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Emotionally absent family and friends

Community Member

Hi all.

I’m new here, recently went off social media & with everything going on in the world I thought it would be helpful to join the discussion here so I’m not so isolated... also hopeful a reader may have some advice for what I’m going through.

Has anyone had experience with family/friends who are emotionally absent? Ive gotten to a point of wanting to cut ties with my mother and sister because I have tried to express my feelings/needs in a respectful way but end up being either attacked or ignored.

I have spent the last few years persisting with treatment with little support from them, and the more time that has passed the more I’ve realised how their behaviours are impacting my recovery. I’m unsure how to communicate with them and would appreciate any help

thanks for reading 🙂

13 Replies 13

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

hey again

thanks for posting and updating us here

that truly sounds difficult and upsetting

it's not okay to be controlled and taken for granted, i'm sorry you are struggliong now during covid having to be in that environment

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Jessica, Lauren and Sleepy21

I'm alot older than you all... I had / have an extremely mentally unwell mother and she was also extremely damaging to my life, toxic you may say. It was possibly worse than that.

I've been No Contact since Police took her from my home a few decades ago. She was extremely violent again that day, to me and in front of my children.

She went to jail.

She played the victim ever so well.

Turned my entire extended family against me.

This huge loss which took me a billion attempts at contact to realise, saw me in a very depressed state for a long time.

It's hard, more than hard, to cut off ties. The Police did it for me in the end and actually "Counselled" me through it! They labelled it Domestic Violence. This shocked me, but as I came to understand the dynamics, indeed it was.

The MISTAKE I made was to NOT seek Counselling around the effects of being raised in a DV household specifically that topic (Family Violence too).
I know because of this I ended up choosing similar partners.

I'm out of it all now.
I completed a Course called "Breaking Free", have had Counselling (ongoing) for many years and recently sought a specialist Trauma Psychologist to help me settle PTSD and anxiety.

I urge you all to reach out here ALOT. Please read up on anything and everything that clicks with you about DV and FV. Try to understand and learn to know the "red flags" in others so you can avoid them. Once you "coin" a person (which I am VERY good at now lol) it can help you separate fast!

Most importantly KNOW none of this is your fault. Learn to love yourself. Care for yourself.

I guess I have "thrived" in the spectrum moving from "victim" to "survivor" to "thriver" but it's a slippery slope and I move between these quite a bit.

Love to you all

Hi ecomama

Besides the counciling what strategies or things did you do to help cope ?

What do you mean by red flags and how do recognise the them

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Lauren57

I couldn't find your thread, if you can tell me what the name of it is and maybe post something there so it comes up to a newer post, I'll get on there too, so any help I can offer is more specific to you - being your thread.

I'll start a thread later this week.... I'll think of a name...

I will put in italics anything you can Google.

I strongly urge anyone in DV / FV situations to, at least, seek Counselling from a person who tags DV / FV in their support title - I see a Counsellor thru Uniting Care and she's freaking amazing.

You may need a professional in this field for many years, esp with childhood DV, as a mentor and sounding board to you and your questions. The work needed by a victim to rise above this can never be underestimated.

A psychologist with same support title can be another source of at least spot therapy as I am having (but this is for diagnosed PTSD and anxiety that became unmanageable this year).

There are SO MANY websites, online clips, books, audio books, even FB pages depending on your circumstances.

ALSO please seek out what free Courses are available for DV / FV at your local Women's Health Centre. THIS was the incredible springboard for my deeper education & understandings around the Cycle of Violence. "Breaking Free" & "The Shark Cage" are the most incredible Courses & I urge ANYONE to do these Courses. Facilitated by 2 Counsellors, so the support was supreme, the content gobsmacking & the engagement onwards excellent.
They will offer these Courses 1:1 if you can't attend group sessions. I highly recommend the groups sessions, 8 for each.

"Red Flags", to me, are behaviours that abusers show to us, even at the beginning of the relationship when they can seem very mild or even endearing! Love bombing is one. Possessiveness, jealousy - major red flags. Usurping ALL your time to the point of excluding your friends, family - major red flag - this is part of "social isolation" abusers to do their victims. There are so many more red flags.... the other thread can help more.

OTHER component to recognise, be aware of & reflect in yourself are certain "key" elements than can make us 'attractive' to an abuser... like a magnet! This is not a complete list... Trigger Warning.. us having "daddy issues", no male figures around ie brothers, father, uncles, male friends... property.. good income.. childhood abuse.. previous SA & more.

Hope this helps