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Child Abuse: Did Your Parents Make Out That You Were Perfect?

If someone was asked to talk about what takes place when a child is abused, they could say that they will be physically harmed or verbally put down. Alternatively, they could say that they will be neglected.

Then again, one could mention all of these things, meaning that it won’t just relate to one type of abuse. Clearly, irrespective of whether a child is hit or abandoned, for instance, it is not going to do them any good.

An All out Attack

What is also clear is that a child is likely to suffer even more if they experience more than one type of abuse. Their being will be violated in multiple ways and there won’t be anyone for them to turn to.

Ergo, a time in their life when they desperately need others, will be a time in their life when they are all alone. These experiences are going to stop them from being able to grow and develop in the right way.

One Need

In fact, this will be the last thing on their mind; what will be the most important thing at this stage of their life will be to merely survive. This is then going to be a child, not a soldier on the battle field, but they will be under attack by the people who are supposed to protect them.

What will most likely make it easier for them to handle this stage of their life will be the different defences that their body and mind utilise. Due to how small they are, they won’t be able to fight, but what they will be able to do is to freeze and they might be able to hide, for instance.

Many More

In addition to these two options, they will be able to leave their body and to go into their head. What this will do is stop them from having to be overwhelmed with pain, thereby making it easier for them to handle what is going on.

So as they are unable to remove themselves from their environment that is dysfunctional, they will remove themselves from the part of themselves that causes them to experience pain. Another thing that they can do is to dissociate from themselves, with this being a way for them to avoid what is going on in their body and mind.

An Observer

One will then be there, but it will be as though they are simply observing what is happening to them. In a way, it will be as if they are watching someone else go through what they themselves are going though.

If it wasn’t for these defences, they wouldn’t be able to survive this incredibly traumatic stage of their life. Hoverer, even though these defences may well allow them to survive this stage of their life, their life is not going to magically transform once they are an adult.

The Hell Continues

As a result of what they went through during these years, they might not be able to function as an adult. They could end up with all kinds of mental, emotional and physical problems that make it impossible for them to lead a ‘normal’ life.

But, as their early years were a time when they were severely harmed, how else are they going to be? Maybe they will be able to reach out for assistance and to start to heal the damage that was done, or maybe they will lead a miserable existence or even end up taking their own life.

A Different Experience

This is not the only type of abuse that a child can experience during their early years, though. There can be another type of abuse that they can experience and this can be far more subtle.

The child is then not going to be physically or verbally harmed, and they won’t be neglected either. This child can have caregivers who are very active in their life, taking them to all kinds of activities and lessons.

The Message

Throughout this time in their life, the child can basically be told by these people that they are perfect in every way. This can cause them to develop a superiority complex, seeing themselves as more-than human.

Their caregivers are unlikely to see their child as a separate individual; what they will do is see them as an extension of themselves. This is likely to show that the child is being brought up by people that also have a superiority complex.

Falsely Empowered

Once this child grows into an adult, they can be very confident but they will probably have the tendency to blame others whenever anything goes wrong. In other words, self-awareness might not be their strong point.

Thanks to how they were brought up, they can believe that they are above making mistakes or being the reason why something didn’t work out, for instance. This is likely to mean that it will be a challenge for them to have fulfilling relationships.

A False-Self

Underneath the image that they present to the world is likely to be someone who feels worthless. The reason for this is that their caregivers wouldn’t have been interested in who they were as a child; they would have only been interested in using them to fulfilling their unmet needs - living their life through them.

And the reason why they needed them to be perfect is most likely because they also felt deeply flawed at a deeper level. Thus, if their child was to do anything that proved that they were not perfect, it might have triggered their own wounds around feeling worthless.


One way of looking at this would be to say that this is what takes place when a child is brought up in a narcissistic family. The child would have received attention, yet this attention wouldn’t have been for who they actually were.

So as this type of abuse if more subtle, it can take a while for someone to realise that their early years were dysfunctional. For someone like this to reach out for support, they might need to truly hit rock bottom.

