Coincidence can be a creepy thing. It almost feels prophetic when coincidence happens. Personally weird coincidences happen to me several times a week. Yes. A week. These are silly incidents that mean nothing but allow me to demonstrate. I had a weird dream one night about a dysfunctional family. It was a television program. I wanted to watch it because I found it interesting. Later that day, I turned on the television and there was a program playing about a dysfunctional family, rather but not entirely like, the family in my dream. An hour later, my brother telephoned me to tell me that a family member was going to sue me for an extremely similar reason as the television family. Talk about dysfunctional. And coincidental.
Still, these are minor karma infractions compared to these incidents:
Saved Twice by the Same Man
In Detroit sometime in the 1930s, a young (if incredibly careless) mother must have been twice eternally grateful to Joseph Figlock. As Figlock was walking down the street, the mother’s baby fell from a high window onto Figlock. The baby’s fall was broken and both man and baby were unharmed. A stroke of luck on its own, but a year later, the very same baby fell from the very same window onto Joseph Figlock as he was again passing beneath. And again, they both survived the event. That’s a keeper.
Homicide or Suicide?
This case is fiction and in fact has a number of variations to it. It is so hilarious with so many twists I had to include it. You may be familiar with the name Ronald Opus, a young man who attempted to commit suicide but accidentally arranged for his own homicide. Ronald Opus decided to commit suicide by jumping from the top of a ten-story building. He didn’t know that a safety net had been strung below the eighth floor by some construction workers and that would have saved his life. As Mr. Opus fell past the ninth floor he was hit in the head by a shotgun blast and killed. The coroner wanted to decide who was responsible, and this was his line of reasoning:
1. The shot that killed Ronald Opus was from a shotgun being used by a man arguing with his wife. He pulled the trigger, missed his wife, and shot Ronald Opus as he fell past his window.
2. The man who shot the gun said he didn’t know it was loaded and that when he got mad, he threatened his wife with an unloaded gun. Therefore, according to the coroner, he was not guilty of murder.
3. The couple’s son had been seen loading the shotgun.
4. That son was Ronald Opus who knew that his father threatened his mom with the unloaded shotgun so planned on his mom being shot. He was mad at her for cutting him off financially.
5. Therefore, according to the coroner, Ronald Opus was guilty of having arranged for a murder, being that of his mother but which turned out to be his own, so he was guilty of murdering himself. The case was closed as a suicide. Now if that doesn’t make you split a gut laughing, what will?
The Titan and the Titanic
Of course you have heard of the Titanic but you may not be familiar with the fictitious “The Wreck of the Titan or, Futility“, written by Morgan Robertson in 1898, 14 years before the Titanic sailed. There are many uncanny coincidences between the sinking of the fictitious Titan and the Titanic. of course there are many significant differences too. Similarities include:
Both ships over 800 feet long. They both were known as “unsinkable”. They both sunk in the North Atlantic. They both didn’t have enough lifeboats. They both had 3000 passengers.
- Struck an iceberg
- Moving at 22½ knots the Titanic struck an iceberg on the starboard side, on the night of April 14, 1912, in the North Atlantic, 400 nautical miles away from Newfoundland.
- Moving at 25 knots, The Titan struck an iceberg on the starboard side on an April night in the North Atlantic, 400 nautical miles from Newfoundland (Terranova).
- The unsinkable Titanic sank, and more than half of her 2200 passengers and crew died.
- The indestructible Titan also sank, more than half of her 2500 passengers drowned.
- The Titanic went down bow first, the Titan actually capsizing before it sank. Brrrr. Mighty cold those waters. In fact ,many people did drown when the Titanic sank but even more died of hypothermia in the frigid water – they froze to death. Nasty.
- This isn’t related to the coincidence topic of this blog, but sadly, I heard a documentary recently, where a sailor who survived the Titanic sinking, claimed that a crewmate working in the telegraph room told him he received a message from another ship, stating that the waters ahead were very icy. The crewmate took the message and placed it beneath a paperweight, forgetting to deliver it. Had the captain received the message, the Titanic’s engines would have shut down, the ship wouldn’t have continued on its course, and probably wouldn’t have run into the berg. Perhaps human error is creepier than coincidence.
I researched an article in Psychology Today for this blog, called Hunting for Coincidences by Keja Perina. Perina shed a very intriguing light on what constitutes coincidence. In fact, he argued that there is actually no such thing. Our brains are pattern-seeking [and tend to] notice coincidences….strikes people as somewhere between notable and miraculous, even though it can be explained by our brain’s capacity for selective attention. So there it is: there really isn’t any such thing as coincidence as there is our tendency to create it. There’s an old and odd term for this behaviour: the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. This gang was once a German urban guerrilla group. The origins of the group can be traced back to the student protest movement in West Germany. It began in the late 1960s during social upheavals after World War II, and the Cold War. Issues such as racism, and women’s liberation were of extreme importance in left-wing politics. The Red Army Faction in its earliest stages was the BM group – post-WWII extreme leftist military types. RAF described itself as a communist and anti-imperialist group engaged in armed resistance against a fascist state. Apparently they didn’t get the memo the Second World War was over. Meinhof was not a leader of the RAF, but her involvement in Baader’s escape from jail led to her name becoming attached to it. Myself, I do not understand the BM’s connection to coincidence. If anyone does, I would love to hear it (kindly quote your source so I can research it myself).
An explanation for supposed coincidence was offered in an article entitled A Skeptic Recalls Uusual Experiences: We forget about all the times when the laws of chance prevail. Over the course of a lifetime, there are a lot of coincidental events that take place just because, well, a lot of things happen to all of us. Belief in coincidence is where many odd superstitions hail from:
- Dont walk under a ladder or something bad will happen to you (in reality – you will probably bump into it and it will fall on your stupid head).
- Black cats cause bad luck. This hails back to those nasty Salem Witch Hunts in Salem, Massachusettes. Anything black was associated with evil, due to the pandemonium of a belief in witchcraft. Interesting, considering the Puritan community in Salem usually wore modest black or brown clothing. That’s not a coincidence. I would call that irony. Or stupidity.
- Breaking a mirror causes 7 years bad luck. How many mirrors have I broken? Probably seven (haha). So far as I can tell, 7 years after the last breakage my so-called bad luck hasn’t happened. Anyone who can find a pattern in a broken mirror and experiencing 7 years of bad luck must have been the saddest loser ever. of course, it’s all in the perspective and what you define as luck.
- Stepping on a spider causes it to rain. By now, every one of us should own our own personal Noah’s Ark.
I do believe Perina and his research of Matthew Huston’s theory about coincidence are at the heart of this stuff. All it takes is a person to step on a spider a few times, it rains right afterward, and there you have your oddball myth. It’s quite cool however that our brains seek out patterns to that extent. It means we are intelligent, evolved beings who are constantly making associations based on analysis and experimentation. In science, for instance, there isn’t an Aha! moment, says Isaac Asimov. Rather, someone says “that’s funny.” Carl Jung believed that such events are not mere coincidences at all, but what he called synchronicity or meaningful coincidence. ‘Synchronicity,’ said Jung, ‘is the coming together of inner and outer events in a way that cannot be explained by cause and effect and that is meaningful to the observer.’ So what that means, then, is that synchronous events are meaningful when they have meaning for you. This is the rational view of coincidence, discovery, and association.
