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Shame and The Golden Fantasy
April 30, 2006
11:19 am
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garfield9547
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I just saw the article again that opened our eyes some 18 months ago. Look at what is said of the Golden Fantasy - This was my husband to a T before therapy. All has changed since then. Just nice to share this with anybody interested.

The person who believes himself to be inferior, worthless, weak and powerless does not want to know this about himself because he does not want to acknowledge that it is true. To acknowledge the truth of his shame might stimulate feelings of self-hatred or abandonment terror.

Shame pathology is so intense, and generates such powerful negative feelings toward the self, that the shamed individual is unable to derive self-esteem from within. This means that most, if not all, access to self-esteem must be sought through contact with others. The result is that the person who is unable to feel good about himself will engage in relationships with others that seem to represent a cure for shame. Poor self-esteem is another term for shame feelings. The process of acquiring this kind of self-esteem from an intimate relationship occurs when the person meets someone that to him represents a fantasy of redemption. The abiding fantasy that one day someone will appear to release him from his shame. This fantasy can never be realized. No person can ever save another from his shame. When someone believes in this redemptive fantasy, it develops into a recipe for rage. For example, a man marries and yet feels deep within himself that he is inadequate and that no one could ever really love him. The origin of this feeling evolves out of a lonely childhood and develops into a fantasy of redemption that soothes him during the long hours of isolation. He has an image of someone who will appear someday to meet all his needs, deeply love him, and deliver him from his shame and loneliness. This condition is referred to as the "Golden Fantasy." His wife feels trapped by his expectation that she will save him. She must constantly prove to him that she loves him, and when on occasion she fails, he rages. All of her efforts to please, to sacrifice, to be good to him, will evaporate in a moment of rage. She cannot win because she cannot live up to the ideal. There is no possible way to become the ideal because it is based on a fantasy. The rage energy builds until it cannot be contained and spills out through the conduit of entitlement. He feels entitled to rage because she has failed to demonstrate her love for him in accordance with his redemptive fantasy. The surprising quality of rage is that the perpetrator so often does not sense the power of the emotion itself. Because rage is unconscious and automatically stimulated, it can actually bypass consciousness through entitlement. This circumstance often leads to more raging because he may feel the reaction he is getting is unjust.

Adults experiencing rage typically feel that its origin is "out there." They believe their anger is caused by the "other," when it is really being stimulated from within. Indicators of shame and rage behavior or their defenses can be noted in domestic violence, racism, perversions, eating disorders, and major depression. It can be said that shame is the core issue forming the nucleus of most personality disorders. Each person responds differently to their personal sense of shame, but when Shakespeare wrote "Out damned spot!" he was referring to a common theme about shame, an emotional stain on one's soul.

The phenomena of rage can be described as a psychological distortion based on the force of a primal shame wound. The active rage state customizes reality to create a means of expulsion. To illustrate, rage alters reality in a similar way that sexual excitement alters perception in the excitement phase before orgasm. Rage is produced by an active shame wound which exerts force from the pain that the person experiences from a negative act or a perceived negative act. Active shame pain feels like anxiety, fear, agitation, torment, depression or anger. There are several stages that precede rage within the person who is experiencing it. First, one may feel a rising tension inside through an experience that the person believes is shaming. Secondly, the mind reacts to this rising tension by unconsciously and automatically searching for an object to purge the system of the "toxic" shame. At this point the object could be anything from an anonymous person who cuts another off in traffic, to a wife who serves the dinner cold, or to a crying child. Thirdly, the psyche invents a rationalization to create a means to an end. The means to an end is identified as "entitlement to rage" or the switch that legitimizes the purging of shame from the psychic system. Rage is the ignition that propels the shame out of the structure and into the world of others. Since the shame/envy/rage/guilt system is the remnant of a regressed infantile wound it is pre-moral and without boundaries. The expelling of rage is a great relief to the pressure that rage produces from within the psyche.

"Shame-prone" individuals are quite fragile emotionally because they have given the authority for feeling good about themselves to someone else. Essentially, the forfeiting of one's own responsibility for self-esteem, burdens the relationship with pressure both to be the savior and to be continually ideal.

This is from Shame, Rage and the death of Love - by William Cloke Ph. D

April 30, 2006
11:50 am
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garfield9547
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"The process of acquiring this kind of self-esteem from an intimate relationship occurs when the person meets someone that to him represents a fantasy of redemption. The abiding fantasy that one day someone will appear to release him from his shame. This fantasy can never be realized. No person can ever save another from his shame. When someone believes in this redemptive fantasy, it develops into a recipe for rage. For example, a man marries and yet feels deep within himself that he is inadequate and that no one could ever really love him. The origin of this feeling evolves out of a lonely childhood and develops into a fantasy of redemption that soothes him during the long hours of isolation. He has an image of someone who will appear someday to meet all his needs, deeply love him, and deliver him from his shame and loneliness. This condition is referred to as the "Golden Fantasy." His wife feels trapped by his expectation that she will save him. She must constantly prove to him that she loves him, and when on occasion she fails, he rages. All of her efforts to please, to sacrifice, to be good to him, will evaporate in a moment of rage. She cannot win because she cannot live up to the ideal. There is no possible way to become the ideal because it is based on a fantasy. The rage energy builds until it cannot be contained and spills out through the conduit of entitlement. He feels entitled to rage because she has failed to demonstrate her love for him in accordance with his redemptive fantasy."

