Archive for the ‘Relationships’ Category

Rest In Me

March 18, 2011

Are you seeking rest or peace within your soul? Here is a song where Jesus invites you to find rest in Him.

Rest In Me
Matthew 11:28

Verse 1
Are you weary from a burden
Do you find it hard to rest?
Are you chasing time
That keeps running away?
Is it like you’re in a dessert
Searching for a drop to drink?
Crawling to a place
That keeps moving away?

Pre-chorus
Is helping coming near?
A voice then called me loud & clear

Chorus
Come & rest in Me
Like a babe in a manger
Without a concern
In the world
Come & rest in Me
In a place that is peaceful
Where you’ll always find
Rest for your soul

Refrain
Rest in Me Rest in Me
Here you’ll find peace for your soul
Rest in Me Rest in Me
When you do you’ll become whole

Verse 2
Are you climbing up a ladder
Hoping soon to reach the top
Finding you were climbing
The wrong one?
Do you feel you’re on a treadmill
Going nowhere really fast?
Looking for a way
Out of this maze?

Pre-chorus
It may be all futile
Is it really all worthwhile?

Chorus

Bridge
This place of rest
Like a cosy small home
Safe & secure
You are never alone
You’re welcome now
To be a part
For I am gentle
And humble of heart

Verse 3
Do you feel there’s something missing
Deep within your inner soul?
Like a black hole in the universe?
Mister Miracle is waiting
To perform a wondrous act
Turning lives around
Is what He can do

Pre-chorus
If you realise you’re lost
Throw a life line to the cross

Chorus

Refrain

Refrain

(c) Beverley Tang 2003

[ Taken from the album “Transformation”]

Collaborative Approach to Conflict Management

June 26, 2010

I read an interesting article a few months ago about a new “Collaborative S tyle” of conflict management. This involves finding a solution that completely satisfies the concerns of both parties (not just one)  in a conflict.

To explain further what this means all the various  conflict styles will be described. They are:-

1. Competing – assertive and uncooperative. You satisfy your own concerns at the expense of the other. Win/Lose.

2 Accommodating – unassertive and co-operative. You sacrifice your own concern’s to satisfy the other party.Lose/Win

3. Compromising – partially assertive and partially co-operative. You look for an acceptable settlement that only partially satisfies your own and the other party. 1/2 Lose/ 1/2 Win   //    1/2Lose / 1/2 Win

4. Avoiding – unassertive and uncooperative. You try to sidestep or postpone the conflict, satisfying neither you concerns or the others. Lose/Lose

5. Collaborative – assertive and co-operative. You try to problem solve to find a solution that completely satisfies both your concerns and the others’.
Win / Win

Many people maybe surprised that a Collaborative outcome can be possible.  What makes this different to the other styles,  is that everyone involved is listening to the others’ views,  not just focusing on their own needs and trying to incorporate the former into sound decisions.

It is important that people recognize which style they tend towards, before learning to adapt another style.  Also one must learn to identify which style is most appropriate or productive for each given situation.

Research shows that a Collaborative Style of conflict resolution leads to superior decisions especially for complex and non routine issues eg. negotiation over resources.   It is better at combining diverse insights into more accurate understandings leading to more innovative solutions.  It also enhances communication learning and builds trust.

Another key to implementing this mode is to distinguish between “Positions” and “Concerns”.   Concerns are the things people in a conflict care about.  For instance, miners wish to ensure that their industry remains competitive and that they have enough profits to invest for future growth and new projects.  The Government wishes to ensure that they can raise more funds in order to provide important services and infrastructure which is needed for the community and help pay off the budget deficit which occurred due to the Global Financial Crisis.

Positions on the other hand are the solutions that each party recommends as a way of satisfying their concerns.  Eg.  Miners hold a position they do not want a super profits tax introduced whereas the Government does see the need for this.

In finding out the Concerns of each party (and not just their positions),  there is a much greater possibility of finding other innovative or alternative solutions (or positions) which may end up satisfying the needs of both parties.   This is where brainstorming and creative problem solving can come into play.

Naturally this style will be more successful if both parties learn to adopt these Collaborative techniques on an equal level.   It is important that such discussions also do not erupt into personality conflicts and clashes which can be highly destructive.   Both parties involved would need to be very secure in themselves to implement such a mature and advanced conflict resolution style, since it can often require a greater openness  as to personal concerns behind positions that people hold.   To reach collaborative solutions can take much longer.  Also views expressed can still be quite passionate.  However the time taken to achieve collaborative solutions can often lead to better outcomes for all concerned in the long term.

Perhaps managers,  top executives and leaders in power need to learn to adopt collaborative techniques in a greater measure so that more satisfactory solutions and outcomes may be achieved for all parties concerned.

These ideas were taken from a White Paper entitled “Making Conflict Management a Strategic Advantage”  by Kenneth W Thomas  Ph. D

Workplace Bullying

January 27, 2010

The following is an article describing the nature of Workplace Bullying from the Human Rights Commission and Anti-discrimination Website.

Unfortunately Workplace Bullying has not been made illegal unless it is caused by discriminatory behaviour.

I believe it is about time it should be made illegal especially due to the way it can ruin the lives of it’s victims in the form of:-

– psychological damage eg.  stress,  depression and trauma
–  financial damage –  many victims end up having to take sick leave,  leave from work or resign from their jobs without a job to go to 
–  physical damage –  in the form of physical sickness from the trauma

Not only does it affect the lives of victims but it is also highly detrimental to businesses,  productivity and ultimately the economy as a whole. 

