The Human Magnet Syndrome - Excerpts - page 18

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front and center. For many, this is when they strike deals with God or themselves that should they survive, they
will never repeat their mistake of poor judgment again.
As the event concludes, the haunted house or rollercoaster junkie is eternally grateful for not sustaining a major
head trauma, severed limbs or vampire puncture wounds. This is when the, “Just let me survive and I will never
do this again so help me God!” promise transitions into the “Holy shit, this was the most exciting moment of my
life!” At this time, their “dance with death” memories are conveniently reshaped into ones that are endowed
with excitement and euphoria. This what I refer to as
roller coaster amnesia
, the number one problem of most
codependents.
Roller coaster amnesia
was responsible for my two very unhappy and dysfunctional marriages to
women, who I believed were pathological narcissists. Like a drug addict or alcoholic, I needed to hit
bottom before I could fully understand the sheer pathological gravity of my codependency and how I
was nearly emotionally destroyed by it. My bottom occurred precisely when I decided to divorce my
second wife. At the time, it felt like I would permanently and irreparably break if I fell in love with
another narcissistic soulmate. I decided to pull myself out of the dysfunctional muck that kept me mired
in a cesspool of shame, loneliness, and self-hatred.
The Drama of the Gifted Child
Early in my codependency recovery, I could not help but notice that none of the therapists I knew
understood the complexities of my
roller coaster amnesia
or my predilection to
dance
with pathological
narcissists. I desperately needed someone who would both understand my hamster wheel path to
healthy romantic love while possessing a prescriptive treatment approach to solve it. None of the
therapists had that codependency specialty. The codependency information that they were familiar with
came from outdated books on the subject and pop psychology sources such as
Psychology Today
.
Without a psychotherapist with the necessary background and skillset, I feverishly sought any
information that would shed some light on the knowledge that I associated with my codependency:
stinging loneliness, unbearable shame and a habitual attraction to pathological narcissists. This is when a
book I had read shorty after my first divorce,
The Drama of the Gifted Child
by Alice Miller (1979), finally
delivered the missing connective information I had been seeking.
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