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Abuse

Unloved Daughters: Dealing with and Recognizing Shame

While not every daughter will feel ashamed, many do, and suffer silently. Shame emanates from being unloved (“I am deficient, damaged, or less than, which is why I am unloved”), believing what is said to you and about you in your family of origin (“My mother says I’m stupid and lazy, and she knows me”), being isolated by cultural mythology (“All children are loved by their mothers so it’s my fault that I’m not”), and...


General

Using Visualization to Calm Yourself and Manage Your Emotions (Even Now)

Many of us have difficulty managing our emotions in the best of times but the times we find ourselves in at the moment are difficult for everyone, no matter how emotionally intelligent we are. Calming yourself down may feel like an insurmountable task at the moment; yes, we all know that we’re supposed to take deep calming breaths but how can you do that when you feel panicked? While I’m neither a psychologist nor a...


Anxious behavior

Toxic Childhood? 6 Ways to Declutter Your Thinking and Spring Forward to Healing

I’m a great believer in taking advantage of the energy that comes with a change of season, especially if you’ve been feeling stuck or listless, as so many people do in the dark of winter. If you’ve embarked on the long journey of healing from childhood, it may sometimes feel as though you’re making zero progress so psyching yourself up to put in a new effort can make a huge difference but you have to...


Abuse

Recognizing the Narcissist: the Pity Party Ploy

Those high in narcissistic traits often exhibit a self-absorption and grandiosity that’s pretty easy to see, unless, of course, you’ve temporarily been blinded by his or her charms. Narcissists –and I use the term loosely to refer to those who are high in narcissistic traits, though not necessarily diagnosable as having NPD—are well-known to curate their outward appearances and that, too, is pretty easy to spot. But there are more subtle ways a narcissist curates...


Anxious behavior

Unloved Daughters and Angst: Strategies to Manage Thoughts and Feelings

Recovering from childhood experiences is hard work, as readers of my book Daughter Detox well know.  One daughter put it bluntly in an email she sent me:
“Will I ever feel confident enough not to overthink every decision and choice? I am fifty but, in here, there’s a kid, worried about falling on her face in the schoolyard or having people laugh at her.  What can I do about that? Am I doomed to be an anxious little girl forever?”