There is an opposing view about coincidence. Dr. Deepak Chopra, author of The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire, argued that, coincidences are a glimpse into the creative mind or the universe or the cosmos. I’ve interviewed leaders of the world ….. [who have said] the secret of their success is, ‘I was lucky. I happened to be in the right place at the right time. ’ A lot of people work hard and have education but in the end, the difference determines this and this.” There is a deeper insight into everyday minor coincidence and that of the cosmos, of course. It appears that Chopra sees fate in most of what happens to people. Meh. The jury’s out on that one. Myself, I attribute much of it to hard work and networking. And coincidence (ha).
Mind you, both odds and rationality and the cosmos could factor in quite well with 9-1-1. There are 4 coincidences or pattern-making or creative power of the mind in that scenario that are all inter-related:
- The date of the disaster – 9-1-1.
- 9-1-1 is an acronym for emergency help.
- 9-1-1 proved costly in an immediate way to both the government and its people. The US had to beef up national security and has done so with billions of dollars, namely taxpayers’.
- The banks dropped interest rates literally overnight to 0%, a godsend for the many millions who were in debt since the mortgage crisis. Interest levels were dropped to ensure taxpayers had enough money to fund increased national security. Coincidence? Who knows?
Most people understand and accept that urban myths and weird coincidence is irrational, but somehow we like that little thrill of the “uncanny“, something we endow with the mysticism to surprise. It’s fun. Silly, but fun. In fact, as I was researching Salem witch hunt for this blog, I accidentally typed in Salem witch hung…most of the accused witches were hung after trial. Wow. What a coincidence (not). Now that you’ve read this blog don’t be surprised when a number of coincidences happen to you today or this week. You’re unconsciously seeking patterns more than ever given this information. Sorry about that. However it makes for entertaining moments. Enjoy!
I was pondering my useless organs the other day. I was thinking about the digestive system and how many people do not know how it works. I’ve learned we need to chew our food a lot more than we do – almost until its mush….gross! That’s because there are more enzymes in your mouth to break down food than in your stomach or intestines. Chunks of food in the stomach mean your stomach has to work a lot harder than it should…hence the reason some people get the shits and have a lot of abdominal pain. I read this interesting article once where a couple were researching the way people eat and they observed them in cafes, restaurants, wherever. The most bizarre sight was a thin little man who packed away a Big Mac in 3 bites. No doubt that little man is eating through a colostomy bag today.
I was under the uninformed impression that there were only 2 useless organs, being the aforementioned. However this entertaining article has identified 5:
Male Nipples: This one might surprise you. Men have nipples because early on in the womb, the gender of a fetus could go either way. Every fetus starts out female and androgens play an important role in “making” the fetus male. Actually I knew this one. No, really.
The Appendix: This small pouch no longer aids in digestion, and none of the 1 in 20 people who have one removed seems to miss it. In plant-eating vertebrates, it remains part of the digestive system. However as of late, scientists believe that the appendix is not a vestigial (useless). It may serve as a safe house where good bacteria lies in wait until needed to repopulate the gut after a nasty case of diarrhea. Even cooler still is that appendicitis is not due to a faulty appendix, but rather to cultural changes associated with industrialized society and improved sanitation. Improved sanitation confused me at first but I suppose if the appendix stores bacteria that isn’t needed any longer, it is expelled from the body. Who knew?
Tailbone - mine is rather prominent and when I am doing crunches on the floor it grinds into it and creates considerable anguish (a great excuse to avoid exercise). At one time our ancestors had tails for balance but when they stood upright, tails weren’t necessary anymore. Eesh. In rare cases congenital defect results in a short tail-like structure present at birth today. This is known as coccygeal retroposition. Twenty-three cases of human babies born with such a structure have been reported in the medical literature since 1884. There are no adverse health effects of such a tail, unless perhaps the child was born in the Dark Ages. In that case, the child and the mother, now considered witches, would’ve been killed instantly, although possibly not in Japan. A Japanese inventor created a mechanical tail that humans wear to indicate happiness. Seriously. He is making a kit to sell in the states. I can hardly wait.
Wisdom Teeth: Little more than a pain in the mouth for many people, wisdom teeth once served a function, but the human jaw became smaller and wisdom teeth have nowhere to grow. Not so wise, it would seem. Dental hygiene is partly to blame. Before tooth brushing, a young adult would have lost many or most of the teeth, and the incoming wisdom teeth would have been timely. Wow. What a great alternative. I’ll keep brushing my teeth, thanks.
Erector Pili and Body Hair: Goose bumps aren’t just to alert you of cold; in many creatures, fear and confrontation cause muscle fibers to activate, forcing hairs to stand up and making the animal appear larger and more threatening. That has been useful to your ancestors, but they don’t do much for us now.
Gallbladder – That was my call and I was very wrong on this one. The gallbladder aids in the digestion of fatty foods. However, I am half right: people who have their galls (stop that, you) removed function normally without it. So there.
Brain – So many people function quite well without one. Enough said.
Never thought I would be extolling the virtue of being stupid and I’m not convinced that I am. This article however made me think that one through just a bit. I’m not sure that stupid is a kind or fair word but I suppose it made for a catchy title, a means to get people to read the damned thing (like mine). This article applies stupidity to career and somehow comes up with success. What? How many books are on the market that insist getting ahead means getting a formal education (especially a Bachelor of Business or even better, an MBA), working 50+ hours a week and always “thinking outside that box.” You know, justifying why you should get a raise during your annual review (with documentation to prove it), offering your assistance to colleagues or even people outside your department; and the classic, “don’t dress for the position you have, dress for the position you want.” I suppose this works for people. I work for a public institution so I wouldn’t know. My guess is many people do very well with this type of behaviour and many people don’t. Many people have been laid off and they have worked for their organization for years. Many people have been forcibly retired when they reach age 65 even though they are perfectly functional and do an exemplary job. Think of the devastation and the slap in the face to a person’s loyalty. Hm. Perhaps there is something to this stupidity thing. (NOT this type of stupidity).
This article insists that moving up the ranks (if you must) more slowly than those on the fast track and enjoying each mundane job thrust upon you can actually bring about more job satisfaction than being an ambitious “go-getter.” That’s because people with an average to somewhat above average intelligence don’t expect as much in the way of success at their jobs and so long as they’re employed and making a reasonable living, they’re happy, dadgummit. Certainly that cannot be true of everyone. I mean, many people do not look forward to Mondays (goodbye blessed weekend). Work is a chore and a bore. The routine gets old fast, no matter how “stupid” or how brilliant a person may be. That’s true of everyone in my experience, “stupid” or not.
