I FEEL LIKE EVERYONE IS AGAINST ME: "AUTHORITY" TRIGGERS FEELING INFERIOR, DOMINATED, & DISRESPECTED
I’ve talked about triggers and self-sabotage in many forms in the past, including passive-aggression, a laundry list of toxic misery-making behaviors, social anxiety, oversharing, feeling guilty or unable to say “no”, expecting mind-reading in lieu of honest communication, powerplays and relational games, staying in a bad situation like living with a narcissist, remedying a life that lacks direction or fun and interest, cruel inner chatter plus contrast poisoning, and more.
If these are a way of life for you, and it always feels like everyone is an enemy-in-the-making because it's only a matter of time before they turn against you and everything ends in a nuclear-fallout fight, the chances are very good that you have been infantilized for most, if not all, of your life.
The nature of living things is to grow and be free. When you are disallowed that, a certain "F*CK YOU" factor sets in, and it manifests in a million vengeful ways that *always* ricochet right back in your face (ouch).
For sure, this was me. I was cursed with the WORST relational luck. I couldn’t even make a friend, much less keep one for any distinguishable period of time. I could barely get hired, much less keep a job (yes, I’ve been fired from RETAIL of all things). Even God wasn’t on my side: I believed in and followed a demanding, fear-disguised-as-love religion that took away my peace of mind and left me a neurotic mess. And don’t get me started on how “The Love of My Life” and I created a warzone in which we declared a truce only to go no-contact every other week (or for 7 months).
Something about me turned people off. WAY off. Either immediately or after a few conversations where I felt I had to get them to “see things the right way” or where I sucked up over and over (I tried everything I could think of). I couldn’t understand it. I was average and unremarkable in every way, so what was so wrong (and repugnant!) with me? Why couldn't I connect, much less click, with someone, ANYONE????
It took me a very long time and a lot of research and help from trusted loved ones to realize that, in addition to all kinds of toxic adaptations to survive in a very toxic and joyless childhood home, I had also adopted a survival mindset to suppress the True Self that I was never really allowed to get to know, much less set free.
When we have been shamed, guilted, terrorized, threatened, ridiculed, coerced, punished, oppressed, or smothered into being who we really aren’t (often for the convenience / pleasure / satisfaction of a “caregiver” early in life), we develop an “Us versus Them” mentality towards anyone in Authority.
And since we feel like Fate has relegated us to the lowest rung on the proverbial totem pole, we start to view nearly everyone as authority. This leads to the normal human instinct to build up and put them on a (often unearned) pedestal where we over-trust, over-rely on, and over-idolize.
At the same time (because of our history with authority figures, and due to lacking objectivity--whether we feel good or bad at the moment often determines whether we see *them* as good or bad at the moment), we’ve come to view authority as a exploitative, empathy-less, mixed-signaling, all-powerful ENEMY.
If your life has been bubbled in a micro-society where any assertion of your own inherent power has lead to explosive, humiliating, disastrous consequences, how in the world are you supposed to:
Even think for yourself, much less suddenly find your “no”;
Be brave enough to stop being passive-aggressive (and take the possibly-life-altering fall-out of direct confrontation that you have no idea how to handle with tact);
Be brave enough to start being openly communicative (and risk further rejection and abandonment);
Be brave enough to start holding people accountable for THEIR actions with YOUR respectful, self-beneficial actions (and your absence);
And see yourself as part of a lovingly supportive team instead of a serf-lord dynamic?
HOW TO STOP FEELING INFERIOR TO AND STOP BEING TRIGGERED AND ABUSED BY SO-CALLED AUTHORITY:
*IT TAKES TIME AND OBSERVATION AND ALOT OF PERSUASION:
I can’t tell you how many times someone who loves me very dearly (and proved it consistently and constantly) has told me “I’m not the enemy” and I was totally unable to see it. EVERY.INTIMATE.INTERACTION was colored through the filter of dealing with my corrosive childhood “caregiver” and other cruel people who had abused their positions of power. I was so damaged and overwhelmed that I couldn’t *not* see animosity ALWAYS. I was ALWAYS on red-alert all-systems-go hair-trigger TRIGGERED for any possible attempt at "being taken advantage of" again. People pick up on that energy subconsciously and non-toxic people flee at the faintest whiff.
I had my own atmosphere.
And thanks to our autonomic nervous system and the gestalts we prioritize, we always find what we look for and continue to experience more and more of our dominate feelings. No wonder I couldn't "win" and I couldn't snap out of it (even when I knew I needed to).
I know how it feels to not know how to “choose your battles” because you are habitually fighting the losing battle on feeling hopeless, helpless, trapped, and infinitely inferior so that even what happened to your yogurt cup, or which song to listen to, calls for scorched-earth emotional lashing out. You NEED control and you can't trust anything.
I know how it feels when everything that happens or doesn't happen that you don’t like, is yet MORE proof heaped onto the pile of “Look How Easy It Is To ‘Disrespect’ Me.”
Objectivity, proportion, and knowing the difference between what to value and what are cosmetic, unimportant details are learned abilities.
