Loving relationships need to be nurtured in order for a child to gain a sense of conscience. Apathy is a learned process. My short time on this planet had provided me with ample support for this statement. Occasionally at times, I would be working with a child who displayed inappropriate behaviors that showed a lack of conscience. I would search in my mind for logical explanations on how this child had become that way. Was it nature? Was it nurture? Was it learned? Eventually, I would meet most of these children‘s parents, and I would come to realize that they shared their child’s lack of conscience. I have always believed that children are largely a product of their environment. Intelligent children writing suicide notes because they do not consider their lives to be of significance, is a powerful example of how others’ reactions can produce serious damage to our views of ourselves in relation to the world, as well as our view of the world as an entity.
There are so many dysfunctional trends that are accepted by our culture as normal. Never should it be common place for a biologically and psychologically developing child to become a parent. Violence and drugs need not be glorified in video games advertised to appeal to children. Little girls should not be made up to look in a sexualized, gendered manner so that they may earn the title of Beauty Queen Under Three. We have all heard the stories of JonBenét Ramsey, Brittany Spears, and Lindsay Lohan. At one time, for a short time, these were sweet, innocent, little girls. Now they are teen pop sensations turned modern-day sex symbols and tabloid trash. I do not doubt at all that the adults responsible for molding their careers were not considering if their behaviors were ethical, moral, or in the best interest of the child they were supposed to be protecting. What kinds of examples were set for these girls, and most importantly, what kind of examples are being set for little girls today?
People need not be afraid of making mistakes or admitting to their faults. No one is perfect and we all make mistakes. Even the best of us use poor judgement at times, and many of us regret it later. Miserable people do not need to be punished; their misery is punishment enough. No matter what you do in retaliation, it will not change that the individual was miserable from the start. Why bother? Smile at them, and make them wonder what you have to be so happy about! In the very least, this will serve as a distraction from their self-involvement. We need to be rational and remind ourselves that an individual who reacts with a lack of conscience may not be capable of change without a serious intervention.
It is important to consider the source of an individual’s ill behavior: psychopathology, a recent passing of a loved one, chemistry, inadequate socialization, a health condition, chronic pain, or maybe they were just having a bad day. If you assume the cause of the individual’s anger is a result of something that does not pertain to yourself, it is easier to move on and not be affected. You are no longer a target. It is no longer personal, and the need for retaliation is not quite as strong. Sometimes we are in the wrong place, at the wrong time, sometimes with the wrong people. It is important to lead by example so that we do not spread negative affect, especially during such a volatile time in our sociopolitical and economic history.
- Kindness and Conscience (thekindnesskronicles.wordpress.com)
I will be having a solo exhibit at the Moon & River Café in Schenectady during the month of September. I will have 12 pieces on display. The Artist Reception is on September 16th at 6PM. All my friends and family are encouraged to attend. Hope to see you all there! This is my first solo show and I am VERY excited!
You may view their website by clicking here.
You may RSVP on Facebook by clicking here.
Fear and the Borderline Personality
I know that you believe what you have been told is true and that you would not believe it if someone told you. But consider, for a moment, that you have been deceived and because you do not understand that the ambiguous behaviors so well hidden by a family system that enables Borderline behaviors to go on undetected that you have become the unwitting accomplice of something that holds the potential to destroy the family system that protects it.
Consider that it is common for the borderline personality to be relatively unnoticed by most people in the family, friends, and acquaintances circle– while at the same time a inflicting personal damage to family members. A common trait of the borderline is to utilize attention seeking behaviors that are used to gather a supportive network of understanding, supporting enablers to rescue the Borderline from her worst fear. Some would call her a “Drama Queen” who acts out to gain the sympathy and support to keep the worst fear from being realized. As a result, she is constantly burdened with a lifestyle that demonstrates a constant sense of “faking it,” and with the continual threat of sooner or later being “found out.” So, what you are seeing is the great effort to continually manage people, information, and perception, to hide who she really is from the public eye.
The danger in a family system associated with gaining understanding borderline behavior is that it evokes (for her) the fear associated with being exposed triggers the core issue– fear of abandonment. What you will witness is her intense feeling of rejection, pain, and the anger that triggers defensive mechanisms bringing rage, acting out, and acting in behaviors. Unfortunately, if you are the person who identifies the deception of the borderline, you should be prepared to be subjected to becoming the object of rage motivated by the irrational belief associated with abandonment, social isolation, and rejection. For the borderline, the loss of control, coupled with the fear of abandonment triggers a heightened level of stress that is unmanageable for her resulting in dysregulated emotions that results in psychological splitting where what is understood is “all good or all bad.”
A pattern among Borderlines threatened with a feeling of lack of control or being found out is to turn their anger to the person who knows their secret and threatens the myth that they have created: endangering their ability to exert control– triggers dysregulation, anger, rage focused on the internalized threat. The pattern of the the borderline which demonstrates the intense fear of being found out is rooted in fear of abandonment and the rejection felt. Her behavior presents in striking out using innuendo, accusation that vilifies the person who threatens her total control , while painting a picture of her own victimization. As the borderline expresses rage, they build a circle of supporters around them, who feeds the ego-need, people, who are largely undiscerning, co-dependent, and capable of being completely duped by the coercive manipulation and deception that she demonstrates.
