The Recovery Expert
with Sharie Stines, Psy.D.


The Myth of “It Takes Two to Ruin a Relationship”

I contend it only takes one…

Evidence shows that it only takes one person to ruin a relationship – one selfish person.

Now, I realize that everyone is selfish to one degree or another. The type of selfishness that ruins relationships is the one that freequently disregards the needs, wants, and desires of the other person.

It is the belief system of the offending partner that creates the unhealthy and untenable environment in the relationship that leads to...


When Your Spouse Cheats

If your intention is to stay with your spouse after infidelity, this article is not for you. This article provides guidance for those who want to leave their spouse once unfaithfulness has been discovered.

The betrayal of a spouse is one of the most heartbreaking of experiences. When you find out you have been lied to and cheated on, you are stunned, shocked, emotionally destroyed. You feel like you will never recover. You try to bargain...


Ten Rules Found in Narcissistic Homes

In a dysfunctional household there are some specific rules which are passed down from generation to generation. These rules are severe and uncompromising.  If you have been raised in a narcissistic family you may find that you have been raised with some, if not all, of the following rules:

Children are taught that someone must be blamed for the mistakes that occur. There needs to be a a healthy family, ownership is taught. Apologies and...


When You’re the Wife of a Narcissist

Here’s what to expect when you marry a narcissist:

You will lose your self-esteem. When you marry a narcissist, you will not realize that he wants to destroy you from the inside out by acting like a normal human being at first, interspersed with random acts of meanness or manipulative-ness, and then over time, changing into a person who doesn’t see you as valuable at all – other than for what you can do for him,...


Healing the Abandonment Wound

The abandonment wound seems to be an under-represented area in mental health. Just like complex trauma is not listed as a diagnosis in the DSM, neither is abandonment mentioned as a cause for some of the mental illness issues experienced by people.

I often write about narcissistic abuse. One thing I noticed about narcissistic abuse is that it can cause an abandonment wound in the victim. Oftentimes people think of abuse as involving some sort of...


Things Narcissists Bank On

Here are some typical responses from victims of narcissists and other abusers when asked to describe why they “ignored” red flags:

I was trying to figure out what I had done to contribute to his outburst.
I gave him the benefit of the doubt.
I discounted it because he was a victim (I saw him as a victim.)
I felt safe as long as…(he wasn’t acting out in this other way or this other part...


When Your Kids Turn Against You In Favor of the Narcissistic Parent

Isn’t it bad enough, that after you get the strength and courage to leave your narcissist, and after you’ve already lost your self-worth, your youth, your time, lots of your money, your sanity, and whatever else you lost because of being in a narcissistic relationship, now you have to lose your kids too?  It just isn’t fair; and it isn’t right.

You’ve watched your narcissist manage to convince joint friends and other community members and sometimes...


Healing from Emotional Abuse

Never underestimate the damage emotional abuse can cause a person.

In many ways it can be considered even worse than physical abuse because it is so covert and unidentifiable. Emotional abuse tends to fall “under the radar.”  Many victims don’t even realize that they are in an abusive relationship and they often suffer in silence, slowly losing themselves in the process.

Perhaps you are in an emotionally abusive relationship and don’t even know it.  Consider these three...


The Trauma of Workplace Bullying

Have you ever found yourself in the position of being the target (scapegoat) of a workplace bully? Have you been gossiped about, ostracized, or scrutinized by your coworkers or boss and found to be lacking?

How can you tell if you are being scapegoated at work?  Here are some questions to answer:

Do you find yourself being ignored, overlooked, and isolated?  Do you feel that everyone knows a secret but you?
Are you unsure of the “rules” but...


Protecting Yourself from Manipulation

Manipulators are everywhere – in homes, schools, churches, the work place. You name it; manipulators can be found wherever people are.

What are some of the tactics manipulators use?  Some are blatant; others are less obvious:

Bullying. This is the strong-arm approach, and not so subtle. The underlying message is, “If you don’t do what I want, you’ll wish you had.”
Sense of Obligation. This tactic involves “shoulds:” You should do this in order to be a...