Along with the stupidity blog was an article entitled Is Too Much Ambition Making You Miserable? This one examines that cliche about being on “the fast track” (to nowhere). This article states that ambition often comes at the expense of close relationships…. the pursuit of materialistic values like money, possessions, and social status–the fruits of career successes–leads to lower well-being and more distress in individuals. Hm. Maintaining balance in one’s life seems to be a possible solution to such havoc. Perhaps there is something to be said for all that. I flatter myself that I am not stupid (naive perhaps, but not stupid). I am a humble soul. I make a good salary yet I am content to live in a small bachelor apartment and keep my expenses reasonably low. I don’t seem to have a materialistic bone in my body (except shoes of course…but at least I find them on sale). I have a responsible, white-collar job and I aim to move upward in my career. However, I am also happy to move at a reasonable pace. It’s the type of job where I need not just the qualification but the experience to take on a more responsible position. Fine. I’ll get there when I get there. I suppose there are lots of people around like me. Perhaps that’s why, in spite of earning 3 university degree to date, and having a higher goal in sight, I am not stressed and I am certainly not in a hurry. Works for me (pun).
A blog that analyzes why happy people are happy listed (of course) some traits that we happy people seem to possess. Dumb little man (his label, not mine), states very definitely that not pursuing status, strip away expectations, and don’t fight your environment (no, not fighting to save the environment). I really liked the “strip away expectations“, referring to easing up on the goal-setting habits of successful, miserable people. A decade or two ago, I remember reading some kind of book that stated it was important to list goals for the rest of the year, five years later, and 10 years later. It kept a person on track and determined a path. I followed this idea religiously. I constantly made this list, completely erasing it and starting over with something new upon a whim, depending on my burgeoning interests and whichever direction my life was headed. It didn’t work.
This isn’t to say that a lack of goals is a sensible move in your career and your life. In fact, going to that extreme is “stupid” (for anyone). If you don’t know where you are going, what are you working for? I would suggest that a general plan (not years from now and then 10 years from now), that isn’t written in stone and is flexible as necessary is a sensible compromise. I know which courses I am taking that lie ahead of me in order to carve out a career path but this doesn’t mean I won’t change my mind somewhere along the way and pursue something else. I don’t think that’s uninspired or “stupid.” I have, however, reached a point where I don’t let my life bounce me around like a raging current, slamming me up against boulders, and leaving me wondering what will happen next, the way I once did. I have a career where I have established a firmer foothold than that, and that’s a good move. I think it’s flexible planning, patience, and a great way to be happy.
Why you say? I bet you think the opposite of love is hate and the opposite of hate is love. Wrongo. The opposite of both is indifference or apathy. Indifference and apathy both mean to not care, to ignore, to have no attachment to in any manner, including a negative one. It makes sense. Loving and hating require lots of energy, time and attention. They both require thought processes and memories. Sometimes they result in actions in the extreme, or repetitive actions. They can both be obsessive and selfish.
To be apathetic or indifferent means to not exert energy, and to not acknowledge. That person is nothing to you; neither pro nor con and certainly not worth worrying about. That person has no power over you and simply doesn’t factor into your life. In fact, so inattentive are you that you may be quite unaware the depth of their emotions. You may even be unaware that they exist. If they operate in any context with you, it is utterly meaningless and not worth noticing. That’s where the expression “I’m not going to argue with you,” possibly originates from: you just aren’t worth the effort and you don’t matter anyway.
An apathetic individual in the extreme (not merely one who doesn’t hate or love),experiences an absence of interest in or concern about emotional, social, spiritual, philosophical and/or physical life. Necrophiles could come under this category, as they see nothing positive in living, and only find some sort of release through preoccupation with death. An indifferent person may lack a sense of purpose or meaning in his/her life. He or she may also exhibit insensibility or sluggishness. They sound like the living dead. I think of people of that nature (and possibly I know of one) as zombie-like, without chasing people down for their brains. Rather, it’s that zombie state induced by a sedative or an extreme lack of sleep. They’re there, but not really.
Can you imagine living your life that way? I doubt you do or you wouldn’t be a person who reads blogs in your spare time. Finding meaning and purpose in nothing and believing life is an unimportant existence we are simply born into is the life of a necrophile or true apathy. That would be a fun friend on a Saturday night. In psychology, apathy is a result of feeling one doesn’t possess the skills required to confront a challenge. Or some individuals have developed the phenomenon known as learned helplessness. Learned helplessness was a theory founded by psychologist B.F. Skinner, although it was later proven incorrect by Seligman and Maier. Their theory suggested that a human or animal could be conditioned into believing in their own helpless in a given situation, even if there are opportunities for escape. An interesting anecdote which has nothing to do with anything was the rumour that B F Skinner forced his infant daughter into a box for several hours a day for two years. He practiced operant conditioning on her with severe punishment and “bright rewards”. Ultimately she became psychotic and committed suicide by shotgun at the age of 31. All nonsense. Truly this rumour wasn’t started by anyone within an apathetic state of mind. Just a loser. Or a nihilist.
I read an interesting quote today: Hate is love in it’s ugliest form. Interesting. I have to mull that over since it eradicates the theory that hate and love have nothing to do with one another. My brother once was roommates with a young man who must have suffered from a personality disorder. I don’t know if it was existentialism, existentialist nihilism, or neither, but this guy was something else. He didn’t have a relationship with my brother, he just sort of tolerated him (even though my bro’ is an extremely likeable and funny man). He barely had conversations with him and when he did they were critical and blameworthy. Once, my brother asked if he could bring his girlfriend over to watch a movie; his roommate assured him it was no problem. When they got there, the roommate had placed a videotape just at the edge of a video player and written on its spine ‘FUCK OFF.” Just hearing about that incident gave me chills. Certainly that had to be nihilism of some sort. In that case, the nihilist was eroding himself, not my brother or his girlfriend. That’s one of the many oddball concepts about nihilism: it does more harm to the nihilist than those who reject it.
Which brings us back to apathy, indifference and love and hate. Perhaps it is all of this balled up together that leads to stalkers and their victims. If hate is indeed love in its ugliest form, do the two together make a stalker? The stalker lays claim to a victim who may not even be aware of his or her existence. Pathetic, really. Which is worst? The victim who has no idea the stalker exists or the victim who simply has no regard for the idiot, unaware of the danger s/he may be in? (Of course I’m not talking which is worst for the victim). Perhaps it is more pitiful to be utterly unknown by one’s obsession than to be disregarded. Invisibility has got to be more of an insult.
All of the aforementioned convinces me that of all the dangers and negativity in the world, apathy has to be one of the worst. Picture an apathetic community, school community, government, medical system, law enforcement, and indifference to social norms. I wouldn’t want to live in that society. The only hope I suppose would be escape from that community (in the event that this environment hasn’t instilled learned helplessness). In the event that it has, there’s always suicide; the ultimate apathy, when a person doesn’t have enough regard for life to value his or her own.