This is why it should be stamped out and made illegal in the workplace

At present only behaviour which is proven to be of a discriminatory nature is illegal according to federal and state legislation.

http://www.humanrights.gov.au/info_for_employers/fact/workplace.html

The Mosque and it’s Role in Society

November 30, 2009

I recently read a small book called “The Mosque and it’s Role in Society”.  It states important information about the Islam religion.  This is important to know, so as Christians we can  maintain Australia as a  Christian nation.  The following are some of the essential points stated in the book:-

Firstly it is very important to note that Christians do not hate Muslims.  Instead it is quite the opposite.  As Christians we are commanded by Jesus to love all peoples know matter who they are or what they look like.  Mark 12:31.  Instead it is just the Islamic ideology that Christians do not agree with.

1.  Every Aspect of Life – Islam is not just a religion and personal faith like Christianity or Buddhism.  Instead it is a whole way of life which includes rules for every aspect of living  including politics,  business,  family relationships and how to see non muslims.

2.  Allegiance to “Allah” Only – A Muslim’s life allegiance is to “Allah”  and obeying his laws as found in the Quran.  He does not have the freedom really to choose to be a Muslim or not.  This is so because if a Muslim leaves his faith for another, this is regarded as the highest form of treason and punishable by death in Islamic law.

3.  Infiltrate Society – The broader goal of Islam,  endorsed by it’s leaders and practicing adherents,  is to ultimately infiltrate each section of society in each country to convert it to Islam, and replace the institutions in that society with their own Shariah Law.   This can start with migrating to a new country,  pretending at first to adhere to the country’s laws,  gaining employment in strategic parts of government (eg.  the immigration department), to gradually allow more and more muslims to take over the decision making bodies in society.

4.  Mosque Headquarters – The Mosque is like the central headquarters where Muslims are trained in these goals and their own laws and culture.   The presence of the Mosque in an area is like a symbol of the growing power and presence of the Muslim faith and culture in the community.

5.  Attitude to  Non Muslims – Muslims are taught not to become friends with non Muslims like Jews or Christians .  Under the laws of subjugation in Islam,  non Muslims are given a choice to convert to Islam or pay a hefty tax in public.  They are then not given equal rights in employment,  housing or positions of authority.

6.  The Islamic Movement – is the organised struggle to change the existing society into an Islamic one following the laws of the Qur’an and the Sunna,  to make Islam dominant especially in socio-political spheres.

7.  Non Integration – Due to these points it can be questionable whether Muslim immigrants will in the long term, integrate into Australia culture and society and be willing to follow the christian laws and ethics of our society.

8.  Adhere to Christian Laws – some individuals are wanting to ensure that  muslim people, before entering the country definitely agree to be subject to Christian laws not just in the short term but the long term as well.  This is important since it is because of these Christian laws and socio political systems set in place, that there exists the  freedom and opportunity in Australia.  

9.  Autocratic Rule – On the other hand if a nation is transformed into an Islamic society,  this will inevitable be headed by an autocratic totalitarian dictatorship which will totally obliterate any form of freedom of choice or social equality in society.

10.  Lying is Permitted – lying is permitted under Islamic law in the following situations:-
–  in war,  espionage,  concealment or in weakness
–  between a wife and husband
–  when reconciling or maintaining peace

11.  Marriage –  under Islamic law husbands are allowed to beat their wives

12.  Swedish Government–  has recently put a ban on any future attempt to introduce Shariah Law into their constitution.

13.  Compassion –  most muslims are probably not the radical extremists we hear about on the news.  Instead many are probably trapped in a culture they don’t know how to escape from.  Hence these people need the saving love of Jesus and our compassion.   It is mainly the leaders and extreme fundamentalists that we need to stop from instigating Shariah Law into the country. 

14.   Stand Up: As a result more Christians in churches need to stand up to uphold Christian values in Australia so we do not become an Islamic nation.   We cannot take our Christian freedom for granted .  To become more actively involved in this cause you  can visit or join the  ACNA ,  “Australian Christian Nation Association”. To obtain a copy of the book   ” The Mosque and it’s Role in Society”  contact Sher  from ACNA   on ph: 9230 2478.  Cost is $9.  Please note this is not designed to be a racist article against all Muslims-many of who are probably very nice people.  Instead it is a fight against the Islam ideology which does not always support loving and just principals eg towards women.   Hence this article is not a license for any of us especially Christians to start having racist attitudes to people of other cultures.

15. Prayer Point –  pray daily that the spread of Islam in any form will be stopped and instead Muslim people will come to know the saving love and freedom which is only found in Jesus.

Exodus From Darkness
A former radical Muslim from Iran was converted by God’s Holy Spirit to become a christian believer and follower  Jesus.  He now leads his own Christian Ministry and is very skilled and knowledgeable in sharing the gospel with Muslim people.  He is available to speak in Churches to teach other christian believers in how to do this effectively.

See his website http://www.ministryblue.com/exodus.html for more details.

What is Verbal Abuse?

November 11, 2009

See the following links:-

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verbal_abuse    (excerpt below)

Verbal abuse is a pattern of behavior that can seriously interfere with one’s positive emotional development and, over time, can lead to significant detriment to one’s self-esteem, emotional well-being, and physical state. It has been further described as an ongoing emotional environment organized by the abuser for the purposes of control.

The underlying factor in the dynamic of abuse can be viewed as the abuser’s low regard for him- or herself. As the abuser may fear not being “good enough” and/or meeting other’s expectations, the abuser may attempt to place their victim in the position to feel or believe similar things about him or her self.

