A Look into the Future of Your Healing Journey

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Healing Henry CloudExcerpted from Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

How will your recovery and healing after narcissistic abuse look and feel to you? Everyone’s road to recovery is different. We all learn, process information, and cope differently. But how will real recovery look? The survivors and thrivers say it is wonderful, but if we have never experienced it, what do we aspire to?

I would like to provide a different level of encouragement and assurance to you with a look into the future of your recovery. After all, we are working so hard to get there. We increase the chances of success if we have a goal and can envision and assert that in our affirmations. So here is a look into your new life and the benefits you will reap and DESERVE from all your hard work. Here is your personal vision statement! Here is a look to not only how it will feel to recover but also to thrive.

You are no longer a victim or a survivor but you are now a victor and feel like one. You have progressed to becoming a thriver: someone who finds joy and satisfaction in many aspects of life. You are confident in your abilities and focus on pursuing goals that serve you and bring you pride and respect. You show on the outside how you feel on the inside. You feel deserving of success and a high quality life and are confident in your personal power.
knowbetter do betterYou recognize yourself as the most important and interesting person in the world – a unique and precious part of life and that there will never be another you in the history of creation. You take the time and effort to nurture yourself and care for your own needs. By now, you have created a new family or support system for yourself that banishes the isolation and shame you felt in the past.

You can readily give of yourself to others and accept nurturance and consideration in return. This is the step in which your new self comes together into a personality that expresses your full essence in the world. It feels awesome and you embrace your new life and truth with gratitude and feeling loved and appreciated. Intimate relationships are now infused with trust, sexual sharing and mutual self-reliance. You freely communicate your needs, allow healthy mutual dependency and resolve conflicts, free of the concerns, pain, shame, fears, and self-doubt of the past.

On healingYour new self-acceptance allows you to be less critical of yourself and others, while your new self-awareness helps you to use your compassion for yourself and others responsibly. You can readily identify hurtful situations and exploitive people BEFORE they cause harm to you. You can gauge situations accurately and share your feelings assertively, as appropriate, without losing control of them.

You give care responsibly and look into your self with confidence for validation of your worth. You balance self-care and self-compassion with giving care and compassion to others. You feel emotionally strong and wake invigorated every day because you know what makes you happy and know you deserve it. You set goals and take action to achieve them because you are confident you can achieve them and deserve the outcomes of your efforts.

By now, you are able to avoid exploitative job situations and can identify and pursue appropriate promotion opportunities. You are no longer mired in office politics or oppressed by bosses or authority figures because you no longer release your power or compassion to them or take on their brokenness. You can develop your career in a way that fosters your interests and talents and accept the financial and emotional rewards that follow. If you find yourself facing a dead end in your career, you know as truth that you can make the necessary changes to keep yourself vital and interested in your work. Instead of experiencing your work and life as a strain, you now feel challenged and satisfied by both.

If you have children, your new sense of self has brought you a new identity as a loving, caring parent. Your children are happy and healthy and have healed through you. You provide them an excellent role model of emotional health and reciprocal unconditional love. You accept your children as separate unique individuals and raise them to respect and honor themselves and others. You foster their self-esteem by giving them appropriate amounts of power and control and protect them from harm by setting clear and consistent limits. You are able to discipline them by using the positive elements of your relationship with them to hold them accountable when they fall short of the values you have set for your family.

12278924_10205493775089309_5891612657388860690_nThis is the time to acknowledge that your family’s intergenerational chain of abuse has ended with you. You and your children are living testimony to this formidable accomplishment. You can continue to grow together, allowing your relationship to mature into a seasoned, adult-to-adult friendship that can provide joy and affiliation for the rest of your lives.

Finally, your new self begins to express itself in one area that may have always been difficult: play. You probably have neglected this area of expression, but the newly-confident you may now be ready to explore this exciting domain. Hobbies, sports, creative arts, traveling and music are just some of the many ways you can play as an adult. Playing keeps you in touch with your own inner child and affords you an opportunity to share another experience with your children. Playing revives us and recharges our emotional batteries. It improves our outlook on life and rewards us for our hard work. Don’t deprive yourself of this important element of life. Find new ways of playing that fill you up and charge your active participation in life.

Many survivors wonder how they will know that they have completed their recovery. That moment is very personal and may or may not be related to an external event in your life. It occurs at the moment when healing on the inside and change on the outside merge into a unified sense of self. It occurs when you become your authentic self, when your beliefs, thoughts, and actions align and you are confident that whatever life brings you, your authenticity and truth will carry you through it. You are clear on your self-worth, rights and authorities and use them independently and routinely to pursue and achieve your goals.

705466_cover_mockup1-1This moment may be a “mystical experience,” one in which you feel at one with the world. It may be the moment in which you realize you have attained an achievement that symbolizes success to you. It will be different things to different people, and you are the best judge of the moment for yourself. Whichever the case, it will be beautiful!

May your spiritual source guide and protect you in your search for truth and becoming the authentic and best version of yourself that you were put on this earth to be and creating magic with others whose truth aligns with yours.


Yourlifelifter Announces Release of the Documentary Film “Narcissist”

Evelyn Ryan, author of Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors, stars in the documentary film, NARCISSIST.

This is a riveting film about the role narcissism plays in society and relationships. The movie was co-produced by Frank MacKay and Lee DioGuardi Buono.

This film includes interviews with Evelyn Ryan, her daughter, politicians and others related to narcissism, empaths, codependency and her personal life and journey for truth and the history behind her book Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

Here is an exclusive preview of the FILM for the Yourlifelifter Community…please share with all your friends!

Thank you for your support!

Together we heal! Together we thrive!

A “Dear John” Letter to a Narcissist

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

5cfff8c5858232ba3e5cba761677b3af (1)I am posting this letter I received with permission from the author that describes poignantly the pain experienced from narcissistic abuse as well as the power we all have to heal after narcissistic abuse! I would like to thank the author personally for trusting me with her heartfelt, gut-5cfff8c5858232ba3e5cba761677b3af (1)wrenching, beautiful, powerful and courageous words.

Dearest Ex-Husband,

I expect my words to be ignored and ridiculed. I expect my deepest feelings to be unimportant or even laughable. I know what I say means nothing to you, but even with this knowledge, it means something to me.

So with that said, my first goodbye is to me not being important, my opinion being so irrelevant. Goodbye to the days of being last and feeling so sorry for ever thinking I should make myself important.

Goodbye to the days of trying to impress you with a home-cooked meal I spent a lot of time preparing and a clean house for you to come home to. For what? You to just come home and tell me it was nothing compared to what you had to endure at work? Everything was always a competition with you. All I ever wanted was to be your teammate. You just don’t understand how that works.

Goodbye to having to cover up almost EVERYTHING you ever did or didn’t do. The best part about this is that the 3 pairs of eyes that saw me doing this, won’t be disgusted with me anymore. They saw it all. They know what a jerk you are and no one has to pretend it wasn’t happening anymore. Hallelujah!

Goodbye to feeling anxious when we were in the company of others because you would boast about yourself and that embarrassed me. I’m happily waving goodbye to all of your lies too. A part of me felt sad for you for so many years because of the stories you told me about your childhood. But I don’t feel bad for you anymore at all. It was all lies, all lies about your heritage, family tree, the murders, college, the abuse you claim that you endured by your Mother, Father, Step Mother, Maternal Grandfather and Ex-Girlfriend. You are a sick individual to make up some of the most horrible scenarios. Also, goodbye to me being an idiot to believe such bullshit! And as for the lies you’re continually telling?GOODBYE! I won’t entertain those either.

Goodbye to feeling so alone. So many times, I would take the children to do things we should have done as a family. You were always so grumpy and distant…never wanting to spend quality time with any of us. So, I picked up the pieces and went on without you. The kids and I won’t have to feel rejection on a daily basis anymore.

Goodbye to having to take the blame – the blame for everything; the blame for why you were mean and abusive, why you had affairs, why you drank alcohol at all hours of the night, why the toilet broke, why there was laundry to be done, why the burgers didn’t turn out well, why you had to have a job, why your truck was dirty, why we had to pay our bills, why we had kids, why the kids had to eat, why the kids wanted to be read to, why your biological daughters were coming to visit, why the camper needed to be cleaned, why I had hurt feelings most days and a few other things.

Goodbye to asking you to help – help with household duties, bills, changing of diapers, or anything that comes with being a married father of 5 children. Because when I asked you of these things, you would scream and yell at me for “making you so tired.” I envied my friends and family who had a husband that would do these sort of things without asking. I still get really emotional thinking of the day one of the kids wanted to learn to ride her bike without training wheels. You sat in a chair disgusted that she would ask you for help. So, her Aunt and Uncle jumped up and within 10 minutes she made a memory with them, instead of you.

Goodbye to walking on eggshells. Everyone hated it! I did, the kids did, our family did and our friends did. You were a ticking time-bomb that won’t be exploding in my home ever again. I’m perfectly content with never biting my tongue again…have fun with that!

Goodbye to being your punching bag. Your mirror. You constantly called me names such as selfish, disrespectful, psychotic, etc….all these things YOU STRUGGLED WITH. And goodbye to sometimes believing you.

Of course, goodbye to all the good things too. There had to be some good in order for me to accept your proposal, right? It was really good in the beginning and we made some really nice memories. Sometimes they sneak up on me and take my breath away. The man I fell in love with and who I thought came in for a new turn in my life has been long gone though. I said goodbye to him a while back. But honestly, he never really existed. It was a mask you wore and wore damn well. But, it’s all over, so adios to that portion of our marriage as well.

And finally, goodbye to having to stand next to a coward; to a man who has never been a place of comfort for his wife or children and who was intentionally absent for most of his daughters’ lives, who walked away from 4 little girls that called him Dad, who couldn’t treat the Mothers of his children with an ounce of respect when in reality, we deserve to be honored and supported whole-heartedly! You will forever carry this burden with you. And because we all know how you wouldn’t dare own up to being this coward.

You will continue to place blame on others as you walk through life. But one day, you will face our Heavenly Lord and the price you pay will be all yours. But honestly, I doubt you’ll make it there. Burn in Hell. (That was me not biting my tongue)


Your ex-wife who is working to write her Hello letter.

7 Signs You’ve Arrived as a Survivor of Narcissistic Abuse

Let Me Reach with Kim Saeed

7 Signs Blog Pic

Recovering from narcissistic and emotional abuse can seem like an ordeal of the most grievous kind.

You may have endured months of struggle and suffering without knowing if you’re making any progress because the pull to go back remains strong.  You miss the moments under your abuser’s sway because, in your traumatized mind, cognitive dissonance and memories of so-called “good times” cloud your objectivity.

How do you know where you stand on your road to recovery?  Victory isn’t always in-your-face.  Arriving as a survivor of narcissistic abuse comes in waves, even ripples, but if you experience the following seven signs, you can feel gratified knowing that healing is within your reach.

1)  You’ve begun to appreciate that self-care is something you need to participate in consistently. Not only because you are healing from emotional abuse, but because healthy people in general understand the importance of putting on their oxygen…

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Don’t Like What You See? Look a Little Closer… The Mirror of the Empath

Empaths Empowered

mirrorWe have all experienced it, being around someone who has either taken an instant dislike to us, or a bizarre resentment suddenly appears in those we have known for some time. We may have no idea why the other feels this way, as we certainly have not given them reason to have such repugnance towards us. No matter whether they try to hide their feelings or not, we can still sense their loathing and it does not feel good!

Someone taking a dislike to another is a completely normal and acceptable part of life with everyone. We are all different and there will always be some people we do not get along with, whether Sensitive or not. For example, the first impression the Empath has when we first meet someone is always spot on, as to whether we could like or trust that person. This is due to having a…

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The Secret to Happiness – We Had the Answer the Whole Time

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

I will tell you the secret to happiness and it won’t cost you a dime.

Here it is. TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE, ONCE YOU FIND IT AND UNDERSTAND YOU ARE WORTHY OF IT. You can eliminate pretty much all your self-doubt, worry, and angst by merely living in the moment and accepting that whatever happens, you will be able to deal with it.

Let’s break this down a bit.

After all, you were able to deal with whatever has happened in your life up to this point, right? It may not have been the greatest but you are here, right? Alive and well. Your personal power allowed that. Your divine design allowed you to do that. So in reality all previous angst and worry were for nothing and your fear was false. You anticipated danger when there wasn’t really any. But now you know even more than what you knew back then. So why would you not be able to deal with things better in the future if now you know better? Exactly. That is no secret, folks.
th-23If we have angst, it is because we are fearful of repeating the same patterns, the patterns of the past that caused us pain. We are fearful of pain. We EXPECT there to be pain and the fear of that pain causes us angst about the future. We are born with only two fears – fear of falling and fear of loud noises. All, yes, all of our pain-based emotions (and the list is long) like shame, guilt, anxiety, grief, phobias, compulsions are learned, every darn last one of them. And just like we learned them we can unlearn them.

Read more here on how our emotions become toxic.

There are no “should haves,” “could haves,” or “would haves” in the world, folks, only WHAT IS. And “what is” is exactly what is going on at this very moment.


And there is a HUGE difference between a real rhino chasing us level of danger and fear of potential harm. Fear of harm and real danger are not synonymous. So, in essence, we overestimate the real danger AND underestimate our ability to deal with it. This causes us to suffer angst and to fear unnecessarily. We end up sabotaging our own happiness and and becoming inauthentic versions of ourselves.

th-1However, what we know for sure is that we cannot take the same actions and expect a different outcome. We cannot, as Einstein said, solve problems at the same level of thinking that created them.

We need to merely unleash our personal power to do that. We ALL have this power. We do that by eliminating the obstacles that are blocking our personal power, the irrational beliefs and trauma bonds that cause us to doubt ourselves and our worth and thoughts that are causing us to scare ourselves to death and to stay addicted to our abusers and false beliefs.

knowbetter do betterWhen we know better and that we are worthy of the knowledge, we do better. This is called replacing lies with truth, your own personal truth and living an authentic life. And like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, we had the answer all the time.

I’ll Take Myself and My Sexual Power Back, Thank You.

Essays on the Narcissistic Relationship

shutterstock_226747705.jpgI’ve had a lot of survivors of psychological abuse come to me for advice especially after listening to my radio show and reading the article I wrote with Andrea Schneider titled Is Narcissism Psychological Viagra?  Our sexual feelings when it comes to psychological abusers are not widely discussed. Nor are the ways in which we need to heal that part of us that was awakened by false love.

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Why Abuse Survivors Can Become Notorious Boundary Violators

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“The nicest of people in a maladaptive wounded state who have the best of intentions must be mindful of honoring other people’s personal rights while they are learning to not only manage their own boundaries but to respect other’s as well.”

A very important and not so obvious lesson relates to the challenges of managing boundaries for those with codependent tendencies, heavily reliant on others for self-worth.

Case in point. An abuse survivor who is far into her healing journey is called daily by a life-long friend who is a serious codependent and who uses her friend’s power to sustain herself but does not work on building her who own self-assuredness to help her through her personal issues.

Case in point. An abuse survivor with admitted over dependence on others for validation, goes to her sister to let her know how her non-traditional therapy went and was told by her sister never to do that again and feels extreme shame.

What can we learn from these interrelationships related to personal boundaries?


Boundaries Control the Flow in Both Directions

Read more on managing boundaries here. 

People who are heavily dependent on others for self-worth particularly may have a hard time sourcing their own power and learning self-reliance. Codependents have learned to routinely not only let others violate their boundaries but also to violate other’s boundaries to source from them what they need to define their worth.

emotional_bill_rightsWe can see how this relates in the first case above. It is not fair and totally disrespectful to legitimate friends to overly burden them with too much information about your problems, issues, and your journey, and worse, expect them to wallow in self-pity with you. Innocently, you become, at a minimum, annoying and in the worse case, burdensome, exploitive, and even toxic. So, the nicest of people in a maladaptive wounded state who have the best of intentions must be mindful of honoring other people’s personal rights while they are learning to manage not only their own boundaries but to respect other’s as well.

Let’s look at another very important and not so obvious lesson from the second example.

Don’t Tell All

Now, an emotionally healthy individual whose ego is intact, would merely be concerned that your therapy worked for you and it met your healing goals and ask you how the therapy went. His or her concerns would be focused on your welfare. The point is that by learning not to tell your “sister,” who in this example represents anyone who is not supportive or perhaps even toxic and learning instead to focus on relying on those who do have your back and will reliably validate you, you learn to depend more comfortably on yourself and less on others. Empaths should also be aware that they are naturally trusting of people and have a tendency to voluntarily tell others everything! Readily sharing too much information with others can leave us vulnerable to emotional attackers as well. You can also learn to limit your group of friends to just a key few you can periodically check in with for assurance rather than reliance on their power or acceptance of your decisions to define your worthiness.

Healing and Learning Better Boundary Management

We can learn to better manage boundaries during our healing and recovery by learning what personal rights are and where healthy authorities and boundaries start and finish,  learning to communicate assertively, and doing self-esteem work. Living alone and staying single through healing can facilitate the process. Learning to better deal with toxic people and situations also supports boundary management.

Read more on how to deal with toxic people and situations. 

Read more on managing boundaries here.

These will not only help us make great strides in our healing and sustain our emotional health but also support emotionally healthy and mutually respectful and loving relationships. I explore these issues and provide many more healing lessons, tips and tools in my book Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

Beware Narcissists Posing as Healers

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-4I write extensively on the Blog and at the Yourlifelifter Facebook page reminding abuse survivors that healing is all about them, not their abusers and how focusing too much on their abusers will prevent them from healing and taking their personal power back.

I would like to expand on this topic especially with the recent release of exploitive “healing” books on narcissism and the increase of healing Facebook pages being run by narcissists some proclaiming even that they are “recovered” when in fact, there is no cure.

So let’s break this down a bit more.

I can teach you all you want to know about narcissists in about 15 minutes. THAT is how predictable they are in their depravity and that is all you need to heal and get over them. I periodically print about 15 one paragraph Questions and Answers that are ALL you need to know to move forward in healing.

12728933_1029523830454167_7543660069029010331_nThe point is this!

You, we, I can focus our energy on the narcissists and continue to give up our power to them and be exploited and try to figure out why they didn’t love us (which they are not capable of by the way) or we can take our power back, heal, heal our children and move on to live joy- and love-filled lives and thrive.

Which do you choose?

Because I know for a fact that there are dozens of Facebook pages and dozens more exploitive books that throw around words like healing and recovery that do nothing more than PREVENT you from healing.

The owners of the legitimate healing pages know ALL ABOUT THEM! In fact, I have been invited to participate in a panel discussion with other healers on a radio show on Mental Health News Radio to discuss this exact topic.

Folks, anyone can claim they are a narcissism expert.

Anyone can research narcissism and just repeat what they read and reprint it.

Anyone can look up memes on narcissism and repost them.

10947330_10152839810449961_2098951278719241549_nAnyone can write about the same stuff over and over and over again and repackage it differently to keep your emotional juices and trauma based hormones flowing and need for revenge triggered that will keep you trauma bonded to your abusers and uncontrollably needing to read more of the dramatic garbage.

Anyone can plagiarize other people’s works and post them and exploit others to believe they wrote it.

Sounds awful doesn’t it?

Well, this is EXACTLY what the narcissists you have never met are attempting every minute of every day to do to you WHILE THEY PREACH NO CONTACT TO YOU.

Narcissists posing as healers? What a novel idea, right?  Well, it is not so novel. It may be pretty new to Facebook but narcissists infiltrated the medical and psychological professions a long long time ago like pedophiles infiltrated the priesthood.