If you are not willing to join the company of enablers and participate in their plan then expect your life to become very difficult. Borderline behavior toward the person who recognizes the deception will be skewed by rage, distorted reason, and perception and fueled by the belief that her behavior is justified, correct, and fueled by intense and cruel actions hidden beneath the innocent image being projected to her unwitting accomplices. For the borderline, her control takes on the form of isolating support mechanisms that she believe that you depend upon– family relationships, children, grandchildren, friends, relationships, financial resources, and support mechanisms. It is common for Borderlines to destroy your personal property, assault your credibility privately which is passive-aggressive anger projecting behaviors that demonstrate the intense rage and fear that is felt to a perceived feeling of a lack of control The goal of theses behaviors is to deflect any belief that they are indeed suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder and to paint the picture that you are the one who is wrong, the one with a problem. Borderlines are constantly putting others in no win situations in order to reinforce the delusion they have created.
People with BPD play the role of victim quite well and make everything about their mistreatment. The behavior that is designed to endear sympathetic attention to feed her deflated ego and absence of individual identity reinforcing skewed perception about self, while painting the picture of victimization by others. In the deception, the goal is to achieve is personal empowerment– by isolating those who are threats, dividing relationships, and ultimately feeling the power of control. In the act of anger focused on the threat , the borderline is empowered in passive aggressive control. Passive–aggressive anger is passive– seems to be innocent, innocuous, and well hidden in reality, the toxic anger felt from rejection, abandonment, and directing rage toward perceived threats is an attempt to dis-empower secretly anyone who might validate their greatest fear, being found out.
For a borderline their is no middle ground. The life perspective is characterize by “splitting”: everything and everyone is either “all good or all bad.” Having the inability to regulate emotions under stress causes dysregulation of emotional response into extremes. For instance, ” I hate you, please don’t leave me” is a statement that expresses the bi-polar extremes of a borderline. For the unwitting partner, victim, it is a psychological double-bind that traps others in a no win situation draining the essence of life away. Adults who enter into relationships with borderlines feel brainwashed by the BP’s accusations and criticisms. Says Benham: “The techniques of brainwashing are simple: isolate the victim, expose them to consistent messages, mix with sleep deprivation, add some form of abuse, get the person to doubt what they know and feel, keep them on their toes, wear them down, and stir well.”
The problem experienced in the deception is a fundamental inability to achieve genuine intimacy in relationship as a result of the perpetual manipulation of the borderline. Deception convincingly persuades the audience with dramatic, impassioned presentation of need through charm utilizing the seductive power of emotional manipulation. Unfortunately, having BPD in a family member and not understanding the peculiar behavior, results in deception, empowers in borderline personality to go undetected leaving family members enabling behavior contributing to the patterns of destructive behavior. Because the borderline is so adept at hiding reality in drama, family members believe the distorted perception of the borderline and have a perception that they are being supportive, helpful, but in reality family members become the unwitting accessory after the fact in the drama.
The fact many are unaware of is that the borderline will crash and burn at some point. When the day comes and you begin to suspect that something is wrong, you may go back and begin to collect the childhood memories– the inconsistencies,–behavior cues that tell you that something was off and then you will feel the pain of being so thoroughly deceived and being the unwitting participant in the destructive behavior patterns. Unfortunately, because you have been so thoroughly deceived, you believe that this could never be and you have been placing blame for what has happened upon another person, who in reality has been the object of the borderlines rage and distorted reality.
If you are reading this, you more than likely understand just exactly what I am saying. If there is a borderline in your life, time will write a story that will have themes of deception, manipulation, dividing, and splitting. Awareness is the first step at having the building blocks for a healthy way to approach a very challenging personality. Only you can make the decision to listen and consider the impact of what is occurring. The unfortunate thing is that many borderlines do not find the help that is needed to enable an effective life until relationships are damaged and what could been is lost in the deception that empowers the borderline to continue on a path of self-defeating behaviors.
John Greenleaf Whittier said, ” The saddest words of tongue or pen is what could have been” Something to think about is that there is help available for those who suffer from this tragic disease that could change how life can be experienced for the borderline. There is no shame in having a mental illness, the shame is that people who believe they are helping are hurting the borderline by allowing the behavior to flourish and destroy relationships in families.
You may view Ronnie’s blog Social Behavioral Patterns- How to Understand Culture and Behaviors by clicking here.
I have been offered an interview for a graduate assistantship research assistant position at The College of Saint Rose. There is only one position available.
I loved being a research assistant as an undergrad for UAlbany, and The Institute for Community Research and Training is definitely interesting since it incorporates statistics, community involvement, and I would be evaluating programs and creating interventions when necessary. I’m excited about the opportunity, and it’s not a sure thing; I just passed the first screening process.
I’m just so excited!