It feels like a parts of my life. Everything has changed since and it has not been easy. My husband lost all his fantasies in order to solve the problem. Now he is working on regaining some of it as he feels he cannot life if he cannot dream.

Garfield

April 30, 2006
2:21 pm
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garfield-this was interesting reading. where did u get this from?

April 30, 2006
2:27 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

If you have time go read the whole thing

This is from Shame, Rage and the death of Love - by William Cloke Ph. D

Just google it. I have had this on my favorites for more then a year.

((Garfield))

April 30, 2006
2:50 pm
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thanks, garfield, i will look it up.

garfield are u hugging yourself!! :0

what the heck....((guppy)) lol!!!

April 30, 2006
3:34 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

Am I being narcissistic or is this a 'healing' sign

I could not stop laughting. Thanks for pointing this out to me.

Garfield

April 30, 2006
4:35 pm
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garfield-i couldn't begin to guess your reasoning behind it, i just decided to go with the flow. ha ha.

April 30, 2006
4:47 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

My reasoning behind it is I NEVER realised I am doing it.

Ha Ha ha

Garfield

April 30, 2006
5:33 pm
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lol!!

((garfield))

April 30, 2006
5:41 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

OK so here's a big hug for you.
The right way.

((((((((Guppy)))))))))

April 30, 2006
5:45 pm
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garfield-dang, u squished me so hard, i look like a pop-eyed goldfish!!! lol!! thank u for the hug.:)

April 30, 2006
5:57 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

If humor is anything to go by you must be a clown fish

Ha Ha

Garfield

April 30, 2006
6:05 pm
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garfield- i'm a little angel fish!!!! ;0. i can't believe i wrote that with a straight face. bah!!!

April 30, 2006
6:11 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

SOOO innecent - 'little angel'

ha ha

Ok now I know. Now you have a reputation to live up to

he he

Garfield

(Gosh - I nearly gave myself a hug again) heeeeeeee

April 30, 2006
6:23 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

thanks for the chat.

Going to sleep now. It's 12:23 am

April 30, 2006
6:26 pm
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garfield-enjoyed the chat myself. i hope u have a purringly good night!!!

April 30, 2006
6:35 pm
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garfield9547
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guppy

Oh purrrrrrrrr If Garfield doesn't go to bed now he might fatasize about eating little angel fish.

April 30, 2006
6:43 pm
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garfield-in that case i just blew up into a puffer fish. good luck getting me down!!!!! it would be worse than any hair ball u ever coughed up!!..... nice kitty. garfield like lazagna anyway.

April 30, 2006
7:56 pm
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garfield9547

A quote from Choke's article said:

"The phenomena of rage can be described as a psychological distortion based on the force of a primal shame wound."

Dr. Arthur Janov, father of Primal Therapy, claims that in infancy we experience terrible fears of rejection when feeling shame. The pain caused by this fear of unworthiness and the constant threat of rejection in infancy builds up to a crescendo to the point wherein we can tolerate no more. Janov maintains that we as infants then 'lock in' this Primal Pain into our emotional centre - the amygdala according to Dr. Le Doux as an emotional memory.

According to Janov, this 'primal pain' when retriggered in adulthood is refelt with the same intensity as that felt as a child. The purpose of this school of therapy is to 'exorcize' this primal pain in regression to infancy sessions.

My theory (and in all probability that of others) is that evolution programmed this emotional pain response into infants in order to attract the protection from their mothers in times of real or perceived threat. Those who didn't have this response probably died in infancy and their 'faulty' genes were thus selected out by default.

Further, my theory goes, we, being the evolution success stories, contain the gene of the infant fear of rejection response. Thus when we, as infants, perceived rejection we imprinted into our amygdala an emotional response of intense pain whenever we perceive rejection from our mothers and fathers.

Thus later in adult sexual relationships with parent template matching, persons such as our sexual partners are likely to be, we can experience the same painful emotional responses felt in infancy and now retriggered by perceived rejection by our partners.

May 5, 2006
10:51 am
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StronginHim77
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Garfield...

thanks for telling us about Choke's article and how to find it online. I just finished reading it and got alot out of it.

- Strong

May 5, 2006
11:16 am
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garfield9547
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StronginHim

I am glad. There is a lot in there

Garfield

May 5, 2006
8:32 pm
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wow, this is good....explains alot....not that I can go explain it to "him" cuz he would never "get it" but also cuz I shouldn't be playing therapist.....but it's good stuff.....thank you for sharing.

May 12, 2006
8:08 am
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I got a lot out of this article, but it seems to be skewed in a particular direction - the externalized violent reaction.

Do you know where I can get a description of the equivalent *internalized* reaction?

--Ember--

May 12, 2006
8:13 am
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Mardoll
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*sigh* Is there a way to delete and re-type a comment? I signed the wrong name by reflex from another site! *laughs*

May 12, 2006
2:08 pm
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garfield9547
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alicat

Yes, it took my husband 6 months in thera[y to realise. Well worth it for him. He understands himself so much better. The therapist just one day dropped the words 'golden fantasy'

And that was all I neaded

mardoll

you said

'externalized violent reaction'
What do you mean?

I will look at internalized reaction to see if I can find anything

Garfield

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