1098228_1187695837924727_3159249499669189930_nIt is all true because narcissists look for vulnerable victims so they need to be creative. Narcissism falls on a spectrum and there are tons of narcissists who continue to exploit their own victims just like there are narcissistic therapists who exploit their clients and narcissists who prey on their own children.


Because as I write about all the time, they know exactly what they do and believe they are entitled to all the benefits you can provide them without doing the decades of and daily research it takes to be a legitimate healer.

They forever lack a moral compass.

They forever lack compassion.

They forever lack empathy.

5cfff8c5858232ba3e5cba761677b3af (1)They forever lack the ability to sustain their own selves and parasitically prey on other human beings including their own children and relatives and even those they have traumatically wounded because they simply DO NOT CARE.

What better people to target than those who admittedly need help so they continue to abuse you “by proxy” by posing as a healer.

Read more here on how narcissists have infiltrated the healing and helping professions.

Blood relations do not make anyone immune to a heartless parasite. In fact, it makes the related empaths more vulnerable as we all here are well aware of.

11148662_10152995529557599_2181743658615626665_oThe challenges to a legitimate healer and to those who are healing are these:

To teach and learn just enough about narcissists to understand what happened to you and what your childhood wounds are and what makes you vulnerable to them so YOU CAN HEAL AND PROTECT YOURSELF from these despicable human beings.

Read more on how much you need to know about narcissism to heal.

You need to learn just enough about them so you can take your power back and be your authentic joy-filled selves you were put on this earth to be and thrive.

You need to learn just enough about them so you can heal and so your children can heal through you.

May your spiritual source guide and protect you in your search for truth and keep you safe from these parasitic emotional vampires, these annoying human mosquitoes, posing as healers.

A Victim’s Story of Hope, Healing, and Survival After Narcissistic Abuse

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

I am posting this letter I received with permission from the author that describes poignantly the power we all have to not only heal but thrive and live our authentic joy-filled lives after narcissistic abuse! I would like to thank the author personally for inspiring me and reminding me why I do what I do and trusting me with these beautiful words.

Dear Evelyn,

I ended a relationship with a narcissist last month…I am still healing the wounds of my heart and soul. I still miss him and I love him so much. However, I know what I want now and, most important, I know why I was in this crazy relationship.

My mother was a narcissist abuser and I suffered my whole life with her and never, ever, noticed that, until I got this relationship. Interesting that my ex and my mother were so alike that they used to criticize or praise each other for the same reasons. I almost married my own mother. When I think how nuts this is, oh my God, what I was going to do with my life. My main feeling after all is of gratitude.

I am deeply and forever thankful for people like you and your wise and brave page. The impact you have in our lives is tremendous and you are in my prayers, my dear, for the rest of my life. I also have to thank a professor who inspired me telling about her own experience. She posted about her life and I saw myself in her shoes. I was living what she was saying. That was so inspiring and made me spend hours and hours reading about this disorder. I also have to thank an article I read about a book called Mean Mothers: Overcoming the Legacy of Hurt by Peg Streep. I live in Brazil and this book is not available here yet, so I will have to wait to read it all, but only one page describing what the author found out about women who were not loved by their mothers (7 main consequences) made me understand exactly why I was in this relationship.

Do you know how I feel now? Free. Absolutely free of this prison! I am free from a double prison, from my mother and from him. For so long I tried to understand my fears, my doubts, my questions, my insecure and lack of confidence. For so long I thought I could help my mother. I can’t. I can’t. And I don’t have to help her, this is not my problem. I am doing everything I can to get better. After 46 years suffering attacks from my mother and 4 years proving the same poison from the man I love, I used all I had around me.

My therapist used flower remedies and aromatherapy. Some months before my breakup, I did regression therapy (not of past lives, I don’t like it, only from womb and on). I was able to heal from my fears and traumas in only 3 months of therapy. I practice yoga and meditation every day, more than once a day. The best of all is a group of friends I have, all of them women, we get together 2 or 3 times a year to spend a weekend in a hotel, doing lots of things together. We talk, we dance, we meditate, do yoga. It is a sacred feminine immersion. It is a blessing in my life and I have been doing it for 9 years. Luckily there will be one of these workshops next month, I’m counting the days to get there.

I just would like to mention something that helped somehow. Two years ago, I found out my boyfriend was cheating on me. That was when I found out about his personality disorder and all the things I had to understand about him. Meanwhile, I had the chance to forgive him, give him another chance and for more than one year, my life was amazing!! Until of course he decided to go back to attack me. I don’t regret giving him another chance, though. At that time, I had to deal with one thing only, the fact that he was not faithful. He helped me healing from this wound he left in my heart. He was amazing, he did everything he could and much more to make me feel better again. Now I have to deal with the break up. One problem at a time. Does it make sense to you? It does to me, I feel like he made it up to me. Now it is time to move on. And the reason I broke up with him, besides his personality, was the fact that I found out he was just like my mother.

Now, after 2 years getting ready for this moment, I feel first of all gratitude for this lesson I had to learn. He was the bridge I was given to cross this river of pain from not being loved by my mother. Second, I really leave him feeling peace and love for everything and everybody. I don’t hate my mother, I don’t feel any negative feeling for him. They are who they are and I have nothing to do with it. My heart is filled with peace and love, nothing can be better than this. Finally, I forgive them, how wonderful this is. But I wouldn’t have achieved this if I had broken up with him 2 years ago, I was so blind at that time, I wouldn’t have seen what I am seeing now…

Thank you so much for everything, I really appreciate your words, messages, pictures, I read everything you post. May God bless your life and all you do.

Best regards,

M. A.


Don’t Be Fooled by Glitter

th-9I as a victim of abuse for a large part of my life searched for decades for truth my soul was starving for. And now I share that truth with others. One of the hardest lessons I learned is that truly evil and toxic people do exist and that they prey on the truly good people and in fact, they target them in all aspects of life.

Read more here on how narcissists target empaths.

I also learned that exploitation and power imbalanced situations can come in many forms because “toxic humans” can come in many forms camouflaged as many things. So even after we recover from abuse, like with any addiction (and abuse victims do suffer from “pain addiction”), we can be targeted and triggered when we least expect it. We can have a single abusive or toxic mate, lover, co-worker, spouse or we can be exposed to toxicity and power imbalance in toxic “groups” that also come in all forms – families, work groups, religious groups, political groups, or what I experienced recently, a branch of a world-wide fundraising organization that is over 100 years old.

So to effectively heal after narcissistic abuse and not be vulnerable to narcissists, I’d like to remind you, “All that glitters is not gold.” This is why.

Pathological Narcissism is a Pandemic

Narcissism is now a world-wide pandemic.  It has infiltrated all aspects or our lives and is rampant in “good deed” communities like politics, the medical community, churches, and even fundraising organizations where many emotional manipulators can exist for years going unnoticed, providing illusions of generosity and “goodness” and feeding off the unlimited supply of power and energy of innocent members of the community while hiding true intentions of superiority and self-righteousness. Gary Bell, a valued community member at Yourlifelifter describes it perfectly, “Service organizations frequently come to be fraternal organizations with a bit of charity work to make it seem legit – fraternity and sorority houses for ‘grownups.'”

Narcissists are even posing as healers on Facebook. What better people to target than the vulnerable wounded ones they harmed who admittedly need help and whom they continue to abuse and exploit “by proxy” by posing as a healers? What a novel idea, right? Well, it is not so novel. It may be pretty new to Facebook but narcissists infiltrated the medical and psychological professions a long long time ago like pedophiles infiltrated the priesthood.

Read more here on narcissists posing as healers.

Kathy Krajco, a formidable pioneer in educating the world on narcissism and narcissistic abuse, describes in What Makes Narcissists Tick how the “helping professions” that supply an abundance of vulnerable prey attract pathological narcissists. Kathy cautions us to “think not only of vulnerable children in the case of teachers but also vulnerable children or grieving and hurt adults in the case of priests and ministers. Think of the vulnerable patients supplied to psychiatrists.” She also warns us about the serious problem narcissism poses in the public sector and private nonprofit institutions that use the do-gooder and moral elitist facade to cloak their true self-righteous intentions to not do good but to be “seen as doing good” and “show how good they are by pointing at someone else and telling them how bad they are.” Politics, she points out, “is an ideal arena for narcissists…the list of them who have conned whole nations to become dictators is breathtaking.”

What Can We Do to Protect Ourselves

10978510_362341267284154_1787609046267314286_n-1We can educate ourselves on narcissism and how to protect ourselves from toxic people and learn to rely more confidently on our emotional intelligence. So, if your gut instinct tells you there is something fishy going on, then trust it, don’t ignore your inner voice or second guess yourself, be cautious, and if the not so good feelings in your gut start to outnumber the truly rewarding ones, then run for the hills.

Read more here on what we can do as a person, a people, and a nation.

Do “do good” organizations do good for the community?  Possibly but beware the true intent of their members! Is it to simply give back to and benefit the community which was my sole personal objective or are there “hidden” underlying objectives? Look closely at their actions and do not assume their intentions, like yours, are good ones. Fact check! The more important question to answer is to determine why the members are really there? Does their objective for being there and donating their time align with yours? Look how they routinely treat all members. Do they play favorites? Are there cliques that seem to manipulate all the decisions in the organization to favor themselves and those in the clique at the expense of others? Do they portray in their home lives the ethics and moral codes of the organization? Do their actions contradict their thoughts and words and vice versa?

Read more here to learn how to identify emotional vampires in your life.

The point is this. Anyone can provide an illusion of doing good by hiding in a “do good” organization or even places of worship that are really filled with manipulative covert aggressive self-righteous people who are exploiting others and are languishing in their superiority over the “needy” they profess to help and are providing a very toxic and emotionally unhealthy environment for its innocent and truly compassionate members who simply are there just to “do good.” Wolves can be cloaked in many versions of sheep’s clothing and snakes can be cloaked in many colors of suits. So it doesn’t matter how appealing it “looks” or “sounds” even if there is a handsome “shiny as a new penny” person at the helm or is a rich Presidential candidate in a $2000 suit…..if it looks like, if it smells like, it is. And if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.


Read more here on what we can do as a person, a people, and a nation.

So even after we heal, we must remain vigilant and confident in our personal power. And never forget that truth is truth and never again let anyone manipulate you into compromising yours even if they appear as glittered “do gooders.”

th-2You cannot polish a turd, folks, but you can roll it in glitter and nevertheless it will remain a turd and the smell lingers. Don’t be fooled by the glitter. It is all an unsustainable illusion. Truth, on the other hand IS like gold. It can tarnish but will never lose its brilliance or value.

Why Protecting Personal Boundaries is Critical in Healing

12642914_10153878531423142_6774038841148030402_n-1Abusers, narcissists, manipulators, and bullies find us. We do not find them. Why? Because they are powerless and weak and so they prey on people who are vulnerable to their covert aggressive tactics and who will give up their power to them.

Abusers and exploiters and bullies and especially narcissists are masters at pushing pain buttons, making people feel powerless, and getting people to let down their boundaries and getting them to give up their power to them. In fact, they enjoy doing it. They use charm and love as their camouflage. We become unknowingly complicit in our own abuse and exploitation. We innocently expose ourselves to some of the worst abuse and harm imaginable.

12654645_941891752514920_7863427450412629576_nPart of healing for those who were victims and continue to be susceptible to their attacks, then, is learning effectively how not to be vulnerable to emotional predators.

Read more here on how to identify emotional vampires in your life.

Unfortunately, there is no electronic monitor like a home protection system you can purchase to warn you of impending “emotional” predators and attacks. However, you can strengthen your own internal monitors and learn new self-care and self-compassion skills including honing your narcissist radar otherwise known as “NADAR” and honoring and “feeling” for and caring for your own wants and needs with compassion and defending your personal rights and authorities. These include assertively expressing what your rights, authorities, needs, and feelings are and recognizing and regulating your own emotions especially your pain-based ones and learning when they are triggered and who routinely triggers them. Just as important, then, is knowing WHAT makes you happy.

These are normal adaptive habits supporting our emotional health and self-worth and self-assuredness we should have learned in our youth. However, we are not encouraged to and are even ignored and punished for merely taking care of our basic needs in abusive and exploitive childhoods, relationships, and environments. If this is true and continues in your life, then you are in one of the most toxic environments rather than a mutually healthy and respectful one that supports your emotional health. If this is the case, take protective actions immediately. The good news?

10947330_10152839810449961_2098951278719241549_nHealing and taking your power back will allow you to embrace the new authentic you with love, compassion, caring and a whole new set of “life” and “self-loving” skills. These include assertively expressing your wants, needs, disappointments, viewpoints, and simply saying no. Saying no is a complete sentence and requires no additional explanation. Remember, too, that boundaries control flow in both directions. So be careful not only to protect your boundaries from others but also maintain them steady and not readily share too much information with others that can leave you vulnerable to emotional attackers as well. Read more here.

When in doubt, simply trust your gut instinct, don’t second guess it, recognize your discomfort with the situation, recognize this person as a potential threat, and walk away.  Say nothing or if you feel compelled, say something neutral like “I never heard that put that way before,” or “I will have to think about that,” and then remove yourself from the toxic situation as soon as you can.

Remember the TDS rule!th-1

  1. Minimize your TIME with them;
  2. Maximize the DISTANCE between you and them; and
  3. Put SHIELDING or a barrier between you and them.

Assertively saying no and walking away to a safe place allow you to do all three, easily and effectively.

For more information on how to deal with toxic people read this article.

Another, very important and not so obvious lesson relates to the challenges of managing boundaries faced by those with codependent tendencies, heavily reliant on others for self-worth.

Case in point. An abuse survivor with admitted over dependence on others for validation, goes to her sister to let her know how her non-traditional therapy went and was bashed by her sister for the decision she made.

Case in point. An abuse survivor who is far into her healing journey is called daily by a life-long friend who is a serious codependent and who uses her friend’s power to sustain herself but does not work on building her who own self-assuredness to help her through her personal issues.

What can we learn from these interrelationships on managing personal boundaries?

healthy-boundaries-memeFirst, people with codependent tendencies and empaths in particular, should focus to avoid telling “good news” or for that matter any news to toxic people whose truth does not align with theirs and who do not have their best interests at heart regardless if those persons are related or not. Just because someone is related and should care about you in emotionally healthy respectful ways and should have your best interests at heart does not guarantee they do and entitle them to disrespect you and not honor your personal rights or wishes.
Let’s take a closer look at the first example here, a person going to another for validation and solace. Now, an emotionally healthy individual whose ego is intact, would have merely been concerned that it worked for you and how it met your healing goals and asked you how the therapy went. My concern would have been you. Point being is that by learning not to tell your “sister,” who in this example represents anyone who is toxic and learning instead to focus on relying on those who do have your back and will reliably validate you, you learn self-reliance, to rely more comfortably on yourself and less on others. You can also learn to limit your group of friends to just a key few you can periodically check for assurance with but not overly rely on for acceptance or approval.
There is another very important and not so obvious lesson here related to personal boundaries: Boundaries control energy flow inward and outward.
Empaths can be so trusting of people they readily tell others everything! Readily sharing too much information with others can leave us vulnerable to emotional attackers as well. Read more here. Releasing too much information too fast is a signal to boundary violators and energy vampires that you are at their disposal to target and prey on. It is also dishonorable to your own self and your life. Trusting others before you have evaluated whether they are “on your side” or not is simply not a wise thing to do. Would you let your money hang out of your wallet while you walked down the street? I think not. Well, the same applies to your own personal emotional health and well-being that hold much more value to you than money!
Abuse survivors can become notorious boundary violators themselves. People who are heavily dependent on others for self-worth particularly may have a hard time sourcing their own power and learning self-reliance.emotional_bill_rights
These “codependent” people have learned to routinely not only let others violate their boundaries but also to violate other people’s boundaries to source from them what they need to define their worth. It is not fair and totally disrespectful to legitimate and emotionally healthy friends to overly burden them with too much information about your problems, issues, and your journey. Innocently, you become, at a minimum, annoying and in the worse case, exploitive, dishonoring, and toxic to them. So, the best of people in a maladaptive wounded state who have the best of intentions must not forget the importance of honoring OTHER people’s personal rights while they are learning to manage their own.
Learning boundary management by re-learning what personal rights are and where healthy authorities and boundaries start and finish will help us make great strides in our healing, replace maladaptive thoughts, beliefs and actions with healthy ones and support and sustain emotionally healthy and mutually respectful loving relationships.
I explore these issues and provide many more healing lessons, tips and tools in my book Take Your Power Back. You can get your copy and read more here.



What is a Family and What It’s Not

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

12400906_10153646045097819_7827403978609735220_nTo put it simply, as related to humans, a family is a group of people who are connected in some way. We have birth families who are connected by genetics. We also have our group of connected friends or neighbors or communities such as Yourlifelifter that are our “families.” We all create and become part of “families” separate from our birth family all the time.

Whichever the case, this I know for sure. The rules of emotional health apply to ALL families and all relationships and moreso:

  • A family of birth is not exempt from these rules because they are genetically related. Invisible genetics do not entitle people to abuse, ignore, neglect, degrade, denigrate, betray, abandon, and crap on others.

Read more how intergenerational abuse is perpetuated here.

  • Our rights and authorities as humans and citizens do not change because we are related by birth. It does not give people a right to profess to love you and habitually betray you, abuse you, single you out, and abandon you in your time of need.
  • A “family” is not entitled to habitually violate each other’s personal boundaries and disrespect and dishonor their personal rights and feed off of the personal power they take from others to feed the gaps in their psyches.
  • A “family” is not a bunch of people who selectively choose to put the undeserving Golden Children on pedestals and scapegoat, crap on, and exploit the kind-hearted, empathetic, smart, bright, talented, and compassionate ones.
  • A “family” does not choose who stays and whom they target, betray and abandon because they did not suit them.

Read more on how intergenerational abuse is perpetuated here.

15220027_10155491353087542_126589844015246668_nA position in a loving family is a role of honor that is earned by showing the members love, honor and respect in the same way we do them. That is what emotionally healthy mutually beneficial relationships are. That is what love is. And we ALL deserve that –  every darn single one of us! That is a universal right as a human being that we are all born with.

So rid yourself of the toxic people in your life and go out and choose your loving family and selectively allow in only those who love, honor and respect you in the same way you do them. And start creating your own customs, joy, and memories with those who deserve your love and respect.

And when you find your family, those whose truth aligns with yours, THAT is real LOVE and when the magic starts.

The little-known reasons why you need to leave the narcissist ASAP!

Let Me Reach with Kim Saeed

The effects of psychological and narcissistic abuse come with many devastating consequences, but there are two that almost no one knows about–unless they’re a doctor or neuroscientist.

In fact, these two outcomes may be the most destructive result of emotional trauma over the long-term and is an added reason why–if you have children with a narcissistic partner–you should try to leave as soon as reasonably possible.

By now, most of us know that repeated emotional trauma leads to both PTSD and C-PTSD, which should be reason enough to leave an abusive partner.  But, what many people don’t realize is that over time, these repeated emotional injuries shrink the hippocampus, which is responsible for memory and learning, while enlarging the amygdala, which houses primitive emotions such as fear, grief, guilt, envy, and shame.

Hippocampus basics

The hippocampus, which is Greek for “seahorse,” is a paired structure tucked inside each temporal lobe and…

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The Body Keeps the Score (Part Two) — how trauma changes us

Everything Matters: Beyond Meds

By William Harryman

Bessel van der Kolk – The Body Keeps the Score (Part Two)

The title of this talk is the nearly identical to that of a new book from Bessel van der Kolk due out in June, 2014The Body Keeps the Score(pre-order at Amazon). I will be excited to see this new work – his research in the recent years has focused on yoga, tapping (Emotional Freedom Technique), chi gong, and neurofeedback, among other body-centered modalities for healing trauma.

