Tag Archives: codependency book

Human Magnet Syndrome International Reviews

For my new Human Magnet Syndrome website, I am putting together graphics.  Here is one for the reviews.

 

On Surviving the Potholes of Self-Love Deficit Disorder Recovery

 

On our healing journey, sometimes we hit potholes in the road. Such surprises may cause us to temporarily lose control of our “vehicle.”  In an adrenaline filled moment of terror, we contemplate the end. Because of our newfound healing instinct, we tightly grab hold of the “wheel” and muscle our car back on to the road. This is when we steer our fate back to self-love
Worry not; you are moving in the right direction! Hold tight onto your courage, as the road to self-love abundance is fraught with risk. When you do arrive, and you will, you will realize that no destination as sweet as this can ever be achieved on a road free of obstacles and dangers. Therefore, self-love is not only the antidote to your driving dilemma, it’s also the destination you have always deserved.

Ross Rosenberg

 

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Self-Love Recovery Institute Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome

Creator of “The Codependency Cure: Recovering from Self-Love Deficit Disorder” seminar (and upcoming book)

SELF LOVE RECOVERY INSTITUTE                         

When Selfish Is Actually Self-Love.

 

WHEN “SELFISH” IS REALLY GOOD

It is GOOD for SLD’s (Self-Love Deficients or codependents) to be selfish. It is like learning to ride a bike. Doing something for yourself and not caring what people think is a dangerous proposition.  “Selfish,” therefore is good.

The problem is the voices in your head have been lying to you; telling you that you are being bad, when you are just trying not to drown anymore.These voices have never been yours. Rather, they are covertly implanted narratives that were designed to confuse you, turn you against yourself, and break you down. It is time to break the gaslighting spell and regain the true voice in your head…your own! Fall a few times, brush off the pain, and get back on the “bike.”

Learning to love yourself will frighten people, who have only one way to get you to quit the nonsense of SLDD (Self-Love Deficit Disorder or codependency) recovery. They will call you a “narcissist” and try to make you feel ashamed and guilty for your moments of self-care. Scoff at the projection, this is more about them than you. Ride your bike all the way out of their life!

 

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Self-Love Recovery Institute Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome

Creator of “The Codependency Cure: Recovering from Self-Love Deficit Disorder” seminar (and upcoming book)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stop Trying to Change the Malignant Narcissist (Why You Should Never Give A Narcissist My Book).

Stop Trying to Change the Malignant Narcissist

malignant narcissistI am so grateful to the many people who have told me that my book The Human Magnet Syndrome was life-changing. Having such a positive impact on the human condition is my teenager “gonna change the world” dream come true. I couldn’t be happier!

My book was written to inspire and motivate people to understand their part in thedysfunctional dance they have been irresistibly drawn into their whole life. It WAS NOT written to be used as a defensive or offensive strategy in dealing with harmful pathological narcissists (PNarcs).

The “codependent” and “narcissistic” designations in The Human Magnet Syndrome were designed to identify a very serious personal and relational problem so the reader would be motivated to get help to disconnect from it. The book was never intended to be used as a retaliatory weapon to be used by angry, vindictive and/or controlling codependents, or what I now refer to as individuals with Self-Love Deficit Disorder (SLDD). Similarly, it wasn’t written to be used as a countermeasure against narcissistic harm.

The mere mentioning of my book to a PNarc is almost always counterproductive, as it will ALWAYS trigger a negative reaction, no matter how much you believe otherwise. I strongly suggest that you never give a copy of my book to PNarc. Never! It will always trigger a narcissistic injury and set up a dysfunctional interaction, or dance, where the PNarc has complete control and the person with Self-Love Deficit Disorder does not.

If a PNarc learns or is told that their partner is reading my book, they will react in one of two manners:

  1. They will exhibit various forms of vindictive and indignant rage, which compels them to openly intimidate, manipulate, and consequently sabotage their partner’s attempt at SLDD recovery.
  2. This is the more insidious and harmful reaction that is common with Covert and Malignant Narcissists. In this scenario, the PNarc covertly executes a plan of sabotage and disempowerment, which may include gaslighting, mind manipulation, and continued brainwashing.

The latter is more dangerous as the PNarc is allowed to maintain their victim role, while manipulating their partner into believing that they have the problems, not them. In these cases, some of my clients, in the beginning of therapy, are convinced that they are the PNarc and their significant other the SLD. Believe it or not, a few of these clients’ PNarcs read my book, and then gave it to their partner with the continued brainwashing narrative that they are the “codependent” and their partner the “narcissist.”

Plain and simple, any suggestion that the narcissist is at fault will elicit a narcissistic injury. Giving them my book, or referring to it, while telling them you are SLD or codependent, is and will cause them to react in one of two ways. One, they will project onto you that you are the narcissist and they the codependent; or, two, they will be triggered with a narcissistic injury, and subsequently rage against you for the comment or suggestion. You will be the target of their unmitigated fury and vitriolic criticisms, and they will punish you.
The following excerpt from the Human Magnet Syndrome exemplifies the predictable negative response that PNarcs have to my work.

