Posted in Alienation

Be careful who you confide in

Posted in Alienation

My dad trained me to doubt my memory and sanity for years – and I believed him

After I learned about gaslighting, I realized I didn’t trust my memory because he’d trained me not to, through years of lies and distortions of the truth. I finally realized that I wasn’t the insane one.

Gaslighting is often examined in the context of romantic relationships. This form of manipulation is damaging and hurtful in any relationship, but when a parent uses this tactic on a child, it can have severe consequences.

Continue reading “My dad trained me to doubt my memory and sanity for years – and I believed him”

Posted in Alienation

How can I let go of my trust issues with my father?

My rule of thumb: “Forgiveness is a gift. Trust is earned.”

Let go of the anger and realize you still probably cannot trust things he says. Those are two separate issues which people routinely mix up and think are the same thing. Abusive people actively encourage that confusion. They want you to “forgive and forget” — basically saying that in order to forgive, you have to trust them blindly and let them do the same damn thing to you again, like a sucker. No, you don’t.

Continue reading “How can I let go of my trust issues with my father?”

Posted in Alienation

Dysfunctional Family Dynamics: Don’t Talk, Don’t Trust, Don’t Feel | Happily Imperfect

Dysfunctional family rules

As Claudia Black said in her book It Will Never Happen to Me, alcoholic (and dysfunctional) families follow three unspoken rules:

1) Don’t talk. We don’t talk about our family problems – to each other or to outsiders. This rule is the foundation for the family’s denial of the abuse, addiction, illness, etc. The message is: Act like everything is fine and make sure everyone else thinks we’re a perfectly normal family. This is extremely confusing for children who sense that something is wrong, but no one acknowledges what it is. So, children often conclude that they are the problem. Sometimes they are blamed outright and other times they internalize a sense that something must be wrong with them. Because no one is allowed to talk about the dysfunction, the family is plagued with secrets and shame. Children, in particular, feel alone, hopeless, and imagine no one else is going through what they’re experiencing.

The don’t talk rule ensures that no one acknowledges the real family problem. And when the root of the family’s problems is denied, it can never be solved; health and healing aren’t possible with this mindset.

Continue reading “Dysfunctional Family Dynamics: Don’t Talk, Don’t Trust, Don’t Feel | Happily Imperfect”

Posted in Alienation

12 Clues a Relationship with a Parent Is Toxic | Psychology Today

Toxic relationships include relationships with toxic parents. Typically, they do not treat their children with respect as individuals. They won’t compromise, take responsibility for their behavior, or apologize. Often these parents have a mental disorder or a serious addiction. We all live with the consequences of poor parenting. However, if our childhood was traumatic, we carry wounds from abusive or dysfunctional parenting. When they haven’t healed, toxic parents can re-injure us in ways that make growth and recovery difficult. When we grow up with dysfunctional parenting, we may not recognize it as such. It feels familiar and normal. We may be in denial and not realize that we’ve been abused emotionally, particularly if our material needs were met.

Continue reading “12 Clues a Relationship with a Parent Is Toxic | Psychology Today”

Posted in Alienation

The Psychology of Trust Issues and Ways to Overcome Them


Trust can take years to develop, but it can be destroyed in an instant. People who have issues with trust have often had significant negative experiences in the past with individuals or organizations they initially deemed trustworthy. For example, studies show that children of divorced parents and those from abusive households are more likely to have intimacy, commitment, and trust issues in future relationships.

While trust issues sometimes develop from negative interactions experienced during early childhood, social rejection during adolescence or traumatic experiences during adulthood can also lead to trust issues for an individual. Betrayal in the form of infidelity in romantic relationships can cause trust issues throughout a person’s life. Significant loss of financial resources or perceived injustice at the hands of authority figures can even cause strong feelings of mistrust toward institutions rather than people. The fragile state of the nation’s economy, for example, has resulted in many people losing trust in the banking system and government organizations.

Continue reading “The Psychology of Trust Issues and Ways to Overcome Them”

Posted in Alienation

5 Ways to Decide Who You Can Trust | Psychology Today

In a more recent study, published in the Journal of Neuroscience in August, 2014, researchers from Dartmouth and New York University showed that our brains take just three hundredths of a second, much less time than an eyeblink, to decide trustworthiness. In fact, our judgments about trustworthiness are so rapid that we are able to make them even before we know who the person is! The researchers showed people photos of both real faces and computer-generated faces deliberately designed to look either trustworthy or untrustworthy. Results showed that we judge people with high eyebrows and prominent cheekbones as trustworthy, while we distrust people with furrowed brows and sunken cheeks. There is no evidence that these characteristics actually make people more or less trustworthy in real life!

Continue reading “5 Ways to Decide Who You Can Trust | Psychology Today”

Posted in Alienation

The Private Lie Detector Test

How many Parental Alienators would be prepared to take the test?

When there is an underlying element related to a specific event which may have happened, the test can identify the truth of the matter. Suspicion erodes trust and the test will either reinstate confidence or confirm a partner’s worst fears. Either way, both partners are able to move forward with their lives when they are in full possession of the facts. Our specialist polygraph examiners frequently deliver the infidelity lie detector test service to private clients all over the UK. Consistently the truth is established and our clients are able to make informed decisions based on the verified report they receive after the test. More often than not the report helps repair relationships rather than destroy them. Continue reading “The Private Lie Detector Test”

Posted in Alienation

Do you have a Pathological or Compulsive Liar in your Life?

The pathological liar

There is a subtle difference between a pathological and compulsive liar, although it is possible to be both. The pathological liar will repeat a lie over and again, even when they know they’ve been found out.  Conversely, a compulsive liar will usually admit to lying and come up with an excuse for it.

Pathological liars are so charming and practised in the art of deceit few people can detect they are lying. However, if confronted they won’t be sorry!  They are wholly selfish and will never consider how damaging or hurtful their lies may be to their victims.

It’s usually pathological liars who, when they fail lie detector tests, insist the polygraph is wrong. They’ll deny they have lied, even when there is other evidence to prove they have.

Whilst most white lies are often told so as not to offend or hurt another’s feelings, pathological lies have no real purpose. Sometimes these liars go so far as to incriminate themselves making it difficult to understand why they have lied at all. Continue reading “Do you have a Pathological or Compulsive Liar in your Life?”

Posted in Alienation

Why Do Pathological Liars Lie?

Why someone lies pathologically is often unknown, to the audience and the liar. According to Psych Central, a pathological liar appears to lie for no apparent reason or personal gain. In fact, the chronic lying seems to be a pointless habit, one which is incredibly frustrating for family, friends, and coworkers. The Psychiatric Times defines pathological lying as a “long history — maybe lifelong history —of frequent and repeated lying for which no apparent psychological motive or external benefit can be discerned.” Continue reading “Why Do Pathological Liars Lie?”