What follows are my notes, as best as I can make them sensible from yesterday’s 3 hour talk. This is part two – part one is here. This second installment is more than half of the talk and it gets into the neuroscience a lot more.

The Body Keeps the Score, Part II

Mental illness is now conceived of as a dysfunction in brain…

View original post 1,529 more words

What Happens When You Marry Han Solo….

Essays on the Narcissistic Relationship


Luke Skywalker was cute as Hell and I almost put a picture of him on my bedroom wall amidst all the other pictures I had cut from magazines in my youth. In my middle-age reflections I realize I had assembled a collage of disturbed men, including Steven Collins during his stint on the 1982 adventure show, “Tales of the Gold Monkey” and Gerald McRaney, from the American television detective series, “Simon & Simon” which ran 1981-95. However, none of those heroes could hold a candle to Han Solo.

I see these figures now as my early training towards “love”–with psychopaths, sociopaths, and malignant narcissists. Han Solo was devilishly handsome and lived outside the universe of acceptable behavior … I mean outside the entire universe. Not even the dregs of universal society liked him. But, Han got the princess and young girls like me were groomed to believe that underneath that roguish…

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How Abusers Use Your Vulnerabilities Against You

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter


Maladaptive behaviors do not spontaneously develop. They are learned in childhood where we are growing rapidly and learning to become integrated functioning human beings. These vulnerabilities are the result of the legacy toxic shame that we are left with from years of betrayal from those who professed to love us and who were supposed to help us feel safe and teach us to rely on our own emotions and selves to sustain our joy, maintain healthy relationships, and thrive. Betrayal includes neglect and invalidation and coddling and even expecting children to grow up too fast and be “mini-adults” and take care of the other children. Even parents with the best of intentions can betray their children by not nurturing them and not validating them and not teaching them to rely comfortably on their own emotions. So folks who may not have been overtly abused and believe they were raised in the best of families can also experience the effects of betrayal and become pain addicted and dependent on others to regulate their pain and define their worth. Survivors of childhood “abuse” bring these “bad habits” with them into adulthood. We go on to teach the skewed unhealthy thinking to our children who mirror us. Narcissists also use these vulnerabilities against us and target us.


Abuse Survivors Readily Let Their Boundaries Down

Abuse survivors typically were exposed to constant boundary violation and disrespect of their emotional and physical rights and authority. The results? They are not accustomed to honoring their personal rights and authority. As they move into adulthood, they openly offer way too much information related to their personal lives and feelings to others that while “honest,” can advertise their vulnerabilities to narcissists, bullies and other abusers and make them susceptible to their attacks. Abuse survivors who are empaths, can also be too trusting.

take-your-power-back-300x300According to Dr. Jane McGregor, empaths are ordinary people who are highly perceptive and insightful and belong to the 40% of human beings who sense when something’s not right, who respond to their gut instinct, and who take action and speak up. They frequently like the child in the “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” will tell the truth and expose lies and wrong doing. A particular attribute in empaths is that they have trouble comprehending a closed mind and lack of compassion in others. This inability to see the “bad” in others also significantly enhances their vulnerability to attacks from emotional vampires throughout their lives.  Read more here on how narcissists target empaths. Empaths, to appease their need to “make things right,” may also “speak too much too soon” without scoping out the landscape first. Read more on empaths here. Trusting others before you have evaluated whether they are “on your side” or not is simply not a wise thing to do. Would you let your money hang out of your wallet while you walked down the street? I think not. Well, the same applies to your own personal emotional health and well-being that hold much more worth to your long term survival than money!


How Do Narcissists Know We are Vulnerable

Well, they learned how to recognize their potential victims in the same place you were abused – by watching the abusers in their own families. They are very slick and have spent years studying their prey, other humans no different than a mother lion teaches its cubs to stealthily hunt for a gazelle. They lack emotional empathy but have developed and learned “cognitive empathy” so they can recognize what triggers your emotions and what does not. As they get older, they hone those abilities and, for example, learn to target empaths, sensitive, compassionate people with high emotional intelligence and actively plan and plot how to “steal” their power from them by manipulating it from them. They also learn to target conscientious hard working and generous people who bring much value to the family, group, job or organization.

How Do We Learn to Protect Ourselves

The good news? We can heal. When we take our power back and build our self-esteem through self-care and self-compassion and better understand our personal rights and boundaries, we learn to release the shame and honor our personal divinity and share our truth when it is in our own best interest to do so and only with those we consciously recognize as equally deserving. We can learn to identify emotional vampires in our lives. We can also learn to assertively protect our boundaries and learn to protect ourselves from toxic people.

Read more and get many more healing lessons, tip and tools in my book, Take Your Power Back. 

Take Your Power Back is a step-by-step “How To” guide to teach you to regain and use your personal power to turn your pain-based life to one that is joy filled. It will help you discover that the source of truth-based healing resides in each and every one of you and how to tap into that infinite power.

Why Did I Get Involved with a Jerk and What Can I Do About It?

12417929_173873962976513_7464281019901344000_nEvelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Reprinted from September 15, 2013

I have been puzzled for many years with the answers to these questions:

“Why would any decent person get involved with a jerk, Why do bullies target certain people?” And “What do you do to prevent getting hooked up with these idiots in the future?” After researching for over 20 years, I have summarized the answers below: You can get much more detailed information in my book, Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

The Jerks Find You – You Did Not Find Them

  1. Accept that you did not intentionally get hooked up with these monsters or deserve it and you did nothing wrong or provoked them in ANY way. Read more here.
  2. They hunted for and found you because they perceive you as a threat or you have something they want and they know they cannot acquire on their own and simply do not want to work for it. You did not find them and they stalked you as their prey. They interpret your kindness and differences as weaknesses and are jealous and envious of your successes. After you, they will go on to their next victim.
  3. You were victimized as you were as a child. If you do not think you were a victim as a
    child, you are in denial. So think again because you would not be in this situation.
  4. They are masters of charm and manipulation, lack compassion, are eaten alive by jealousy and envy, and feel they are entitled to whatever they WANT AND NEED as Ted Bundy, Hitler and Mao Tsetung were without working for and earning it. They will steal your soul in front of an audience of 10,000, while eating a ham sandwich, deny it, and convince everyone that you are crazy and made it up and they were eating lasagna.
  5. You believe (falsely) this is what you deserve and you do not deserve better.
  6. You do not know what better is because you had and have no good role models or examples of healthy harmonious personal or family relationships (see list of characteristics of healthy harmonious relationships below). You lived in a family that consistently violated your and each other’s emotional, physical and personal boundaries.
  7. Growing up as a defenseless child in critical stages of emotional development, you had no choice but to learn how to love in a manner that was defined by another narcissistic abusive jerk’s reality and denial where he/she/they forced you to fit into a role he/she/they CHOSE for you so they could feed off of your soul and energy to fill the gaps in theirs. If you wonder why they targeted you, see Number 2 above.
  8. Your core truths about who you really are were damaged from growing up in the narcissist’s reality described in Number 7 above. This treatment and betrayal damaged your core beliefs and sense of self-worth and your sense of lovability since you were victimized by those you trusted with your heart to love you and keep you safe unconditionally.
  9. Your damaged invisible core belief (that you desperately and immediately need to challenge and change) is that you have to feel pain and suffer to be lovable and to be good.

Cannot heal at same level as pain

Distorted Thinking Patterns Make Us Vulnerable to Jerks

Remember, folks, we move in the direction of, create in reality, and do what we believe to be true EVEN IF it is a lie. Your filters for screening out narcissistic jerks were damaged in the process. The problem being, that if you meet someone who is really a good person and you are not feeling pain, you are at risk of feeling unloved and unworthy and then sabotage the “good” relationship. Relationships with jerks bring you pain that you associate with being lovable and a good person and believe you are powerless to and you do not believe you deserve better. You also most likely are an empath with codependent tendencies, self-sacrifice for other people, and believe you must fix their problems before you take care of yourself.

emotional_bill_rightsWhat You Can Do About It

To heal and recover from a relationship with a jerk and not get hooked up with one again, you need to break these distorted thinking patterns. Truly understand 1 through 9 above and bring them into your conscious awareness and challenge and change these ridiculous false core beliefs, lies you were taught to believe. Reprogram your thinking and redefine your self-worth to understand who you truly are through untainted filters. To accomplish this:

  1. Bring the broken core beliefs (I deserve to feel pain to be lovable and to be a good person and I am powerless to my emotional pain) into your consciousness and change them by using self-talk. You can help to do this by repeating the following to yourself several times a day: Add to this list as you see fit.
    • I have the personal power, right and authority to regulate my emotions including my pain-based ones which exist to protect me, not harm me.
    • I deserve and have a right to be treated with dignity and respect in any relationship.
    • I deserve and have a right to be happy and pain-free in any relationship.
    • I was born lovable and am lovable ALL the time and anytime.
    • I deserve and have a right to be in a healthy harmonious relationship (see characteristics of one below)
    • I deserve all my personal, emotional, and physical boundaries to be respected and needs to be met first. Take assertive classes to learn how to say “no” in constructive ways to help you protect and manage your personal, emotional, and physical boundaries.
  2. Surround yourself with only positive loving supportive people and preferably those who have survived similar personal and family relationships who will listen, care, understand where you are coming from and provide constructive feedback in a safe environment. Join a support group, blog, or Facebook page of survivors of narcissistic abuse or any type of abuse. Seek counseling only from competent professionals who are experienced in narcissistic personality disorder, trauma bonding, post traumatic stress, and addictive behaviors. Many say they are but are not so get recommendations from reputable sources.
  3. Practice self-care, self-compassion, and assertiveness. Learn how to not say yes when you mean no. Most of us were punished for even taking care of our basic needs so this will be a tough one to learn but is CRITICAL to your healing AND rebuilding your self-worth and honoring your personal rights, authorities, and boundaries.
  4. Learn about narcissistic personality disorder and the manipulation tactics of covert aggressive personalities. This is the worst of the personality disorders and once you educate yourself, you can tell right away if the one you were or are with is one and can recognize another one from a mile away.
  5. Eliminate toxic people from your life and ALL contact with the jerks or learn how to maintain your self-preservation when dealing with them. 11248949_10152916566146439_9136272755930132611_o
  6. Stay by yourself until you come into your own truth and fully heal and recover. Read more on how living alone can support emotional health.
  7. Learn the characteristics of healthy relationships and families. Gauge your interactions and feelings using these traits and set these as targets and what to aspire to in your relationships. If you are in a relationship or even a job and you answer no to one or more in the following list, then you better reconsider or run for the hills. Why would you settle for anything less than what is healthy and harmonious and that you are deserving of? The opposite is unhealthy, toxic, and chaotic! Life is too short, folks. For example, I deserve and want personal, family, and professional relationships where:
    • Individual human rights are valued and encouraged and empathy and compassion are shown in all dealings.
    • Tolerance and acceptance of everyone’s differences are encouraged and are the norm.
    • Unity, loyalty, respect, and consideration are communicated routinely as taking precedence over ANY individual’s narcissistic self-serving concerns. There are no favorites or golden ones, including children, spouses, siblings, parents, partners, co-workers, bosses, etc.
    • There are no scapegoats or self-serving rules, lies, labels, or myths about anyone!imgres-2
    • Feelings and dissenting views are tolerated and others do what they can to sooth, validate, and understand each other’s pain, feelings, and opinions.
    • Members do not make fun of each other or use others at their expense.
    • Warmth, generosity, and affection are the norm and coldness and iciness and greed are discouraged and frowned upon.
    • Independence is fostered and members are encouraged to develop their own codes of conduct and governance and interests and to validate each other’s thoughts and decisions.
    • Independence of thought and action is permitted and members feel free to make their own decisions without undue fear of punishment, criticism and withdrawal of love or affection.
    • Distinctiveness and uniqueness are valued and accepted as a human right and are not criticized or frowned upon.
    • Members are not scapegoated or bullied or verbally, physically or emotionally abused or neglected for any reason.
    • Communications and open discussions are valued and differing opinions are accepted and tolerated.
    • Other’s feelings are regarded as important and are heard, validated, and valued.
    • Members are treated respectfully and politely and say please, thank you, and excuse me and apologize openly.
    • Members respect others’ personal, physical, and emotional boundaries.
    • Members support each other in times of STRUGGLE and TRIUMPH and are not jealous or envious of each other or a chosen targeted few.
    • Special occasions are acknowledged equally for and by all.
    • Tolerance is shown for growth, mistakes and development.
    • Members are supported in the achievement of their personal and if at work, their professional goals.

Greg Zaffuto ReviewFor more healing lessons, tips and tools, I invite you to learn more in my book Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors

Learning the Truth About Ourselves After Abuse

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

magic llusion truth

Years ago my cousin Louisa told me that I had the natural ability to make people feel good. Well, I had to think about that for a moment. My first response was, “Well, I guess that is not so bad a quality to have.” It took me years of unnecessary pain, grief, and anger to understand the true value of what I now realize is a “gift” that I should not have taken for granted for a second. All that angst? For what?


Learning the Truth about Yourself

It also took me years to learn that this “gift” and my intelligence, compassion, and integrity made and continue to make me a target of bullies, scapegoaters, narcissists, and other emotional vampires. In short, it took years to learn the truth about myself. Does this story sound even a little bit familiar to the other folks out there? I would bet you a $100.00 it does and this is why.

We are human. We are fallible and we learn through our successful and our, well, not so successful, endeavors. This is how our characters and personalities and belief systems evolve and mature. This is how we learn what nourishes our soul.

Learn more on how work and obligation contribute to emotional health and building character.

It’s that simple. Learning how our minds work and what causes the invisible barriers such as fears, anger, angst, phobias we possess can set all of us on a pathway to understanding the truth about ourselves. Once you have clarity, you have freedom to choose and put in place the steps to deal with these invisible barriers. Once you do that, the pathway to happiness is cleared of the obstacles that prevented you from getting there all along. Look at anger, for example. Here is a quote from Dr. Lynne Namka’s book, How To Let Go of Your Mad Baggage.

“Life is full of multidimensional possibilities… Remember, you don’t have to keep on doing the same-o, same-o. Choices. Life is about choices. …One great thing about being a Human Being is that you do get choices. We can use our choices…to become gentle, loving people. What better option do you have to do with your lifetime? Choose wisely.”

I agree totally. We have the choice to break the cycles once we know the truth. Let’s discuss our upbringing for a moment and how it affected us. Do you have a history of being a victim of abuse, degradation, bullying, scapegoating? Then, most likely you were abused, degraded, bullied and scapegoated as a child. And most likely you are an empath since bullies target empaths.

Read more on the McGregor Studies showing how narcissists, bullies, and psychopaths target empaths.

We repeat the same patterns we were conditioned to accept and be familiar with as children and even become the abusers! Personally, I think anyone who was the target of abuse can achieve clarity by understanding the abuser and why you were you targeted to begin with. These truths can set you free to wise choices.

Is Abuse about the Abuser

The truth is that the abusers, shadowed their pain and inadequacies on others they perceive as a threat, a threat that is entirely in their mind. What a revelation, right Yes. They are the broken ones yet other innocent victims are made to suffer, the perfect definition of a scapegoat. I will discuss more “facts” about the innocent victims a little later.

According to http://www.bullyonline.org “Bullies are seething with resentment, bitterness, hatred and anger, and often have wide-ranging prejudices as a vehicle for dumping their anger onto others. Bullies are driven by jealousy and envy. Rejection (which cannot be assuaged) is another powerful motivator of bullying.” But why don’t bullies seek help? The answer is simple. They lack the abilities to do so. They are emotionally weak and fragile. They are the ones with abominably low levels of self-esteem who never seek or deal with the truth or make any efforts to improve because they do not have the abilities to self analyze or self sooth.

Read more on how much we need to know about narcissists to heal.

Since childhood, bullies learned to avoid the unpleasant consequences through denial, blame, and pretending victimhood. They are psychologically deficient and most likely personality disordered and are not able to see any fault in themselves. They also lack compassion and, frankly, do not think what they are doing is wrong. Frequently they are energy vampires and cannot generate their own energy. So they seek out and find targets from whom they can easily steal energy.

th-11Bullies also gang up on victims. They like to recruit other broken ones, the proverbial “flying monkeys,” most like them and frequently make them the golden children or “favorites,” partners in crime of a sort. So now they, the other family bullies, and the golden children rally against the selected black sheep and collectively dump their emotional garbage to obtain psychological relief, what I refer to as “psychological burping.“ In a sense, the black sheep role keeps the dysfunctional family, that routinely violates family members’ personal boundaries, intact. The family “normalizes’ dysfunction and the children grow to repeat the family roles that were chosen for them in their families.

Read more about dysfunctional families and intergenerational abuse here.

The black sheep then live pain-based lives they were conditioned to believe were their destiny, frequently ones of pain, drugs and alcohol abuse, emotional abuse, low self-esteem, and low sense of self-worth throughout their lives. They can go on to become the abusers and/or marry abusers or self-sacrifice for others and become codependents while neglecting their own needs.

1098228_1187695837924727_3159249499669189930_nWhy are We Targeted?

Why are the “black sheep” targeted to begin with? Do they deserve this treatment? Do they taunt the abusers? Why are some folks bullied while others are not? This selection has really nothing to do with you personally. But it has lots to do with the type of person you are, your vulnerability, and your personality and character. Here is a list of qualities in people who are typically bullied or scapegoated and how they are perceived by the abuser:

Learn more on why narcissists target empaths.

Note:   These are all characteristics of highly productive emotionally intelligent empathetic people with high integrity, qualities the bullies and scapegoaters do not possess and most likely never will. They also include characteristics that make us vulnerable.

  • Uniqueness. Stand out in some way (Qualities the bully envies or can pick on)
  • Independent and refuse to be subservient (Qualities that make it harder for the bullies to control so you are singled out as threat)
  • Highly competent or talented (Bullies are jealous, can’t stand to share credit and view this as competition)
  • Better liked and possess greater emotional intelligence (Bullies are jealous and perceive these as a threat)
  • Possess a good sense of humor (Bullies are envious of attention you receive and perceive you as a threat)
  • Ethical, generous, and honest with a desire to help, heal, teach, develop, and nurture others (Bullies are envious and they perceive this as submissiveness and a threat)
  • Non-confrontational (Bullies interpret this as submissiveness).
  • Empathetic; natural rescuers and healers with exaggerated compassion (Bullies interpret this as weakness and vulnerability)

Bullied individuals are frequently highly talented intelligent and people of the highest character. This list reflects the insipid and insidious nature of abuse, neglect, and scapegoating. The pain bullied individuals hold is the pain shadowed upon them by those who they trusted to love and protect them. The immeasurable damage is invisible and the patterns of destruction repeat themselves until, that is, you learn the truth, select other options, and break the cycles.

705466_COVER_Mockup1The point is, folks, that you have the free will to choose to parent yourself, treat yourself well, nourish your soul, and decide with whom you want to associate. You have the freedom and power to heal and replace the toxic beliefs and fears you are familiar and comfortable with with emotionally healthy ones founded on your personal truth, not lies you were conditioned to believe. You have the choice to remove toxic people from your life and surround yourself with loving people with whom you have reciprocal balanced mutually respectful relationships. You have the choice to live the life you choose and the one you deserve. You have the power to learn to monitor and manage boundaries and stop violating boundaries of others and stop others from violating yours. These choices and skills are all free for the taking once you take your power back and learn the truth about your real self-worth and the blessed person you truly are.

Learn more on becoming your authentic self.

I explore these issues in much more detail in my book Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors.


Why Do Narcissists Really Do So Much Harm?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-4The short answer? They are aggressive covert parasites with charm.