The day you can become aware enough to identify what really matters, who is truly supportive, freeing, and delighting in of the REAL YOU (and not just occasionally, only to take it right back the moment they feel “disappointed” by you, your successes, and your failures), how to be truly supportive in like-kind (and not be an impossible-to-please dudgeon dungeon who always brings up past let-downs), how to stop valuing the opinions and respect of your abusers while putting those who always show up for you through the wringer, and how to let go and just *enjoy*, is the day you become aware enough to make a future worth living.
It happens bit by bit, but you can help it along by opening your eyes and mind every day.
*KNOW YOUR RIGHTS, DOCUMENT, RECORD, SEEK SUPPORT:
You must be and will always be your own biggest advocate.
When you don’t know what rights you have and what actions you can take to protect yourself and resolve issues, you by default choose to build your own cage of helplessness and victimhood.
Abuse of authority (real or imagined) thrives on your complicit silence and your volunteering to eat their sh*t.
Past Me was so terrified of imagined repercussions and conflict that I endured real harassment and hostility and ended up taking the fall and making myself look bad (more self-sabotage). I was an enabler to my own being bullied. This haunts me to this day.
And maybe, just maybe, I wanted to be “tough enough” in the battle of wills to “win”.
Know & follow the rules of both conduct and communication instead of breaking them with ignorance, passive-aggression, or gossip / bad-mouthing / oversharing (which just gives your abuser a valid excuse to legally reprimand you and material to use against you). Know your rights (which may or may not be made clear and obvious), document, record where legal / possible, and seek support and redress.
You have no obligation to protect an abuser and you deserve the peace and dignity that they are denying you. Very few people like abusers, and abuse-based lawsuits and toxic company culture have cost businesses big bucks.
You will find the majority on your side. Remember that. You matter, your humanity matters, your peace matters.
Believe me when I say, you won’t be proud that you stood up for yourself & what is right LESS.
*ESCAPE / FLEE / LEAVE HOME:
This can be emotional no-contact, or it can literally be to go see the wide world. You can’t know what you don’t know, and you can’t fully *understand* what you haven’t experienced. There is a reason every.single.blog.out.there will tell you to cut toxic people out of your life. It is the exact same reason creepy horrific cults seek to insulate followers from any outsiders and eliminate individuality and access to information.
It's because you NEED to experience that wholesome contrast to an unwholesome environment. You need to understand that what you want is possible to such an extent that you internalize the realization that your unwholesome “home” is not how it has to be and certainly not how it should be.
It gives you time, space, and energy to recalibrate so that your boundaries strengthen and your b.s. tolerance diminishes to the point that your excuse making sounds ridiculous, unacceptable, and pathetic, even to YOU.
*TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF:
When you feel like the world is against you and there is just no point in anything because you are used and exhausted, it’s hard not to just let yourself go.
But the inside reflects the outside, and the outside reflects the inside. Change one, and you help the other to change.
When you dress nice in clean clothes, when you keep your promises, when you move your body so that it has more energy, when you do something you enjoy that expands your spirit, when you take care of your skin and hair, when you eat well, when you can relax because you’re on top of things (instead of letting them get out of control) and you have your sh*t together…
You are making your case to the world that you are worthy of respect and abundance, and that to receive otherwise would be weird and indeed off-putting because it just doesn’t go together.
When you *understand* your options (and that you have them at all), your life becomes YOURS because YOU CHOOSE what it becomes. Destiny gives you an open invitation to co-create your Fate. You are re-born as the fourth Norn.
For most of my life, I was con-vinced that I had to take whatever sh*tty thing that showed up in my life first. The cruel boss; the menial, unrewarding, hand-to-mouth job; the terrible climate; the wrathful, nitpicking, narcissistic “God”; the awful attitudes of whoever was willing to put up with me (that mirrored my own that I had no clue how to fix), like some sort of “done deal”.
Don’t take an apparent “no” from the Universe for an answer. Try somewhere else. If it feels wrong, it is wrong. Do *whatever.it.takes* to get somewhere else. I can’t tell you what an earth-shattering, belief-shattering experience it has been to live somewhere else, to leave something that made me miserable, to try a different workplace and work with kind, easy-going people. I could never have believed it if I hadn’t been there. I’m still shocked at the contrast.
When you commit, the world adjusts. Why? Because it has to. That’s just what it does.
Make the world have to adjust to what YOU need by ACTING on your choices, and it will.
It takes longer than you’d like, and it’s usually more uncomfortable than you’d like, but it happens sooner and more assuredly than you think.
When you have been infantilized and treated as a commodity all your life, it is the most natural thing in the world to be threatened and triggered by the very concept of authority. And if that has been your life, literally everyone will be a threat because your conditioned-to-feel-ever-demoted-by-default mind, heart, and soul that have been so excoriated and crushed will be on constant lookout to preserve whatever is left of the half-life you’ve been told you are destined to (inadequately) live.
It doesn’t have to be that way. And it won’t be, or you would have stopped reading by now.
The “birthright curse” of bad relational luck and bad mental and emotional health ends starting today.
All My Love (Always!),
Want to work together one-on-one? I'm here.