"every where thinging days nighing"
"Some is where!"
This gibberish was texted by a 25-year-old, 11-week-pregnant woman to her husband. I know, you’re thinking it’s another case of autocorrect, that often annoying function on all these “not so smart” phones. But, that’s not the case.
She was taken to the Emergency Department where signs of a stroke--right-sided weakness, disorientation, and the inability to speak--were noted.
Women love reading true crime books. In fact, women purchase significantly more true crime books than men. Researchers presumed that men, aggressive by nature, would find gory topics such as rape and murder more interesting than women. But their two-study research showed that women overwhelmingly chose true crime books over other books, given the same choices as men. The researchers then conducted three more studies to try to determine why this was true. Their conclusion was that women were drawn to true crime books out of their own fears of becoming a victim of violent crime. One suggestion was that women read more than men (a true fact). According to the researchers, women were drawn to true crime books for these reasons:
- To learn how to prevent becoming a victim.
- To learn how to survive being a victim.
- To learn warning signs to watch for.
- To learn escape tips, survival strategies
In another study, women and men were given a choice of reading a true crime book, or a true book about an army unit in the Gulf War. Among female participants, 77% of women chose the true crime book, and only 23% chose the war book. The same was true when women and men were offered a choice between a true crime book and a book about gang violence. 73% of women chose the true crime book, and 27% chose the gang book. Among men, 51% chose the true crime book over the war book (49%), and 57% chose the true crime book over the gang book (43%). Men showed a much less marked preference for the true crime genre, whereas this preference was clear for women. In a third study, the authors asked participants to choose between two different true crime books, and offered short descriptions of each book. Unbeknownst to the participants, one of the two descriptions contained information about how the protagonist got away from the killer (e.g., by using a pin from a watch to remove a pair of handcuffs). The other description, though similar, didn’t contain information on any survival tricks. With this simple manipulation, 71% of women chose the book with the survival trick, compared to 29% who did not (66% chose the book with the survival trick description.) In yet another study, the researchers included or did not include information about the motivations and thought processes of the criminals. Among women, 65% chose the book that promised to reveal psychological insights on the criminals, while 35% chose the other book. Among men, the more temperate pattern again emerged: 59% of men chose the book with motives, compared to 41% who chose the book without motive information.
A random Amazon.com Top True-Crime Books, compiled by a male author, included approximately half true-crime books involving serial killers, rapists, and men who murder their wives. The rest of the list included con artists, a jewel thief, drug empires, and undercover agents infiltrating a violent biker gang. By contrast, a female who comprised a list of the top 50 True-Crime books included strictly murder, rape, and abduction. This may be because she misinterpreted the meaning of “true crime”, and focused solely on male and female killers and rapists, rather than adding any other type of true crime reading.
Keep in mind that these were studies where the guinea pigs …oops… I mean participants were only offered two choices, always one being a true crime book. Most likely, stats are very different in retail stores and libraries since there is significantly more choice in many other genres. Had the study been conducted in these environments, I would be more inclined to accept the researchers’ conclusions. As it is, I don’t know how much I believe the researchers’ conclusions that many women actually choose to read true crime books in order to learn survival tricks. That seems rather weird. That has never occurred to me, or any female friend or family member, to my knowledge. I do believe women are more likely to read true crime books than men ,however. In my limited, subjective experience, the many males I have known, including family, seldom purchase or read true crime. If anything they are far more interested in politics, war, powerful historical figures, and the like. Very seldom do any of them read about athletes, even though the men I know and have known are usually sports fans.
One of the reasons I believe women read true crime is the authors’ tendency to use beautiful females as either victims or protagonists. A beautiful, conniving or innocent female seems to sell a lot of true crime. Sometimes they are fashionable, wearing expensive designer clothes. Other times they flaunt their best assets to snare a wealthy man just for money. Very seldom do true crime books include only males as killers and victims without a love triangle with a female. Sex sells. If the women featured in these books are protagnists they generally:
- were gold-diggers
- sought revenge
- were motivated by jealousy, money and anger
- are wealthy
- killed their family members, including their children, more often than strangers or friends
- were abused as children
- used covert murder weapons (80% used poison)
- were very rarely serial killers
- were a black widow or an “angel of death”
- killed while at home
- killed to protect their children from abuse
- were mentally ill
- preferred murder to divorce in order to maintain social and financial status
Keep in mind that these characteristics are very general. There are female killers, and serial killer, written about in true crime books who do not fit any of these profiles.
If the woman featured in a true crime book is a victim she is often:
- a college co-ed
- a prostitute (someone no one would be looking for)
- single mother or divorced
- living alone
- killed by her boyfriend or husband
- very trusting and naive; doesn’t recognize evil
- an acquaintance or a relative of her killer
- 27 years of age or younger
- the victim of a serial killer
- a victim of domestic abuse
- a victim of a stalker
- killed violently
There is something inherently similar behind the horrible themes in fairy tales and the murders documented in true crime. Fairy tales and true crime seem like a strange analogy but consider that in fairytales there is typically:
- a beautiful female victim or antagonist
- a young victim – a potential life never realized
- a rescue fantasy
- evil monsters – such as ogres and dragons
- a handsome prince
- castles and riches
- an impossibility – “long, long ago, in a far away place“
In other words, true crime suggests a type of ”long ago” familiarity – childhood. It is grown up fairy-tales except with unhappy endings (even when the monsters are caught in the end). Researchers made several conclusions as to why women enjoy reading true crime. They didn’t discuss the reasons men do and don’t read it. This would be an interesting follow-up since mens’ and womens’ motives for reading the same type of material would probably be diverse.
Outrageous, isn’t it? What is going on with airport security? Yes 9-1-1 is a violent, frightening reminder that airport security needs to be extremely careful with who it admits onto airline flights. Most security (so far as I know) do a sensible, decent job. They aren’t out to harm people. They simply want to do their job and prevent tragedy from slipping by them and into the country. At the same time airport security has to field anger and suspicion from the public for doing their job. Not an easy position to be placed in, I’ll agree to that. Watch this video where airport security scan a 9-year-old boy in a dignified manner and playfully tease a younger child by assuring him a scanner doesn’t hurt. This is a dignified airport search. It isn’t odd that the guard is searching children; there are weird people (yes, they live among ug) who hide drugs and weapons on their children to get the stash over the border. Airport security is right to search children in a non-invasive, reassuring manner.
However, airport security around the world is earning a bad reputation in a number of occasions. The video above is outrageous. I’m no fan of Dr Phil but (oh no, not the word but!) this video is worthwhile and so is the woman’s testimony.There is another equally disturbing video that has gone viral. A woman became emotional after a female security guard “inspected” her by feeling her breasts. The woman declared this was illegal and asked for airport police to assist her. No one called them and she became hysterical, weeping and yelling for help. Her husband and son were nearby, but (!) they seemed helpless and didn’t intervene. The son, however, had enough sense to film the entire incident. Airport security reacted by insisting the man stop filming the incident and leave the area. A police officer approached him and made no action against him. It turns out information came forward that revealed the woman had been violently raped years earlier by 5 men and the assault brought back emotional trauma. Whether or not the woman had a traumatic past in terms of sexual assault, what the airport security did was entirely unreasonable. Who hides a lethal weapon between her breasts or in her bra? This isn’t a James Bond movie.
