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The Recovery Expert
with Sharie Stines, Psy.D.

Abuse

What’s the Difference between Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder?

Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD) is a serious personality disorder that is often confused with the more commonly known Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).  These two disorders sound similar in name, and are often confused with each other, yet they are really two very different and very distinct disorders.

The main distinction between the two disorders is that OCD sufferers perform ritualistic behaviors, and those persons with OCPD tend to be perfectionistic in many areas, causing their...

Abuse

Healing from Parental Neglect

If you grew up with an “oblivious” parent – one who didn’t seem to realize he/she was supposed to raise you – then you most likely have some emotional hurts as a result.  A lack of parental attunement, attachment, and care, can cause a covert-type of damage, one that people often don’t realize. Neglect is less obvious than abuse, but the damage is deep and pervasive.

If this describes your childhood, what can you do now...

Abuse

What to expect after leaving your narcissist and going “no contact”

Once you finish going through the detox phase, which includes massive cravings for your narcissist, feelings of despair and emptiness (caused by a depletion of the hormone, oxytocin,) and the withdrawal phase at the beginning of going no contact, you will come to experience some positive changes in your reality.

Leaving a narcissist is similar to breaking a heroin addiction. It is painful and difficult, but in the end, you get your life back. In order...

Abuse

War Guide for Preventing and Coping with Narcissistic Parental Alienation

When you are co-parenting with a narcissist, rather than cooperation, collaboration, communication, and compromise, you come to realize you are in an altered reality. Usually the victims of narcissistic abuse continue to delude themselves into believing somehow they’re going to figure out the “trick” or just the right words to say to their children’s other parent, that is going to somehow get him/her to see the light.

It never happens.

Instead, you are in constant turmoil and...

Abuse

Healing from Rejection

Have you ever been rejected by someone important in your life? Perhaps you’ve been betrayed by a loved one, discarded by a narcissist, cheated on by a spouse, fired from a job, or left by someone you cared about with no explanation given.

Experiencing the sting of rejection is very difficult to come back from, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bounce back from it. In fact, I contend that you can be even more confident...

Abuse

Holidays are so much better without the silent treatment

After spending years and years with a relative, spouse, or otherwise “loved one,” walking on eggshells, or feeling the sting of being ignored, it becomes very emancipating indeed to have silent-treatment free holidays! There is nothing quite so liberating as getting away from people who don’t value you enough to talk to you.

Some toxic relatives are so obvious with their public shunning that they will go up to someone standing right next to you and...

Abuse

Emotional Abuse and Threats of Abandonment

I don’t hear much about this type of abuse. Threats of abandonment are a form of emotional manipulation that uses a person’s fear as a weapon.

I know a woman who shared the following story with me. She was trying to explain the problems she experienced in her marriage with her husband at the time.  I will use her words to tell you her experience:

“One night my husband and I were arguing about something, I’m not...

Abuse

Why Victims of Abuse Stay with Their Abusive, Narcissistic, or Borderline Partner and What to do About It

So many people do not understand why victims of abuse remain with their partners even after being terribly abused by them. Many people believe a few myths regarding victims of abuse:

They are masochists
They like being abused
They are weak
They provoke the abuser in some way, contributing to the abuse
Victims are partially culpable for the abuse because they stay in the relationship

If you are the victim of abuse and you can’t figure...

Abuse

Why is Couples Counseling Counter-Productive in Abusive Relationships?

Many people who find themselves married to an abuser tend to believe that marriage counseling is the solution.

A lot of these people believe that they have a relationship problem, such as communication or conflict resolution issues.  Everyone, including the counselor, fails to see that the problem with the relationship resides within the abuser.

The solution to the problem is the abuser’s to fix, and the partner’s job is to stop being responsible for the well-being of...

Abuse

What Causes Attachment Based Parental Alienation in Narcissistic Relationships?

“It’s funny how sometimes the people you’d take the bullet for, are the ones behind the trigger.”

What exactly is parental alienation in the context of a narcissistic relationship?

It is the dynamic that occurs when a child is manipulated by the narcissistic parent to reject the other, healthy and empathic parent.  It happens because the narcissistic parent uses a type of invisible coercion to convince the child that the other parent is no good. In essence,...