“According to their verbal and/or written feedback, they feel the seminar is offensive, ill-conceived, biased and even absurd. In particular, they are quite bothered by what they perceive as prejudice. These participants hear me say that codependents are the victims and emotional manipulators are the perpetrators of their dysfunctional relationships. Nothing could be further from the truth, as the training (and this book) specifically details how both the codependent and the emotional manipulator are equally willing magnets in their dysfunctional “dance.” The codependent’s tendency to find harmful partners and remain with them cannot and should not be blamed on emotional manipulators, or vice versa.

It would appear that the severe reactions from my audience are likely products of a narcissistic injury, which occurs when the narcissistic individual felt criticized, judged or defeated.

Anger and defensiveness are the common reactions of a narcissistically-injured emotional manipulator, as they feel offended, degraded and/or humiliated when confronted about their wrongdoings.” (Rosenberg, 2013).

Depending on the PNarc’s sub-type or diagnosis, their narcissistically prompted rage will be either delivered directly (“in your face”) or passive aggressively/covertly, which is the common strategy by Covert Narcissists and Malignant Narcissists. The covert and passive aggressive form of the narcissistic injury is more harmful than the reactions from the garden variety overt narcissists. They deliver maximum damage to the triggering (activating) SLD because of the invisible, secretive and manipulative nature of their counter-attack. Examples include triangulation of family, friends or co-workers, in order to promote their victim narrative.

Sadly, and ironically, the mere fact of fighting for what SLDs most want and need — unconditional love, respect and care (LRC) — results in the loss of it. Once in a relationship with a PNarc, any attempts to control or coerce the narcissist into loving, respecting and caring for the SLD are quickly offset by a dizzying array of self-serving manipulative countermeasures. These come in various forms, depending on your PNarc’s subtype. Unfortunately, as long as codependents fight for LRC in a manner that renders them powerless and ineffectual, they are virtually guaranteed never to receive it.

I learned 22 years ago that setting boundaries, resolving conflict, and defending myself from a PNarc was a complicated and dangerous endeavor that left me feeling worse than I felt before the ordeal. I was surprised to learn that my repeated and unsuccessful attempts to control my PNarc’s neglectful and harmful treatment were the primary interactional components of our relationship. My behavior was so automatic and reflexive that I was completely oblivious to it. Adding insult to injury, the only predictable outcome of my control compulsion was feelings of shame, loneliness, anxiety, and anger.

We must learn that PNarcs are never the primary problem. Instead, it is a SLD’s distorted and delusional belief system that compels them to keep trying to change and control their PNarc partner, who has a great deal riding on not letting you succeed. Despite ample evidence that SLDs can rarely effectively and consistently control their PNarcs, they blindly continue.
In conclusion, please do not use my book or other works to wage a battle against your PNarc. In the words of George Bernard Shaw, I beseech you to Observe and Don’t Absorb your PNarc into oblivion!

I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig.
You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it!
– George Bernard Shaw

About Ross Rosenberg, MEd, LCPC, CACD, CSAT

Ross is the author of the Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us.

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT © 2016
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Advanced Clinical Trainers Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us

BPD, codependency, codependency author, codependency expert, dysfunctional relationships, human magnet syndrome, love advice, love help, narcissism,narcissism author, narcissism expert, narcissist abuse, narcissistic abue, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic abuse syndrome, narcissists, npd, relationship advice, ross rosenberg, why he love people who hurt us,  addiction expert, aspd, best codependency book, best narcissism book, BPD, codependency addiction, codependency author, codependency book, codependency cure, codependency expert, codependency help, codependency treatment, human magnet syndrome, narcissism, narcissist, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic victim syndrome, npd, observer don’t absorb, pathological narcissists, ross rosenberg, ross rosenberg author, self-love, self-love deficit disorder, sldd, trauma expert, trauma resolution

 

Excerpts from The Codependency Cure: Recovering from Self-Love Deficit Disorder Book Proposal

Excerpts from The Codependency Cure: Recovering from Self-Love Deficit Disorder Book Proposal

Chapter 3: “CODEPENDENCY” NO MORE – THE SELF LOVE DEFICIT DISORDER STORY

Discovery Phase V – Core Shame Pathological Loneliness
At age 43, about two years after my humiliating second divorce, my life spiraled out of control and seemed be irrevocably reduced to shambles. My success driven self, the one that kept winning races because of the blinders he had on, could no longer carry the day. Like an old battered row boat with one too many holes in it, I took on more water than I could frantically bail out. No matter how much I tried, dragging on life’s rocky bottom, made it impossible to keep the “good” Ross afloat. As rapidly as one part of me was sinking, another part was rising upwards, seeking the light of day.