​They could spend years with the view that it isn’t them who need to change, it is everyone else. If they do get to the point where they are ready to look in the mirror, they may need to reach out for the assistance of a therapist or a healer.

Teacher, Author, Transformational Writer & Consultant - With Over 2,000,000 Article Views Online.

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Hello Mr Businessperson! What if I told you that I could reduce your sick leave by 20%? If we worked really hard maybe even 45% or even 55%?

15.4 million days were lost in the UK during 2017 to 2018 due to mental health alone. That makes up 57% of all work sick leave. Almost half (44%) of those 15.4 million days were due to workload. This data is compiled yearly by the UK’s Health and Safety Executive but is isn’t unique to the UK.

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The worst part? This isn’t news. It has been this way for decades. While we have all be shocked into action and the fight against medical issues like AIDS, TB and cancer, men have been killing themselves rather than live in a devolved country. A large proportion of this has a relation to work and as we discovered above, 44% is workload itself.

Since the recession of 2009, budgets in all businesses have been tightened. Sometimes processes simplified or corners cut. There are occasions where this isn’t a bad thing but sometimes removing unique services and products alienates your customers and your own staff. Making people redundant and then being surprise there is not enough people to handle your sales or service calls is embarrassing, farcical, damaging and, worryingly, not uncommon. Your customers big and small no longer regard you as a market leader – suddenly your higher prices are no longer ‘worth it’ because your service is now no better than the cheaper competitor. They think they have achieved the savings the business needs but it’s self-destructive and I’ve seen it first hand.

The businesses that have flourished in the last ten years are the ones who took a small pair of pruning shears to the ‘bush’ of their processes, services and staff and not the businesses who took a machete.

Businesses who support their staff see better sales and reliability. Happy staff do more for the business, in and out of work.

Mind, a leading mental health charity in the UK, run their own Workplace Index. Their report from 2017 showed that only 54% of staff, in an array of industries, felt their manager support their wellbeing and mental health.

Simple solutions such as offering occasional one-2-ones help focus your staff and support them. It also allows managements to see where the real issues are – the issues that actually affect your customers and your profits. Mind encourage companies to sign up to their pledge and join the battle. Big industry leaders such as Heineken and JaguarLandRover have been on board for years. Suicide is preventable. A short conversation, an occasional check-in with someone who may be struggling to cope can go a long way, and might even help save a life.

In 2015, I suffered workplace discrimination. I tried to end my own life. It has taken years to recover. It was embarrassing for the management and the brand involved as well as costly due to the legal action that followed. If you want talented staff doing their best and the sales and profits that match, you have to offer the right service to your staff. The alternative is either the staff burnout, which in my example is costly, or the staff go to your competitors.

It’s finally business savvy to care about the wellbeing of your staff.

Depression is anxiety. It is the constellation of symptoms caused by relentless anxiety. This is critical to understand because anxiety is simply the sensation you feel when your body is full of stress chemicals, such as cortisol, adrenaline and histamines. It is the essence of your body’s neurochemical unconscious survival response, which is approximately a million times stronger than your conscious brain.

“I know better”

So, anxiety is not primarily psychological and not solvable by your rational brain. Have you ever wondered why so many people (maybe all of us) act badly when we know better? How successful are we at keeping our New Year’s resolutions? Why would you treat your loved ones worse than you would treat a stranger? What about the atrocities that are commonly committed at a societal level? This list is endless because you can’t outrun or overpower your mind and need to survive.

I have known for many years that anxiety is the driving force behind depression, and have seen smatterings of it being discussed in the literature and news. I suffered from a major depression for over 15 years with the last eight of them being extreme. In 2002, I was actively suicidal, and am still not quite sure why I didn’t go through with my plan. I got lucky and have been given a second chance. About 18 months later, I pulled out of my downward spiral of anxiety and major depression. Little did I know that they were the same entity.

I eventually was able to live a fuller and richer life than I dreamed was possible. It is also the experience of many of my patients who escaped from the grips of chronic pain in that their quality of life is even better than before they developed chronic pain.