The long answer? They are character disordered. They want to and that is their intention and that is just what they do. They do it to everyone, but they needed you the most to provide them narcissistic supply for a long period of time and you came along at an opportune time for them. You were convenient. They wanted all the benefits you could supply them without any of the work so they targeted you. They found you. You did not find them.

Now, they could not tell you this, could they, because you would say, “who is this lunatic (which is what they really are)” and run for the hills if you knew the illusion and grooming was all a ploy, a con, a lie and they used love as their camouflage.

READ MORE ON THIS PROVOCATIVE TOPIC in Evelyn Ryan’s Book, Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

It is exhausting for them to pretend because it takes work and they do not like to work so, in time, their true colors emerge and you get to see who they REALLY are….covert aggressive weak uncompassionate emotional vampires who would sell their own mother and children for a nickel if it served them. But your cognitive dissonance, your inner belief system that keeps you safe, causes you to doubt what you are seeing and feeling. Why? Because they insert an element of doubt into our reality and trigger our pain from childhood and we start to feel uncomfortable in our own bodies, unsafe and defenseless in the same way we were made to feel defenseless in childhood.

th-2This, folks, is the core to what causes the highs and lows of trauma bonding and we think the narcissists, the abusers, are the only ones with the power to alleviate it (like we thought in childhood) when in reality they are so weak they have to parasitically feed off the energy of other people. This creates an addictive dooloop of uncertainty and pain that we think WE are the cause of and are deserving of.

This is the core to any abuse but the primary core to the harm caused from aggressive long term invalidation from narcissistic abuse. Narcissists intentionally and premeditatedly take all they can from us that they cannot supply themselves and that will serve them long term and help feed an illusion of “normalcy” to the world and then proceed to deplete us. That was their plan from the beginning. They turn us figuratively into them and then destroy us. THAT is how much they loathe themselves and the magnitude of THEIR personal shame.

Divorce or breaking up with them is like acid on their skin to them because they have lost their camouflage of normalcy and fear being exposed to the world for who they really are….you are seeing the magnitude of the evil wrath, inability to love, lack of compassion, and aggression triggered by their TOXIC fear of shame. You are seeing the wolf who has taken off his or her sheep’s clothing, the snake who has taken off its suit!

It also demonstrates how much that WE are the opposite and the magnitude of our own personal power and value. They target the best of the best because they know we are, they pathologically envy us, and we are vulnerable to power imbalanced relationships due to the damage done to our core belief system and self-worth in our childhood.

The good news?

We are merely wounded and we will heal. We can love. We will create long lasting memories and mutually respectful relationships.

The evil emotional parasites cannot. They are parasites with charm.

I write in much more detail about this provocative subject and much more in Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors.

Facebook and the Power of Healing

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

thAs the owner and founder of Yourlifelifter, a healing page on Facebook and website that serve as “A Truth-Based Healing and Information Center for Narcissistic Abuse Survivors and Others Seeking Emotional Freedom,” I have witnessed first hand the miraculous healing power of social media.

th-2 Facebook and the World Wide Web have allowed me to provide a haven for the good folks to rest, heal and thrive, a family, if you will, for the authentic ones with heart, compassion, caring and who want to help other people and who also have been exploited by the narcissists and other character disordered covert aggressors who manipulated their power from them. Many of us seeking to heal have been alienated from our families of birth. The souls of many are starving for truth and Yourlifelifter is showing folks where to look and what to look for to nourish their souls.

starving soul hungerFacebook and the World Wide Web also afforded all of us the opportunity to feel as well as experience our personal healing power first hand. How? By the magnitude of reach of the healing energy and truth: The almost daily letters of thanks I receive from folks collectively from 45 countries and who speak 21 languages who are healing and have healed…A post that reaches 40,000 people from around the world…Posts that reach over 500,000 people weekly around the world because abuse victims share those posts with others who share with others who share with others until the message of healing truth spreads like a virus across the seas!

th-3This demonstrates the power of truth, goodness, compassion, authenticity, integrity of character and righteousness that is not only vast beyond human comprehension but is truly humbling in its beauty. It also indicates a rise in the collective consciousness of healing, need for truth-based nourishment that our souls long for as well as the real power generated by authentically good people, the empaths, the compassionate energy receivers and healers.

Do the evil target us? Will they continue to target us?

Of course. Evil is just part of humanity. Because there will always be people who lack compassion and who want all the benefits that the truly good and virtuous people can supply them without having to earn them. And, yes, there is currently a pandemic of narcissism across the world that is also causing the rise in terrorism that we see.

th-4However, we of the healing community will rise above and together we will change the world and return the balance of goodness where it should be: front and center in the minds of the politicians, parents, teachers, presidents, CEOs, our children and every other person in this world. And we will set examples, continue to spread truth and also educate people on narcissism and its causes in the same way we will educate the abused (including those predisposed to narcissism) on the causes of their abuse and start addressing trauma in their youth and focus on the elements of virtue that will help them build characters of personal integrity. We will educate the parents and help them heal so their children heal through them. And Facebook and the World Wide Web are allowing us to do so, to reach out and touch the lives of millions and, soon, billions from across the globe.

In this way, we can put a stop to the pain-based and faulty thinking and pain addictions that are at the core of intergenerational abuse and keep the narcissists’s depravity at the lower end of the continuum where they will do the least amount of damage as they get older and move into adulthood. We, the good folks, will then not be vulnerable to them and no longer fear them and even if they continue to target us, the harm they inflict will not be as serious.

This is how good overpowers evil!

Together we heal! Together we thrive!

It Isn’t Love – It Is Narcissistic Abuse

After Narcissistic Abuse

Love doesn’t destroy us. A lack of love Destroys us.

Narcissism is the antithesis of love.


Here are 5 Ways Narcissism prevents Love in relationships:


The foundation of love is truth. A whole person will insist on having an honest connection with themselves. A person who can love has the desire to live with integrity, be true to their identity and values, they know who they are and respect themselves and others. Whole people possess the desire to adhere to their personal ethics.  All these traits stem from a strong connected relationship with yourself (and a higher power).

You cannot have a relationship with someone who is wearing a mask

Narcissists are lacking this relationship with “self” and a higher power. They’re floundering inside, looking for a cure on the outside and flit…

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Almost Twenty Truths for the New Year

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter


Happy New Year!!

As we enter the New Year, this is what’s on my mind.

When times get rough or complicated and for sure, they will, here are the twenty fundamental truths I remember:

  1. Live in the moment. Be grateful for what you have and not long for what you don’t. If you have a roof over your head, food to eat, people who love you, and your health, you have everything. Thanks, Mom.
  2. You were born lovable and do not have to suffer or self sacrifice to be lovable or worthy of love. There will not be another you in the history of the universe. Live in your own truth and do not live others’ lies that make them happy and leave you lacking and miserable.
  3. Happiness is a state of mind that comes and goes. But we are happiest when our lives are in balance, and living our personal truth, when we are achieving our financial, spiritual, community, relationship, and health goals. If you are not where you want to be, research how to get there, set a goal, make a plan and go and get it. Accept that this takes hard work and does not come for free and that you deserve it. These are the differences between dreamers and doers, between those who are content and those who are not.
  4. No one is immune from being evil. Financial success or lack of it has nothing to do with emotional health or personal integrity. Millionaires as well as poor people can be serial killers, evil, narcissists, and psychopaths too.
  5. Just because someone says they love you, does not mean they do in a way you deserve to be loved or in a healthy manner.
  6. Understand that in emotionally healthy relationships, boundaries are respected including your privacy, feelings, beliefs, needs and emotions and you should never have to defend these to anyone or have them habitually violated.
  7. Emotionally unhealthy people cannot handle the truth and shadow their brokenness on unwilling targets as a coping mechanism because they lack self coping skills and the level of compassion that would prevent them from using others for self-serving ways.
  8. If you are a compassionate empathetic person, BEWARE. Manipulators target compassionate empathetic people who themselves typically were also survivors of childhood abuse. To stop the cycle of abuse you must understand this in order to take the steps to stop being a victim.
  9. To prevent being a target of the emotionally unhealthy people including abusers, be careful advertising too much of your personal business freely, and being overly honest….emotionally unhealthy people interpret this as permission to violate your personal boundaries and you are setting yourself up to being scapegoated, lied about and targeted for others’ personal gain. Don’t lie…just don’t say anything.
  10. Never settle for less than what you want and deserve…if you do settle and end up being used, taken advantage of or neglected, it is because you have self worth issues that 99% of the time were the result of your upbringing.
  11. Don’t misinterpret drama or lack of it with emotional health or happiness. Environments without drama can be filled with covert aggressives and closet addicts just like drama filled ones can be ripe with overt aggressors, boundary violators, abusers, and addicts.
  12. You are paid for the value of the services you provide. This is why when you are young it is important to pick a career that will pay you to live a lifestyle you are accustomed to. If you are not paid enough, increase your skills, knowledge and abilities in the field you are in or pick a different career.
  13. Never stop learning. Stay relevant and never stop exploring or stop moving.
  14. Always look your best for yourself first but remember you also only have one time to make a first impression.
  15. Make sure you save enough money to live a comfortable life and have medical coverage in your old age. Start saving EARLY and learn how to invest wisely because your accounts will go up exponentially with interest on interest.
  16. Take charge of your physical and mental health. Take good care of yourself all your life!! Do not become an ailment or link your identify to it or let it stop you from enjoying a fulfilling life. You are larger that that! You do have the divine ability to heal yourself and alleviate your aches and pains. Don’t rely solely on a pill to take care of your ailments. If you do not know how, take stress and pain management classes and learn biofeedback classes, yoga anything that will teach you to connect to, use and hone your cognitive skills and to the metaphysical part of yourself and life.
  17. Do what you can, accept what is, and turn the rest over to your spiritual father or source. Understand that you, we all have personal limitations and tolerance levels. When you have exhausted everything within your power, pray, meditate, appeal to higher powers.
  18. When people we love pass on, their souls live on through us, in our thoughts, in our feelings, in our dreams, when we miss them. Find ways to keep their spirits alive so others can benefit from them as well.
  19. Evil people “go to hell” because when they leave this earth, they are gone for good. No one misses them. They leave memories people quickly forget.

Happy New Year!

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Listen to Discussion on Narcissism with Evelyn Ryan on “Breaking It Down with Frank MacKay”


Listen to this mesmerizing discussion on narcissism with Evelyn Ryan on “Breaking It Down with Frank MacKay.”

Evelyn and Frank discuss an array of provocative subjects from empaths being targeted by narcissists, to her aunt’s suicide from abuse, to her new book, Take Your Power Back, to how narcissism impacts terrorism.

Hope you love the show!!



Codependency No More! Now Called Self-Love Deficit!

Life, Health, Career Coaching

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter


“Self-Love Deficit Disorder” (SLDD) has been officially trademarked by Ross Rosenberg!

Hallelujah! We can all stop being labelled “codependents.”

The last thing abuse survivors need is to be labelled. Becoming dependent on others to define our self-worth and soothe our repressed pain is a consequence of abuse not a cause of it.

This is a major theme in my book Take Your Power Back and in this article “Codependency Does Not Cause Abuse.”

Self-Love Deficit (SLD) much more accurately describes what happened to us and the consequences of the abuse we suffered. It points to the causes of the damage, not to us personally as having a flawed condition that causes the abuse that is promoted by addressing people as defective “codependents.”

Personally I refer to abuse consequences as “pain addictions.” Others refer to it as “Narcissistic Abuse Syndrome” and “Narcissistic Victim Syndrome.” The point is not what we call it but that we…

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Why Forgiveness is Fundamental to Healing and Achieving Justice from Narcissistic Abuse

Life, Health, Career Coaching

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-2“Forgiveness is part of healing. It is not a prerequisite to healing. It is a point we reach when we understand and accept the truth about what happened to us from a position of emotional neutrality without the pain, blame and shame that our abusers shadowed on us.” 

I’d like to share some information on forgiveness, justice and victimization that may not be so obvious to survivors of narcissistic abuse but is critical to their healing.

Survivors of narcissistic or for that matter any abuse were victims, no different than a victim of a crime, a brutal illegal attack or violation of our boundaries, rights, authorities, or freedoms. What is the difference between a brutal attack of one’s body or possessions and one’s psyche and one’s heart and betrayal of intimate trust? Not many. But there are a few fundamental ones.

One attack, you may think, takes place in the conscious physical…

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Forgiveness is Bullshit


Wherever you find an intolerance for and avoidance of “negative emotion,” you are almost guaranteed to also find a “doctrine” of forgiveness. I cringe every time I hear forgiveness come up. For a while, my cringing was accompanied by guilt because I felt horrible that I would see such a “positive” action/attitude as repulsive. I could easily understand why I might feel repelled by the fundamentalist definition of forgiveness, but I didn’t understand why I was also disgusted by the more “liberal” definitions of forgiveness.

As I’ve taken the journey to reclaim my right to have my emotions, even the shadow ones, I’ve gained a bit of a better understanding of my hatred of the very idea of forgiveness.

Basically I’m here to say it’s all bullshit.

Yes, I know I’ve probably made many of you gasp and even branded myself in some minds as a “bitter person.”

That’s okay…

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How to Survive the Holidays with Narcissists

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Unknown-2Having no contact with narcissists can be most challenging during the holidays when narcissistic abusers typically exhibit their worst behaviors and also use the “spirit” of the season to play on our sympathies, guilt, and exaggerated shame.

images-1Holidays provide a perfect time for the narcissists and their flying monkeys to try to hog all the attention and target the scapegoats who are free fodder for the taking.

What can abuse survivors do?

The answer is lots!

th-1Holidays are the perfect time to practice the time, distance, and shielding (TDS) rule to help protect us and our children from the abusers and their flying monkeys. The TDS rule which expands on the NO CONTACT rule is the same simple three-part rule that high risk toxic hazardous environments use across the world to prevent and mitigate the toxic effects of hazards and it is just as effective with toxic people.

The TDS rule as applied to narcissists goes like this. You can minimize your exposure to their toxicity by:

  1. Minimizing the time you spend around them;
  2. Maximizing the distance from them; and
  3. Putting up a barrier or shield between you and them.

Let’s break this down.

Harm from a toxic person is no different from harm from radiation or a hazardous chemical. Would you stand close to and spend the day with a radioactive source? Then why spend lots of time close to someone who did and does you and your children harm?

So remember this!!

The more toxic the person,

  • the less time you spend with them,
  • the greater the distance you put between you and them, and
  • the thicker and stronger the barriers you set up to protect yourself and your children. You may even need multiple barriers, multiple layers of “defense in depth.”

YUnknownour exposure to toxic people is proportional to the amount of time you spend around them. Seems like common sense, but not having a well laid out plan ahead of time, or just not being aware of how much time you are spending with them can put you in harm’s way.

However, applying the TDS rule when life-long habits, traditions and faulty beliefs get in the way can be challenging. Here are some options using the TDS rule tips that will help you minimize the damage to you and to your children.

Scenario #1 – You are invited to the narcissist’s home or a family function.

Learn to say no. Remember that you can refuse the invitation or ignore it. If you have to respond, tell them you prefer not to travel on holidays, because it is dangerous. Use this time of year to build new traditions and invite friends who have no or distant family to your home. Turn lemons into lemonade. If you do not want to spend the holiday at your home, go to a friend’s home or out to dinner or volunteer your time and your children’s time at a shelter or homeless center. Your self-esteem and self-worth will soar as you assertively use your free will and take action that will best serve you and keep you safe, protected and on course to meet your healing goals while supporting the spirit of the season.

Scenario #2 – The narcissists send gifts to play on your sympathies and guilt.

Unknown-1No contact includes not accepting and not unwrapping gifts and not sending thank you notes. Do not forget that remaining in contact exposes you and your children to harm. Your children are healing through you not in spite of you. Instead of returning the gifts, consider giving them to the needy that will support the spirit of the season and help turn a negative situation into a positive one.

Scenario #3 – The narcissist or his or her flying monkeys start playing on your shame and tell you that any decent child or person should and would spend Christmas with his or her family. They tell you or intimate covertly that you are a bad daughter, son, parent.

imagesThis is manipulation and covert aggression. They are playing on your faulty childhood beliefs, exaggerated shame triggers, and unhealthy dependence on them for validation. Remember in your healing that you are a human being with the rights to make your own choices on whom you choose to associate with or not and to protect your children from harm. Do not overestimate the danger or underestimate your ability to deal with it. You have the right to protect your personal boundaries and self-interests and your children’s and your safety. Say No. Do not justify it to those who do not have your best interests at heart.”No” is a complete sentence and requires no justification.

Scenario #4 – You absolutely cannot avoid spending time with the narcissists for the holidays.

Remember to focus on minimizing harm to you and your children. This is where creative shielding can help to protect you. Here are just a few suggestions.

First, provide yourself a safe location away from the narcissists where you can go to for protection.  If you are traveling a long distance, make efforts to not stay at the narcissist’s or flying monkey’s home. If you must stay at the narcissist’s home, stay away as much as possible. Make plans ahead of time with your friends or to attend several shows or functions in the area. Buy the tickets ahead of time so you are committed to go. This will limit your time with the narcissists and their proxies, set up a physical barrier between you and them and help you maintain your personal authority and power. It will also provide you time and neutral space to regroup and maintain a cool head.

Another option is to bring an emotionally healthy friend with you to keep you focused on yourself and to help provide a barrier between you and the narcissists’ and flying monkeys’ venom. Friends of mine have frequently asked me to attend family or other functions to provide moral support, deflect the narcissists’ attacks, and to provide a temporary source of attention to the narcissists who then stay off of the target’s back.

A third option is to become a “Gray Rock.” Do not give them any attention, positive or screen-shot-2016-12-20-at-4-07-22-pmnegative. Gray rocks do not attract attention and blend in with the scenery and you can do the same to make yourself less appealing to a narcissist. If you do not give them your energy, they will go away. They need narcissistic supply to survive. Without it, they cannot live. Practice not reacting to anything they say or do or even thinking about them.

Read more on the “Gray Rock Method.”

I hope these tips help in empowering you as well to enjoy a delightful healthy and safe holiday filled with the blessings of this most special time of year.

Be well! Be safe!! And don’t forget the TDS rule. It is simple and very effective in helping you prevent and minimize harm from these creeps and enjoy your holidays as you so well deserve. Happy holidays!

Say Good-Bye to Codependency

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“Self-Love Deficit Disorder” (SLDD) has been officially trademarked by Ross Rosenberg!

Hallelujah! We can all stop being labelled “codependents.”

The last thing abuse survivors need is to be labelled. Becoming dependent on others to define our self-worth and soothe our repressed pain is a consequence of abuse not a cause of it.

This is a major theme in my book Take Your Power Back and in this article “Codependency Does Not Cause Abuse.”

Self-Love Deficit (SLD) much more accurately describes what happened to us and the consequences of the abuse we suffered. It points to the causes of the damage, not to us personally as having a flawed condition that causes the abuse that is promoted by addressing people as defective “codependents.”

Personally I refer to abuse consequences as “pain addictions.” Others refer to it as “Narcissistic Abuse Syndrome” and “Narcissistic Victim Syndrome.” The point is not what we call it but that we correct and take down obstacles that prevent our healing.

sldd2Labeling abuse victims as “codependents” creates an obstacle to healing. It implies that we are the cause of abuse and that we are flawed which adds to and compounds our already existing toxic shame. The term as Dr. Rosenberg points out has been misused. Dr. Rosenberg’s new trademark will level the healing playing field and enable folks to understand that we were and are victims of emotional predators and to be aware of our vulnerabilities and protect ourselves from these emotional criminals.

Abuse survivors have been starving for truth and were conditioned to live lies. Being labelled “codependents” perpetuated the lies.

