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Hurt People hurt Other People

Have you ever experienced hurt by another person?

Of course you have.

Ever wonder why or what to do about it?

 

I invite you to read on as I discuss the concept of “hurt people hurt other people” as an insightful exploration potentially of the source of your pain (including why there may be addiction in your life), understanding the people behind your hurt, and what you can to do about.

 

Why.

Every human being has experienced a level of hurt. It can range from being spoken to in a belittling way, being betrayed by a friend to…divorce, adultery, sexual/emotional/sexual abuse, loss, a car accident, trauma.

It could of been your father. It may be your mother. Maybe it was a boss, a brother, a sister, a uncle. Maybe it was your best friend. Or a stranger.

But who is the real enemy?  In the case of abuse towards women or children, it can be easy to point an angry finger to men. Or in the case of a broken family, it can be easy to point to the mother that cheated on her husband. Maybe it’s that abuser…

Above that, what’s most curious is…why the sick cycle repeats again-- Why does someone who grew up being controlled and verbally/emotionally abused, act controlling towards others and their own children? Why do the sexually abused abuse others? Why do children of divorce divorce themselves? Why do children of violent alcoholics inflict angry violence towards their own children? Why are people addicted to porn, drugs, sex, dsyfunctional relationships…?

You would think that those that experience hurt, especially on such a deep level, would not want to inflict the same type of hurt to others.

It doesn’t seem to make sense…

…Oh, but at the same time, it totally does make sense…  More…

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Forgiving Yourself

10.7.12 Journal Blog post about my experience counseling in the inner city (For more context- please refer to Corporate Girl in an Inner City World)

 

To the torturers

During “Patterns of Change” class I co-lead, I brought up the topic of unforgiveness towards self because we were talking about guilt and shame. Working with the women in this shelter, I have really noticed that there’s a lot of guilt and inability to forgive oneself.

Many of these women have come from difficult domestic abuse or substance abuse situations where they have not been able to give their kids the best. (many had kids in their teen years)

Somewhere in the middle of their addiction and their abusive relationships, most women had kids at a young age and really wasn’t there for their kids (either their parents took care of their babies or they did a poor job raising their kids).

In that shame, in that unforgiveness—as the Bible says—there really is a release to the ‘torturers’ that I believe happens even psychologically! This has to be a priority…to not just forgive others but to forgive themselves too.

More…

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The Idolatry of Marriage and Family

10.7.12 Journal Blog post about my experience counseling in the inner city (For more context- please refer to Corporate Girl in an Inner City World)

 

The dream of the child of divorce

I saw my client “Lauren” today who has struggled with a long battle with alcoholism—she lost her marriage, her “dream” of that American dream of the marriage, 2 kids, and home,…when her husband got involved in cocaine.

We had a very poignant session where we explored why it made her feel so angry and jealous inside to see her husband divorce her then get remarried, and attain that dream of  hers. Although she clearly knows that her husband had a large portion of responsibility in leading to the divorce, she also blames herself for the marriage and for turning to alcohol to cope during and after it.

As we explored the narrative of rejection in her life, I keyed in to this “dream” that seemed to stir up so much emotion when she would think about it being ‘lost.’

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The Breeding Ground of Addiction

10.7.12 Journal Blog post about my experience counseling in the inner city (For more context- please refer to Corporate Girl in an Inner City World)

 

Ever since I started my time in my doctorate program, I have been learning
more about what drives addiction.

What causes a liquid (alcohol) to have the debilitating power to literally ruin a person’s life? What causes pictures (pornography) to control someone and destroy their marriage and family?

I have learned a lot about the chemical reaction and the brain that interacts with addiction and how the body can start to work against oneself (More on this in my blog article, “When you keep doing what you hate“) but what really fascinates me is the concept of emotions and emotional regulation.