To my great dismay, from the murky depths of my unconscious mind, arose my emotional nemesis – core shame. This wasn’t the first time we met, as “he” had repeatedly and unremittingly tapped me on the shoulder back in my exquisitely sad, lonely teenage years. In an effort to stop the throbbing loneliness he caused, I almost self-medicated myself into oblivion. Twenty-eight years later, I was back to my self-medicating ways, trying to anesthetize myself from the ever-present reminders that I was essentially broken, worthless and unlovable. “Bottoming out” at age 44 served as a wake-up call, when I decided to awake from my self-medicated slumber and got myself back into therapy. This time around, I would not stop, until I could permanently eradicate my shame core, that part of me that kept leading me into the arms of a pathological narcissist.

Proposed Table of Contents

Dedication
Acknowledgments
Forward: Another author will write?
Introduction: The Journey to Self-Love: Breaking Free to Recovery
Chapter 1: “Magnets” and “Cures:” The New Codependency Landscape
Chapter 2: Codependency, Narcissism, And The Human Magnet Syndrome
Chapter 3: “Codependency” No More – The Self-Love Deficit Disorder Story
Chapter 4: Paleopsychotherapy: Uncovering Trauma Fossils
Chapter 5: Codependency Addiction: “Hooked” on Your Narcissist
Chapter 6: Organizing The “Codependency Cure.” A Six Stage Recovery Model
Chapter 7: Hitting Bottom – From The Ashes the Phoenix Does Rise”
Chapter 8: Stop Wrestling with “Pigs!” The Observe Don’t Absorb Technique
Chapter 9: Finding Your Voice: Setting Boundaries in A Hostile Environment
Chapter 10: Maintaining Safe & Secure Boundaries
Chapter 11: Healing the Wounded Child Technique
Chapter 12: Discovering Self-Love: Building A Self-Love Foundation
Chapter 13: Relationship Math: The Addition of Two Self-Loving Individuals
Chapter 14: Reaching Self-Love Abundancy – The Codependency Cure
Conclusion
Bibliography

CHAPTER 6: ORGANIZING THE “CODEPENDENCY CURE.” A Six Stage Recovery Model

The Inevitable “How To” Question
It seemed every time I talked about the Human Magnet Syndrome (HMS)—in seminars, YouTube videos, blogs, articles, and of course, in my book—I was repeatedly besieged by the same emphatic question: “When will you tell us how to solve the problem?” Even with the epiphanies and watershed moments that the HMS material made possible, these same people were still mired waist-deep in the muddy swamp of a lifetime of codependent pain.

Naturally, the HMS’s explanation for why they repeatedly mistook harmful Pnarcs for loving life-partners was helpful, but it wasn’t enough. It helped them identify and understand their destructive self-sabotaging tendencies, but they also craved guidance on how to break free from the bonds of codependency , while learning how to be in a relationship with a lover, a best-friend, a mother, or a brother, who was mutually loving, respecting, and caring.

In writing The Human Magnet Syndrome, my goal was to explain what codependency is, not the solutions to it. It was my intention to both revise and redefine it, while explaining its predictable and reflexive behavior pattern, and why codependents repeatedly “dance” with harmful Pnarcs despite cascades of consequences, losses, and emotional pain. As much as I sympathized with the urgency of these questions, I maintained the course of my mission, which was to create a seismic shift in the understanding of codependency. I would not waver from this decision, since I had already planned to follow-up my HMS work with an instructive “how to” book focused on practical solutions and the path to healing.

Even with the clarity of my master plan, I still needed to convince others—both professionals and patients eager for help—why my “why material” needed to be separated from and to precede the eventual “how to” discussion. The following lays out my rationale.

CHAPTER 8  STOP WRESTLING WITH PIGS!  How to Master the Observe Don’t Absorb Technique
The Emotional Wrestling Ring

The emotional ring is the fight that occurs in the SLD’s head, a fight which the SLD always loses. This thought and feeling-based wrestling ring consists of the flood of thoughts, feelings, suppositions, predictions, and judgments that overwhelms the SLD before, during, and after the SLD enters the physical ring. Adding another level of complexity, in any given emotional ring, the SLD is wrestling the current Pnarc, as well as Pnarcs from the past, namely the narcissistic parent or parents responsible for attachment trauma (the cause of SLDD).

The emotional wrestling ring is more dangerous than its physical counterpart. Not only is it invisible and lacking a definitive shape, but it is also the venue in which inner voices or dialogue command your attention. On a good day, the voices or dialogue are patient, accepting, self-forgiving, and self-loving. On a bad day, the Pnarc takes residence in your head, berating you with a cacophony of conclusions, judgments, and impatient commands that unfairly second-guess, judge, and ridicule your actions while degrading and derailing any attempt to secure healthy boundaries.

With the Pnarc infecting your thoughts, feelings, and judgments, the wrestling match is over before it starts, and the inevitable outcome is assured. When you add to the mix the flight or fight and false power responses, the SLD’s thought processes and judgment are impaired, rendering them the surefire loser of any altercation, argument and/or conflict with their Pnarc partner. In addition, once the SLD “rents” the Pnarc “space in their head,” all bets are off, as defeat in the emotional ring ensures another humiliating smack-down in the physical. The fight may seem to the SLD to be fought and lost in the physical ring, but this is an illusion, as most fights are lost in the emotional ring.