2. http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-verbal-abuse.htm   (excerpt below)

Verbal abuse is a form of battery that involves the use of words, rather than blows and punches. In a verbally abusive situation, words are used to attack, control, and inflict harm on another person. Verbally abusive behavior goes far beyond mean behavior; it involves inflicting psychological violence on another person, attacking the very nature of an individual’s being and attempting to destroy his or her spirit. Verbal abuse can affect people of all ages and in all types of relationships. However, it is especially prevalent in marital relationships.

A number of behaviors are considered verbally abusive, including angry outbursts, screaming rages, and name-calling. Verbal abuse often includes blaming, brainwashing, and intimidation. Hidden aggression is a part of verbal abuse, as well. Verbal abuse is extremely manipulative, as insults are often disguised as caring comments. Verbal abuse can be overt or covert, but it is always about controlling and manipulating the victim.

Often, verbally abusive comments are offered as jokes. When the target of the joke is hurt or insulted, the verbal abuser laughs it off and says that the victim is overly sensitive. However, the intent of the verbal abuser is to cause this hurt. After a time, verbal abuse often escalates into physical abuse.

Arguments in verbally abusive relationships are far different from those in healthy relationships. Normally, people argue over real issues that have the potential to be resolved. In verbally abusive arguments, real conflicts are not the issue and problems are not resolved. The abuse becomes the issue, and often the victim is told that everything is always his or her fault.

Often, verbal abusers tell their victims what to think and how to feel. They typically refuse to see or understand the victim’s point of view. In fact, they often object, in a violently verbal way, to the victim’s opinions and desires. Verbal abusers often deny reality and attempt to keep their victims confused by constantly changing or distorting the issue.

Withholding is often a major part of verbal abuse. In a verbally abusive relationship, the abuser may withhold information, affection, support, or money. When the abuse victim attempts to speak up about such issues, the verbal abuser denies the issue altogether.

Verbal abusers often seek to isolate their partners, cutting off or blocking their relationships with friends and family. Sometimes, the verbal abuser works to convince the victim that the abuser is the only person who really cares about or likes the victim. In some cases, the verbal abuser may admit to his or her behavior and agree to stop. Typically, however, the behavior begins again within a short period of time.

Verbal abuse can be described as stealthy; it leaves wounds that are not visible to the naked eye. As it harms the mind and spirit, it can be more difficult to recognize than physical abuse. Also, its victims become so torn down by it that they are often unable to notice the abuse themselves.

Low self-esteem and confusion are ever-present in the minds of the verbally abused. The abuser is often able to convince the victim that he or she is the problem. In fact, verbal abusers often accuse the abused of playing the victim.

 Eventually, the verbal abuse victim becomes so worn down by the abuse that he or she becomes unable to put up a defense against it. Often, the victim begins to try to change or placate the abuser, thinking that such change will improve the relationship. Sadly, verbal abusers typically do not change on their own. For real change to occur, professional psychiatric help is usually required.

3.http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/abusiverelationships/f/verba_abuse.htmQuestion: (excerpt below)

Verbal abuse is difficult to identify and regrettably can be a common type of abuse in some marriages. Not all words that are meant to hurt are “ugly words.” A master at verbal abuse can damage your self-esteem while, at the same time, appear to care deeply for you. The use of words to punish is a very covert attempt to control and regardless of how loving your spouse may appear to be, verbal abuse is wrong and can be just has harmful as physical abuse.

Answer: Physical abuse is easily identified. There is no doubt, once you have been hit, that you have been abused. You don’t second guess yourself because the bruises and scars are visible evidence that abuse has taken place. Verbal abuse is different. The damage is internal, there are no physical bruises or scars, just a wounded spirit and sense of self-esteem.

Below are some common signs of verbal abuse:

  • Being called names by your spouse. Any negative form of name calling is unacceptable. If you feel that it is a put down, then it most likely is. There are names that are obvious and, without question abusive. Then there are the covert, veiled attempts to put a spouse down that are harder to identify. Verbal abusers love to use constructive criticism to beat a spouse down. If your spouse is constantly criticizing you, “for your own good,” be careful. This is the most insidious form of verbal abuse.
  • Using words to shame. Critical, sarcastic, mocking words meant to put you down either alone or in front of other people.
  • Yelling, swearing and screaming. I call this the “walking on eggs shells” syndrome because you are living with someone who goes verbally ballistic for very little cause.
  • Using threats to intimidate. No threat should be taken likely, even if your spouse tells you they are only joking, especially if it causes you to change behaviors or to feel on guard in the relationship.
  • Blaming the victim. Your spouse blows his/her top and then blames you for their actions and behavior. If you were only perfect they wouldn’t lose control!
  • Your feelings are dismissed. Your spouse refuses to discuss issues that upset you. They avoid discussion of any topic where they might have to take responsibility for their actions or words.
  • You often wonder why you feel so bad. You bury your feelings, walk on egg shells and work so hard at keeping the peace that every day becomes an emotional chore. You feel depressed and have even wondered if you are crazy.
  • Manipulating your actions. The persistent and intense use of threatening words to get you to do something or act in a way you find uncomfortable. This form of verbal abuse is common at the end of a marriage. If your spouse doesn’t want a divorce they will say whatever it takes to play on your emotions, to get you to stay in the marriage. All in an attempt to get you to comply with their desires, regardless of what is best for you as an individual.

