Client addiction to abuse

Postby MindMinders » Tue Feb 07, 2017 4:53 pm

Am a clinical psychologist and I have a client (female) who is obsessed with relationships with jerks, she has been in numerous relationships with guys who use her abuse and leave. I tried CBT, and NLP to get her over this behavior, she isnt complying to the treatment and just dwelling over her obsession with a new guy she met, who already isnt interested in her and told her so on the first date. she is fixated, and obsessed as he held her hand. how can i get her to comply with the treatment? and how to help her with the obsession in the meantime? should i stop her treatment as she isnt ready?
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Postby Alex4 » Tue Feb 07, 2017 11:39 pm

Unfortunately, you can't "make" her change. I won't as, as I know sessions are private, but perhaps finding out why she keeps getting into these abusive relationships in the first place.
I don't mean this next to be sexist, but guys rarely talk about being abused even if they are. There seems to be a return to another abusive relationship for some women who seem like they have so much going for them. Smart, attractive, driven, yet in their personal relationships, can't seem to stop the cycle.

Just a guess, but I would bet that she doesn't feel that good about herself. Maybe she was abused as a child, or somewhere along the line she didn't fit in and didn't want to lose the abusive man or woman. Most of us would get angry and not let someone walk all over us much less verbally or physically abuse us. (Again, this is from a male point of view so I'm sure there are things I've missed).

One of my Aunts started out with an abusive husband, and though she divorced him, continued to move from bad to worse. She finally found someone who treats her well in her late 60's. She too is smart, witty attractive and you would never guess that every relationship over the past few decades was either physically, emotionally (or both) abusive.

Until you find what caused her to feel poorly of herself or to think she didn't deserve any better, you will have made a major breakthrough.

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Postby jeinert » Mon Feb 27, 2017 4:49 pm

I agree with Alex4. This is almost always caused by childhood abuse of some type. I would use some type of regression or parts therapy to either find the first event or to convince the part or parts causing the problem to change. I might also use EFT to release any bad feelings or traumas she has. Until you can release these trapped emotions associated with her problem, she will just keep going back to abusive relationships.

As an example, a story I once read about a woman who kept getting into abusive relationships. It turns out that as a child, when she got into trouble, her dad would make her strip naked and beat her with his belt. Every time he hit her, he would say, "I love you." And because of that, she associated love with abuse. Your client may or may not have a similar story of abuse, but I bet she has something that happened in her past that causes her to subconsciously associate these abusive relationships with love or comfort, or some good emotions.
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Postby Candid » Tue Feb 28, 2017 11:11 am

People who unerringly choose abusive relationships come from a background of abuse, as others have suggested.

Are you aware of complex ptsd? If not, it would help you to watch this:

Your client doesn't choose abuse consciously, it's just what feels like 'home'. CBT and NLP are both useless for treating this. It would be best to refer her to a trauma therapist.
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