Thank you, Ross Rosenberg for helping to share the truth with abuse survivors from around the world.

Hear more from Ross Rosenberg and Self-Love Deficit Disorder here.

Why Are People Evil?

Life, Health, Career Coaching

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-2Now, I am not preaching or discussing my religious beliefs however religion, anecdotes, truth, and evil are are my mind today. And this is why.

I have always been fascinated with what makes people evil.

Frankly, I could never relate and still have a hard time understanding the lack of compassion and empathy in evil rotten broken people, specifically pathological narcissists and psychopaths. But since most religions address good and evil, it was natural for me to use them as sources of information.

This is what I found:

  1. Pretty much all religions are founded on reconciliation of good and evil and the search for truth or enlightenment.
  2. They use anecdotes, short accounts of a real incident or person not supported by scientific data, to make a point.
  3. All discuss the consequences of committing evil deeds or violation of moral or ethical codes more commonly referred to as “sins.”…

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Can Malignant Narcissism Be Cured?

Life, Health, Career Coaching

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter


Here’s the simple answer: “No!”

Therapy can help narcissists put on the brakes if they go to therapy and the therapists are skilled in their covert aggressive personalities and know how to deal with their perverted thinking including their manipulation, lack of compassion, aggression, combativeness and need to win. However, based on my decades of research and the collective opinions of real experts on character disturbances who have treated thousands of narcs and their victims, I believe there is no cure. Read more at http://drgeorgesimon.com.

Can they have redeeming character traits? Intelligence?

Of course they can.

But they permanently lack the qualities we as humans need to build and sustain integrity of character and building meaningful healthy relationships.

Let’s explore this.

Our characters are built through life experiences and mistakes and successes and are chiseled permanently like sculpture. Our characters, whether they be characters of integrity just like disturbed…

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On Functional Medicine, Truth, and Healing from Abuse

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” ~ Albert Einstein

Let’s look at traditional medicine and ask the same question that Doctor Phil frequently asks:

“Is it working for you.”

th-5-1Well, it is very obviously not working for the patients who continue to suffer but a lot of people are benefitting from treating symptoms of disease, autoimmune illnesses (hugely on the rise), emotional fatigue and trauma, or whatever.

The functional approach is a long overdue new direction in medicine that focuses on root causes to disease and ailments and promotes our bodies’ natural defense mechanisms to prevent and heal illness and disease related to our physical and emotional health.

However, functional medicine is not based on a new concept – not in the least. I have used this for over 35 years and it is pretty basic. It goes like this:

“It is impossible to heal and prevent a problem if you do not address what causes it…pure and simple.”

It is impossible to effectively heal a problem and sustain healing if you label it with something after going through a checklist of SYMPTOMS and do not investigate to identify and then address the root causes. Addressing what happened does not address why it happened or the events or series of events leading up to the mishap.

th-1Albert Einstein said it eloquently in his statement (and my favorite quote):

“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

The same applies to illness or sadness or whatever we know “needs fixing.”

We also need to acknowledge it needs fixing because if we don’t, our human nature as creatures of habit takes over and we revert back to what we are comfortable doing even if is doing us harm or brings us angst. Why? Because, if we were abused, neglected, invalidated as children, we can have so many fears we are accustomed to living with that we choose the one or ones we are most comfortable with and deny the others.

shameLet’s see…should I stay with the abuser because my fear of abandonment overrides my fear of emotional pain or should I select abandonment over shame? Sound silly? Maybe. But this is exactly how the human mind reacts, how it copes after it has been overly taxed, traumatized. The brain is capable of so much but it is not capable of spontaneous healing.

Now these beliefs and immature coping mechanisms may have served us in the short term when we were defenseless to our heartless uncompassionate caregivers and caretakers, but they do not and will not serve us in the long term because they are just bandaiding symptoms. They will sustain your happiness because pain and the sources of pain DO NOT EVER GO AWAY. Just because you cannot access them does not mean they do not exist. Believe me. They are there ready to raise their heads when you least expect it and most likely when you are emotionally challenged such as during an illness, death, divorce, or after some major loss.

This example demonstrates the damage that is done to our belief systems and to our mechanisms for self-regulating our pain-based emotions. So abuse survivors’ emotions become toxic to themselves.

This is why traditional therapies frequently do not work for narcissistic abuse survivors and this is why millions of people worldwide are on Facebook and the Internet looking for answers. They are in emotional pain. They are emotionally fatigued. Their souls need emotional nourishment. They need truth.

You cannot treat trauma from abuse by prescribing a pill and treating symptoms and not accessing the trauma back to its source – childhood. It is as simple as that.

Gregg Zaffuto told me that reach at his groundbreaking healing page on Facebook, “After Narcissistic Abuse” reached over one million people worldwide last week and that is just one of many legitimate and credible healing pages.

Yes, folks there are millions of us looking for answers, millions of us whose souls are unnourished and starving for truth.

What? You say you were never physically abused? Well, emotional abuse, covert aggression, invalidation, coddling are all forms of abuse so no one is immune.


Healing is all about truth! This is why I focus on the truth and your healing. This is what I am committed to share with you at Yourlifelifter and what I documented in Take Your Power Back along with a step-by-step program and the tools to help you in your healing journeys.

705466_COVER_Mockup1Take Your Power Back is the product of my decades long search for truth into the root causes of pain addictions in abuse victims.

I wrote it to help you find yours, stop believing lies, break your pain addictions, become the joy-based people you were all put on this earth to be and THRIVE!

May your spiritual source guide and protect you in your search for truth!

Together we heal! Together we thrive!

Five Major Fundamental Healing Truths

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Excerpted from Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors. Purchase a copy here.

As discussed in detail in Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors, victims of abuse have been conditioned to think like victims. It is this thinking that hinders recovery. Victims can get so accustomed to living cyclical patterns of seeking and avoiding pain that they do not understand the real extent of their unhappiness and level of dependence on harmful power imbalanced relationships.

You may live and work in environments where these dysfunctions continue, the boundaries of personal respect are habitually violated, and personal rights are not honored. Your self-esteem suffers, and you live to avoid pain rather than pursue and seek joy. Perhaps you do not even know what brings you joy. The distorted thinking and skewed beliefs that create invisible barriers to your happiness can also create barriers to your healing.

So, here are five fundamental truths to help you challenge what I believe are the biggest falsehoods in your thinking that have hindered and will continue to create obstacles in your healing journey.


hopeBelieving lies does not make them true and not believing the truth does not make it a lie. Truth IS truth. Lies are lies. This is indisputable!


We manifest in life what we believe to be true!

We live to provide the evidence that our beliefs are true – even if in reality they are not!

Read this again!

We manifest in life what we believe to be true (even if our beliefs are really lies).


The human brain cannot process two opposing thoughts.

Let’s break this down a bit more.

Cannot heal at same level as painIf we believe we are the source of our pain, must suffer to be lovable, deserve pain rather than joy and we are powerless to the pain (all lies we were taught to believe in childhood), then when we become adults, we create the lies we believe and become attracted to relationships and people that continue to bring us pain.

This is how and why abuse spreads from our caretakers to us and from us to our children and is perpetuated from generation to generation. Yes, the broken ones before us taught us to believe their lies; we became pain-based inauthentic versions of ourselves who teach the same lies to our children. We attract those who prey on vulnerabilities we developed because we did not and do not live authentic lives based on our personal truth and divinely provided human design.

Read “What You Don’t Know About Dysfunctional Families and Intergenerational Abuse” here to learn more.

In addition, emotional vampires like narcissists and psychopaths who cannot generate their own power, bank on our vulnerabilities and the false beliefs that we are deserving of pain and are powerless to those who trigger it.


Abusers find us. We do not find them!!

Sorry to disappoint you, but abusers do not have some magical power over us and no, we are not the source of our pain and we do not deserve to be in relationships with weak, spineless, aggressive, uncompassionate, lazy people who steal our energy from us and who want all the benefits we can provide without any of the work.

Listen and learn more on the “Toxic Tango of Empaths and Narcissists” here.

They are aggressive but the truly weak ones who cannot generate their own power so they steal ours from us. Aggression is not power, folks. Abusers hunt for and prey for those with our vulnerabilities, the false beliefs and fears we were taught in childhood. In fact, they bank on our vulnerabilities so they can feed off of our compassion and benefit from us, like a parasite feeds off of its host, for a very long time. Read more here on the differences between harm, fear and real danger.


We can heal. Our abusers cannot.

The good, and really not so surprising news, is that with hard work, self-compassion, and self-care, our brains can rewire. Absolutely they can. We have the divine ability to release the pain and replace these false beliefs (the lies we were taught to believe) with truth, build our self-worth back up to their true levels, take our power back, and then find others whose truth aligns with ours in power balanced mutually respectful relationships we truly are deserving of.

This is how we heal! This is how we thrive! This is how we become the deserving joy-based authentic versions of ourselves we were put on this earth to be!

I explore these truths and share many more lessons, tips, and tools that will facilitate your healing in Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors. You can read more about the book and purchase a copy here.

May your spiritual source guide and protect you in your healing and in your search for truth!

Take Your Power Back is Now Available for Purchase



Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors is for sale!

You can read an excerpt and purchase a copy of this groundbreaking book here!

Thanks to Dr. Patrick Gannon, PhD, Co-Founder of the ASCA (Adult Survivors of Childhood Abuse) Self-Help Recovery Program for this great review!!

Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors is a practical and inspirational guide that focuses on key issues faced by adult survivors. Evelyn Ryan’s words of support and encouragement will be a source of emotional nourishment for adult survivors as they go through recovery. The book gets inside the emotional consequences of abuse. In particular, it shows how abuse impacts self-esteem and how survivors are inclined to unconsciously seek power-imbalanced relationships with narcissistic partners. The 7 Healing Lessons are cogently described dynamics tied to one’s past and the corrective thinking that is necessary for recovery. The focus on the ASCA Self-Help Program (Adult Survivors of Child Abuse) in the chapter on the Healing and Recovery Journey dovetails perfectly with the central message of this inspirational book: you can recover your authentic self by committing to make specific changes that are essential to life success but it will take hard work, persistence and most importantly, a COMMITMENT TO YOURSELF. I can see that survivors will want to read and re-read sections of this book for on-going support and inspiration – THE WORDS ARE THAT POWERFUL! Full of helpful lists, psychological insights and practical suggestions on how to take charge of one’s inner life to facilitate recovery, this book is an undiscovered gem!

Patrick Gannon, PhD
ASCA Self-Help Recovery Program

Can Malignant Narcissism Be Cured?

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Here’s the simple answer:


Can narcissists have redeeming character traits? Intelligence? Of course they can. But they permanently lack the qualities we as humans need to build and sustain integrity of character and meaningful healthy relationships.

thTherapy can help narcissists put on the brakes if they go to therapy and the therapists are skilled in their covert aggressive personalities and know how to deal with their perverted thinking including their manipulation, lack of compassion, aggression, combativeness and need to win. However, as summarized below, based on research and the collective opinions of the “real experts” on character disturbances who have studied and treated thousands of narcs and their victims, there is no cure.

Read more at http://drgeorgesimon.com and listen to Dr. James Fallon  in “Crime Talk.”

ST-21-1_-1How Do Our Characters Develop?

Our characters incrementally build through our life experiences, hard work, mistakes and successes and are chiseled permanently like sculpture into our being. Our characters that develop as we age, whether ones of integrity or disturbed manipulative ones, cannot be undone.

We all have to work to build self-worth, self-esteem, self-assuredness, and self-reliance, the qualities, skills and abilities that motivate and sustain us through life. However, this process goes haywire in narcissists (and some other disordered individuals) who lose these abilities as well as the ability to self-soothe. Instead, they learn to manipulate power or whatever they want or need to sustain themselves from others. They remain like small children, always dependent on others for survival. Their characters do not develop and predictably remain “childlike.” They forever remain human “parasites.”

images-2Their thinking, as they grow into adults, distorts and they believe they are entitled (like any small child) to all the benefits of humanity and of life without working for them. They permanently view their adult hosts as a small child views its mother. A child cannot care for itself, right? And does not know it is dependent on its mother and does not care if the mother is generous or self-sacrificing or not. A small child does not even understand it is a separate being from its mother and has no empathy for its mother. It just gets and takes from its mother what it wants as well as needs and, as a child, is validly entitled to. And if it does not, well, it then rages, cries, and has tantrums.

Sound familiar? It should because arrested development causes the characters of narcissists to remain forever in a helpless child like state and not develop the elements needed as they age to adapt, improve, self-soothe, regulate their own emotions, love unconditionally and to work for what they need to sustain their own happiness. They permanently lose the ability to become a normal functioning human being similar to a feral child raised in the wild who loses many of the human cognitive and emotional abilities if not developed by a certain age.

Narcissists permanently lack the human capabilities to ensure our normal emotional development and that allow us to integrate and interact in emotionally healthy ways with other humans. They have lost those functions because their brains have lost the functions that allow them to do so. Their thinking and beliefs are skewed. They are sort of like mutants who look normal on the outside but in reality are not. I refer to them as “The Lacks” because they are permanently missing the key elements we need to function “normally.” They are forever stuck in a “less than as adult humans were designed” state. And, so, their characters and thinking become disturbed, disordered, broken. They are forever unable to act on their “free will.” They have learned instead to maladapt by filling these gaps with energy parasitically sourced from and manipulated from others.

Let’s explore these “gaps” further.

The Roles of Compassion and Empathy in Human Existence

Having compassion and learning to use it responsibly are critical to our individual and collective existence. It allows us to function in relationships with others and as a society. Compassion is critical to our emotional health and our character development and personal relationships.

We need compassion to care about and for ourselves and others and they for us. It enables us as we mature to learn emotional empathy, the ability to actually put ourselves in other’s shoes and feel what others are feeling. Empathy is a potential ability those with compassion can learn and matures as the brain develops and as our characters develop. That ability to “mirror” ourselves emotionally in others allows us to love and to be loved reciprocally. Compassion allows us to value ourselves and others and motivates us to care for ourselves and others and strive to end our own and other’s suffering and pain. Compassion allows us to tolerate and adapt to change and other’s differences and to coexist in peace and harmony. It prevents a total chaotic society.

The levels of compassion and empathy vary from person to person. Unfortunately, some of us can be born with too much (e.g. empaths) and some of us are not born with enough (e.g. narcissists and psychopaths).

What are a Narcissist’s Major “Character” Gaps?

Well, at the top of the list is the lack of compassion. They lack empathy and the ability to love. They have exaggerated fear of shame. These are the most significant gaps in their disturbed characters that prevent their self-worth and self-reliance from developing and that cause them to become emotional parasites and prey on others and not have effective healthy relationships with others of their own kind. So, doesn’t it make sense that empaths who have too much compassion would be targets of narcissists who lack compassion?


Preeminent neuroscientist, Dr. James Fallon reports in “Crime Talk” that narcissists and psychopaths are genetically predisposed to aggression, violence and lacking compassion and emotional empathy and for psychopaths, lacking conscience. They do, however, possess cognitive empathy, the ability to recognize emotions in others. The pleasure centers of their brains are also affected so narcissists and psychopaths do not get pleasure like normal folks would get such as from reading a book.

What I find most interesting is Dr. Fallon’s description of how their “evil genes” are “turned on” by abuse (including coddling) in childhood. Psychopaths and narcissists, however, use the functioning parts of their brains and those that support reasoning and planning to con you and manipulate you. Their brains, according to Dr. Fallon, create a work around in order for them to survive and abuse and con from you what they want and need and they do not care what impact that has on you.

We can also see major flaws in a narcissist’s thinking when it comes to work, commitment, and obligation (or more accurately lack thereof).

“Why would I work for anything to achieve a goal that I do not know I am worthy of achieving and I am not confident I can achieve when I am entitled to do minimal work and use others’ successes to make me look good and provide an illusion that I am successful?”

As depraved as this sounds, this is a realistic example of the skewed thinking of what Dr. George K. Simon, a preeminent expert on manipulative aggressive personalities and author of the best sellers In Sheep’s Clothing, Character Disturbance, and The Judas Syndrom refers to as the “covert aggressive personalities” that include the pathological narcissists and psychopaths. Dr. Simon confirms that narcissistic personalities lack the capacity to love because they lack empathy and the warning signs of such empathy deficits are always in the attitudes they display toward accepting work and obligation. Narcissists simply detest putting out effort that might, even in part, benefit someone else.


Dr. Simon also verifies that narcissists can work very hard and can spend inordinate amounts of time and energy to get something they want. As most of us very well know, they can put in extraordinary efforts to groom and love bomb a potential mate or spouse. But putting the same amount of energy into finding or keeping a legitimate job or a personal relationship, taking care of a sick family member, demonstrating the loyalty and consistency necessary to be considered for advancement, or making the investment in personal self-development to merit consideration for more advanced positions are completely different matters and very unattractive enterprises to them. They want all the benefits of marriage, for example, without having to work for them or earn them!

Dr. Simon emphasizes that narcissists resist working to become better human beings more than any other kind of work. So even when it comes to respect and love and admiration, they want to come by them in the same manner as everything else  – without having to earn them. And guess what folks? How do we build integrity of character?  You got it …by working hard to set goals, make a plan to achieve them, being successful, and learning lessons through mistakes we make along the way. The normal human desire to work for those things to improve themselves are lacking in the disordered. And as a result, the characters of the narcissists do not mature or develop. They remain “deficient” humans with questionable to poor characters and even criminal ones who manipulate from the truly good people what they need to sustain themselves. So in essence, they are and remain human parasites, man and woman “babies” who are dependent on others for emotional sustenance.

Malignant Narcissism, Cures, and Change

Narcissists rarely, if ever, seek professional care or ever want to change because they like themselves just the way they are and loathe working on self-improvement. Very few psychology professionals are even trained or equipped to deal with them. So, if they choose to change (which the probability for is close to zero), very few professionals will be able to treat them competently anyway. And even if they are treated by a competent therapist who teaches them to become aware of their depravity and how to temper it, they will still lack compassion and empathy, and they will continue to fake the new “behaviors” to con you and others to serve none other than themselves. They will remain unable to love and sustain the behaviors that support reciprocal emotionally healthy relationships. They will still think like and be narcissists.

So, you cannot “love” a narcissist to change or teach them to be compassionate. Narcissists have a conscience and know exactly what they are doing. They simply do not care and no one can make them care. It would be like telling you to stop caring about others or to stop having compassion or to tell a leopard to change its spots. These are the skewed and permanent parts of a pathological narcissist’s thinking and emotional development that cause the irreparable damage to their “lacking” characters.

Can Narcissists Learn to Change Bad Behaviors?

Of course, they can. They are master manipulators and while they lack emotional empathy, they do not lack cognitive empathy. So they readily can identify emotions in others and learn and plan to manipulate them. They conned you into “liking” them or loving them and they learned to charm you. Didn’t they? They also turned on you on a dime when their pathological envy and sick needs to destroy you and manipulate from you what they believe in their evil minds they are entitled to take without any of the work kicked in. This is because the disorder, like Dr. Fallon reports above, does not impact parts of the brain where they plan and scheme and strategize.

Can Narcissists Be Cured?

Can you cure a vampire? A parasite?

Our characters, as discussed above, are permanently chiseled into our being. Disorders by definition are permanent character flaws. Disorders are not bad habits that we can break and replace with newer and healthier ones. Can the disordered “behaviors” be diagnosed and perhaps treated? Of course. But changing a behavior (which is close to impossible in narcissists who love themselves just the way they are) will not “cure” the “permanent” gaps in their characters or distorted thinking and the ability to change a behavior does not make a disordered person now “normal” or “healed.” And, in fact, for a narcissist, changing a harmful behavior by learning to “put on the brakes” masks the disorder and actually, in my opinion, makes them more dangerous since it adds to their portfolio of combat tactics and better enables them to change their outward demeanor like a chameleon changes its colors to match the “environment.” Most importantly, remember, they can never regain compassion and emotional empathy, the key emotion and character trait, respectively, that humans need to sustain not only themselves but also normal emotionally healthy relationships and that are needed to build integrity of character. 