Muhammad Ali’s Emotional Knockouts
Muhammad Ali, international sports icon and boxing legend, exemplified a person who dominated his sport because of his mastery of both the emotional and physical rings. Many boxing aficionados and sports historians would agree that Ali may not have always been physically stronger, faster, or more skilled than his opponents. However, these same people would agree that despite his opponents’ obvious advantages, “The Champ” would find a way to win the boxing match. It is unimportant to this book to determine if Muhammad Ali was a Pnarc or not. But what is of value is to demonstrate how and why his psychological boxing methods were a masterful use of the emotional ring, and how they enabled him to achieve dominance in the boxing world.

Especially in the mid to later part of his career, Ali racked up wins through the carefully executed psychological manipulation of his opponents. His big wins, especially against the likes of Joe Frazier and George Foreman, were attributed to his ability to get into their heads, provoke unbridled anger, and ultimately, render them their own worst enemies. Winning in the emotional ring was achieved by taunting, ridiculing, and embarrassing them, which got them so enraged and hell-bent to pulverize Ali that they would ultimately sabotage their own efforts to win the fight.

Once Ali’s opponents were antagonized to the point of rage and a hyper-focused obsession to beat him to a pulp, they expended huge amounts of their energy early on in the match. The combination of his opponents’ triggered vindictive rage, their all-out intention to knock him out in the first few rounds, and Ali’s successful use of his “rope-a-dope” strategy (hunkering down in a safe, defensive position), all but guaranteed Ali a win. By the time his opponent lost his steam, and perhaps his false power, Ali would tap into his reserves and deliver a flurry of bout-ending punches.

Simply speaking, Ali won most of his fights by leading his opponents into an emotional ring and manipulating them to fight unknowingly against themselves; just as the Pnarc does with the unsuspecting SLD.

 

The Goose Allegory: When Leaving Saves Your Life, But Breaks Your Heart

The Goose Allegory: When Leaving Saves Your Life, But Breaks Your Heart

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

I first came across this allegorical story about self-love, courage and risk 28 years ago when I began my psychotherapy career in Boone, Iowa.  The story is a chapter from John and Linda Friel’s 1988 book, “Adult Children Secrets of Dysfunctional Families: The Secrets of Dysfunctional Families.”  The Friels were one of the early pioneers on ACOA (Adult Children of Alcoholics) and codependency.

The Friel’s goose story typifies the experience of being raised in a family that protects its dysfunction more than the people in the family.  It eloquently and powerfully conveys what it is like to experience the double bind of knowing what is wrong with your family, but being afraid of exposing this truth.  For many families, such as the one in this story, the risk to tell the truth often requires either leaving the family, or being expelled from it.

As the protagonist of the story, a young adult goose matured and began to realize how sick his family really was and how unwilling they were able to accept it.  In fact, the toxicity of the family’s dysfunction was so severe that everyone’s mental and physical health (safety) were sacrificed in order to maintain and perpetuate their shared denial-based narrative.  The young goose’s courage to face the truth about his family’s toxic dysfunction, set boundaries with them, and follow his intuition about what is healthy or not, is truly inspirational!

Looking back at it now, I am reminded how the brilliant work from people like John and Linda Friel impacted my own codependency recovery and what would become my own clinical and written work.  Twenty-eight years later, this story still resonates with my own codependency and dysfunctional family story.  It is clear now that ideas such as my “Surgeon General’s Warning,” “Observe Don’t Absorb” technique, and my Five Stages of Codependency Recovery concepts could not have been developed without the knowledge and inspiration from pioneers like the Friels and their compatriots.  I hope it impacts you in the same way!

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

 

Adult Children Secrets of Dysfunctional Families: The Secrets of Dysfunctional Families

From The Goose (Chapter 9, page 93)

Once upon a time in a far away land called Northern Minnesota, there was a family of geese who lived on a quiet little pond on the outskirts of a small town. Mr. Gander and Mrs. Goose and their three goslings spent a lot of time in the pond, and they enjoyed their neighbors, Mr. Beaver and Mr. and Mrs. Loon. On sunny afternoons after the wind had died down, they would congregate near Mr. Beaver’s house and talk about their families and their plans for the winter. Like all normal Minnesotans, the weather was always at the top of the list for conversation.

“Hot enough for you, Mrs. Goose!” asked Mr. Loon.

“Land sakes, yes!” replied Mrs. Goose, with a mock sigh of consternation in her voice.

“Well, I don’t know,” piped in Mr. Beaver. “I sort of like this weather.”

Mr. Gander listened our of one ear as he gazed our over the pond and thought about what a wonderful life they had all made for themselves. His goslings were growing up faster than he had ever imagined, and he was thinking ahead to the trip south that they’d all be taking in a few months. He was even thinking beyond that, to the rime when they could return to this pond again after the long, cold Minnesota winter was over. He loved this place.

While all this adult conversation was going on, the three goslings were out in the middle of the pond skimming across the top of the water, feet paddling fast as they tried to get themselves airborne for the first time. None of them were to accomplish it today, but they would soon enough. As they stopped to rest, the Littlest Gosling spoke to his brother and sister. “You know, I haven’t been feeling so great the past few days. My stomach has been a little queasy, and my head hurts just a bit.”

