Last Updated on January 18, 2021 by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

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Abandonment vs. the Self

Some people want to understand why: Why do they doubt themselves? Why is their self-esteem eroded? Why does it hurt so much to be abandoned? To not be accepted? To feel slighted by a friend? How did this vulnerability set in? What caused it? What keeps it going?

The simple answer is “unresolved abandonment,” but to really understand the whys and wherefores, we have to go back — all the way back to the primal fear of abandonment.

When we were babies, we cried in terror when Mommy walked away from the crib, afraid she was never coming back. Our survival instinct was at the heart of the scream. She was our survival lifeline. Babies, after all, can’t survive on their own. …


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Stick to your diet? Have trouble with it? Taming Your Outer Child Slims You Right Down

Outer Child is always trying to get immediate gratification, and the most immediately gratifying experience is popping a piece of food in your mouth — you taste and feel it instantly. Taming Your Outer Child has a truly effective program for overcoming Outer Child resistance to your diet.

But not all weight control problems are caused by an overactive Outer Child. Out of compassion for those whose bodies tend to stockpile fat (regardless of how much they eat), I want to list some of the biological factors that can increase your appetite, promote excessive fat storage, and-or slow metabolism. These factors remain unknown to many dieters who are left to suffer their weight problems in shame and frustration. …


© Susan Anderson December 22 2020

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Outer Child — your internal nemesis — reacts to stress by falling back on overused, automatic patterns of behavior — kneejerk reactions you have been developing since childhood. They may have helped you cope with various stressors when you were younger, but they bypass the need to think and therefore are not subject to the wiser judgment of your cognitive brain, so these patterns tend to become maladaptive to your adult purposes.

Stress hormones can mobilize your physiological resources in a real emergency, but when sustained and triggered chronically, they can lead to cognitive deficits, learning difficulties, low self-esteem, memory gaps, and heightened emotional sensitivity (resulting in depression or anxiety in adulthood). …


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When the Workplace Triggers your Issues…

You begin to feel nobody values your ideas. Or somehow you become a scapegoat. Or your coworkers gravitate toward your rival. Or you’re overlooked for promotion. Or your staff actively ignores your directives. Or….

Any number of triggers can rekindle the old abandonment would, generating feelings you suffered in your family dynamics or in your peer groups at school. It’s as if your primal abandonment sores start bleeding through, imprinting themselves onto your current experience. The setting is different and the players have changed, but the emotional stain remains the same. …


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Last Updated on April 28, 2020, by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

The world is full of love-worthy, eligible people looking for a way out of involuntary singleness. They want to put an end to their cycles of abandonment and find a long-term mutual relationship. They are determined to overcome any self-sabotaging patterns that might stand in their way. Some may be attracted to the unavailable. Some tend to lose interest when a person becomes available. Some have heightened abandonment fear when they fall for someone and their emotional reactivity drives the person away. Others are abandophobic and remain isolated rather than risk getting hurt again. Still, others can’t seem to find anyone that sparks their interest.

Read more here On Huffington Post!

By Susan Anderson © 2015

Click here to view recent articles.

Originally published at https://www.abandonment.net.


Last Updated on May 19, 2020 by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

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In working with the victims of abandonment trauma, I keep coming across folks who are emotionally anorexic. When people attempt to give them love, they can’t seem to take it in. They rather remain in a state of emotional starvation rather than risk abandonment — their greatest fear.

As with almost all conditions, emotional anorexia can be seen on a spectrum. Most of us have moments when we can’t take something in — praise, acknowledgement, empathy, admiration, affection. But let’s see what this condition looks like in its extreme. …


Last Updated on May 19, 2020, by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

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Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and PTSD of Abandonment

There is a significant overlap between borderline personality disorder (BPD) and post-traumatic stress disorder of abandonment (PTSD of Abandonment). In attempting to distinguish them, we are met with a lot of fine lines and nebula.

Since there is a stigma attached to BPD, defining the difference is a worthy task on behalf of those whose symptoms are specifically posttraumatic to abandonment. Worthier still would be trying to remove the stigma from the borderline label, but this challenge is addressed in another article.

Complicating any effort to differentiate between BPD and PTSD of Abandonment are three…


Last Updated on May 19, 2020 by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

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In looking out for helpful information on behalf of my readers, I’ve come across a few pills.

Pills? You mean abandonment pills? For when you’re going through heartbreak and loss? Is there a pill for heartbreak?

Well, sort of.

People have always wished there could be a magic pill (like a Tylenol for broken heart) to cure the primal pain of abandonment, one that hopefully wasn’t addictive or turn you into a corpse. Yes, drugs and alcohol can dull the pain initially, but at great risk to the individual. …


Last Updated on May 19, 2020, by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

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Do people ever call you borderline? Did you ever ask yourself if you have a borderline personality disorder?

We’re all a little borderline from time to time, and sometimes we’re a lot borderline, but does that mean we have Borderline Personality Disorder?

Not necessarily.

But it does mean we have an active Outer Child — the self-saboteur of the personality — the part that wears its heart on its sleeve, clams up when we should be asserting ourselves, shoots off its mouth when we shouldn’t, shuts down or storms off when we should be working through important feelings within a relationship. …


Last Updated on May 19, 2020, by Susan Anderson, Psychotherapist

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Does your Outer Child sabotage your relationships? Your long-range goals? Your diet? There are myriad ways we all abandon ourselves by letting Outer Child take control of our lives. Do you forsake your true needs and goals on a daily basis? Some of Outer Child’s self-defeating patterns are aimed at our love-lives; others at our careers, and still others at our lifestyles.

Outer Child’s self-sabotage has everything to do with self-abandonment.

Self-abandonment is what happens when you love yourself ONLY enough to give yourself immediate gratifications, but NOT ENOUGH to postpone those gratifications to give yourself what you really want. …

About

Susan Anderson

Psychotherapist, Author, Abandonment Expert w/ 30+ years of clinical experience & dedicated research of #abandonment victims. Contact me: abandonment@erols.com.

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