Accepting this along with learning how not to be vulnerable to them and in some cases, protecting your children are huge in healing for narcissistic abuse survivors. Dr. Fallon, who is a self-diagnosed narcissist himself, believes that if we as parents see the signs of pathological narcissism in our children early enough (assuming we are knowledgeable in the signs and are healed ourselves), we can try to get them competent care which may increase the likelihood that they do not turn out that bad, however there are no guarantees. In the best case, they will still be narcissists, however, they will fall at the lower end of the severity spectrum of harm they can inflict. Read more here on what parents can do.

However, there is one fundamental difference between narcissists and the people they target. The brains of the abused can rewire and heal the skewed beliefs that cause their susceptibility to power imbalanced relationships. The damage can be addressed and reversed. The brains of narcissists whose skewed thinking is caused by arrested development lose their ability to rewire and, therefore, narcissists, as Dr. Fallon confirms, cannot heal and cannot be cured. The damage is permanent.

What You Don’t Know About Dysfunctional Families, Pain-Based Thinking, and Intergenerational Abuse

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

trait-8Bringing clarity to the root causes and sources of the family dysfunction will significantly help alleviate the self-blame and shame that abuse survivors experience and clear a path to healing and recovery.

Dysfunctional abusive families are fueled by unhealed pain-based maladaptive thinking that has been passed on from generation to generation to generation. Most recently, epigenetic studies are exploring the factors that embed trauma in our cellular genetic memories and the resilience to deal with it effectively.

So the abuse that you and I and everyone are experiencing today, at this very moment, along with our emotional pain, was never ours to begin with. They, however, can be traced to unhealed emotional wounds, faulty thinking, and pain from your great great great great great grandfathers and grandmothers.

The Roots of Pain and Abuse in Families

My 89 year old father still shares stories told to him by the elders in the village and in 400 year old songs of attacks from the Turks who took 20,000 men from his island to sell as slaves in Constantinople and Egypt. They ran into the hills to protect themselves! So what did those who survived and who witnessed these vicious attacks along with experiencing the starvation and extreme poverty caused 200 years later by the Greek civil war and Nazis who rampaged the villages do to alleviate the legacy of emotional pain, repressed trauma, and feelings of powerlessness? What about the ones who survived their slavery and torture? On a recent trip to Greece, my guide and esteemed historian Maria, described how her family were refugees from Smyrna after it was burned to the ground by the Turks during the Greek-Armenian genocide in the early 1900’s.

if-you-dont-heal-your-painOh, how they must have suffered and oh, how traumatized they must have been! Could they go to the local clinic for counseling? Or on Facebook for self-help or read a book on healing? I think not! So the trauma became embedded in their cellular memories and repressed in their physical ones. So to survive, they had to become innovative in their methods to alleviate their pain and trauma.

Pain-Filled Families Learn to Prey on Their Own

Monetary or material privilege does not provide genetic entitlement or immunity from abuse, emotional pain, or disease for that matter or guarantee strength or integrity of one’s personal character. Noone is immune to pain, folks, or the damage it causes no matter how far families have come or how “privileged” they are. Psychology did not exist back then in the villages and tribes where all our ancestral roots lie. And repressed pain does not stay repressed forever. What did they do? What could they do? This is how, I profess, it more accurately played out.

The ones with character and kind hearts, compassion, emotional intelligence, and consciences and who were born empaths (and most likely inherited the pain coded in their genetics) went on to become the abused and scapegoats and the ones with the evil cold hearts became the abusers, bullies, golden children and narcissists. Now, abuse did notimgres-2 always manifest in physical or sexual violence, because the abusers creatively figured out that could play favorites and neglect, ignore, criticize, diminish, denigrate and invalidate their other children and even learn to live vicariously through their successes that they could brag about in the villages. Of course! They figured out a way they could benefit without doing any of the work of actually being a good parent and sacrificing for their children’s benefit! But they could provide an illusion of power and goodness to their small world with the small vision and faulty belief system that they did.

So these dysfunctional pain-addicted families starved not only for nutritional but also emotional sustenance and preyed off of each other’s energy like blood thirsty vampires, recruited other flying monkeys in their dirty dealings and used their own helpless children and siblings as hosts, free fodder for the taking. The abusers could not generate their own energy and needed some way to alleviate their deep-seated and now genetically programmed emotional pain. The pain and trauma that were locked in the family’s genetic code and repressed memories were now free to “express themselves” in abuse and exploitation of their own flesh and blood. Essentially they became “brood parasites,” if you will.

Read more here on the natural parasitic nature of narcissists here.

What better or moreth-2 convenient way to self-soothe than to shadow their repressed emotional pain on their own defenseless children and especially the female ones who were less able to defend themselves and the “village idiots” who they could bully and make fun of unhindered with no accountability! The emotionally starved “brood parasites” emotionally cannibalized their own to serve none other than themselves. God forbid that the abused should tell the truth or rebel! Those who did were threatened with abandonment or banishment from the village and even death! This became a key component of the dysfunctional unhealthy unwritten and unchallenged cultural “belief code” of the village reflected  in the abusive and exploitive dynamics in what we now call “dysfunctional families.”

Leaving the Village “Takes a Village”

th-9Epigenetic studies related to inheriting pain are providing credence to the adage, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” Our genetics, thankfully, do not only make us vulnerable to pain, they also predispose us to psychological resilience that was most certainly needed by those who chose to move and live elsewhere or perhaps to merely act on their right to pursue happiness.

People who chose to leave the village had daunting emotional challenges that required much more than packing up and moving. Not only did they have to heal from inherited pain as well as the pain inflicted from the abuse and scapegoating, they also had to deal with the unwritten tribal belief systems and the accompanying rejection and aggression and even fear of death. Can you imagine the reaction when someone actually acted upon and used their free will and chose to leave the tribe simply because they were unfulfilled and their souls were starving or they were pursuing their heart’s desire? How dare they! How could they? We all can see the extreme impact of culture in the honor killings of children and siblings whose lives are believed to be of lesser importance than the “shame” brought about by their merely acting on their free will. It is very easy to see the impact of those who lack compassion has on their inability to self-sacrifice for their children’s welfare.

Using free will including self-care and self-compassion were frowned upon and severely punished because not only did they threaten the livelihood of the “family” and challenge the village’s and family’s cultural belief system and power balance but they also made the person less available to others to shadow their pain on and threatened their emotional food supply. If those folks became successful? Well, then the abusers could, on a whim and based on how the ego-driven winds were blowing that day, either brag about their accomplishments back in the village or pretend they never happened or simply just lie about them and continue to scapegoat them. So the truly brave and emotionally resilient ones simply left voluntarily knowing that it was all a bunch of glittered crap and nothing but a huge carefully planned illusion created by extremely weak, powerless, uncompassionate, conforming, and evil-hearted people. What about the ones who stayed?

The Vulnerable Ones Stay

Well, the ones, for whatever reasons, who stayed continued to suffer and pass the pain-based wounded thinking, distorted beliefs, and trauma coded genetics to their unknowingly vulnerable children. Perhaps, overcome by fatigue and depression, they committed suicide (like two of my relatives did) and were never spoken of again. The truly evil “broken” ones passed their evil genes and character weaknesses including the inability to self-soothe and create their own energy to the golden children they conceived and coddled who reminded them of their own selves. As adults, they wanted all the benefits of humanity without doing any of the work and learned to create an illusion of normalcy to groom other kind yet wounded people, pretend to love them, marry them, continue to abuse them, and suck their power and energy and souls from them. Or if the marriages were arranged, then matching an abuser to a scapegoat they could overpower was likely.

This is how the cycle of abuse is perpetuated by the legacy of unhealed wounded thinking that is at the root of dysfunctional and abusive families today and the millions of suffering people seeking alleviation of their chronic emotional pain and nourishment for their starving souls! This is the same legacy of unhealed wounded thinking that has contributed significantly to the pandemic of disturbed characters comprising terrorists, bullies, dictators, narcissists, Presidents, and criminals across the world today – the scourge of humanity!

Read more here on terrorism and world-wide pandemic of narcissism.

th-8Abuse Survivors Can Heal and Break the Cycle

What I find very very interesting and what is most important to understand and grasp is that abuse survivors do have the propensity and the strength of character needed to heal from the damage this crazy making causes! In addition, as we heal, our children heal through us. This is how we break the cycle of abuse.

Let’s explore this.

First, we are all born with the inalienable human rights to pursue life, liberty and happiness. No one was born with the right or entitlement to prevent us from using our free will to act on these rights and become our authentic selves just as our founding fathers agreed to in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution and its amendments. And so while abusers can try to sabotage our lives and manipulate our power from us, they can never take away our right to freely pursue life, liberty and happiness. There is also now a collective movement in world-wide healing that supports this vehemently. Read more on Facebook and the power of healing. 

However, other more “interpersonal” rights we earn as we mature and grow. For example, respect is earned through our experiences and the knowledge and abilities we acquire and our successes and mistakes that cause us to think about, change, and develop our internal beliefs, turn pain into wisdom, and strengthen our character. Credibility and trust are also earned. We are not born credible or trustworthy. The rights to be believed and trusted we work for by demonstrating our trustworthiness to others and they to us.

Learn more on how we build integrity of character, authenticity, and personal strength.

This is how we develop integrity of character. Abusers can temporarily try to interfere with our lives but they cannot prevent us from creating our own unique personal truth and character or make us become someone we are not “designed” to be. They cannot take away our emotional resilience and our drive which are key components to developing integrity of character. Notably, after abuse and trauma, the brain can rewire and heal. Abuse survivors, can unlearn faulty pain-based thinking and replace it with joy-based thinking they come to learn they are worthy of and have the complete right and authority to pursue.

Read more on Facebook and the power of healing.

In regards to families, we all create and become part of “families” separate from our birth family all the time. The rules of emotional health apply to all families and all relationships. A family of birth is not exempt from these rules because they are genetically related. Invisible genetics do not entitle people to abuse, ignore, neglect, degrade, denigrate, betray, abandon, and crap on others. A position in a loving family is a role of honor that is earned by showing the members love, honor and respect in the same way we do them. That is what emotionally healthy mutually beneficial relationships are. That is what love is. And we ALL deserve that –  every darn single one of us! That is a universal right as a human being that we are all born with.

Read more on what a family is here.

Narcissistic Abusers Cannot Heal

The abusers, interestingly enough, can heal no sooner than they can change the color of their skin. You cannot teach someone with a disturbed or disordered character how to have compassion, a conscience, and a heart. That is impossible. You either have them or you don’t. So while we are all born with the potential to develop a good character, those with disturbed characters lack the ability to develop one and feel entitled to take what they want rather than earn it through hard work like the rest of us. We can see the biggest differences between narcissists and authentically “good” people when it comes to work, commitment, and obligation. Read more on these differences here.

In addition, developing a virtuous character and maintaining healthy relationships require having compassion and a conscience, traits that are lacking and that do not develop in disturbed characters.

Read more here on what causes malignant narcissism. 

Read more here on why there is no cure.

Narcissists will, simply, always be disturbed, covert aggressive emotional frauds and thieves, “human parasites.” They may want all the benefits of what conscientious and virtuous people work for and earn, but they will always lack the integrity, strength, power, and authenticity to truly become good people.

And as the truly good people with integrity of character heal their emotional wounds and come to understand their true self-worth, their children will heal through them. And when they do, not only will they and their children live authentic joy-filled lives, they will thrive. This is how we break the cycles of intergenerational abuse rooted in our genetics and our ancestors’ unhealed emotional pain. This is how we heal ourselves and our children. This is how we take our power and free will back and become the authentic versions of ourselves we were put on this earth to be. I cover these issues including a “how to” healing and recovery plan in much more detail in my book, Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors. You can purchase and read a sneak peek and review of the book here.

Control and Personal Power in Power Imbalanced Relationships

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“If we live in fear of anything, we give it the power to overcome us.”
~ Michele O’Donnell, Healer, Minister, Author, and Counselor

th-29I have been researching personal power and how it relates to personal success and happiness for decades. Sadly, this is what I discovered. That we have been misinformed about the relationship between abuse and an abuser’s need to control. This does not accurately describe the causes of power imbalance in abusive relationships and actually can hinder an abuse victim’s healing. Let’s break this down.


People with real power do not covertly or overtly aggressively go after others’ power because, simply, they do not have to. People with real power work for it. They use their free will to set goals and do the work including getting the education and building the relationships and the integrity of character to achieve them. When they hit a wall, they take further action to course correct or thought correct. They become proficient at creating value for themselves and others. They have what my cousin Alexandra calls “skin in the game.” They tap into themselves to generate the energy and use it freely and willingly to create value that benefits themselves and others that they know they deserve and are worthy of. They use their own energy to nourish their souls and fuel their spirit and self-esteem. They share their power with others, who voluntarily of their own free will, share theirs back.

Life and relationships, in particular, require a balance of work, commitment, and obligation. It is when this balance of give and take becomes “tipped” that things can become unhealthy fast. The more tipped the balance, the more unhealthy the situation can become. Think about this. Isn’t it always when someone is giving too much and putting in the extraordinary effort or someone is taking too much and not putting in the work (and especially over a long period of time) that things get crazy, stressful, exploitive, abusive, unpleasant, or just plain suck?


Because, we are not benefitting from the investment of our time, energy, pain, love, effort, education we are expending commensurate with the level of effort we are putting in. Our efforts and our value are never validated. What we believe to be true about ourselves is not validated and what we aspire to never happens so our personal truth and personal worth are never “proved.” We are stuck in a give and give and give (and “no take”) dooloop of unfulfillment and emotional exhaustion.

Read more here on the The Five Pillars of Personal Worth, Power, and Authenticity.


abraham-lincoln-power-quotes-nearly-all-men-can-stand-adversity-but-if-you-want-toThere are huge differences between real authentically powerful people who have integrity of character and people who are inherently weak and pretend to have power and integrity of character. The latter are what preeminent psychologist Dr. George K. Simon refers to in his best seller, Character Disturbance: The Phenomenon of Our Age as the character disturbed with covert aggressive personalities. These are the ones who want all the benefits of life without earning them because they believe they are entitled, because they believe in their disordered brains that the rules of life, law, love and personal honor and respect do not apply to them.

Read more on narcissists, work and obligation here.

These are the energy thieves, the narcissists, psychopaths, abusers, con artists, criminals, and manipulators who aggressively and offensively go after others’ power because they cannot generate their own and because they do not want to work for it. These human parasites want all the benefits of life, marriage, friendship, a successful career without any of the hard work. Now, mind you, I am not claiming that they these folks do not have potential power or perhaps even redeeming personal traits or talents, skills and abilities. Of course they do. But they will use those talents, skills and abilities to serve themselves and to manipulate you and your children and not to better themselves. They abuse their power and use it to manipulate others’ power.  In fact, their greatest aversion is working to better themselves. They will have no interaction with you unless they in some way benefit and you in some way are giving up your power to them. They have to win always. They are in constant combat. This is just how these predictable and annoying characters tick.


Read more on narcissists, work and obligation here.

We cannot survive without emotional sustenance, folks, so these energy vampires, like the blood-sucking vampires, will shrivel and die if they do not steal attention, adulation, love, winning, coming out ahead, or whatever they need by creating illusions of normalcy by grooming you, telling you they love you, conning you, putting you on the defensive, and preying on your vulnerabilities. So they have no problem working for what they want and what will serve them and aggressively and covertly go after the power they want and need and target the most vulnerable and easy to manipulate and who do you think the best to feed off are. Other narcissists? Other character disturbed people? Others of their own kind are very very unpalatable but no one is immune to their attacks not even other narcissists. But the most tasty and yummy to feed their emotional gaps are none other than the survivors of abuse and, in particular, empaths, people with high emotional intelligence and compassion.

Yes, the evil of society, the emotional and energy vampires prey on the wounded, the ones who unknowingly give up their power to those who trigger their repressed legacy pain. These are the ones discussed in the Bible that “call evil good and good evil and put darkness for light and light for darkness.” They will cease at nothing in order to get not only what they need but what they want and believe they are entitled to take.

The wolves, by the way, are continuing to pose as sheep and are becoming more creative in their combat tactics. Narcissists are now even posing at healers and are starting healing Facebook Pages and websites in the guise of having compassion and wanting to help the exact people they victimized and traumatized and people are falling for it. So they have figured out a way to continue even to feed off the healing energy of their suffering victims that should be reserved for themselves and their survival.


th-1Be wary folks. Reading that abusers “need to control others” is very very misleading. This, in my opinion, can significantly prevent healing and actually keep people in abusive
relationships by causing us to focus too much on the abusers and falsely leading us to think they can be healed and feeding our toxic shame by communicating the untruth that somehow we are the weak faulty ones and the abusers are the strong ones with some magical power over us. In fact, it is totally the opposite. Abusers are covertly or overtly aggressive but they are very very weak individuals with extremely low self-worth who cannot freely generate their own personal power.

Let’s examine this further.

We (not others) are the only ones who are able to use our free will to nurture our souls and our self-esteem and self-assurance that serve our personal needs and sustain our emotional health. This is the human design. This is authentic legitimate personal power. Abusers, on the other hand, are character disturbed and believe in their distorted minds that aggression and manipulation and taking from others (what they have worked for) is power. The last time I looked, that was called theft, exploitation, weakness, character disturbance, covert aggression, bribery, burglary, abuse, and evil.

So contrary to what we are taught, magic llusion truthabusers don’t need to “control” you.  More accurately, they use aggression to create an illusion of power that intimidates you and triggers your fears and makes you feel powerless so they can manipulate your power from you because they lack real ability and desire to generate the power needed to sustain themselves. This is why they move from victim to victim to victim. The level of aggression and their combat tools vary but abuse in any form is abuse be it physical, violent, emotional, invalidation, or neglect and criminal activity is criminal activity. This is why we have laws to protect us, right? Whatever the case, it is all aggressive offensive combat and they use love and grooming and other tactics to play on our vulnerabilities including our overly developed consciences and compassion and insecurities to trap us. They want all the benefits of what we can provide them without the work. They are weak powerless predictable parasites in human form. They are, simply, depraved and broken.

Read more on narcissists, work and obligation here.


Now, let’s look a bit more at abusers’ aggressive combat tactics and how they impact personal power and control. There is a huge difference between aggression, power, harm and control. Abusers use aggression to create an illusion of power. They use their covert aggressive skills to manipulate you to believe you have no power and they are the “All Powerful Oz” who, remember, was actually a great creator of smoke and mirrors that was discovered by Toto a very small scruffy dog. In between the abuse, abusers groom you. So the cycles of abuse and makeup sessions create peptide addictions in the brain. We end up mistaking the chemical trauma bonding for love. We were conditioned to believe we must suffer to be lovable and that we are defenseless and powerless to emotional pain. We are conditioned to believe that only the abusers can relieve the pain. As healer, minister, author, and counselor Michele O’Donnell states, “If we live in fear of anything, we give it the power to overcome us.”

Cannot heal at same level as painThis is not love, this is not power, and this is not the basis of emotionally healthy relationships. This is, however, the basis of power imbalanced abusive relationships and what causes us to unknowingly give up our power to abusers, become complicit in our own abuse, and perpetuate the cycle of intergenerational abuse.

Abuse, folks, is not about control. Abuse just like healing and recovery is not about the abusers. Abuse and healing are all about us, fixing our skewed beliefs and taking OUR power back. I explore these issues in much more detail in Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors. You can read a sneak peek and review of the book and purchase a copy here.