Responding to Verbal Abuse:

If your spouse, the person you are closest to habitually, verbally abuses you and dismisses your feelings, you will begin to see yourself and your needs as unimportant, of little consequence and irrelevant. When you finally recognize and come to terms with the idea that you are being verbally abused you need to also become focused on getting help. Here are some steps you can take if faced with verbal abuse:

  • Abuse is never justified so, you should never feel that it is your fault.
  • Let the abuser know how hurtful their words are and discuss with them the fact that it is unacceptable to you. Set boundaries on what you will and will not accept from your abuser.
  • Seek counseling, either together or separately.
  • Surround yourself with a support system of family and friends. Discuss with them what is happening and how you are feeling.
  • If the verbal abuse escalates to physical abuse, leave. Your personal safety is far more important than the relationship.
  • Do not engage in conflict with your abuser. If your spouse becomes angry stay calm, walk away and don’t give him/her what they want…a reaction from you.
  • Take back your power. If you react to the abuser, you are rewarding them. Letting them know they have power over your emotions. Don’t allow the abuser to have control over how you feel.

How Can Someone Identify and Respond to Verbal Abuse?

What is Emotional Abuse?

November 10, 2009

Taken from :- http://eqi.org/eabuse1.htm#Types of Emotional Abuse

Definition

Verbally mistreating or withholding positive emotional support from a child. Emotional abuse involves an adult speaking to a child in ways that are intended to demean shame, threaten, blame, intimidate, or unfairly criticize the child. www.jjab.ky.gov/terms.htm 

Often results in various behavioral, emotional, or psychological problems www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Child_abuse 

Summary

Abuse is any behavior that is designed to control and subjugate another human being through the use of fear, humiliation, intimidation, guilt, coercion, manipulation etc. Emotional abuse is any kind of abuse that is emotional rather than physical in nature. It can include anything from verbal abuse and constant criticism to more subtle tactics, such as repeated disapproval or even the refusal to ever be pleased.

Emotional & verbal abuse is like brain washing in that it systematically wears away at the victim’s self-confidence, sense of self-worth, trust in their own perceptions, and self-concept. Whether it is done by constant berating and belittling, by intimidation, or under the guise of “guidance,” “teaching”, or “advice,” the results are similar. Eventually, the recipient of the abuse loses all sense of self and remnants of personal value. Emotional abuse cuts to the very core of a person, creating scars that may be far deeper and more lasting that physical ones. In fact there is research to this effect. With emotional abuse, the insults, insinuations, criticism and accusations slowly eat away at the victim’s self-esteem until she is incapable of judging the situation realistically. She has become so beaten down emotionally that she blames herself for the abuse. Her self-esteem is so low that she clings to the abuser.

Emotional abuse victims can become so convinced that they are worthless that they believe that no one else could want them. They stay in abusive situations because they believe they have nowhere else to go. Their ultimate fear is being all alone.

Types of Emotional Abuse

Dominating

  • Someone wants to control your every action. They have to have their own way, and will resort to threats to get it.
  • When you allow someone else to dominate you, you can lose respect for yourself.

Emotional Blackmail

  • The other person plays on your fear, guilt, compassion, values, or other “hot buttons” to get what they want.
  • This could include threats to end the relationship, totally reject or abandon you, giving you the the “cold shoulder,” or using other fear tactics to control you.

Aggressing

  • Aggressive forms of abuse include name-calling, accusing, blaming, threatening, and ordering. Aggressing behaviors are generally direct and obvious. The one-up position the abuser assumes by attempting to judge or invalidate the recipient undermines the equality and autonomy that are essential to healthy adult relationships. This parent-child pattern of communication (which is common to all forms of verbal abuse) is most obvious when the abuser takes an aggressive stance.
  • Aggressive abuse can also take a more indirect form and may even be disguised and “helping.” Criticizing, advising, offering solutions, analyzing, proving, and questioning another person may be a sincere attempt to help. In some instances however, these behaviors may be an attempt to belittle, control, or demean rather than help. The underlying judgmental “I know best” tone the abuser takes in these situations is inappropriate and creates unequal footing in peer relationships. This and other types of emotional abuse can lead to what is known as learned helplessness.

Minimizing

  • Minimizing is a less extreme form of denial. When minimizing, the abuser may not deny that a particular event occurred, but they question the recipient’s emotional experience or reaction to an event. Statements such as “You’re too sensitive,” “You’re exaggerating,” or “You’re blowing this out of proportion” all suggest that the recipient’s emotions and perceptions are faulty and not be trusted.
  • Trivializing, which occurs when the abuser suggests that what you have done or communicated is inconsequential or unimportant, is a more subtle form of minimizing.

Verbal Assaults

  • Berating, belittling, criticizing, name calling, screaming, threatening
  • Excessive blaming, and using sarcasm and humiliation.

Blowing your flaws out of proportion and making fun of you in front of others. Over time, this type of abuse erodes your sense of self confidence and self-worth.

Unpredictable Responses

  • Drastic mood changes or sudden emotional outbursts. Whenever someone in your life reacts very differently at different times to the same behavior from you, tells you one thing one day and the opposite the next, or likes something you do one day and hates it the next, you are being abused with unpredictable responses.
  • This behavior is damaging because it puts you always on edge. You’re always waiting for the other shoe to drop, and you can never know what’s expected of you. You must remain hypervigilant, waiting for the other person’s next outburst or change of mood.
  • An alcoholic or drug abuser is likely to act this way. Living with someone like this is tremendously demanding and anxiety provoking, causing the abused person to feel constantly frightened, unsettled and off balance.

