Negative Transference in Relationships

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LeiaFlower

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This serves as a reflection guide for myself. Though I would appreciate insights or shared experiences. It's about the correlation of negative transference in my current relationships. I'm constantly seeking out someone who makes me feel less alone as if I'm important.

Growing up I felt like I didn't deserve to exist. Due to my fawning response to people please I rarely got in trouble. I knew what to do and say to avoid the wrath of my parents However, this created two problems. One where I no longer was allowed attention, even though it was negative it was better than none at all. And secondly, it caused my siblings to despise me for what they believed was favoritism when in fact I simply knew how to appeal to my parents to survive. This all left me alone, and the loneliness surmounted. Until she came along, my groomer. She made me feel special like I mattered. She showered me with gifts that my parents couldn't afford. She took me on special outings downtown like train rides and local amusement parks. However, these things came with a price, I soon found out that I owed her for her kindness.

Even though I don't remember the abuse the feeling of owing others shows up in my current relationships. I felt as if I owed my previous therapist sexually for her kindness. This caused multiple nightmares, and when I explained the dreams where my therapist acted as my abuser, it lead to my therapist in reality saying we weren't a good fit and for a termination session to happen. This created the same shame I grew up with that I at first never understood. The shame for speaking up.

This negative transference even shows up with my close friend. Like my previous therapist, she was the first person who made me feel like I meant something, and that I wasn't an annoying burden. The feelings I owe her for her kindness show up despite constantly trying to push them down. But when she started dating she wasn't available anymore. I still cling to how our relationship used to be but can no longer coexist. I feel replaced and abandoned. These feelings gave me the revelation that the groomer could've replaced me. Found someone younger. Despite everything that I know and don't know, I still miss my groomer as much as I miss the relationships with my previous therapist and my friend.
 
Though I would appreciate insights or shared experiences.

Inhibited RAD here. When I was an infant/toddler I was physically isolated & not taken care of meaningfully in any way, left alone & I eventually failed to thrive, had linguistic acquisition delays & the most damning of all was my emotions just did not develop. Having RAD messes up how you seek out relationships && form attachments.

Essentially it comes down to being comforted, which for the inhibited reactive will usually trigger an extremely aggressive response. Being comforted and receiving attention and learning to set boundaries are skills that you learn as through your formative, familial attachments. When that gets interrupted it can influence how you relate to others even in adulthood.

Because of the severe neglect I experienced in childhood & due to my extreme suggestibility whereby I was not permitted to develop a solid foundational identity of my own values -- I am easy to manipulate because all anyone has to do is be nice to me and my defenses (I am normally very resilient, mentally and physically) completely evaporate.

I no longer react aggressively to kindness & instead I will become inconsolably emotional & overwhelmed with tears. It's very hard when you are saddled with trauma related to attachment, neglect && attention but certainly possible to work with. && all humans need positive attention, even as adults! So it's not an inherently bad thing to want. It's just important that you're keeping yourself safe in the process.

& the biggest tool in that toolbox is learning to validate yourself and spend time alone with yourself. Otherwise you will be reliant on others & this will result in resentment when they can't meet your emotional needs all the time since as adults? Yep. People are busy, doing other things, have other friends, etc etc etc.
 
Being comforted and receiving attention and learning to set boundaries
Sorry I thought I replied to this. This is something I struggled with a lot when I was in therapy. Not wanting attention or comfort but desperately longing for it. Through therapy I now feel okay to ask for affection though it’s only towards my friend.
this will result in resentment when they can't meet your emotional needs all the time since as adults?
I can see the resentment at times with my friend. But I usually am able to remind myself that she no longer can be there all the time. So I developed relationships with others and widening my support system. Though even with that I use them solely as support than reliance. My trust for others don’t allow much of full reliance. Thank you for the advice and sharing your experience.
 
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