“Well,” his sister replied, “you’re probably just anxious about the big trip south this winter. After all, it is a long way from home.”

“Yes,” his brother added, “and you’ve been working awfully hard to learn how to fly. Why don’t you just go over by Mom and Dad and take a breather.”

The Littlest Gosling frowned. “I don’t know. It just feels like something; wrong. I can’t quite put my wingtip on it, but something tells me things aren’t right.”

“You Silly Goose!” his brother and sister echoed in unison.

The Littlest Gosling began swimming toward the spot on the edge of the pond where his parents were. Before he reached them, he veered off to the left into a small cove lined with cattails and water lilies. He noticed a peculiar odor and spotted two dead fish floating bellies up on the surface of the water. He wondered if there was something wrong with his pond; and he wondered if that was why he was feeling a little sick.

He paddled out of the cove and around to his parents, Mr. Beaver, and Mr. and Mrs. Loon.

“Mom, Dad,” he began, “I think there’s something wrong with this pond. I think there’s something in it that’s making me sick.” He gazed up into their eyes, awaiting that glimmer of pride and recognition in their expressions that would say they were interested in his discovery.

Instead, Mrs. Goose snapped, “0h, you Silly Goose! Whatever gave you that idea? Land sakes, son, you come up with the silliest notions sometimes”.

That evening his parents, brother and sister all had a good laugh over the Littlest Gosling’s “discovery”.

“Why, we’ve been coming back to this pond every spring for as long as I can remember,” spouted Mr. Gander. “And no one has ever been sick a day in his life since we’ve been here,” added Mrs. Goose.

“Alright, alright,” shouted the Littlest Gosling, “enough is enough!”

Over the next few days everyone forgot about the incident, and things pretty much went back to normal.

About two weeks Inter the Littlest Gosling began to feel sick again, but he’d learned his lesson the first time, so he didn’t even think about telling anyone in the pond about it.

At first he didn’t know quite what to do. He went back to the small cove and saw some more dead fish and smelled that smell again. Then he took a tour of the rest of the pond and discovered some of the same things going on. A few dead fish here and there, a funny smell and a slight headache and queasy stomach that wouldn’t seem to go away.

By now he was able to fly, and although lie was feeling weak, he decided to break the rule that his parents had made for him and his brother and sister, and he flew up and over the edge of the pond and away. After gaining altitude, he noticed a big lake off in the distance with a large population of geese, ducks and loons, and so he headed toward it.

After a few minutes, he landed gracefully on the surface of the lake about 50 yards from a big gaggle of geese who were swimming about, enjoying the late afternoon sun. He was hesitant at first because his parents had told him not to leave his own pond, and because these geese were strangers. But they were very nice, and they invited him to come and join them in their conversation.

Soon after they began to talk, the Littlest Gosling told them what had been happening to him lately. As he talked, the Eldest Gander of the gaggle became very serious. The Littlest Gosling noticed that a frown swept across his face, and then suddenly the Eldest Gander began honking furiously.

“Where exactly do you live, son?” he asked the Littlest Gosling.

“A few minutes from here, as the goose flies,” he answered. “In that pond behind that abandoned farm.” The Eldest Gander honked even louder now.

“You must fly home and warn your family at once! And everyone else who lives there, too. That pond is poison! Believe me. We lived there once, too. His face grew sad. “I lost two of my goslings because of that pond.”

The Littlest Gosling did not hesitate for an instant. He took to the air and flew directly to where his parents were swimming in the pond.

“Dad! Mom!” he shouted. “I know l’m not supposed to leave the pond, but I just had to get away. I was feeling so sick. And I was so curious. Anyway, I talked to some geese in a lake near here, and the Eldest Gander there said that the water in this pond is poison, and that he lost two goslings because of it. We need to get out of here right away!” he said excitedly.

Mr. Gander looked sternly at his son and said, “We told you never to leave this pond until we are all ready to fly south for the winter. You have broken our most important rule. We are very disappointed in you. Now go back to the nest and don’t leave there until we tell you to!”

The Littlest Gosling was heartbroken and terrified. He didn’t know what to do. He loved his family, and he wanted to be a good gosling, but he didn’t want his family to die either. He began to return to the nest. When he was almost there, he suddenly turned, looked up into the sky, recalled the words of the Eldest Gander, and then flew off toward the big lake.

He had decided to live rather than to die but he was so deeply sad that he cried for the better part of four days. Members of the gaggle on the big lake would stop by to comfort him, and to tell him that he had made the right decision, but he still felt a deep pain inside.

On several occasions, he almost got up and new back to the pond, thinking that to die with his family would he better than to live with strangers. But each rime, something deep inside of him told him to stay put.

