Adults who were raised in homes organized around chemical dependency or physical abuse may display certain behavior characteristics. These behaviors may be the tip of the ice berg of an underlying emotional or behavioral disorder that is damaging to the emotional and spiritual well-being of the individual. The following list is intended to help you identify the ways in which you may have been affected by familial alcoholism or physical or sexual abuse.
We have feelings of low self-esteem that cause us to judge ourselves and others without mercy. We cover up or compensate by trying to be perfect, take responsibility for others, attempt to control the outcome of unpredictable events, get angry when things don't go our way, or gossip instead of confronting an issue. For example:
We tend to isolate ourselves and to feel uneasy around other people, especially authority figures. For examples:
We are approval seekers and will do anything to make people like us. We are extremely loyal even in the face of evidence that suggests loyalty is undeserved. For example:
We are intimidated by angry people and personal criticism. This causes us to feel anxious and overly sensitive. For example:
We habitually choose to have relationships with emotionally unavailable people with addictive personalities. We are less attracted to healthy, caring people. For example:
We live life as victims and are attracted to other victims iN our love and friendship relationships. We confuse love with pity and rescue. For example:
We are either overly responsible or very irresponsible. We try to solve others' problems or expect others to be responsible for us. This enables us to avoid looking closely at our own behavior. For example:
We feel guilty when we stand up for ourselves or act assertively. We give in to others instead of taking care of ourselves. For example:
We deny, minimize, or repress our feelings from our traumatic childhoods. We have difficulty expressing our feelings and are unaware of the impact this has on our lives. For example:
We are dependent personalities who are terrified of rejection or abandonment.We tend to stay in jobs or relationships that are harmful to us. Our fears can either stop us from ending hurtful relationships or prevent us from entering healthy, rewarding ones. For example:
Denial, isolation, control, and misplaced guilt are symptoms of family problems. Because of these behaviors, we feel hopeless and helpless. For example:
We have difficulty with intimate relationships. We feel insecure and lack trust in others. We don't have clearly defined boundaries and become enmeshed with our partner's needs and emotions. For example:
We have difficulty following projects through from beginning to end. For example:
We have a strong need to be in control. We overreact to change over which we have no control. For example:
We tend to be impulsive. We take action before considering alternative behaviors or possible consequences. For example:
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