Invalidation

The abuser seeks to distort or undermine the recipient’s perceptions of their world. Invalidating occurs when the abuser refuses or fails to acknowledge reality. For example, if the recipient tells the person they felt hurt by something the abuser did or said, the abuser might say “You are too sensitive. That shouldn’t hurt you.” Here is a much more complete description of invalidation

Denying

  • Denying a person’s emotional needs, especially when they feel that need the most, and done with the intent of hurting, punishing or humiliating (Examples)
  • The other person may deny that certain events occurred or that certain things were said. confronts the abuser about an incident of name calling, the abuser may insist, “I never said that,” “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” etc. You know differently.
  • The other person may deny your perceptions, memory and very sanity.
  • Withholding is another form of denying. Withholding includes refusing to listen, refusing to communicate, and emotionally withdrawing as punishment. This is sometimes called the “silent treatment.”
  • When the abuser disallows and overrules any viewpoints, perceptions or feelings which differ from their own.
  • Denying can be particularly damaging. In addition to lowering self-esteem and creating conflict, the invalidation of reality, feelings, and experiences can eventually lead you to question and mistrust your own perceptions and emotional experience.
  • Denying and other forms of emotional abuse can cause you to lose confidence in your most valuable survival tool: your own mind.

Abusive Expectations

  • The other person places unreasonable demands on you and wants you to put everything else aside to tend to their needs.
  • It could be a demand for constant attention, or a requirement that you spend all your free time with the person.
  • But no matter how much you give, it’s never enough.
  • You are subjected to constant criticism, and you are constantly berated because you don’t fulfill all this person’s needs.

Constant Chaos

  • The other person may deliberately start arguments and be in constant conflict with others.
  • The person may be “addicted to drama” since it creates excitement.

Basic Needs in Relationships

If you have been involved in emotionally abusive relationships, you may not have a clear idea of what a healthy relationship is like. Evna (1992) suggests the following as basic needs in a relationship for you and your partner: (I have changed this from “rights” to “needs” and made other small changes- S.Hein)

  • The need for good will from the others.
  • The need for emotional support.
  • The need to be heard by the other and to be responded to with respect and acceptance
  • The need to have your own view, even if others have a different view.
  • The need to have your feelings and experience acknowledged as real.
  • The need to receive a sincere apology for any jokes or actions you find offensive.
  • The need for clear, honest and informative answers to questions about what affects you.
  • The need  for freedom from accusation, interrogation and blame.
  • The need to live free from criticism and judgment.
  • The need to have your work and your interests respected.
  • The need for encouragement.
  • The need for freedom from emotional and physical threat.
  • The need for freedom from angry outburst and rage.
  • The need for freedom from labels which devalue you.
  • The need to be respectfully asked rather than ordered.
  • The need to have your final decisions accepted.
  • The need for privacy at times.

What is an “Emotionally Abusive Mother”?

Generally, I don’t like to use labels, but in this case the subject is important enough to try to define the term and create a profile of those who might fairly be called “emotionally abusive mothers”. There are many degrees of abuse, so it may sometimes be difficult to say someone definitely “is” or “isn’t” an emotionally abusive mother. Can a “good” mother sometimes be emotionally abusive? Yes, I believe so. What matters is the overall nature of the relationship with her children/teens. Though it may be difficult to achieve consensus on exactly what qualifies someone as an “emotionally abusive mother,” we can at least try to arrive at some common characteristics.

In broad terms I would say an emotionally abusive mother is a mother who uses her son or daughter in an attempt to fill her own unmet emotional needs. This is similar to defining sexual abuse as someone who uses another person in order to fill their own sexual needs.

An emotionally abusive mother is a mother who uses her son or daughter in an attempt to fill her own unmet emotional needs.
By nature, women generally have instinctive needs to raise and nurture children. The fulfillment of these needs is natural and healthy. Emotional abuse occurs only when the mother attempts to use the child or teen to fulfill needs which are not consistent with those of an emotionally healthy adult. Emotional abuse occurs, in other words, when the mother tries to fill those needs of hers which normally would have already been filled during a healthy childhood and adolescence.
It might help to consider the distinction between the emotional needs of a child, of an adolescent and of an adult.

A child has a need to feel loved. A child has a need to feel secure. A child has a need to feel protected. A child has a need to feel approved of.

A teen has a need to feel independent and in control of himself and over his environment.

Both children and teens have a need to feel accepted and respected. Both children and teens have a need to feel appreciated and valued.

For the species to survive, the emotional needs of the adults must compliment those of the children. For example, while the child needs to feel loved, safe, secure, and protected, the adults must need to feel loving, non-threatening, secure, and protective. While the child needs to feel respected and accepted, the adults needs to feel respectful and accepting. While the child needs to feel appreciated, the adult needs to feel appreciative for the gift of nature that is called “their child.”

If the mother did not feel adequately loved, safe, secure, protected, appreciated, valued, accepted and respected before giving birth, she will, in all likelihood, attempt to use the child (and later the teen) to fill these needs. If she did not feel adequately in control of her own life as a child and teen, she can be expected to try to control her son or daughter as compensation. This is the recipe for emotional abuse.

To fill her unmet need for respect, a mother might try to demand that her daughter “respect” her. To fill her unmet need to feel loved, the mother might try to manipulate the son into performing what she perceives as acts of love. To fill her unmet need to feel appreciated, the mother might try to spoil her daughter or she might constantly remind the daughter of all the things she does for her and all the sacrifices she makes for her.

Mothers are particularly adept at emotional manipulation. They are skilled in setting up their sons and daughters to fill their unmet emotional needs left over from childhood and adolescence. Ultimately, though, this arrangement fails. It is impossible for a son or daughter to fully meet the unmet childhood and adolescent emotional needs of the parent. A child or teen can not be the filler of someone else’s needs when they have their own needs. This is a clear case of role reversal, the consequences of which are very serious.

A child in this situation feels overwhelmed, facing an impossible burden yet still trying his or her best to do the impossible. The child will necessarily feel inadequate as he fails to do the impossible. By the time the child is a teen, he will feel not only inadequate, but drained and empty. He will feel insecure and afraid of failure, disapproval, rejection and abandonment. The implicit, if not explicit, message has always been “if you don’t fill Mother’s needs, she will reject or abandon you.”