And then something happened. Almost three weeks after he had left home, he saw a lone goose, or was it a gosling, winging its way toward the lake. His eyes were riveted on the bird. His heart leaped when he realized that it was his brother. His brother had started to feel sick, too. He had got in a huge fight with Mr. Gander but had finally decided to join the Littlest Gosling. Three days later, his sister joined them and a week after that, so did Mrs. Goose. Finally one week later Mr. Gander, sick to his stomach and with a headache throbbing in his temples, joined the rest of the family on the big lake.

It took a lot of courage on their part, but once they were settled into their new home, Mr. and Mrs. Gander called a meeting of all the flocks.

As a hush settled over the late, Mr. Gander put his wing around the Littlest Gosling and said, “This is my Littlest Gosling. For a while I thought he was a Bad Little Gosling. I thought he was a Silly Goose. But he wasn’t. We were the Silly Geese. And the Littlest Gosling saved our lives. We are proud of him.”

A tear trickled down the beak of Mrs. Goose. It was a tear of pride and relief and gratitude. The Littlest Gosling’s heart filled with warmth as every duck, loon, goose and gander on the big lake began honking their loudest honks and calling their loudest calls to celebrate his courage, wisdom and strength.

That winter they all flew south together and in the spring they returned to the big lake. They were pleased now to be a part of all the flocks safe in the knowledge that their water was pure, their friends were true and that their goslings would be able to grow up to be healthy and strong.
Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT © 2016
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Advanced Clinical Trainers Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us

                  

 

“EMPATHS” ARE DIFFERENT FROM CODEPENDENTS

EMPATHSEMPATHS ARE DIFFERENT THAN CODEPENDENTS

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

Empaths Are Different from Codependents
Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CACD, CSAT

I have to be honest, I do not like when the term “empath” is used interchangeably with “codependent.” “Empath,” which has its origins in the spiritual and metaphysical world, was never intended to be a replacement term for codependency. An empath is defined as a person with the paranormal ability to intuitively sense and understand the mental or emotional state of another individual. According to empaths I have spoken to and the information available on the Internet, they are highly sensitive to the emotional and metaphysical energy others. If, indeed, this extra-sensory phenomenon exists, it is definitely not the same thing as codependency.

Since “empath” has mostly positive connotations and “codependent” does not, it makes sense why it is a preferred moniker for the more serious psychological problem of codependency.
Misrepresenting codependency, or what I now refer to as Self-Love Deficit Disorder (SLDD), only adds a layers of denial to a problem that is already shrouded in shame. In addition, it casts a serious problem in a positive light, while perpetuating the myth that SLD’s or codependents are victims, instead of willing participants in their dysfunctional relationships with narcissists.

Who can argue that being empathetic is bad? Well, it isn’t. The idea that empaths are vulnerable people, just because of a certain personality type, is an excuse, which offers no solution to the problem. Being empathic is good! However, being empathic and allowing yourself to be hurt by people you choose to be with, or are unconsciously attracted to, is not.

But one could argue that being overly empathetic while choosing to be in harmful relationships with narcissists is dysfunctional and self-destructive. “Empath” should, therefore, not be a replacement term for “codependent,” When we admit we struggle with SLDD, we are honestly and courageously confessing our pain, while describing what we need to do in order to find loving, respecting and mutually caring relationships.

I have worked with SLD’s/codependents my whole career, and I, myself, am a recovering SLD. I have learned that we can only recover from our secret hell – our magnetic attraction to narcissists – when we understand that we are willing participants or dance partners in a very dysfunctional relationship dance. We choose narcissistic “dance partners” because we have a “broken (relationship) picker.” We fall prey to our own belief that the chemistry we experience with new narcissist lovers is a manifestation of true love or a soulmate experience.

Adding insult to injury, when the cracks of the soulmate’s façade surface and we start to experience the isolating and humiliating pain of loneliness and shame, we are, once again, powerless to break free from another narcissist lover. Inevitably, our soulmate transforms into our “cell mate.” This is not the problem of an empath, but of someone with Self-Love Deficit Disorder.

The only way SLD’s get better (recover) is to understand that they freely participate in their dysfunctional relationships with narcissists. As a reminder, SLDD is a symptom that manifests through the Human Magnet Syndrome. It is an addiction that results from one’s need/desire to self-medicate (detach, numb or escape) the pain of pathological loneliness, which is fueled by the core shame resulting from childhood attachment trauma at the hands of a pathologically narcissistic parent.

self-love deficit

Admitting we have a problem that we cannot, or never could, control, is the first and most important step in SLDD (codependency) recovery. Yes, we can stop the madness! We can take the big step towards sanity, peace and fulfillment by admitting our powerlessness over our SLD and need to recover from its inherent addiction – the compulsion to be everyone’s lover, friend, confidant and caretaker, while ignoring our own needs for the same.

