Romantic Delusion – Dissociation hit by Cupid’s Arrow

Imagine you are on a second or third date with a very handsome man. There is something that draws you into his face. His smile, his eyes, his generosity, his warmth. You find yourself lapping up everything he has to say. Then you come home and you talk to your friends about how it went. What did he say? You can tell them where he works, how old he is, what he looks like, even how many siblings he has. When it comes to answering questions about his previous relationship, what he wants for the future, any tensions he might have brought up with family or friends, or anything at all of substance that may have seemed to be a conversation that triggered you in some way – you draw a blank.

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A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing – The Covert Narcissist

“The mind in conflict with itself is dangerous to itself, and of course, by extension, to everyone else in all dimensions.  Therefore, indeed, beloved friends, beware of those that come in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.  Beware of the viciousness of the ego within your own mind.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Lesson 22, Page 266)

Ah, those sheep. They are so handsome, so sexy, or even when they are not, there is something about their character that draws you in like Little Red Riding Hood thinking it is Grandma. In psychotherapy, we talk about countertransference and transference issues. This is when a characteristic of the other person, makes us think of someone else and we transfer those thoughts onto that person. For example, Little Red Riding Hood is so focused on her ego telling her “This is Grandma’s house, so the person answering the door MUST be Grandma.” Her gut feelings told her that she had “Big Eyes,” today and “Big Ears,” and “Big Hands,” but little red’s ego kept insuring her, in compliance with the wolf, that he was in fact her Grandma.

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Having a Healthy Relationship After a Narcissist

Watch this or read the blog below! Whichever you prefer.

I am a psychotherapist in the Columbus, Ohio area. I have been working with survivors of narcissists for many years and during this time I continue to find new ways to help support the survivor as I learn myself. In my own evolution or increasing self-awareness as a psychology professional and a survivor of narcissism.

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Holiday Family Chaos – Rising Above The Social Media Lies and Distortion

The above quote is the very first line you will read in Anna Karenina. It is the only line I really cherished as I couldn’t fathom the book. I could manage the movie but Russian writers are not my forte.

As we go into the holiday season, don’t focus on what you see on social media, focus on the reality of your own life, on how you can become a better person. I can tell you that so many of the lies you see on social media, I have learned about in my office.  They are not happy families; they show you what they imagine they have. There are some rare circumstances but more and more, it is like finding that rare penny that will make you a millionaire.

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Robbins Hunter Museum – Tribute to Victoria Woodhull

I quite enjoy finding little treasures in unexpected places.

Ohio Women's History

All Photos by Nina Russo. Victoria out at a little after 4pm Granville, Ohio (clock is fast). She looks ready to give a speech to onlookers below.

Last week, I had the pleasure of visiting Granville, Ohio for the first time. My childhood friends, Kelly and Nina were with me and wanted to go to the Avery-Downer House and Robbins Hunter Historical home. (Note: Museum link is not secure). I, of course was delighted to, not knowing about the connection to Victoria. This museum is next to the library and across the street from the Worthington Inn. We first determined to go to the writer’s store, Just Write (which also seems to be the gift shop for the home). Yes, this was an interesting journey. Just Write is run by a lovely lady, