Dealing with Abusive, Difficult People:
At Beyond the Storm
my practice has a strong focus on working with people
moving through storm situations with the difficult,
demanding, even abusive people in their lives. Many
times by the time a client reaches my office they are
deep in depression and anxiety. They are suffering much
confusion as they struggle to handle difficult situations
at home, work, and community.
Of course, we are all probably someone else's "difficult
person" but my focus is on empowering people to move
out of co-dependency, emotional dependency, fear, and
intimidation about some very challenging people in their
lives. Sometimes that person could be a mother you truly
love and support but who has a way of belittling, criticizing,
and "picking" at you like she did during your growing
up years. But today you only want her to have a happy
retirement. As you support her it seems your childhood
can never seem to heal, or old wounds continue to be
ripped open, and you struggle to find some semblance
of self-confidence and competence. The challenge now
is learning how to handle your mother in a healthy manner
and to quit fighting her, or feeling defeated or "defined"
by her. The time now is to learn how to stop being that
incompetent, small child, and instead become a mature
woman, with healthy boundaries, who is strong and whole.
Sometimes we can find ourselves stuck in the same storm
situation, never "moving beyond
the storm". Today is the day to begin making
permanent changes for your future.
Or the difficult person in your life could be a spouse,
a growing child, an adult child, or other needy, demanding
relatives either by blood or by marriage. Stop being
used and manipulated and made to feel deficient and
begin walking in healthy boundaries. I work with people
to learn new healthy behaviors that protect their boundaries,
how to understand the difference between providing healthy
support to our loved ones, and when we have given to
a fault. In short, learning how to have a happy, healthy
life. New communication skills are needed to break old,
dysfunctional patterns. It is time to "move
through the storm" to a better future, one
step at a time, one day at a time.
Many times the difficult, challenging person could be a person at work, or in your community. A person who is very aggressive, a definite bully, and in whose presence you seem to lose your personal power. Now is the time to learn how to hold your own, be your own person, with your own understanding of healthy boundaries.
In my work with clients
dealing with difficult people I cover the following
- What is client's long-term pattern with difficult, challenging people?
- What communication and boundary skills are needed to create a healthy boundary?
- What are the patterns of intimidation, fear, and exploitation?
- What is the best approach or strategy for making gradual, but important changes in behavior?
- What is the core, real identity of a client who has been confused by the pressure of difficult persons?
I am there for you. Let us "move
beyond the storm" together.
Caroline Gearing, MA, LMFT
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
"moving beyond the storm"