We can conquer pathological loneliness, soul-searing shame and our repressed or suppressed childhood trauma if we choose the difficult but healing path of trauma resolution and the pursuit of self-love. Seeking this healing and self-loving path will ultimately compel us to cast away all relationships that are exploitative and narcissistic, while moving towards those that enhance our pursuit for self-care, self-respect and self-love. The courage to recover from Self-Love Deficit Disorder is within your reach. Stop being a delivery mechanism for everyone else’s need for love, respect and care!
In conclusion, if you identify with Self-Love Deficit Disorder (codependency), rejoice in your emotional and, perhaps, spiritual empathetic gifts. But, at the same time, make the life-changing decision to take the challenging but healing path of SLDD recovery. The following excerpt from Robert Frost’s celebrated poem, “The Road Not Taken,” illuminates the importance of this resolution:

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

© Ross Rosenberg, 2016
trademark-logo.png.pagespeed.ce.eY15aM7wLY Self-Love Deficit Disorder (SLDD)

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Advanced Clinical Trainers Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us

Register for Ross’s 2/26/16 Skokie IL (Chicago suburb) Codependency Cure Seminar

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Self-Love Deficit Disorder: An Interview with Ross Rosenberg

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Join us for a discussion with psychotherapist, author, professional trainer, and behavioral health practice owner Ross Rosenberg.  We discuss his trademarked term Self-Love Deficit Disorder, his best-selling bookThe Human Magnet Syndrome, and his next book The Codependency Cure: Overcoming Self-Love Deficit Disorder.

I’ll admit this was the first show where I did not look at the talking points. We covered everything and it was hard to stop recording. Ross was probably our most comfortable guest and we’ll look forward to interviewing him again. The information shared is invaluable and my entire team is excited to get their hands on his second book. We look forward to replacing the term “codependent” with something that empowers evolving into self-love.

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LISTEN TO THE SHOW!


SLDDRossRosenbergWhat is codependency?

Why did you change its name to Self-Love Deficit Disorder (SLDD)?

Is there a difference between an “empath” and a “codependent/SLD?”

What is your take on the proliferation of interest in narcissism?

Have stealthy narcissists cashed in on the narcissism train?

What is SLDD/codependency addiction?

Why does the fear of pathological loneliness or the experience of it drive SLDD?

Is there are cure for  SLDD, and if so, what is it?

You are writing your second book.  What does this book cover that was not included in your first book?

How has your perception of personality disorders changed from the first book to the second?

Let’s talk about your work as business owner and behavioral health provider. Tell us about your social media presence and how do you maintain this kind of following and run a successful behavioral health organization?

Questions about the show? Email us here.


r-rosenbergRoss Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT has been a psychotherapist since 1988. He is a professional trainer, consultant and a certified addiction and sex addiction specialist. Ross owns Clinical Care Consultants, a counseling center in Arlington Heights and Advanced Clinical Trainers. He wrote the best-selling and internationally acclaimed book The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us and is in the process writing the follow-up, The Codependency Cure: Overcoming Self-Love Deficit Disorder. His professional trainings and Keynote speaking have spanned 27 states and in Europe. Ross’s is a passionate clinician and teacher on topics ranging from codependency, narcissism, trauma, and sex and love addiction. His YouTube channel, which features 70 instructive videos, has amassed 2.6 Million views and 24K subscribers. He has been a featured on network TV and News and is an avid writer for several prominent blogs and publications.

Malignant Narcissism (from The Human Magnet Syndrome 2013)

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Malignant Narcissism (from Rosenberg’s Human Magnet Syndrome Book 2013)

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

In 1984, Dr. Otto Kernberg, a Cornell University psychoanalyst, coined the diagnostic term “malignant narcissism.” Kernberg believed that there is a narcissism continuum, with NPD at the low end, and malignant narcissism with psychopathic features at the high end. Malignant narcissism appears to be a hybrid of NPD, as it is a combination of four pathological extremes: narcissism, psychopathy, sadism and paranoia. Even with the other forms of psychopathology, they are still distinctly narcissistic as they demonstrate most narcissistic traits/symptoms. The difference, though, is that malignant narcissists are able to force their grandiose fantasies onto others.

Like NPDs, they are entitled and grandiose. However, malignant narcissists take it to a more extreme level because they believe they have a special destiny in life. By believing in their special status or destiny, their extreme sense of entitlement and grandiosity in their relationships is reinforced. They are outwardly selfish and unapologetic, while also feeling compelled to direct the lives around them. They are often suspicious of others, especially those who could remove them from their position of power. They are belligerent and scheming, while manipulatively casting themselves as the injured party. They often rise to influence by claiming they are victims of oppression. As a direct result of their beguiling charm and calculating nature, they are able to sympathetically rally support for their cause. With legions of dedicated followers, they are able to lead and inspire rebellions, which in turn secure their leadership and power structure.

Because malignant narcissists are fundamentally insecure and paranoid in their relationships, they counter by maintaining complete and total control of others. With a rise to power through popular support, they believe there is a mandate for them to maintain power and strict control over their legions of followers. Once they have achieved control, they will do almost anything to maintain it, including rape, murder, and even genocide. As a direct result of their paranoid and psychopathic tendencies, they challenge, defy, demean and even murder anyone who is either an authority figure or has the power to hurt them. Examples of malignant narcissists include Adolph Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Muammar Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein.