On the security’s side, (I’m NOT defending either of the aforementioned situations), stats from somewhere or other revealed that 90% of people who carried a gun on their person were not searched by airport security and were permitted to attend their flights. I don’t know which airport this was or how many people were involved but egads, that is a scary fact. Hence the reason why airport security is probably trained on an ongoing basis to be ever vigilant about people entering airplanes. And the manner in which criminals smuggle weapons and drugs over the border is nothing less than amazing. Weaving cocaine into wigs and swallowing small parcels of cocaine is not uncommon. It is airport security’s job to prevent these oddities from succeeding.
I am in agreement with careful screening. I want to know the airplane I am on is safe. I want to know the passenger beside me won’t pull out a gun and blow my head off because she doesn’t like my hairdo. I want to know that none of the passengers can hijack the plane at gunpoint and send us into another 9-1-1. These are important responsibilities of airport security and airports. They have to ensure my safety (and yours) whenever I take to flying with friendly spies….oops….I mean skies. However I also want to know that airport security won’t molest my breasts or private or rectal area in case I am carrying more than 3 ounces of a liquid (shampoo, you know, is extremely volatile at high altitudes…as an aside, 3 ounces of a liquid is acceptable, but 4 ounces ….we’re all doomed. Who thinks up this stuff?) I also believe that many people are being unfairly accosted, assaulted, and treated just plain rudely.
Recently my brother went on a flight to some place or other in the States from Canada. (Interestingly, he has never been searched or assaulted in any manner by airport security and he travels frequently for his work). An elderly lady in front of him was being spoken to very rudely by a young, male security officer who was asking her routine questions, yet behaving in a hostile manner. My brother intervened and said politely, “this lady is elderly and unlikely to have a lethal weapon on her person. Also, could you be more polite in speaking with her? She is being cooperative and hasn’t done anything to deserve this treatment.” The security guard snapped back at him in some manner, but he did let the woman go through security right afterward. He even let my brother through. This isn’t to say, however, that the woman being elderly exempts her from security procedures. All we’re asking is for a little more respect. Check this video.
Recently, airport security accused of insulting and laughing at people’s bodies beneath their clothing as they passed through new scanners that allow security to see beneath our clothing (collective gasp). Betcha didn’t know about those scanners, did ya? (Next time you’re passing through an airport, be sure to wear your kinkiest underwear – and gentleman, consider wearing your wives’ pantyhose….we’ll give them something to laugh about). This information was revealed on a Youtube video that went viral by a person who claims to be a former TSA agent. The most outrageous reaction however was that of the airport manager who stated quite stupidly, “everyone has the right to their opinion.” Seriously. That was his idea of good PR. I’d love for someone to turn the tables and force airport security to walk through the scanners, then get laughed at by the entire airport. Serves them right. Nyah nyah. I had to drop this video into my blog – if all of us went through the scanners the way this woman reporter sits on camera, there wouldn’t be a need for body searches.
Here’s a weird fact about TSA training: there is a list of 70 suspicious behaviours passengers make that indicate potentially high risk situations. Many of the indicators, as characterized in open government reports, are behaviors and appearances that may be indicative of stress, fear or deception. Allegedly none of them refer to or suggest race, religion or ethnicity, but one addresses passengers’ attitudes towards security. It reads: “Very arrogant and expresses contempt against airport passenger procedures.” TSA officials said that no single indicator is used to identify travelers as potentially high-risk. Travelers must exhibit several indicators before officers subject them to more thorough screening. On the other side of the fence, Michael German, a former FBI agent who works for the American Civil Liberties Union, stated, “expressing your contempt about airport procedures — that’s a First Amendment-protected right.”
Guarding national security is a fine, difficult line. I’m glad I don’t have that job. I also believe the public has to fight back against airport abuse, whether it is you yourself who is being assaulted, or someone else. Don’t just walk on by when someone is being abused or begging for help. Stop and call 9-1-1 or find an airport police officer. They do not work with the airport security company. The police are real cops – not cop wannabes like security guards (had to get that one in there). Let’s help each other out and force airport security to conduct their job in a manner that is dignified for themselves and the public. We are all in this together.
The Black Plague, the Bubonic Plague, or the Black Death, was one of the most devastating pandemics in human history. Historically, it has plagued humans 3 times; we are most familiar with the Medieval Era. The Black Death is thought to have started in China or central Asia. It reached the Crimea by 1346. From there, it was carried by Oriental rat fleas living on the black rats that were regular passengers on merchant ships. Spreading throughout the Mediterranean and Europe, the Black is estimated to have killed 30 to 60 percent of Europe’s population.All in all, the plague reduced the world population from an estimated 450 million to a number between 350 and 375 million in the 14th century. Nasty. Gives new meaning to the phrase “I see dead people.”
Symptoms begin with bubos, which are like gross boils, appear on the body as pink bumps and turn black within a day or so. Today they can be treated with antibiotics, although these are considered to be less effective than previously (yes, this plague is still around in third world countries). Bubos generally appear in the groin area and arm pits where lymph nodes are located. Without treatment, the bubonic plague kills about two-thirds of infected humans within 4 days. Infection from the bubos went septic, meaning it quickly worked its way into the blood stream. As the bubos darkened, gangrene set in and people were literally eaten alive. The Italian writer Boccaccio said its victims “ate lunch with their friends and dinner with their ancestors in paradise.”
EFFECTS ON THE SOCIAL STRUCTURE OF MEDIEVAL ENGLAND
Even when the worst was over, smaller outbreaks continued, not just for years, but for centuries. The survivors lived in constant fear of the plague’s return, and the disease did not disappear until the 1600s. Medieval society never recovered from the results of the plague. The plague, along with the King Ricard I poll tax, even led to a major revolt across Europe. After the pestilence, many buildings, great and small, fell into ruins in every city for lack of inhabitants, likewise many villages and hamlets became desolate, not a house being left in them, all having died who dwelt there; and it was probable that many such villages would never be inhabited. In the winter following there was such a want of servants in work of all kinds, that one would scarcely believe that in times past there had been such a lack. So many people died that there were labor shortages all over Europe, leading workers to demand higher wages, but landlords refused.By the end of the 1300s, peasant revolts broke out in England, France, Belgium and Italy. The Peasants’ Revolt, Wat Tyler’s Rebellion, or the Great Rising of 1381 was one of a number of popular revolts in late medieval Europe and is a major event in the history of England. As a result, the end of serfdom, the status of peasants under feudalism, was the next major English reform.