Why is depression just the expression of sustained anxiety?

  • All people with depression have anxiety (although it can be suppressed by anger), but not everyone with anxiety has depression.
  • One of the earliest signs of depression is waking up in the morning and not being able to fall back asleep. This is usually from racing thoughts – connected to anxiety.
  • Then you can’t fall asleep. Again, from disruptive thoughts, but also from your body being full of stress chemicals. You are on high alert, which isn’t conducive to falling asleep.
  • You’re not sleeping – a cardinal symptom of depression.
  • Eventually, you have trouble concentrating, which is a combination of your racing thoughts and not being able to sleep.

You have already defined a minor to moderate depression – and the relentless anxiety continues and becomes increasingly intolerable. It was by far and away the worst part of my ordeal. From a survival perspective, the intention is to create such an unpleasant feeling that you are compelled to take action that to escape the threat. But I couldn’t escape my thoughts and they progressed to vivid, obsessive thought patterns, which is the core of OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder). I was introduced to another realm of suffering I never would have imagined. It is beyond words, and that is why I use the term, “The Abyss.” I watched my patients try to describe how deep their suffering was, and all that kept coming up for me was the word, “dark”, and without any hope of light. The next word was, “despair.”


I also experienced the more advanced symptoms of a major depression (anxiety).

  • Loss of appetite and weight loss – adrenaline decreases the blood supply to your GI tract.
  • Lack of energy – being full of these chemicals keeps your body on high alert and it just wears you down. It is similar to attempting to sprint a mile.
  • Multiple diffuse physical symptoms – direct effect of your body’s hormones on the different organ systems. I was experiencing over 17 of them at the worst phase of my ordeal.
  • Social isolation – the one worst part of my journey, besides the anxiety, was loneliness. It was crushing and many self-deprecating thought patterns emerged. This occurred in spite of the fact that I am normally extremely social. It still took me down.
  • Suicidal ideation – and action plan.

You get the point. What we are calling depression is a set of symptoms created by sustained levels of stress chemicals (anxiety).

Anger – stepping it up a notch

Then the story gets worse – a lot worse. One antidote to anxiety is control, and normally when a physical threat is solved, the anxiety drops, and you’ll live another day. However, when you can’t escape (your thoughts for example), your body will secrete more adrenaline, cortisol and histamines in an effort to regain control, and you’ll feel angry (trapped). So, anger is anxiety with a chemical kick and is the same entity. The problem is that anger is truly the last-ditch effort to survive and is destructive. An animal will do whatever it has to do to stay alive. Humans have the same need, but the destructive behavior doesn’t have an endpoint because we have consciousness. Additionally, it is self-destructive.

Sustained anger will drive you deep into the hole, cause more intense physical symptoms, and to me felt like a pile driver was driving my soul right into the center of the earth. Then, since you may be beyond caring, you might neglect your health. Complete disregard for your physical health is akin to a slow suicide. Talk about knowing better and then doing something different, is the classic illustration of the unconscious behavioral patterns winning out over willpower. Why else would you not want to feel physically great and live life to the fullest?

Medicine has missed it

I will get a lot of push back on this article from almost every corner of the medical world. But, they have missed this one – badly. Anxiety and depression are conceptualized, labeled and treated differently. They are not only the same entity, but neither are truly solvable with isolated psychological interventions. Although, psychological treatments are important aspects of care by providing support, wisdom, guidance and symptom control they must be combined with other strategies that teach you how to develop your own individualized way of regulating your body’s chemistry. Learning how to change your hormonal profile to “play”, which includes oxytocin (love drug), dopamine (rewards), GABA chemicals (anti-anxiety), and serotonin (antidepressant) is simple, effective, easily learned and will change your life.

Anxiety and depression are the same entity. The core driver is anxiety, which is not primarily a psychological problem. We can’t get rid of it or we wouldn’t survive. Understanding the nature of any problem will allow you to address the root issue. It is a solvable problem using strategies that stimulate your brain to rewire.

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