Pete Walker Category

Pete Walker – Why do you specialize in Complex PTSD?

There’s an old adage: “Teach what you know.” I know about trauma because I survived childhood in the war zone of a severely dysfunctional family in NYC in the 1950’s. The frontline was definitely in my house, but there were many traumatizing skirmishes on the streets and in the Catholic school where I was held […]

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Pete Walker, M.A. Psychotherapy – How Did I Get Complex PTSD?

How Did I Get Complex PTSD? The genesis of complex PTSD is most often associated with extended periods of ongoing physical and/or sexual abuse in childhood. My observations however convince me that ongoing extremes of verbal and/or emotional abuse also cause it. Moreover as an upcoming article on my website will explicate, long-term childhood emotional […]

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Pete Walker, M.A. Psychotherapy – The Fight Type and the Narcissistic Defense

The Fight Type and the Narcissistic DefenseFight types are unconsciously driven by the belief that power and control can create safety, assuage abandonment and secure love. Children who are spoiled and given insufficient limits (a uniquely painful type of abandonment) and children who are allowed to imitate the bullying of a narcissistic parent may develop […]

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Pete Walker, M.A. Psychotherapy

Those who are repetitively traumatized in childhood however, often learn to survive by over-relying on the use of one or two of the 4F Reponses. Fixation in any one 4F response not only delimits the ability to access all the others, but also severely impairs the individual’s ability to relax into an undefended state, circumscribing […]

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Therapist Heal Thyself!

In my thirty years in the field, I do not believe I have ever met a therapist who does not have some form of this wound – who has not sought out this profession from at least an unconscious desire to discover and work through the pain of the sad truth that s/he grew up […]

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Children of narcissists

Dangerous people represent the same challenges that we underwent in early childhood, so to our subconscious, they ironically feel a lot less frightening. The trick is not to trust too easily or not trusting at all: the balance is found in trusting ourselves. Until we’ve learned to grieve and heal our core wounds from childhood, we won’t […]

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What is the Abandonment Depression? The Abandonment Melange?

The Abandonment Depression is the complex painful childhood experience that is reconstituted in an emotional flashback. It is a return to the sense of overwhelm, hopelessness and helplessness that afflicts the abused and /or emotionally abandoned child. At the core of the abandonment depression is the abandonment melange – the terrible emotional mix of fear […]

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9 Ways Children Of Narcissistic Parents Love Differently

Remember that hyper-attunement? Well, it comes in handy for being caretakers but not so much when it comes to maintaining boundaries. We learned to cater to the needs of our toxic parents at a very young age in order to survive. Many of us even took on parent roles. This means our boundaries are porous and need extra […]

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