blame Yourself?

June 28, 2010 1 comment

Blaming yourself for your relationship’s failure to thrive is a most painful type of regret. Beating yourself for losing someone’s love is true agony.

People often blame themselves for breakups, believing that their insecurity is what drove their partner away.

Another thing on which people blame their breakup is their own personal defects. They believe that their lackings, inadequacies, faults or negative behaviors drove away the person they love. They feel as if they’ve been condemned to involuntary aloneness as a form of personal punishment for their shortcomings.

People also blame the breakup on their supposed unworthiness. They feel they are lacking enough personal power to hold a person’s love. In short, their pain during the breakup is coming from feeling unlovable, that they’re somehow inherently lacking some essential ingredient of personal value. Otherwise, why would someone have thrown them away?

The truth is, we are all needy — especially when we are attempting a new relationship, and especially when the person we are attached to isn’t fulfilling our basic need for trust and security.

Unless we feel a mutual love and attachment coming from the other person, we can all become insecure and exhibit behaviors that are extreme and can drive the person further away.

The first step is to accept our humanness — neediness and insecurity are part of the human condition (even if most people don’t admit to them in public).

The task is to accept yourself, warts and all.

Don’t expect to be perfect.

Don’t expect other people to validate your worth. You must do that yourself, even at this painful moment when you are believing yourself unworthy of a relationship.

Stop looking to your ex to accept you. You must take 100 percent responsibility to give yourself the esteem that you need (that’s why it’s called self-esteem).

Your task is to give yourself security; it’s nobody else’s job — especially not your lover’s. Only you can do this. And as you do, you will become emotionally self-reliant. Write your ex a thank you note for motivating you to finally develop self-regard and self-respect.

Taming Your Outer Child: Overcoming Self-Defeating Patterns can now be preordered.

Do you have an outer child?  Go to to see the checklist and learn more about self-sabotaging your *relationships *diets and *finances *etc. and what to do about it.