The concept of emotional regulation is this: when different emotions arise (particularly negative emotions), do you have the ability to properly handle and process those emotions in a healthy way?  More…

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When you keep doing what you hate

10.7.12 Journal Blog post about my experience counseling in the inner city (For more context- please refer to Corporate Girl in an Inner City World)

 

What do you do when you keep doing what you hate?

Maybe it’s a hard core addiction- drugs, alcohol, porn, smoking, sex, an eating disorder…or maybe it’s a little more subtle like overeating, overspending, pride, an unhealthy on and off dating relatioship, serial dating, finding yourself attracted to the wrong type of person….you name it.

If you’re honest, it’s seriously impacting your job, your daily life, your spirit… your body and relationships…

What is addiction and why is it so hard to break??

More…

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You’re just not good enough

9.25.12 Journal Blog post about my experience counseling in the inner city (For more context- please refer to Corporate Girl in an Inner City World)

 

 

Feeling not “good enough”

I am now co-leading a class at Union Gospel Mission’s women’s shelter called “Patterns of Change” and thought I would share something we discussed that I think everyone senses this at one point of another– whether they know it or not…this sense that deep inside, you’re just not… “good enough.” 

Maybe it’s in your career, maybe it’s in your appearance, maybe it’s with the opposite sex…hey, you don’t have what it takes. You aren’t pretty, handsome, rich, smart or successful enough… You aren’t enough and one day…others will find out. You will be found out…

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Toxic Anger: Part 2

If anger is like a fire that causes great damage in the body, in one’s spiritual life and in relationship with others when mishandled then…what does handling anger well look like?

In the first part of this article, “Toxic Anger: Part 1,” I outlined the original design God had for anger, common roots for anger and what happens when anger is mishandled. In this second part of the article, I will review what it looks like to handle anger in a biblical and healthy way that has been particularly useful and life-changing for me.

 

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Toxic Anger: Part 1

Anger. The emotion and sensation of feeling offended, wronged or denied. Desiring retaliation.

We all experience it on some level.

Sometimes people are ruled by it (think: road rage) or work really hard to keep it inside (“I’m not angry! just frustrated…”)…

But like fire, anger has to be handled correctly or it can cause great damage. In fact, I would argue that many physical and stress issues people have today can be linked back to the mismanagement of anger. Unreleased anger and stress can ravage the body.

I would also vouch as I did in the article “Learning How to Feel Again,” that the mishandling of the anger and emotions we experience can be at the root of many addictions.

In this 2 part article, I will outline the original design God had for anger, common roots for anger, what happens when anger is mishandled and one approach on handling anger that has been particularly useful and life-changing for me.

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Freedom is a Choice

A lot of people think they have to struggle…forever.

A lot of people secretly struggle with a lot of things…eating disorders…porn…sexual addictions…closet drinking…insecurity…lust…the list goes on.

Some addictions seem ‘worse’ than others but the reality is that…it’s all bondage.

And with it, I see two camps of people.

Those who feel like victims, defeated. Accepting the fate that they will be like this forever…

Or those who know there’s a way out. A supernatural way out.

The reality is that there’s a God who specializes in change. In changing you. In changing me.

He loves us way too much to allow us to stay the same, but…it’s a choice.

In this article, I will walk you through an important principle God showed me the past few years that has made all the difference in the world in my own healing and those I have walked with through their healing journeys.

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You Are Just Like Your Father

“You are just like your father…”

Oh, how so many of us have heard these words…especially the men among us.

Usually these words are spoken in utter disdain, like a sharp, bitter arrow targeting the heart.

 

With it comes hurtful parallels and comparisons to the weakness and failure of our dads. When we grow up naturally expecting perfection from our fathers and those words, his actions, are painful reminders that he is not…perfect and our paradigms are shattered.

No father, no parent is perfect but like father, like son…we sometimes witness patterns of dysfunction, recurring cycles of addiction and bondage repeat…in others in our family and to our dismay, in...ourselves.

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