Serfdom was a condition of slavery. Serfs occupied a plot of land and were required to work for the Lord of the Manor who owned that land, and in return were entitled to protection, justice and the right to exploit certain fields within the manor to maintain their own subsistence. Having said that, this so-called exploitation was pitiful. The serfs were poorly fed, lived in shacks with dirt floors, and had to work the land even during harsh, cold winters. Many children and infants died during this era, since two parents had to work the land together and they often left toddlers alone to watch over their infant siblings. A peasant who was a serf worked for the Lord often until death. Should the family debt to the Lord not have been repaid, his family were now indentured and had to continue working for the Lord. There were many illegitimate children throughout the Lord’s property, since he forced himself upon women whom he felt were under his”ownership.” Talk about exploitation.
A plague doctor was a special medical physician who saw those who had the plague. They were hired by towns that had many plague victims in times of plague epidemics. Since the city was paying their salary, they treated everyone: both the rich and the poor.They were not professionally trained experienced physicians or surgeons, and often were second-rate doctors not able to otherwise run a successful medical business. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, some doctors wore a beak-like mask which was filled with aromatic items. The masks were designed to protect them from putrid air, which was seen as the cause of infection.Being a plague doctor was unpleasant, dangerous and difficult. Their chances of survival in times of a plague epidemic were low. ague doctors could not generally interact with the general public because of the nature of their business and the possibility of spreading the disease; they could also be subject to quarantine.Plague doctors practiced bloodletting and other remedies such as putting frogs on the buboes to “rebalance the humors” as a normal routine. Humors were believed to comprise the human body with four distinct bodily fluids. The four humors of Hippocratic medicine were black bile, yellow bile, phlegm and blood, and each corresponds to one of the traditional four temperaments. A famous plague doctor who gave medical advice about preventive measures which could be taken against the plague was Nostradamus the Seer. Nostradamus’ advice was the removal of infected corpses, getting fresh air, drinking clean water, and drinking a juice preparation of “rose hips“. Nostradamus also recommended not to bleed the patient. I wonder if Nostradamus predicted the plague. If he didn’t then that was a bit of an oversight (pun).
PLAGUE IN THE 20TH CENTURY
On March 6, 1900, a city health officer autopsied a deceased Chinese man and found organisms in the body that looked like plague. In 1894, two research physicians had simultaneously and independently identified the bacillus that causes bubonic plague. In San Francisco, political issues vied with scientific efforts. Anti-Chinese feeling ran strong in the city then, and the first step taken was to quarantine Chinatown. The Chinese objected, and so did the business community, not to protect the rights of the Chinese, but because the knowledge that the Plague was in the state was bad for business. The quarantine was lifted but health officials ran house-to-house inspections of Chinatown. People resisted, hiding their dead and locking their doors. More plague cases were found. In April 1901, a clean-up campaign of Chinatown was undertaken, scouring almost 1,200 houses and 14,000 rooms. On February 29, 1904, a woman in the town of Concord, California, died of plague, its last victim — for a while. There had been 121 cases in San Francisco and 5 outside, with 122 deaths. North America is the world’s largest reservoir for the plague. Every year people are infected a few die from it. The early signs of plague are easily mistaken for flu or other illnesses: fever, chills, and weakness to the point of severe prostration. Plague’s ability to masquerade as flu in the early stages is particularly unfortunate, since successful treatment depends on using the appropriate antibiotics within a narrow time frame. Our main defence against the disease is hygiene. Our modern sewage systems and Public Health organisations keep this plague to a minimum.
The Flagellant Brahren and their Atonement for Sin
Bands of hooded men, wearing white robes marked front and back with a red cross, are moving to and fro across Europe, attempting to atone for the ravages of the Black Death by whipping themselves in ritual public ceremonies. The Brethren mistakenly believed the plague was a punishment for human sin, and that by scourging themselves they showed mankind’s repentance. They travel in parties of anything from 50 to 500 men, and were high ly organized. They moved from town to town to perform their rituals. Singing hymns and sobbing, the men beat themselves with scourges studded with iron spikes. Blood gushes from their many wounds, and the spikes embed themselves in the torn flesh. The ritual was performed in public twice each day.
The movement and position of the planets, suns, moons, and anything else in orbit you can think of, was also believed to be the culprit during the Medieval Era. Ahem.
Many people closed their doors and windows, burning incense, in the mistaken belief that the plague was spread by bad air. Villages set controlled fires in the streets. I’ve breathed some bad air before but it wasn’t from the plague.
Poor witches. It always comes to that, doesn’t it? Many people were suspected of witchcraft and this, naturally, was the cause of the plague. Many people were tortured and put to death for “consorting with the devil.” What a terrible time to be alive.
The Disappearing Woman
This story has circulated for decades, originating in Paris, France, around the Victorian Era. A woman and her mother were travelling through France together and checked into a hotel. Later that night, the mother became very ill. After the hotel manager examined the woman, he sent the woman across town to visit a doctor for a medication. The woman left but when she arrived at the doctor’s address, she discovered his house was shut down and he was away on vacation. She returned to the hotel to report the matter but the hotel manager was confused. He asked her why she had gone searching for a doctor. Bewildered, the woman reported he had sent her to the very doctor he denied knowing, in order to treat her mother’s illness. The manager stated he was unaware of the woman’s mother accompanying her into the hotel and that she had checked in alone. She insisted on returning to her room, and was brought to the same room with a different number on the door. When she entered she discovered the room was furnished in a completely different manner; even the wallpaper was different. Only her own possessions were there and none of her mother’s luggage. There was no sign of her mother. The woman contacted police, who visited the hotel. The hotel staff insisted the woman had arrived alone and they had never seen her mother. Eventually, the poor woman returned home without her mother and never discovered what became of her. Speculation suggests that the woman’s mother had somehow contracted the Black Plague since they had recently travelled through India. In order to prevent pandemonium in the city, police advised hotel staff not to admit the mother had ever been in the hotel. Whether or not this actually happened has never been verified.
The Brothers Grimm, narrators of many incredible folk and fairy tales for children and adult, established the delicious tradition of making gingerbread men and women in Europe. The Grimms are most well-known storytellers of European folk tales, and their work popularized such stories as “Cinderella” (Aschenputtel), “The Frog Prince” (Der Froschkönig), “Hansel and Gretel” (Hänsel und Gretel), “Rapunzel”, “Rumpelstiltskin” (Rumpelstilzchen), and “Snow White” (Schneewittchen). Recurring themes in their folk tales were that of starvation, homelessness, poverty,tasks that had to be completed, deceptive women and always concluded with a moral. Food featured frequently in the tales since so many people went hungry, hence the reason for the candy house in Hansel and Gretel and the gingerbread man. As for settings, actual landscapes and geographic regions were used in the tales. For instance, the tale of Hansel and Gretel was set in a dense pine forest known as The Black Forest. The brothers’ believed that all the tales were of value and reflected inherent cultural qualities. Activities in daily life were continually featured in their tales, including using spinning wheels with flax. The Brothers featured characters who were of sound quality as spinners, and lazy, amoral characters had no interest. in it. The contrast between a fairy tale and a folk tale is that former typically features fantasy characters, such as fairies, goblins, elves, trolls, dwarves, giants, or gnomes, and usually magic or enchantments. Fairy tales may be distinguished from other folk narratives such as legends and explicitly moral tales, including beast fables. In cultures where demons and witches are perceived as real, fairy tales may merge into legends, where the narrative is perceived both by teller and hearers as being grounded in historical truth.