How Abusive Childhoods Cause Us to Sabotage Our Health and Happiness

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

“We all have inalienable rights to pursue life, liberty and happiness. Absolutely we do. However, if we are prevented from pursuing them because we have damaged the only vessel that we have to travel in that journey, we are sabotaging not only our own health and happiness but also our children’s by teaching them the same maladaptive unhealthy thinking patterns and beliefs. And, frankly, we and our children all deserve so much better.”

th-12The article, “The Damaging Effects of Living An Inauthentic Life and How to Change It,” by Tracey Crossley provides probably the most important lesson to adult survivors of childhood abuse on the damaging effects of childhood abuse.

This is why.

Because abuse survivors were punished in youth whenever their authentic selves emerged to protect and care for themselves and they were rewarded for being who their abusers wanted them to be to serve none other than the abusers.

We learned, as a result, at that moment in time when we were defenseless dependent children and our brains were in critical stages of development, to become inauthentic versions of ourselves in order to cope and respond to pain. We disconnected rather than integrated with ourselves emotionally, did not learn self-care and self-compassion, and learned to maladapt and rely on others who cause the pain (we think we deserve) to soothe the pain. As we took in too much pain and trauma, our bodies defensively repressed it, temporarily stored it away in our memory banks until we were more mature and better equipped to handle it.

As is described so eloquently in Tracy Crossley’s article, as we go out into the world and live our lives and develop relationships, go to school, and pursue our passions, we make decisions based on false perceptions and beliefs about the world and ourselves along with our unhealed trauma wounds. In the process, we never learn what the real things are that nurture OUR souls and OUR self-worth and that make US happy and how to pursue them. We end up neglecting our own needs and become overly dependent on other people to tell us what we are doing is worthy and we use, by default, their happiness to bring us happiness rather than sourcing that from within our own selves.

Let’s explore this not so obvious point a bit more.

th-5-1Living Lies Cannot Sustain Us

Living lies just like physically abusing or neglecting our bodies cannot sustain us because our bodies were not designed to work that way. We are fighting nature by fooling ourselves and what will nature do? It will rebel and when it does, the consequences can be severe and for some irreversible. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. So when you do not supply the body what it needs to function properly, it will attempt to take from somewhere else.

So if you do not provide the body the proper nourishment it needs to survive and sustain itself or you take in too many toxic substances or stress your body above what it was designed to do, the body cannot develop normally and visually, you look bad and physically and emotionally, you feel bad. You become physically and emotionally unfit.

c8201dd7ec25ba33ef0f4148c07a5d9bNow for a while, the liver or body systems that are being taxed will filter out the crap and your natural defenses will take over until..wham! You have overtaxed them and they no longer are able to filter out the garbage faster than it is coming in or you have strained that vertebrae or ligament or muscle as far as it can be stretched. You experience emotional and physical pain. These are the cues that what you have been putting in the body is not sufficient to nourish and sustain it and you need to stop doing what you are doing and course correct.

So you could take an aspirin or an antacid or put on makeup or get false teeth or take high blood pressure medicine or cholesterol medicine that will mask the damage and temporarily relieve and sustain yourself, nevertheless until you provide your body the proper nutrition to care for it and ensure its works as it was designed, something will continue to give and you will continue to risk being at some level of pain and suffering.

How Overtaxing the Mind Starves Us of Emotional Nourishment

Equally, when you do not provide the mind what it needs tostarving soul hunger flourish or you overtax it and take in too much emotional toxicity or pain, the spirit will starve for nourishment and you will exceed the pain threshold your brain was designed to handle. Read more on nourishing our souls. The brain has remarkable plasticity but it is not good at spontaneous healing. The mind and spirit will become traumatized and malnourished and you will become emotionally fatigued, exhausted, stressed, or depressed. Sustained emotional stress also results in more physical damage to the body because the human body is comprised of integrated systems. The neurological system is connected and interrelated to all the body’s systems, hence, healthy body, healthy mind and vice versa.

In essence, when you mess with nature, you mess with your own divine AUTHENTIC and integrated design. To be happy we have to learn and embrace a healthy life style that includes not only our emotional fitness but also our fitness related to our achievements and relationships and our physical health. Read more here.

Masking Pain Will Not Address It

14445943_10154619521823628_8931312378332167929_nAnd like an aspirin that provides temporary relief from physical pain, we can bandaid our emotional pain. Absolutely, we can. Doctors can label us with this condition or that and prescribe antidepressants or mood elevators or we can self-medicate with alcohol or illegal drugs or food or people and find many other creative ways to mask the pain and continue to be someone we are not and look to others, even abusers and manipulators, or things to define our worth and for instant relief and gratification. We can even deny it. The body when the trauma is too much for the mind to bear, even represses it. However, wounds that cannot be accessed cannot be healed. Some of us may even believe this works for us. That is until we get older and our liver or kidneys or heart or soul become stressed to capacity or until we face some major emotional catastrophe that tests our self-reliance, self-assurance, and coping skills. Then and for some, only then, do they experience the perfect storm and are faced with reality and like Dr. Phil says learn in the hardest and worst way that what they have done has not worked for them and has resulted in immeasurable and, for some, irreparable damage.

th-13We all have inalienable rights to pursue life, liberty and happiness. Absolutely we do. However, if we are prevented from pursuing them because we have damaged the only vessel that we have to travel in that journey, we are sabotaging not only our own health and happiness but also our children’s by teaching them the same maladaptive unhealthy thinking patterns and beliefs. And, frankly, we and our children all deserve so much better.

How Abuse Makes Our Emotions Toxic

Let’s now look at abuse and how it impacts our abilities to regulate our emotions and engage in healthy relationships. Everyone who is abused is most likely not able to recognize the “good” in a healthy relationship because they never learned to relate good treatment to love and to defining their worthiness. The belief filters in abuse survivors become skewed. The magnitude of the damage depends on what “fears” are driving you as well. Read more in “Why Did I Get Involved with a Jerk and What Can I Do About It.”

Read more on how emotions can become toxic in abuse survivors.


Don’t forget that in life, we move in the direction of, create in reality, and do what we believe to be true even if it is a lie and even if it does not serve us and harms us. That is what makes us get involved with abusers and not leave them on the spot. Our filters for screening out narcissistic jerks were damaged in childhood and most likely many other abusive power imbalanced relationships we have had in our lives.

The problem is that if we meet someone who is authentically a good person and who is NOT inflicting emotional pain on us and NOT pushing our fear and pain buttons, we are at risk of feeling unloved, unfulfilled and unworthy and then proceed to sabotage the “good” relationship to keep ourselves in our comfortable and familiar state of shame that, of course, while painful, we nevertheless “believe” we can handle better, say, than our fear of being betrayed and abandoned and do not believe we are worthy of anything better.

This is an excellent example of how abusive childhoods cause pain addictions and skewed beliefs in personal power that rule our lives that become “pain-seeking” and “pain-avoiding” rather than “joy-seeking” and “joy-filled” (e.g. joyful). While we do this unconsciously and not deliberately, these vulnerabilities make us susceptible to attacks from emotional predators and for a life of chronic unhappiness, unfulfilment, and emotional pain and fatigue.

“The problem is that if we meet someone who is authentically a good person and who is NOT inflicting emotional pain on us and NOT pushing our fear and pain buttons, we are at risk of feeling unloved, unfulfilled and unworthy and then proceed to sabotage the ‘good’ relationship to keep ourselves in our comfortable state of shame that, of course, while painful, we nevertheless ‘believe’ we can handle better than, say, our fear of being betrayed and abandoned and do not believe we are worthy of anything better.”

Let’s break this down a bit further as it applies to relationships. Do relationships with jerks bring you pain? Absolutely, however, it is pain that you associate with being lovable and a good person and believe you are powerless to and you do not believe you deserve better. You also in your childhood most likely developed codependency tendencies and learned to self-sacrifice for other people. Perhaps you are an empath with too much compassion and believe you must fix other’s problems before you take care of your own needs? Perhaps you never learned you are worthy of being happy and were rewarded only for taking care of other’s needs?

This maladaptive thinking is what keeps us vulnerable to abusers and how abuse makes our emotions become toxic to our own selves. We learn to maladapt and confuse self-worth with avoidance of pain rather than pursuing goals and relationships that bring us real joy. Our decisions become heavily based on our learned pain tolerances and perceived weaknesses rather than our personal value and power and worthiness of joy. We become attracted to power imbalanced relationships because we believe we should suffer to be lovable and can “handle” the shame and emotional pain from abuse better than our fear of abandonment from being alone. So a relationship with a “good” person would not be appealing to abuse survivors who would not relate being treating well to being lovable or worthy and would not be able to “see” the good in it and therefore, would perceive no value in it.

Here’s the good news!th-23

We are only born with two fears: fear of falling and fear of loud noises. All others fears, pains, apprehensions, anxieties, phobia, bad habits? Well, those we learned. And just like we learned them, we can UNLEARN them.

I am committed here at Yourlifelifter and wrote Take Your Power Back to help you do exactly that and show you where to look to discover the real truth, facilitate your healing, and live as the joy-based authentic person you were put on this earth to be.

On Free Will, Character, and Tolerance

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-7If you do not provide the body the proper nourishment it needs to survive and sustain itself or you take in too many toxic substances or stress your body above what it was designed to do, the body cannot develop normally and visually, you look bad and physically and emotionally, you feel bad. You become physically and emotionally “unfit.” Read more here.

starving soul hungerNourishment, we must remember,  includes emotional nourishment. We cannot sustain ourselves emotionally if we are not allowed or are prevented from acting on our inalienable rights to pursue happiness. So we need to act on our free will to survive and to support our emotional health and overall well-being. In fact, our human bodies were divinely designed to use our free will to search for and pursue “truth” to sustain our happiness. Let’s examine this further.
No one has the right to prevent us from becoming our authentic selves including manipulating our power from us to redirect it to serve themselves. In fact, this is just plain dangerous. No one was born with that right or is entitled to that right just as our founding fathers agreed to in our Bill of Rights and the Constitution and its amendments. Our “power” is limited to solely, if we choose, inform others we don’t agree and why or this is what we believe and why. That is about it! You can’t debate the “correctness” of beliefs or conclude that mine are wrong and yours are right. What we believe is what we believe even if we think those of others are skewed and way off base. We cannot turn personal beliefs into laws and expect them to hold steadfast and true. Self-righteousness is not righteous.

We have laws founded in morality and righteousness that mandate the boundaries of our actions to ensure a peaceful society and support the principle that we are all different and have a common right to free will and to choose our paths in life. These laws have evolved and proved their effectiveness over time. However, laws cannot tell us how to think or what to pursue or what not to pursue. That we must figure out on our own. When the laws become self-righteous or exploitive and prevent folks from acting on their free will (assuming people are capable of making decisions that do not do them harm), people start making their own rules and rebelling. Why? Because directing, manipulating, or restricting that what innately makes us human and what we as humans are uniquely designed for and what drives our passions and our unalienable rights to pursue happiness and use our own free will to pursue it, in short, create chaos. They go against the laws of nature, conflict with our life’s purpose, and prevent us from being who we were put on this earth to be and to live harmoniously with others.
12622499_1059585244104691_2861246025910635435_oWe can’t tell people how to think or manipulate their thinking and what to do even if we do not believe or agree with what they think or what they do. We can try, however this is self-serving, exploitive, fraudulent, disrespectful, dishonorable, and abusive. This is invalidating and is attempting to take away a person’s divine right to free will as well as what they need to sustain their health and well-being and to act on their inalienable rights. As stated earlier, when we attempt to do so, chaos ensues.

How does free will relate to our personal rights and relating to one another? As discussed, we are are born with the inalienable rights to pursue life, liberty and happiness. We are also innately born lovable. However, other personal “rights” such as the rights to be believed or to be trusted are earned and learned. We work for these rights by gaining the skills, knowledge, and abilities and more so and demonstrate our worthiness through our actions and words that stem from beliefs we validate through our life experiences and our personal interactions. This is how our characters develop and become chiseled permanently into our being. Read more here.

Let’s look at my business and Facebook ownership, for example. This ownership gives me no special entitlement. Being an abuse survivor or having the ability to manage a Facebook page and business provide me no special rights or divine authority to be believed.  It simply doesn’t work that way. And to think otherwise is irrational and ludicrous.

th-8I could, like any unethical, weak, exploitive, or self-serving person just tell you all a bunch of lies or what you “need” to hear to manipulate your power from you and continue to exploit you. I. assure you that is not the case. To the contrary, I, like other legitimate healers, earned this position and the respect that comes with it through my hard work, education, authenticity, professional certifications, actions, validation from others including experts, other credible Facebook owners, and my community members and customers who through reliability of my service, have learned to trust me.

So no one has the right to dictate how others behave or how or what they choose because, simply, they have not earned that right and it is not their “divine’ purpose to do so. Those who do, are the ones who have maladapted and instead of becoming self-reliant and self-sustaining people, learned to parasitically source their emotional nourishment from someone or something else. They have become dangerous to society. They are the ones who as described in the Bible, turn darkness into light and light into darkness.

Read more on why people are evil.

In reality, if we want to change the behaviors of others, we can only change through sharing truth and with our learned ability to influence change and proving our credibility to others. Bringing value to others is the only power we have over others. That is about it. The rest is left to others to decide. Accepting this and others without judgement is the key to tolerance and compassion that are what drive mankind’s survivability and sustainability and our own ability to adapt to that we know we have no power to change and using our free will to change that which we do.

And when we find others who reflect our truth back to us?

Well, that is when the magic starts and that is what life is all about.

Why Healing From Abuse Is Never About The Abuser

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Excerpted from Evelyn Ryan’s book, Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips and Tools for Abuse Survivors. Read a review of the book here.

th-8The only person you are here to serve is your authentic self. When you serve your authentic self, your decisions and actions fulfill your legitimate emotional needs. All of life’s pieces fall into place, since the core of your being is truth-based and authentically you. You know you can rely on yourself for your safety. You feel safe in your own body.

What happens to us when we are abused, betrayed by those we intimately trust? Betrayal is one of the most painful human experiences. The victim’s response is shame, internal pain, self-loathing, trauma, and fear. We translate that into the false belief that something is wrong with us. But there is nothing wrong with us! There never was. We did not do anything wrong. Being who we are is not wrong. Our love was real. Our trust was real. Theirs was not. We were innocent defenseless victims.


Our attackers are character-flawed, disordered. We were betrayed because we trusted and depended on unhealed abusers, manipulators, and untrustworthy broken people. They betrayed us. We were betrayed because that is what betrayers do. It was not personal in that sense. Our attackers targeted us because they are experts on homing in on people with our vulnerabilities.


They need people with our vulnerabilities so that their manipulation tactics will be
successful, so that they will win the challenge and the ultimate prize: our energy, attention, and adulation. Before you and me, there were many, and after us, there will be many more. We were betrayed because we were vulnerable. We did not ask to be victimized, but we played a role in the abuse that we need to understand and accept.

imgresMany of us are empaths—highly sensitive natural healers, compassionate people with
high emotional intelligence. We did not learn to use our compassion and trust responsibly; we depended on untrustworthy people to define our self-worth. Our emotional vulnerabilities make us complicit in our own abuse by keeping us susceptible to abusers who preyed on us and kept us addicted to pain. This truth can be very painful, and yet it’s life-changing. It will change your life forever and for the better. When we know better and that we are worthy of the knowledge, we do better.

knowbetter do betterAnger, resentment, and revenge will not heal us. Self-avoidance will not heal us. Focusing on our abusers will not heal us. Taking responsibility and accepting without judgment will. In healing, we learn to become our authentic selves—and to stop seeking approval of our worth from others. Healing is a learning process. Through asking the right questions and seeking and finding truthful answers in a safe and trusting environment, we learn to turn our compassion and courage inward to support shifts in our thinking that lead to long-term emotional health and happiness.

We learn to befriend ourselves (who we long ago abandoned) by accepting our powerlessness, committing to our healing, challenging our thoughts, releasing our fear and shame, and incrementally taking our power back as we lift up our thinking and discover and honor our real selves and our personal divinity.

Do we need to understand our abusers to heal? Yes. But minimally and only in order to understand what they are missing and what they exploited in us and what faulty beliefs make us vulnerable to them. In fact, focusing too much on them will prevent you from healing.

Read more here on how much do we need to know about narcissism to heal.

Narcissistic abuse recovery expert, Melanie Tonia Evans, cautions us frequently that focusing too much on our abusers and our fear of them rather than on our healing and the role we play in our abuse can keep us trapped and prevent our recovery. I can relate.

One of the most difficult lessons I learned was that I was vulnerable to attacks by manipulators and bullies. I felt threatened by them and believed I was not safe. I became fearful and resentful. My fear drove me to overestimate the harm from them and underestimate my ability to deal with them. I felt defenseless. I became hyper-vigilant in my attempts to avoid shame and pain as I waited for their attacks. I became hyper-reactive to attacks that I was sure would come and did come. I became intolerant, which did not serve me.

In the process, I gave up my power to emotional vampires who continued to target me. Trying to avoid perceived threats kept me emotionally trapped to the people and events that triggered my fears and caused me continued pain. So, I remained a victim of the emotional vampires because I thought like a victim. I was held captive by my own fears. I became emotionally fatigued. Focusing on them rather than myself kept me from healing. I learned and accepted that my fear was giving my abusers the power to overcome me.th-14

So I put on my big-girl britches and, little by little, took on and challenged my fears and
my false sense of powerlessness, replacing them with courage and self-assurance. I took my power back as I came into my own truth and accepted what I could change as well as what I could not. I accepted what happened to me, took responsibility for the role I played, and shifted my thinking from that of a victim to one who wanted to take her power back, detach from and defuse the abusers, and thrive. I took action!

I adapted by turning the irrational fear and hypervigilance into compassion and tolerance. I turned that wasted fear-driven energy to the source of that fear within myself and not only challenged and released it but replaced it with self-compassion, self-knowledge, self-power, self-respect, and self-love. I honed my ability to identify and cope with evil people. Instead of focusing my energy on them, I shifted my attention to me and my self-worth and abilities. I protected my personal boundaries because I know and believe I am worth it.

In the process of healing and witnessing my own healing, my fear of aggressors became pity for the powerless annoyances they are. In the process, my self-esteem and self-respect and self-assuredness soared, and I took my power back. I chose not to give my power to powerless emotional vampires and to protect my personal boundaries and honor my personal rights and authority because I know I deserve respect. I taught my daughter the same. In the process, my daughter healed through me and thrived. It is never about the other person, folks. My dear friend Jim Upshaw told me that years ago, and I never forgot the message. Now I know the true meaning. Now I never forget the lesson: When you serve your authentic self, your decisions and actions fulfill your legitimate emotional needs. You know you can rely on yourself for your safety. All of life’s pieces fall into place, since the core of your being is truth-based and authentically you.

In the healing process, we regain our self-trust, self-power, self-respect, and self-esteem. We learn what our true value is to ourselves. We learn to rely on and trust internal emotional cues that have been recalibrated with our personal truth and core beliefs. Oh, of course, we must get cues from our environment and from others who have our best interests at heart. We also become better able to recognize those who do not. But we now can readily use those cues to gauge where we are and to tweak our internal truth-seeking filters based on our choices and their outcomes.

th-29In healing, we learn who we really are and to love ourselves. We become fully integrated people of integrity whose thoughts, actions, and beliefs align. Our healing allows us to be the best version of ourselves. It is the best demonstration of self-love we could give ourselves. And in that newfound truth, we thrive.

Power Imbalance in Abusive Relationships – Part 2

Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

th-1This is Part 2 in a two part series on power imbalance in abusive relationships.