The teenager will have also learned that it is is impossible to make mother happy. No matter what the teen has done to try to make her happy it is never enough. So the teenager starts to feel like a failure, or “failful” as opposed to successful. This shatters his or her self-esteem.

This, briefly, is the danger of the emotionally needy, and therefore often, emotionally abusive mother.

Signs of Abusive Fathers

He’s trying to control you and make you dependent on him if:

  • He has to know where you are and who you are with all the time.
  • He tries to control your contact with your friends.
  • He puts down what you wear, do and say.
  • He tries to control you by being very bossy, giving orders, making all the decisions, and does not take your opinion or your feelings seriously.
  • He is scary. You worry about how they will react to things you say or do.
  • He abuses drugs or alcohol.
  • He puts you down so you will lose self-esteem, confidence and control
  • He tells people things you did or said that embarrass you and make you feel stupid.
  • He says it’s your fault when things go wrong.
  • He calls you stupid, lazy, fat, selfish, spoiled, ugly or a “slut”.
  • He blames you when he mistreats you. He says you deserved it, or you provoked him, pressed his buttons, made him do it.
  • He threatens you.
  • He uses physical violence or he physically controls you, for example, physically stopping you from going out of the house.
  • He hurts or hits you, or uses his greater physical strength to hold you down so you make you feel helpless, powerless or humiliated.
  • He threatens to hit you, hurt your friends, pets or family if you do not do what he wants.
  • He says he will kick you out of the house if you don’t obey him.
  • He threatens to stop giving you money, or to not pay for your education if you don’t obey him.
  • He threatens to kill himself and blames it on you.
  • He gets very angry about small, unimportant things.
  • He will not tell you his feelings when you ask and then he blows up.
  • He pressures you to do things you don’t want to do.
  • He attempts to manipulate or guilt trip you by saying “If you really loved me you would…” or “If you were a good daughter you would….”
  • He compares you to other people’s daughters and says things like “Why can’t you be more like….”

Child Sexual Abuse Information

November 8, 2009

If you would like to know more about the organisation ASCA and the support it provides for adult survivors of child sexual abuse here is a link to their website. If you click on the menu item “Survivors” you can read some testimonies of actual survivors.

The following are some helpful articles that appeared in one of their newsletters called “Breaking Free”. Just click on the image 2 times to enlarge for easy reading.

Recovery1
Recovery3

Recovery2

Effects of Child Sexual Abuse

Here is a link which describes more of the effects of child sexual abuse on an adult’s life:-

http://www.asca.org.au/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=65

Testimonial Books of Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse

1. Execution of Childhood Innocence
A Backward Journey to a Forward Destination

Author: Demi Shugrue
Paperback (5 x 7) 138 pages
Available from the publisher at: Tate Publishing

 BACK COVER:
The Execution of Childhood Innocence: A Backward Journey to a Forward Destination transports you to a front row seat through the journey of a lifetime. In a unique style, author Demi Shugrue investigates the construction of her protective shield throughout the atrocities of abuse and applies the information to an understanding of the dynamics of adult personal interaction. The truth that lies behind the eyes of the battered child brings light to the shadows and reality. The ?mind chants? and echoes of the little girl inside the woman as they struggle to become one. Readers will experience the emotional struggles of an abused child and gain empowering insight from the reflection and significance of diverse relationships, including the most important of all: our relationship with ourselves, the process of owning our own lives. This is a journey of reflection, purpose, and ultimately hope. The Execution of Childhood Innocence is a testament to the fundamentally profound truth, self-value is paramount.

2. Beyond the Tears by Lynn C. Tolson

BACK COVER
A true story, Beyond the Tears begins with the suicide attempt of an abused and addicted twenty-five-year-old woman. In the aftermath, she commits to counselling to recover from anxiety and depression associated with post-traumatic stress disorder. The author engages the reader in therapy sessions where the young woman reveals dysfunctional family relationships, including domestic violence, sexual abuse, and mental illness. Due to the therapeutic process, the woman discovers a path to love and the value of life, and she ultimately achieves a life that reflects health and happiness. In sharing this inspirational journey, the author provides a message of hope.

Available from Catharsis Foundation 
Email: info@catharsisfoundation.org

3. Ellie – A Story of Profound Loss and Abuse-
A must-read for both Survivors and Supporters
By Catharsis Foundation

Deborah Rose reveals the inescapable life of abused children in her book, “Ellie – A Story of Profound Loss and Abuse”. “Ellie” is a first-hand account of a disturbing reality shared by far too many children – only the intimate details, the people involved and the locations are different. “Ellie” could epitomize the concealed horrific life of a child you know, perhaps even yourself.

“Ellie” doesn’t waste words in an attempt to make the issue unduly sensitive or pretty and Ms Rose isn’t trying to put the reader in her shoes to solicit sympathy – she’s concise and to the point – child abuse is real and she’s lived it! It isn’t just something that happens in other countries – it happens closer to home but children are forced to never tell their secrets!

Ms Rose not only captures the hell that children experience while being abused, she offers helpful words of inspiration and hope for other Survivors who are searching for a way to heal from childhood abuse. “Ellie” is also a must-read for people who don’t understand the agony that constitutes the unfair lives of abused children not only during abuse but for the remainder of their tormented lives.

“Ellie” and Ms Rose are true inspirations! 

Catharsis Foundation
Location: Calgary, AB Canada
E-mail: info@catharsisfoundation.org

Catharsis Foundation for Survivors of Child Abuse is committed to Survivors and to ending child child abuse and dedicated to encouraging Survivors to purge their nightmares through cathartic writing. Who knows the truth better than Survivors?