The tale of the Gingerbread Man of course is a fairy tale. The tradition of baking gingerbread began in the 11th century when Crusaders returning from the Middle East brought a new spice, ginger, with them. Catholic monks baked gingerbread for special religious celebrations. The cakes were constructed in specific designs depicting saints and religious motifs. The early carvings were made with a large and elaborately carved “cookie board” that impressed the pattern onto a stiff rolled dough. As the costs of exotic ingredients and spices dropped, gingerbreads slowly became more popular across Europe and Britain. The tradition of baking a Gingerbread house began in Germany after the Brothers Grimm published their collection of German fairy tales in the early 1800s. Among the tales was the story of Hansel and Gretel,children left to starve in the forest, who came upon a house made of bread and sugar decorations. It is possible however that brothers Grimm were actually writing about something that may have already existed. If you’re looking for a gingerbread man template for a craft project, print the one below. There is also a template for a constructive craft or to build a simple gingerbread house.
Competition for impressive gingerbread houses is fierce the world over. Frankly, I’m astounded with the hobbyists’ creations. I couldn’t design those houses if I was paid. Many of the houses reflect actual houses that have significant meaning in various communities. I find these to be among the most historically impressive:
- Winchester Mystery House – Sarah Winchester, heir to the Winchester rifle fortune, was a disturbed woman who believed in ghosts and evil spirits. It is rumoured that she was a paranoid schizophrenic. After visiting a Boston medium, she spent 38 years constructing and deconstructing a bizarre manor that was once an 8-room farmhouse. Hundreds of winding staircases that led to a wall. Twisting corridors that led nowhere and were so confusing servants needed a map to orient themselves or they would get lost, themes of the number 13, 7, and 11 appearing in stained glass windows and staircase design also featured in the house. Some of the staircases and rooms had names: there is a Switchback Staircase and a Seance Room, among many others. One staircase has 44 steps and is only 9 feet high since each step is only 2 inches in height. Another has 11 steps up and 7 steps down. There was once 500 – 600 rooms in the mansion but due to continuous construction and deconstruction, the house has only 160 rooms today. The actual house is featured on the left. The gingerbread replica is on the right..
- The Carson Mansion, Eureka, California. The Carson Mansion is “considered the most grand Victorian home in America.” It is one of the most written about and photographed Victorian houses in California, and perhaps, in the United States. William Carson arrived in San Francisco from New Brunswick, Canada in 1849. During one of the winters between forays into mining, Carson hauled logs from the Freshwater slough to the Pioneer Mill on the shores of Humboldt Bay. He claimed to be the first to fell a tree for commercial purposes on Humboldt Bay. By 1853 he was selling shiploads of Redwood lumber, bound for San Francisco. In 1863 Carson formed the Dolbeer and Carson Lumber Company, and in 1884, he began construction on his mansion. The mansion is a mix of every major style of Victorian architecture, including the following styles: Eastlake, Italianate, Queen Anne (primary), and Stick. The gingerbread house took two months to create. It is featured on the top left corner of the photograph on the left.
- Brothers Grimm Castle - based on various Grimm fairytales, a hobbyist designed this castle. The designer must have used as many descriptive details from the stories as possible, along with pictures of actual castles and a great imagination. That’s my guess.
4. The Whitehouse - The house was designed by Irish-born James Hoban and built between 1792 and 1800 of white-painted Aquia Creek sandstone in the Neoclassical style. In 1814, during the War of 1812. the mansion was set ablaze by the British Army in the Burning of Washington destroying the interior and charring much of the exterior. Reconstruction began almost immediately, and President James Monroe moved into the partially reconstructed Executive Residence in October 1817. The Executive Residence is made up of six stories—the Ground Floor, State Floor, Second Floor, and Third Floor, as well as a two-story basement. This construction is included in the gingerbread version.
5. The Downtown Abbey - A British series is a British period drama television series created by Julian Fellowes. The series, set in the fictional Yorkshire country estate of Downton Abbey, depicts the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants in the post-Edwardian era. Highclere Castle in Hampshire was used for exterior shots of Downton Abbey and most of the interior filming. The kitchen and servants’ quarters and working areas and several “upstairs” bedrooms were constructed and filmed at Ealing Studios. The gingerbread version is on the left.
7. Notre Dame Cathedral - in Paris, France, is a historic Roman Catholic Marian cathedral on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité in the fourth arrondissement of Paris, France. Widely considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture and among the largest and most well-known churches in the world ever built, Notre Dame de Paris is often reputed to be one of the most prominent examples of Gothic architecture in both France and in Europe as a whole, and the naturalism of its sculptures and stained glass are in contrast with earlier Romanesque architecture.
If gingerbread house contests are your thing, use the above photographs as a measuring stick. If you simply enjoy spending 100s of hours on them, try not to eat the building materials. Enjoy!
I seem to have an obsession with this type, the egomaniac, also known as narcissist, although I don’t get it myself. I have met a few and damn, they are so annoying and, well, narcissistic. You can’t help but loathe them or simply want to get the hell away from them and this seems to be a sensible reaction to a narcissist. In fact, I discovered a few cool things about personality disorders and two types of people: those who sense the unhealthy personality and avoid it, and those who sense it (or don’t sense it) and enter into a relationship with that person. That’s a tad worrisome. Imagine knowing instinctively that something is creepy about someone and instead of becoming cautious, becoming intrigued and attracted? That’s just wrong. There is a profile of person who gets involved with the narcissist, and, not surprisingly, that profile is also rather weird.
Just as the egomaniac (which we fondly refer to as an ass—le) has a fancy, psychiatric label so does the unfortunate submissive who becomes involved with him or her (although more frequently it is a “him”, just as more frequently the female is the dependent). The co is controlled by another person, who is affected with a pathological condition (typically narcissism or drug addiction). Narcissists are natural magnets for the codependent. Codependent people are constantly in search of acceptance to the point where they martyr themselves, and practice excessive self-sacrifice. They suffer from abandonment anxiety. They accept the role of victim yet in this manner they attempt to control their abusers to a degree.
The Type 1 Co-Dependent - Clinging and smothering behaviours, almost mortal fear of abandonment and separation. They never obtain true autonomy.
Case Study: Mona, 32
I know I won’t actually die, but it often feels like it.” – says Mona and nervously pats her auburn hair – “I can’t live without him, that’s for sure. When he is gone, it’s like life switching from Technicolor to black and white. There is no excitement, this electricity in the air that seems to constantly surround him.” Sometimes she feels like throwing up at the mere thought of separating or being abandoned by him. She is helpless without him: He is gorgeous and a great lover. Is he intellectually stimulating? “He is more the silent strong type.” She is supporting him financially. “He is studying“. In the last seven years he had switched from psychology to political science to physical therapy. How long will she continue to support him? ”As long as it takes. I love him”.