Part 1 discusses misperceptions on the relationship between abusers and their victims and describes the predatory aspects of abuse and the not so obvious causes of power imbalance in abusive relationships.

Part 2 discusses further the differences between aggression, power, and control in abusive relationships and how healing allows us to access and rely on our own personal power.

No matter what you think or what you read about the abusers’ need to control, people who abuse or exploit others have no superhuman magical powers to inflict pain and also alleviate it. To the contrary, they are much more simple and “weak” than that. Abusers are, in reality, aggressive fearful parasitic spineless cruel individuals who lack compassion and the ability to generate their own power and energy.

thPeople who abuse “simply” are aggressive character deficient hunters who easily betray trust and do not and cannot follow the rules of respect, honor and decency. Aggression and control, however, are not synonymous with power or danger.

Abusers may be overtly or covertly aggressive but they abuse because they lack power no different than the creeps we see on world-wide news who lure and track a defenseless creature, kill it, skin it, behead it, and put its head over the mantel to ogle at and think in their depraved minds that now he or she is more powerful than the truly powerful and majestic creature whose life they selfishly took because they “simply” “wanted to” because it made them “feel” better. What is the difference between these “big game” hunters and narcissistic emotional vampires. Well, not much.

They target us, because our pain addictions and false beliefs of powerlessness we brought with us from wounded childhoods make us vulnerable to their attacks and they WANT AND NEED our power to feel better. They target you, like the hunters “simply,” because they can and YOU are beneficial to THEM and they are character or personality disordered and aggressively go after and take anything they want! They believe they are entitled and that the rules of normal respectful human engagement or honoring life do not apply to them. They make their own rules that serve them. They have distorted views on work and obligation. They “simply” are depraved and have become human predators.

Read more on narcissists, work and obligation here.

However, because we were powerless to our abusers in childhood, we believe falsely based on our unhealed wounded thinking that we are defenseless to these limited individuals who inflict pain on us and they are the only ones who have the power to take away the pain they inflict. Folks, we do not have to suffer or self-sacrifice to be lovable! And we are not powerless to these creeps. THEY are the powerless ones! And frankly, you DESERVE SO MUCH BETTER.

Read this again!

Healing requires major shifts in our thinking so they are based on truthful and adaptive beliefs that serve our authentic needs NOT the needs of parasitic energy vampires who like the big game hunters need the power of trophy wives or husbands to feed off of and hang over their “ego” mantels. Healing requires us to take our power back, regulate our emotions and not rely on soul suckers and weak spineless people who would sell their own mothers and children for a nickel if it serves them.

Do you have neuroses, compulsions, fears, anxieties, phobias? Most of us do and this is why. In childhood, our abusive or neglectful or invalidating caretakers caused our pain emotions to become toxic and did not, as they should have, validate our emotions and teach us how to functionally and effectively control our emotions and self-soothe. We all have those capacities. They just never developed because we were neglected and were never taught how to use and mature them to benefit our own selves.

th-23Pain-based emotions are here to protect us and not do us harm. We are born with only two fears: fear of falling and fear of loud noises. Every other pain, phobia, and maladaptive emotion-based neurosis we have, we learned. We become reactive to our emotions that control us rather than using them as cues to willfully course or thought correct. Read more here. When we are emotionally starved and fatigued, guess what? We get depressed. And guess what? When we are emotionally fatigued and depressed, we cannot set and achieve goals to support our self-esteem and self-worth that sustain our happiness and emotional health.

Read this again and again. This is no secret.

Real power is willfully and confidently choosing to do what we want to do and when, taking actions sourced from our own power, our own free will to authentically serve our own selves! This is how the human body was designed to function. And as we live our lives, through our experiences and interactions with others and our successes and our mistakes, we incrementally build wisdom and our characters.

Read more on living an authentic life here.

Learn more about building personal power and worth.

This functional capability goes haywire from the trauma from abuse including neglect and emotional invalidation. Rather than developing and maturing these abilities, we, maladapt, and learn to rely on other unreliable people, things, and substances to cope and for emotional sustenance and to define our self-worth. So instead of willfully controlling our lives and making independent decisions that serve our goals and nurture our souls, we become pain addicted and dependent on weak abusive exploitive people who do not have our best interests at heart and who trigger our fears and feed off of our power and use “love” to manipulate it from us. They become our conscious source of the pain and the unconscious source of relief to the pain no different than addictive substances, drugs, alcohol.

Cannot heal at same level as painFolks, the source of our joy is none other than us and the only ones who can rescue and relieve our pain are our own selves. Fortunately, we can heal! However, we cannot heal at the same level of thinking that creates our pain. Healing requires fully understanding why we love people who inflict pain on us and why we tolerate it.

Healing requires us to take our power back and learning to protect and honor our own divinity, reach our highest potential, be our authentic joy-seeking selves, and thrive.

Read more on living an authentic life here.

705466_cover_mockup1-1I cover these topics and more in much more detail in my book, Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors. You can read an exclusive sneak peek and review of the book and purchase a copy here.

Heal Your Children Through Yourself

th-3Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

Our children will be exposed to narcissists, nasty teachers, selfish room mates as well as kind generous authentic people every day. Healthy boundaries go in both directions and we can only teach our children how to protect and love and honor themselves and to make wise choices. Why, then, should it be any worse or more dramatic because they have a narcissistic parent? Why do we, the parents, feel we are responsible for putting our children through this? Why are we so hugely emotionally vested and fearful?

Healing Takes Deliberate Planned Action

As a parent and a survivor of narcissistic abuse, I was beside myself with worry every day that not only would narcissists harm my child but that I was powerless to stop it. I learned through my healing that this was faulty learned thinking that I risked transferring to myif-you-dont-heal-your-pain child if I left it uncorrected. Along with it, I carried profound guilt, shame and trauma and believed falsely that I was an ineffective parent. This was my inner critic’s guilt and shame I carried with me from childhood that was projected onto me by my abusers! I came to learn that the pain I was carrying was not even mine and was unhealed pain that had been transferred to me generationally.

Read more here on dysfunctional families and intergenerational abuse.

I realized soon that focusing on my guilt, shame, pain, angst, and fear and protecting my daughter from harm, was just keeping me from healing and preventing my daughter from acquiring the full benefit of my genuine love for her because I was not emotionally healthy and functioning authentically at one hundred per cent. Why should your children and my daughter and our relationships with them suffer because we did? Let’s explore this.

In order for my daughter to thrive (and she is), I and no one else had to own my pain and understand that I was worthy of healing and being pain free and to honestly express that ownership and my responsibility for healing with my daughter. She and I both deserved better as do you and your children, right? So I focused on my health and wellness, made a plan, and took action. I put on my big girl britches and apologized to her for my poor choices and told her the root causes and what I was doing to course and thought correct. It was not her problem to correct or take on as her own. It was mine! I can only be her mother and she had the personal right to an emotionally healthy and honest one and to be raised in an emotionally healthy home. Not only did I heal, I thrived and when I thrived, guess what? So did my daughter.

Did I make mistakes when I felt helpless and overwhelmed and lost? Of course. Did that make me a bad mother? Of course not. To the contrary, it made me an awesome one, a powerful one. Did my daughter drive me crazy through her teenage years? Of course. Did that make her a bad child? Of course not. But once again, I took on the guilt of “ruining her.” In times of stress, we go back to what we are comfortable with though it may not be effective. Thank goodness for the National Geographic edition on the teenage brain that explained the teenage years are a sort of “retarded” stage humans have to go through for normal development. What relief I had when the burden of shame was replaced with truth and empowerment.

Do Not Normalize the Abuse

Abuse victims are frequently unnecessarily conflicted about alienating the child against the other parent. Don’t ever think your children are too young to learn the truth about being victimized or exploited that you are “saying something bad about the other parent.” This is a lie that results in nothing more than normalizing the abuse, teaching falsehoods on healthy relationships and love, shaming the victim and adding to their pain. There is a big difference between speaking crap about a person and speaking truth about a crappy person. Always speak truth because it does set us free.

Healing is your right to act on your free will and to live as you were designed. Healing is all about you, not your husband or wife or partner and a child is never too young to learn about good and evil and what healthy relationships, love, and boundaries are. Love that is unrequited is not love, right? The challenge is teach our children how to relate to all people including relatives without sacrificing love and honor for themselves.

Empowering Life Skills – Critical Thinking and Healthy Reciprocity

We, to be effective parents or mentors, must teach our children or proteges life skills that support their emotional and relational health.  Brian D. Johnson, Ph.D. and Laurie Berdahl, M.D. report in “Childhood Roots of Narcissistic Personality Disorder” that critical thinking skills help us tell lies from truths and determine when someone is manipulating to take advantage of or scam us.  Critical thinking also allows us to reliably distinguish emotionally healthy from emotionally unhealthy behaviors, identify narcissists and anyone toxic, hang tough in our own truth and manage the boundaries with all toxic people even the ones we are related to who we are “supposed to love.”

We can easily teach these empowering life skills by being mindful of healthy and healthy interactions and behaviors we observe and pointing these out to our children. Of course, we must walk the talk and fess up to and apologize for less than optimal behaviors to reinforce positive behaviors and mirror healthy behaviors and accountability for our actions and behaviors as well.

Part of healing and building self-worth is learning what self-love is and what healthy loving relationships of reciprocity are. We are all born lovable however loving relationships are not an entitlement. They are worked for and earned based on honoring each other’s wants and needs in sickness and health and in good times and bad in a respectful manner beneficial to both parties. Emotionally intelligent and healthy individuals know this and live it. They are clear on their personal worth and lovability and the rules of healthy respectful human interactions. Again, the best way to teach our children is to support these behaviors consistently in our words, thoughts, and actions.

If we are in abusive relationships and have young children, we can tell our stories and teach these lessons in a healthy constructive manner, while holding the abuser responsible for their actions, and at the same time stay accountable to our healing goals. Absolutely you can! Take this as as example.

Why not present situation as a child would understand such as in a fairy tale about good and evil and put yourself in the story. Be creative. The brain is growing and processing and she is mirroring, seeing herself in you. You ARE your child’s reflection and you are teaching her how to become as she is divinely intended and to respect herself and to understand personal worth. You are teaching her to become the best version of herself she can become and to understand her self-worth. You are teaching her to have compassion for her mother, the person who gave her life. You are facilitating your child to become a participant and compassionate witness in your healing and rebirth in the same way you participated and witnessed hers. Your actions validate the lessons you teach and she is witnessing and benefitting from your love that she projects back to you. This is how we live authentially and learn healthy lessons on our lovability, compassion, self-reliance, and personal worth.

What if My Child is a Narcissist

If we have children with narcissists, sadly we run the risk of having narcissistic children. You did nothing wrong. Nature did and you cannot fix it. Compassion and lack of it are both inherited and hopefully if our narcissist children are at the lower end of the spectrum we can have some semblance of a relationship with them.

Learn more on what causes narcissism.

That, nevertheless, may not be possible if their toxicity level, combat tactics, and manipulation tactics are severe. Accepting that our children can not love us in healthy ways is extremely painful, but acceptance is empowering. Your safety and that of your other children always come first. If you let them, narcissists will, without a doubt, consume every single bit of narcissistic supply you give them at the expense of your other children, joy, happiness, energy, life, bank account, reputation and whatever else they can exploit from you. We also, remember, run the risk of having empathetic children who are vulnerable to their attacks as well. So we also need to protect our children and teach them to recognize narcissists, manage boundaries, and protect their vulnerabilities. Frequently, empathetic children can have too much compassion so we must focus on teaching them the same lessons and how to use their compassion responsibly and not become overly reliant on others for validation of their worth that makes them vulnerable to narcissistic predators. 

The best any parent can do for narcissistic children is guide them with love, compassion, moral-based teaching, and consistency and perhaps they will end up falling at the lower end of the spectrum of less harmful character traits but there are no guarantees. Managing them takes very finely honed skills that very few therapists are even equipped with and are capable of handling. If you notice lack of compassion and serious self-centeredness in them and the failure to thrive, have healthy relationships or self-soothe, and engaging in bullying, get them into competent counseling right away.

In adulthood, the best option may be to follow the TDS (Time – Distance -Shielding) Rule and minimize your time, maximize the distance with them and put shielding between you and learn how to maintain your self-preservation when around them. The rest is in divine hands.



Your Children Will Heal Through You

Years ago, in the midst of an unhappy period in my life, my dear friend, Jim, told me, “Evelyn, It is never about the other person.” I, at the time, did not know what he meant but I never forgot that advice. Now I never forget the lesson. Here it is:

th-8Until you own your own pain and shame and get rid of it and stop blaming others for it, you will not heal and you will continue to think like a victim and transfer this angst to your children. Your children will then needlessly suffer collateral damage and abuse will be perpetuated.  This was not your pain to begin with.


Read more here on how abuse is perpetuated generationally in dysfunctional families.

Heed more Melanie Tonia Evans’ healing words of wisdom.

“The true remedy for getting out of this emotional charge is know who you are and have no need to defend it to anyone – especially your children. The truth of the matter is, however, that the more we get emotionally charged, the more we fight back, and the more we try to defend ourself against the narcissist, the atrocities escalate even more, and the more the atrocities work in the narcissist’s favor…There is nothing that an individual’s soul does not co-create that isn’t right for the purpose of the opportunity to create evolution and healing….heal your children through yourself.”

Read more on healing your children from Melanie Tonia Evans here.

Power Imbalance in Abusive Relationships – Part 1

th-2Evelyn Ryan, Yourlifelifter

This is Part 1 in a two part series on power imbalance in abusive relationships, common misperceptions, causes and effects of power imbalance, and how to correct them.

Part 2 discusses further the differences between aggression, power, and control in abusive relationships and how healing allows us to access and rely comfortably on our own personal power in mutually respectful healthy relationships.

This article discusses misperceptions on the relationship between abusers and their victims and describes the predatory aspects of abuse and the not so obvious causes of power imbalance in abusive relationships.

There is what I believe a huge misperception on the relationship between abusers and their victims. That is correct…their victims. You will read often that abuse is the need to control and take power over another. While this may be partly true, this does not accurately or completely describe the predatory aspects of abuse and the not so obvious causes of power imbalance in abusive relationships.

Dynamics of Work and Obligation in Healthy Relationships

starving soul hungerThe core to healthy relationship are healthy interactions between compassionate people who have healthy views on work and obligation. Simply put, emotionally healthy people work for what they need to benefit and sustain themselves and those they are in relationships with. We expect to periodically self-sacrifice and put in the extra effort to benefit someone else because we know if we do, we will reap the rewards as well. We also expect sometimes to not work so hard and let others put in the extra effort to care for us when we need it. We know that we are paid for the value of the service we provide to others no matter if they are loved ones, customers, bosses, or even strangers. We also work for what we need because we know and are confident we can do so and enjoy working towards our goals. It brings us joy. It sustains our life. It nourishes our souls. It makes us better people. We know that having “skin in the game” builds character. If we reap benefits that are equal to or exceed the efforts or costs to achieve them, then we are happy, content, fulfilled. Why? Because we have literally proven to ourselves through our own actions and hard work that what we believe is true and benefits us and we are worthy of achieving those benefits. This is how we develop self-reliance and self-worth.

Dysfunctional Work and Commitment Dynamics in Abusive Relationships

This balance of give and take and work and obligation that fuels normal character development, relationships, and human existence becomes severely skewed in power imbalanced relationships. Why?

Because abusers simply detest putting out effort that might, even in part, benefit someone else. They can work very hard and can spend inordinate amounts of time and energy working purely to get something they want. As most of us very well know, they can put in extraordinary efforts to groom and love bomb a potential mate or spouse. But putting the same amount of energy into finding or keeping a legitimate job, a personal relationship. taking care of a sick family member, demonstrating the loyalty and consistency necessary to be considered for advancement, or making the investment in personal self-development to merit consideration for more advanced positions are completely different matters and very unattractive enterprises to them. They want all the benefits of marriage, for example, without having to work for them or earn them! Abusers resist working to become better human beings more than any other kind of work. So even when it comes to respect and love and admiration, they want to come by them in the same manner as everything else  – without having to earn them.

Abusers benefit from the self-sacrifice and work or their victims whom they exploit for their personal gain. The victims are stuck in “hamster wheel relationships” that go nowhere and get nothing back in return for their extreme investments of pain and energy. Their efforts are unrequited. Chronic exploitation leads to chronic emotional pain and trauma, overtaxing of our pain-based emotional mechanisms. They become depleted and emotionally fatigued, depressed, and traumatized. The extreme and long-term imbalance of power and chronic invalidation are the core to the damage from abusive relationship fueled by legacy wounded thinking and skewed beliefs that originated in abusive childhoods. It is this wounded thinking and these skewed beliefs that also makes us vulnerable to these predators.

Read more here on how we inherit pain-based thinking and how it is passed from generation to generation.

Abuser Find Us and Prey on Our Vulnerabilities

Abusers find us. We do not find them. In reality, abusers aggressively and offensively target and prey on the vulnerable ones who will easily give up their power and energy to them. Abusers do this because they loathe working on self-improvement, cannot self-soothe, cannot generate their own power and get great enjoyment and emotional fulfillment from taking it from, where else? Others! As discussed above, they want all the benefits others can provide them without working for them.

The abusers shadow their pain on vulnerable victims and use them and play on their vulnerabilities so they defensively give up their power to them. Abusers learned these predatory practices from the same place their victims learned their maladaptive behaviors – in their own families. People who are emotionally fit do not readily give up their power to others. In short, they would simply not be bothered with abusers because they are confident in their self-truth and rely comfortably on their personal power and on their internal cues to define their worthiness. They reserve their self-power for themselves and others they voluntarily choose to share their power with and who treat them with respect. They monitor and protect their personal rights, authorities and divinity comfortably and confidently. They assertively would tell the abusers to go away or ignore them and the abusers would simply move on to the next victim.

Adult survivors of childhood abuse, on the other hand, suffer from low self-esteem and pain addiction because their pain-based emotions lose their protective functions, go haywire, and become toxic. In effect, when we are abused as adults, our exaggerated pain and trauma and accompanying feelings of unworthiness and defenselessness from our youth are triggered. So our shame is old unhealed legacy shame and the beliefs are false wounded beliefs our childhood abusers shadowed on us that we bring with us into adulthood.

How Do Victims Become Victors and Take Their Power Back

Abusers do not hold some magical hold on us. We are not the source of our shame that drives our self-loathing. We are, however, vulnerable to abusers who target us due to damage from overuse of our pain-based emotions. It is our toxic pain-based emotions and false beliefs of powerlessness that cause us to give up our power to abusers who trigger our pain. We also believe falsely that we must suffer to be lovable, another skewed belief we were conditioned to believe in childhood.

th-1So victims of abuse do not deserve the pain and are not powerless or defenseless to their abusers. We are not the cause of our pain and we are not responsible for it and we are not defenseless to it. We are, however, adults who are thinking like abused wounded children, maladaptive thinking we formulated  when our brains and characters were developing and when we were most vulnerable that resulted from abuse and neglect and pain inflicted on us by those we trusted and were dependent on and who were supposed to care for and love us unconditionally. It was not our pain to begin with. This is pain and distorted thinking we shadow on our own children. This is how intergenerational abuse is perpetuated.

705466_cover_mockup1-1It is time to fix our self-esteem, heal our traumas, and TAKE OUR POWER BACK! It is time to break the cycle of intergenerational abuse. And as we heal, our children will heal through us. I explore these issues in much more depth in Part 2 in this series and in my book, Take Your Power Back: Healing Lessons, Tips, and Tools for Abuse Survivors. You can read a free sneak peek and review of the book and purchase a copy here.