Malignant narcissists are known to be emotionally, physically and/or sexually abusive and will purposely and maliciously harm others. Their cruel and harmful treatment of others is reinforced by their need to maintain power, control, and a sense of superiority over others. Although they seem similar to psychopaths or those diagnosed with an antisocial personality disorder, they are different in that they can internalize right and wrong, form meaningful personal and social relationships and rationalize their actions as a desire to advance society. They may be loyal in relationships, but because of their paranoia, may hurt or harm those who pledge loyalty to them.

LINK TO MY VIDEO: Malignant Narcissist Are Dangerous! Loving the Destroyer

COME SEE ME IN LONDON ON 11/28/15

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FINALLY, AN UPDATED and SIMPLIFIED CODEPENDENCY DEFINITION. Codependency Redifined

codependency definition

FINALLY, AN UPDATED and SIMPLIFIED CODEPENDENCY DEFINITION

Regrettably, the term “codependency” has been overused, misused & often misunderstood. It has become a caricature of its original meaning. To the general public, the term now implies that a person is weak, needy, clingy & even emotionally sick. Like the term “dysfunctional,” it has been lazily & conveniently reshaped to fit our mainstream lexicon. A revised definition has long been overdue.  And here it is!

“Codependency is a psychological condition that is manifested in relationships. Codependents give a great deal more love, care and respect (LRC) to others than they expect, request and ultimately receive. Even though they are resentful and angry about the LRC inequality, they do not terminate the relationship. They convince themselves, that they alone, can change the narcissistic nature of their loved one. In the event that they or their partner do end the relationship, codependents perpetually find themselves on the giving end of a new relationship.”

Codependency Subtypes: Passive and Active

There are two sub-types of codependency: passive and active. Although all codependents are habitually and instinctively attracted (and later bonded) to severely narcissistic partners, one is more active in their perpetual but unsuccessful attempts to obtain their emotional manipulator’s love, respect and care (LRC), while the other is more passive. Although both try to control and manipulate their narcissistic partners into meeting their LRC needs, they go about it differently.

Passive codependents are more fearful and avoidant of conflict. For complicated reasons, mostly related to their extremely low self-esteem, fear of being alone and tendency to be in relationships with controlling, dangerous and/or abusive emotional manipulators, the passive codependent attempts to control or influence their narcissistic partner through carefully, if not meticulously, executed control strategies – most of which are intended to fall under their emotional manipulator’s radar (awareness). Because of the secret and hidden nature of their control strategies, passive codependents are perceived as more manipulative (than active codependents).

Active codependents, on the other hand, more boldly and overtly attempt to manipulate their narcissistic partner into meeting their LRC needs. Being less afraid of conflict and subsequent harm, they are prone to initiate arguments and confrontations with emotional manipulators. Active codependents are often mistaken for narcissists because of their more openly controlling demeanor. Even though they are caught in a never winning cycle of trying to control someone who is neither interested nor capable of meeting their LRC needs, they are typically not able or motivated to end the relationship. Like the passive codependent, they believe that “one day” their pathologically narcissistic partner will realize their mistakes and wrong-doings and finally give them the love, respect and care they so desperately want and need. It just never happens…

Although different “on the outside,” both the passive and active codependent share the pathological “others” self-orientation. They both remain with pathologically narcissistic partners while being unhappy, angry and resentful at the lack of reciprocity, mutuality and fairness in their relationship. While the active codependent may seem stronger, more in control and more confident, both share the same deeply imbedded insecurities and feelings of powerlessness. Both are unable to break free from their dysfunctional relationship.

Codependency Anorexia (Codependency Turned Off)

Codependency Anorexia occurs when a codependent surrenders to their life-long relationship pattern to destructive pathological narcissists. It occurs when they hit bottom and can no longer bear the pain and the harm meted out to them from their malevolent pathological narcissists. It is paradoxical in a sense, as it occurs during a moment of clarity, when the codependent realizes that they are completely powerless to stop their attraction to lovers who, in the beginning, feel so right, but shortly thereafter, hurt them so badly. In an effort to protect themselves from the long line of “soul mates,” who unexpectedly convert to “cellmates,” they flip their vulnerability switch to “off,” which results in a complete shutdown of their emotional, relational, and sexual machinery.

To maintain their codependent anorexia, codependents ultimately have to divorce themselves from their emotional and sexual selves. As a result, they “starve” themselves from the very human need to connect romantically, intimately, and sexually. Such deprivation often leads to long-term mental and relational health problems.

Codependency Anorexia Full Article: http://goo.gl/KrP8MG

Codependency Recovery Induced Narcissism

When the over-zealous (and excited) recovering codependent goes overboard in setting boundaries and showing the world their new sense of empowerment, personal power, and heightened self-esteem. Many people, especially those who are narcissistic will accuse this codependent of being narcissistic. Many mistakes and judgement errors can occur during this temporary transition toward better emotional and relational health.

Two humorous examples are from the movie, Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXZs3mjGlQU
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-VBcSukH_8

copyright-symbol-for-web-2 2015, Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

Clinical Care Consultants Owner and Advanced Clinical Trainers Owner

Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer

Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us