She acknowledges that he is verbally and physically abusive. He has cheated on her many times. She even participated in group sex to make his fantasies come true. So, why is she still with him? “He has his good sides. I want to learn how to hold on to him.”- she whispers – “He is a very special man and has special needs. I am looking for guidance on how to hook him. I want him to become addicted to me, like a junkie.” She consulted all her friends and casual acquaintances. Does she have many friends? Not any more. People get tired of her, they say that she is clinging. But that’s not true – she only asks their advice on a regular basis. “What are friends for, anyhow?”
The Type 2 Co-Dependent – The Drama Queen. They gain control over others by feigning helplessness, manipulating others into meeting their needs. They use emotional blackmail.
The Type 3 Co-Dependent – This person lives vicariously through others, often their children. They suspend their own needs in order to fulfill the needs of others. This creates a sense that they are “needed“; they cannot stand the thought of being alone and no one needing them.
A female friend of mine keeps going for guys that are underdogs, losers that drain her financially and emotionally. It’s now causing her real problems. She’s early 40′s and finding hard to move out of a relationship that’s not doing her any good. She admits that she has some sort of saviour. She says she needs to, “look at why I have to do this for everyone and how the savior in me desires to constantly save. It is true that he is a chauvinistic narcissist and that his behaviour is unacceptable and repulsive. But all he needs is a little love and he will be straightened out. I will give him the love that he lacked as a child. Then his narcissism will vanish.”
The Type 4 Co-Dependent – The Counter-Dependent – This one is subtle. A Narcissist often displays a counter-dependent personality. They despise authority figures. Their sense of self depends upon defying authority. They are fiercely independent and controlling. Many are anti-social (you don’t say). The counter feels trapped in an intimate relationship. This nut is locked into a cycle of approach and avoidance.
The Type 5 Co-Dependent – The Covert Narcissist – A co-dependent can be a narcissist (talk about messed up). Also called “the inverted narcissist” this co depends exclusively on narcissists. The inverted narcissist craves a relationship with a narcissist. She seeks relationships with narcissists and only with narcissists. She feels empty and unhappy in relationships with non-narcissists.
Case Study – Unhappy Childhood
A psychiatric patient described her experience as her father’s “favourite” child: I grew up in the shadow of my father, who adored me. He told me I could do or be anything I want to be because I was brilliant, but, he ate me alive. I was his property. I also grew up with a mounting hatred of my narcissist brother who got no attention from my father or my mother. My job was to make my father look wonderful to all outsiders, with a genius wonderkid. When I stepped out of line even the tiniest bit, these were enough to warp my personality.
- The Adult Inverted Narcissist
The fear of losing and being humiliated is so intense that I’m terrified of showing people that I care about doing well, because it’s so shaming for me if I lose. When I’m in a competitive dynamic with someone, I can’t hear about any of their successes or compliments they have received. I don’t even like to see the person doing good things, like bringing Thanksgiving leftovers to the sick. Those things make me feel inferior for not thinking of doing them myself. It is just so incredibly painful for me to see the other person’s good qualities because it immediately brings up my feeling of inferiority. This deep and obsessive envy is destroying my joy in other people. I have a hostile, corrosive envy at other people for being all the wonderful things I can’t be. I would love to feel happy for someone else, but I can’t stop the incredible pain that explodes in me.
- A female inverted narcissist stated: When my pathological envy gets triggered I would be bluntly honest about it. I’ll say, you always get the good stuff and I get nothing. People like you better. I’m a jerk. Or I might get hostile and say it must be nice to have so many people worshipping you. i am totally flooded with the pain of feeling utterly inferior. From my therapist’s point of view I am much better off than a full-blown narcissist because I know I am unhappy.
- Another female inverted narcissist claimed: One thing that triggers my rage is my inability to control another person, to dominate and force my reality on them. Part of what I’m feeling is envy. That person who can’t be controlled clearly has a Self, and I don’t. I also want to get narcissistic supply by being in control and on top and have the other person become submissive and compliant. It`s as though I`ve been possessed by a demon acting out all this abusive, horrible stuff and then after the departure of the demon it`s like, what have I done.
The Co-Dependent in a Relationship
Ther co’s view their relationships in terms of “black and white” (an infantile psychological defense mechanism known as “splitting”.) are the result of regarding their relationships as either doomed to failure or everlasting and their mates as both unique and indispensable (“soulmate”, “twin”) or completely interchangeable (objectified.) As a codependent, you tend to jump to conclusions and then “jump the gun”: you greatly exaggerate the significance of even minor infractions and disagreements and you are always unduly fatalistic and pessimistic about the survival chances of your relationships.
Object Relations Theory
A co’s unfortunate circumstances usually begin with a codependent parent (here we go blaming poor mom and dad again). With that type of parent, the needs of an infant are necessary but temporary, whereas the needs of the codependent are constant. If you believe in psychiatric theories, then you might ascribe to the Object Relations Theory, which refers to a child’s natural process in turning people and events into object (rather like a stamp on the unconscious mind). These objects are carried into adulthood. If you experienced a happy childhood with a mother who encouraged your autonomy while at the same time providing a safe haven for your upbringing, you would probably find the same experience in your future. By contrast, an adult who experienced neglect or abuse in infancy would expect similar behavior from others who remind him of the neglectful or abusive person from their past, particularly when codependence has been part of this experience.. This unhappy existence isn’t the fulfillment of a psychological dream. It’s familiarity, the only relationships the co-dependent or narcissist understands.
The Irony of Recognition
Should a person, say a man, believe that his wife is codependent, he can be sure the same is true of himself. It takes two to make or break a relationship, and this is as true of the codependent relationship as any other type. At the same time that a husband complains about the clingy, needy, nagging wife, he has also shown an attraction to such women and hence he has ended up in a tiresome marriage. These men are unable to establish stable boundaries between themselves and their demanding wives. At first, the codependent man feels flattered and manly: he is rescuing a needy female and providing her with security. Over time of course, her needs become unreasonable and the only way he can remove himself from her smothering demands is to become a workaholic, have affairs, or turn to drugs and alcohol. Codependent couples are reactive because they each lack autonomy and are emotionally dependent upon each other. Some men are verbally and even physically abused by their wives and girlfriends and don’t know how to handle it. Often, they’re afraid that authorities won’t believe that their wives are violent and feel humiliated and ashamed that they can’t deal with it themselves.
And you thought your relationship had problems?
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- frugal for life
- Special Education Workshop: Bill 212/Anti-Bullying Laws in Ontario Education
- The Good Greatsby
- Marty Nemko's Website
- Awful Deals
- Forget the Truthn Acceptn Your Curse
- silab garza
- male survivors of sexual abuse trust