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By Chandrama Anderson

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About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ...  (More)

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Premarital and Couples: Get Real

Uploaded: Oct 4, 2019
"Be grateful for every scar life inflicts on you. Where we're unhurt is where we are false. Where we're wounded and healed [my italics is where our real self gets to show itself. That's where you get to show who you are," wrote Sara Gran, in her New Orleans mystery Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead.

In 1951 Carl Jung used the term "wounded healer" meaning that only one who has been wounded can heal others effectively.

I talk with my clients about the concept of the "walking wounded." In essence, you look around you and mostly see people that look like they've got it all together. But the truth is that most of us have been wounded in some way: emotionally, physically, sexually, spiritually.

So what do you do with your own wounds? What options do you have? Since most people are "good" at covering up their wounds, you often don't see how others work through their wounds and healing. How are you to learn your options?

Based on your own experiences, hence how your brain is wired, and therefore the attitude you have (optimist/pessimist; cup half-full/half-empty), you are somewhere on the spectrum of:

Hide it, deny it, try to forget, think it's unfair, lash out, feel shame, resentment, anger, and so on . . .

TO

. . . Learn from it, gain compassion and empathy, realize it's part of life, acknowledge one's shared humanity, help others, feel gratitude for making it through, and so on.

Where are you on this continuum today?

Your wounds are the flip-side of your strengths. Your strengths are the flip-side of your wounds. Why am I repeating this?

The experiences that lead to your scars and healing are not fun. You will be exhausted, vulnerable, and at times, pushed to your limits. Yet you must go through your feelings and integrate them -- somehow -- to heal. This leads you to your real self, to your humanity.
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Comments

 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Home at Last, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood,
on Oct 4, 2019 at 12:18 pm

Thank you for describing the cycles of human hurt and healing. It's reassuring to remember the benefits that can come if we find ways to heal.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Chandrama Anderson, a Almanac Online blogger,
on Oct 5, 2019 at 8:10 am

Chandrama Anderson is a registered user.

Thanks for writing, Home at Last. It helps us accept that hurt/pain are part of the human condition. We don't have to be held back by it.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Old Enough to Know Better, a resident of Rex Manor,
on Oct 8, 2019 at 3:17 am

Old Enough to Know Better is a registered user.

One of the advantages of age, and a good memory, is that you can observe the evolution of prevailing beliefs over the decades and recognize the fallacies of those beliefs.

What I have observed is that the popular public opinion of what someone is "supposed" to believe, or supposed to have faith in and supposed to distrust, etc... Has all evolved, like women's fashions and for similar reasons, a passing trend, a style of the moment.

As Carl Jung became more popular, people started blindly accepting certain well-known sound-bites, like "only the wounded can heal the wounded". The whole idea that "you can't help me unless you have experienced the same trauma I have, so don't waste my time."

That is a fashionable idea, not the truth. If anything, trauma distorts the mind of the healers and distracts and biases the thinking of the healer until even the healers believe that healers can only heal those victims of trauma that have suffered the same exact type of trauma the healers have.

The truth is that any healer is a better healer when they remain detached from their own personal trauma and remain detached from the trauma of their patience. Healing is an objective science much more than a subjective art.

Both art and science are critical tools for any healer, but art and science and even the super-natural, can only be useful to a healer and thus to a patient when the healer sees those as objective tools in the tool belt to be selectively pulled-out and used in the most practical manner as needed.

It is one of the most despicable lies being told by healers and the media and public today that a person is "supposed" to behave a certain way and NOT to behave a certain other way when reacting to a highly stressful situation.

Countless people have been sent to prison with NO evidence of guilt, only a mis-match between what the popular belief is about how a person SHOULD be acting after a trauma or stress and how the person actually in the situation actually behaves.

Today, healers, especially mental healers, have hypnotized the public into believing they know exactly how each person should behave after a stress or trauma and if they stray from the script, it can only mean they are guilty.

In WWI through Korea, our troops did not suffer with the massive mental issues that we now see in our best-protected modern-day troops who see nothing remotely as harsh and extreme as our troops in past wars saw.
And yet, our troops from WWI to Korea came home in pretty good mental health compared to our troops of the past 20+ years do.

The reason? Different attitude and they WROTE LETTERS back and forth to their loved ones. They really knew how to write letters and their loved ones did too. By the time our troops came home is was as if they had a trusted therapist by their side the whole time they were at war.A letter actually works better than a video chat or even an email.

When you ask a WWII vet why they so rarely speak or wallow in their experiences of WWII, they will say there is nothing left to say, they already got out all the words they needed to at the time or soon after they were welcomed home from the war. Those soldiers could set aside their wars and continue to live in our peaceful society.

Yes, there are always some soldiers who were either mentally fragile to begin with or experienced something so extreme they needed some help or people who were totally alone in the world, but those were few compared to the typical soldier.

For those of us who did not go to war, we can learn the lesson and not allow anyone to tell us how we should be feeling, what we might feel, how we might behave. In fact, you want to help heal people, STOP TELLING THEM what to expect and just tell them that whatever they end up feeling, it's OK because it came form inside them. However a traumatized person behaves (as long as they don't get violent or self-destructive), you have to say that's OK too.

It's one thing to judge people for what they have done, it's quite another to judge them for how they reacted to a trauma or extreme stress.

In my life, I have seen a loving husband break into uncontrollable laughter when he was told his wife was dead. I've seen a loving woman calm and objective upon learning her entire family had been killed. I've seen people drink half a bottle of Whiskey and then become the perfect cooperative witness with an excellent detailed memory. I've seen a man punch out a cop and jump in his car and escape into the woods for weeks.

All of those people were proven totally innocent, but they all got charged with serious crimes and had to get lawyers and spend huge amounts of money. Not because there was one bit of evidence against any of them, but simply because mental health dogma has us all convinced how a person is supposed to react to trauma and stress.

This belief system that judges people by their reactions is non-sense and just another way to force conformity on people.

I'm Old Enough To Know that everyone experiences extreme events differently and usually we have no idea how we will react until we face the situation.

The poison come from people doubting themselves and thinking their must be something really wrong with me because I reacted differently than people expected, or even I expected.

Self-inflicted poison, society-inflicted poisons, these expectations are.


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