Catharsis Foundation aims  to reveal the prevalence and horror of child abuse, to stop protecting child abusers and especially, to begin the journey towards healing. Catharsis Foundation for Survivors of Child Abuse is committed to Survivors and to ending child child abuse and dedicated to encouraging Survivors to purge their nightmares through cathartic writing.

“It’s Time To Tell!” – to reveal the prevalence and horror of child abuse, and to begin the journey towards healing.

Taken from:- http://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A125HMF9YE9MQB/ref=cr_cm_rdp_pdp/181-6454530-9102654

http://www.asca.org.au/index.cfm

Responding to a Friend or Family in a Medical Crisis

October 2, 2009

The following is a helpful article I found in the YWAM Associates newsletter recently.  It is written by Alexis Wilson:-

I felt the need to write this article after of walking through six months of medical crisis with my husband of 35 years. I have learned so much and I would like to share some of my experience in the hope that it will provide some guidance and comfort for others who may experience a similar crisis or know someone who is going through such a crisis.

“I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO SAY.”
So many friends said they did not call or visit because the just did not know what to say. If you do not know what to say a simple I love you and am praying for you is sufficient. You do not have to say much to the grieving just a quick call even if you get a voice mail a brief “I’m thinking of you” message says so much.

KNOWING THAT PEOPLE CARE, BEING REMEMBERED
When you are in the middle of a crisis especially on that finds you far from your home and family the assurance of being remembered and knowing that people care about what is happening to you and your family can provide immeasurable encouragement, refreshing and strengthening.

Please don’t wait for people who are in a hard place to contact you, you contact them. I often felt I just didn’t have enough emotional strength to go another step most of the time. The idea of initiating contact with someone was overwhelming. Simple things seemed to require extraordinary energy I couldn’t muster.

When a crisis is long and drawn out is it more important than ever that patient and caregiver feel they aren’t forgotten. Even if you do not know them very well, a call, a card, a small donation goes a very long way in comforting those that are grieving. We had numerous contacts from people who heard of our situation through the friend of a friend. It is amazing how much the love of God was ministered through these people who might otherwise be considered strangers.

A TIMELY WORD
My husband’s neurosurgeon came running into the ICU room we occupied and said to me “If I do not drill a hole in your husbands’ head in the next five minutes we may loose him, sign here.” Shall I sign or not sign? I didn’t have time to read the fine print and what does it all mean! Are we playing God and prolonging a life the Lord is trying to take? Is my husband going to be worse off after this operation than before? Am I responsible if I sign this release?

All these questions flooded my mind at once. I was already in a state of shock and exhaustion just trying to survive all that had transpired! Within a few minutes, as I laid wrapped in a warm blanket a compassionate nurse so comfortingly wrapped my weak body in, I had an international telephone call from a trusted dear friend whose call not only got me focused on the Lord but helped me to rest and to trust the doctors God had given. I will never forget that call it was a ministry of comfort.

COMFORTERS
As much as I wanted people to know what was happening and I wanted to hear from those people who cared and were praying for us I was using all the reserve I had to focus on the crisis in which we found ourselves. There wasn’t a lot left for much communication with anyone else.

I experienced friends who laid down their lives for us during this crisis. They were at the Hospital waiting for us as we were flown in on a medical emergency plane from another state. They took my phone and answered calls. Initially they took over. They fed me, took care of immediate housing needs, airport runs to pick up family coming in. They set up a blog and updated it daily so friends could stay in touch and know how to pray.

At the beginning of such a crisis just trying to understand all the new terminology is exasperating. My friends looked up the meaning of words like angiogram, brain stem aneurism, encephalitis, and meningitis.

They provided little things like a hot pack for the neck and back, soothing teas, water. They made me eat, and helped with the reams and reams of paper work and information required by the hospital, Medicaid and eventually Medicare.

As my husband’s illness lengthened they helped keep my home base covered. While we were out of state rent, utilities, bills etc. still had to be covered, the mail had to be picked up and plants watered. My friends covered this for me and helped me stay on track so I did not get behind. Even with all this help there was a lot of juggling living away from home.

VISITING
In the beginning we asked for very limited visits. There was so much unknown and a lot of emotional strain for my husband and our family. We also had to consider the extreme risk of susceptibility to infections. Colds and flu were always a worry but after awhile one needs to have visitors. Visits should be kept short to conserve the energy of both the patient and their caregiver.

If the visit can’t take place in the patients room the caregiver can often come to the waiting room and visit there.

Singing songs to a heavy heart, Proverbs 25 tells us, is like pouring vinegar on an open wound, please ASK FIRST!

ADDITIONAL HELP
People frequently asked what they could do. While flowers aren’t allowed in ICU, they are allowed once a patient is moved out of ICU. Food and snacks are always good, a Starbucks card for the coffee and tea drinkers. Giving the family a break to go out to lunch and have someone stay with the patient while they get a break.

After a number of months we had a friend fly from Hawaii to stay with my husband so that I could have a much needed break, truly amazing. Money is often needed. Much of the time caregivers are away from home which often requires eating out, purchasing things you already may have at home, lots of phone calls and other expenses that you haven’t budgeted. These are expenses over and above costly medical bills.

In our case once my husband became ill one of our primary source of income was cut off. If you have the ability to organize needed monetary help ask if it is needed.

If you are familiar with processing Medicare forms or are familiar with the qualification process for Medicaid ask if your knowledge would be helpful. Navigating these organizations is not for the faint hearted.

