In group today we were looking mostly at coping mechanisms in the Schema model.
I’ve mentioned before about the detached protector, which is disassociating with emotions in order to protect yourself from pain. I’m sure everyone uses that from time to time in their life but it’s certainly something I do a lot. We also discussed (now forgive me, I can’t remember all the names properly) attention-needing, which is causing drama, threatening suicide, drawing attention to your problems, sleeping with a lot of partners, etc. The bullying mode where you attack people before they get a chance to criticize you. The overcompensator, who prizes status and achievements, the soother who uses alcohol, drugs, food, sex, films, video games, etc as a distraction. Oh and many others…or maybe not. I’ve forgotten.
But the one that stood out for me was compliant surrender. Someone who is afraid of conflict and goes along with others to make them happy. A submissive person whowill tolerate abuse, seek approval and forget their own wants and needs in a way that fulfills their view of themselves.
Now I’m an attention seeking actress, I write my feelings for others to read, I read to distract myself and imagine my obsessive anorexic behaviour comes into the distraction mix somewhere too, and I certainly flip my feelings off so I do all these things. But I KNOW that I use compliant surrender to protect myself. And it has had me in trouble. I’m so afraid of saying ‘no’ that I’ve said ‘yes’ to things that I know will be dangerous to me, hurtful to others, a waste of time, a contradiction, a stress. And that’s because I’m scared. I’ve used this coping mechanism to stop myself getting hurt in the past and now I don’t know how to escape it. But that’s what therapy is for. I feel like I’ve made a bit of a breakthrough. Now I know this, I know what I need to work on.
NO. See, that wasn’t so bad….