That's Not How It's S'posed To Be

Written by Susan Dunn, MA, Personal Life & EQ Coach

When things are not “how they’re supposed to he,” how we suffer. Life events which assault our assumptions of how life should be are difficult to handle and require patience inrepparttar recovery, and rely onrepparttar 126109 development of strong emotional intelligence.


We set out in our adult life with certain expectations about how things are supposed to be. It’s part of our upbringing, part of our culture, and part ofrepparttar 126110 values imparted to us by caring parents.

“You’re supposed to get your degree, then get a job, then get married,” says one parent. In another familyrepparttar 126111 formula may be “Follow your heart. If you love her, marry her. The rest will work out.” But behind these life rules passed down are certain assumptions, i.e., job, education, partner, marriage, children.

We learn it about little things as well as big. “He should have [was supposed to have] thanked you for that,” says your parent, or “He should’ve thought about that beforehand [that’s what he was supposed to have done].”

Basically we assume a natural order along with this. It may vary somewhat, but at midlife you’re supposed to find yourself (1) married, (2) with children, (3) with a good job, and (4) money inrepparttar 126112 bank. Some time after that, we expect to have grandchildren, we expect to be able to retire well, and we expect to be OK financially. Behind these assumptions isrepparttar 126113 fact that we’re supposed to have a good life if we do what we’re supposed to. 1 + 1 = 2.

When this natural order of things, and our sometimes unmindful expectations, are not met is when trouble occurs. We suffer when we are forced to retire sometimes more because ofrepparttar 126114 emotional affront than fromrepparttar 126115 actual deed.

I say “unmindful” because often we aren’t aware of what we assume to be our rights in life until they are violated. WE should never be burglarized, we assume, and are shocked when it happens. WE should never have a teenager in a rehab facility, we assume, until we find ourselves there. WE should get promotions, we assume, until we discover thatrepparttar 126116 corporation where we work values other qualities rather thanrepparttar 126117 fine ones we possess and ‘knew’ would take us far. WE should have grandchildren, because everyone does, we assume, untilrepparttar 126118 day our child informs us she plans to have no children.


What do we do when this occurs? It requiresrepparttar 126119 EQ competency of Resilience, which meansrepparttar 126120 ability to bounce back from failures, losses, rejections and adversity. The good news is that it will also build it. Most of all it requires emotional processing and growth.

The Psychology of Torture - Part II

Written by Sam Vaknin

Sometimesrepparttar victim comes to crave pain – very much as self-mutilators do – because it is a proof and a reminder of his individuated existence otherwise blurred byrepparttar 126108 incessant torture. Pain shieldsrepparttar 126109 sufferer from disintegration and capitulation. It preservesrepparttar 126110 veracity of his unthinkable and unspeakable experiences.

This dual process ofrepparttar 126111 victim's alienation and addiction to anguish complementsrepparttar 126112 perpetrator's view of his quarry as "inhuman", or "subhuman". The torturer assumesrepparttar 126113 position ofrepparttar 126114 sole authority,repparttar 126115 exclusive fount of meaning and interpretation,repparttar 126116 source of both evil and good.

Torture is about reprogrammingrepparttar 126117 victim to succumb to an alternative exegesis ofrepparttar 126118 world, proffered byrepparttar 126119 abuser. It is an act of deep, indelible, traumatic indoctrination. The abused also swallows whole and assimilatesrepparttar 126120 torturer's negative view of him and often, as a result, is rendered suicidal, self-destructive, or self-defeating.

Thus, torture has no cut-off date. The sounds,repparttar 126121 voices,repparttar 126122 smells,repparttar 126123 sensations reverberate long afterrepparttar 126124 episode has ended – both in nightmares and in waking moments. The victim's ability to trust other people – i.e., to assume that their motives are at least rational, if not necessarily benign – has been irrevocably undermined. Social institutions are perceived as precariously poised onrepparttar 126125 verge of an ominous, Kafkaesque mutation. Nothing is either safe, or credible anymore.

Victims typically react by undulating between emotional numbing and increased arousal: insomnia, irritability, restlessness, and attention deficits. Recollections ofrepparttar 126126 traumatic events intrude inrepparttar 126127 form of dreams, night terrors, flashbacks, and distressing associations.

The tortured develop compulsive rituals to fend off obsessive thoughts. Other psychological sequelae reported include cognitive impairment, reduced capacity to learn, memory disorders, sexual dysfunction, social withdrawal, inability to maintain long-term relationships, or even mere intimacy, phobias, ideas of reference and superstitions, delusions, hallucinations, psychotic microepisodes, and emotional flatness.

Depression and anxiety are very common. These are forms and manifestations of self-directed aggression. The sufferer rages at his own victimhood and resulting multiple dysfunction. He feels shamed by his new disabilities and responsible, or even guilty, somehow, for his predicament andrepparttar 126128 dire consequences borne by his nearest and dearest. His sense of self-worth and self-esteem are crippled.

In a nutshell, torture victims suffer from a Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Their strong feelings of anxiety, guilt, and shame are also typical of victims of childhood abuse, domestic violence, and rape. They feel anxious becauserepparttar 126129 perpetrator's behavior is seemingly arbitrary and unpredictable – or mechanically and inhumanly regular.

They feel guilty and disgraced because, to restore a semblance of order to their shattered world and a modicum of dominion over their chaotic life, they need to transform themselves intorepparttar 126130 cause of their own degradation andrepparttar 126131 accomplices of their tormentors.

The CIA, in its "Human Resource Exploitation Training Manual – 1983" (reprinted inrepparttar 126132 April 1997 issue of Harper's Magazine), summed uprepparttar 126133 theory of coercion thus:

"The purpose of all coercive techniques is to induce psychological regression inrepparttar 126134 subject by bringing a superior outside force to bear on his will to resist. Regression is basically a loss of autonomy, a reversion to an earlier behavioral level. Asrepparttar 126135 subject regresses, his learned personality traits fall away in reverse chronological order. He begins to loserepparttar 126136 capacity to carry outrepparttar 126137 highest creative activities, to deal with complex situations, or to cope with stressful interpersonal relationships or repeated frustrations."

Inevitably, inrepparttar 126138 aftermath of torture, its victims feel helpless and powerless. This loss of control over one's life and body is manifested physically in impotence, attention deficits, and insomnia. This is often exacerbated byrepparttar 126139 disbelief many torture victims encounter, especially if they are unable to produce scars, or other "objective" proof of their ordeal. Language cannot communicate such an intensely private experience as pain.

Spitz makesrepparttar 126140 following observation:

"Pain is also unsharable in that it is resistant to language... All our interior states of consciousness: emotional, perceptual, cognitive and somatic can be described as having an object inrepparttar 126141 external world... This affirms our capacity to move beyondrepparttar 126142 boundaries of our body intorepparttar 126143 external, sharable world. This isrepparttar 126144 space in which we interact and communicate with our environment. But when we explorerepparttar 126145 interior state of physical pain we find that there is no object 'out there' – no external, referential content. Pain is not of, or for, anything. Pain is. And it draws us away fromrepparttar 126146 space of interaction,repparttar 126147 sharable world, inwards. It draws us intorepparttar 126148 boundaries of our body."

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