If you have housing for someone finding himself or herself far away from home please let them know. The generosity of many provided me with more than just a place to lay my head.

When someone suddenly finds himself or herself in the unthinkable crisis there is always something you can do.

Some thing I could encourage folks to do is to stop by a hospital and pickup the form called 5 Wishes or Your Right to make Health Care Decisions.

It is a simple thing to do and does not require a lawyer etc. and it is free. If you live most of the time in the same area it is good to leave a copy with the hospital you would most likely go to in an emergency.

Consider and put it in writing if desire or desire not have DNR. I did not even know the meaning of DNR until about the 5th week of ICU. DNR means Do Not Resuscitate. This is something to talk about with your loved ones and the decision can always be reversed. Often a patient that receives resuscitation comes out of that much worse off than they were before their emergency.

This summary is by far from being all exhausted but hopefully can be helpful to some.
Alexis Wilson
YWAM Associates

Homosexuality – The Christian View

July 11, 2009

The bible states that the act of homosexuality is a sin according to God’s laws.  See :-

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 – “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” (NIV).

Romans 1:26-27 – “Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.” (NIV)

Homosexual tendencies within individuals are often caused by a degree of abuse or dysfunction experienced during the early childhood and or teenage years.   People are not born as homosexuals. Here are some examples :-

1.  If a boy was sexually abused by his father,  step father, uncle,  male teacher,  male peer or any other male figure,  this boy may develop homosexual tendencies because of this abuse .   Sometimes these incidents can be so traumatic they can become suppressed memories in the subconcious and may only surface in later life when the survivor is ready to deal with these memories.   Incidents of severe abuse may also be so buried in the subconcious, they may sometimes  only surface in dreams or nightmares.

2.  If at birth the parents of the child wanted a girl  instead of a boy, and this is clearly made known to the child while growing up,  the boy may subconciously reject his maleness and adopt female characteristics in order to please his parents.

3.  If the wife continually puts down or rubbishes her husband due to discontent, infedility or disapproval and puts down men in general,  in front of her male child,  this child may in turn grow to see that being male is a negative thing and hence learn to take on female qualities and desires instead. 

Every individual case is different as to  the root causes of their homosexual tendencies.   It may be a series of different incidents and effects that can contribute to their homosexuality.   It can also depend on how continuous the abuse or negative input into a child’s life is.    How sensitive a child is, can also make a difference in how he or she reacts to their environment.   Not every child will react in the same way to the same abuse or negative input.

The good news is that it is possible for the power of God through Jesus Christ  to heal the homosexual.  God loves the homosexual person and in his compassion desires to see him or her fully healed and restored to wholeness.  This can be achieved through skilful and trained prayer ministry and inner healing.  Even suppressed memories from childhood,  can be unearthed and revealed through the power of Jesus, in the form of skilful and trained prayer ministry.  However it is not always a quick process, but can often take a long time –  even a number of years.    The length of time can depend on  how severe the root causes are and how willing the person is willing to work on change.  See :-

1.  Exodus International  http://www.exodus-international.org/
2.  Living Waters Ministry http://www.livingwaters.org.au/

Unfortunately many homosexual people,  do not choose the road of wholeness and healing,  partly because they do not want to admit they are broken people who need  help.  It is much easier to believe  that homosexuality is now a normal and accepted state of being, in society.  In this way one can live in denial that there is anything wrong and that deep issues need to be dealt with in their lives.  

However it is not a weakness to admit that one is “broken” and in need of help or healing.  Instead this is really the beginning of true freedom and restoration in a person’s life.   And if it is any consolation,  all of us a broken and wounded in various degrees and in different ways.  This is due to the fact that we live in a world of sinful and imperfect people,  many who will hurt us and wound us whether they realise this or not.   This is why all of us are in need of the saving power of Jesus and that is why Jesus came to die for every one of us not just for homosexual people.

So the fact is all of us are broken people in some way or another.  Some people just live in denial that this is so.

Another point to note is that the more a homosexual person willingly engages in this sin and lifestyle,  the more that person gives a foothold for Satan to enter his life and eventually take control of him or her.   They will soon succumb  to the deception that what they are doing is normal acceptable and OK before God.

Since God sees the homosexual act as a sin,  these people would also need to abstain from carrying out their sexual desires in this area.   Many people may view this as harsh and unloving for God to demand such a thing. 

However I would like to argue that abstaining is not a new thing  within the Christian faith.  For instance for Christians,  if one is single one has to wait until they have found a marriage partner until they are able to have a sexual union.  Some individuals may only find their life partner when they reach the age of 40 or  50 .  Hence they have to abstain from sex for 20 or 30 years.   Even married people who are Christians, have to abstain, in a sense as well.  Not necessarily from their spouse (but this may also occur due to sickness etc) .   However if they become attracted to other members of the opposite sex,  which may occur  through the process of everyday life,  they cannot  just act on every impulse that comes their way.  They have to choose to abstain and exercise self control as well.

God’s laws are always given for our own good and well being-  to protect us from a life of disaster and emotional and physical chaos.  It is up to the individual whether he or she chooses to believe this or not.

Helping Your Child Handle Difficult Emotions

May 26, 2009

Sometimes I feel

There is a new book published called ” Sometimes I Feel – How to help your child handle difficult emotions“.   It is written by Samantha Seymour a clinical psychologist and mother of two sons aged 2 & 5.  The book contains inspiring visuals where parents can talk through how to handle difficult emotions with their child.  Although not designed to be a complete manual it may provide some insights and suggestions for this sometime difficult area. 

See the following link for more details :-http://www.finch.com.au/html/s02_article/article_view.asp?art_id=279&nav_cat_id=220&nav_top_id=70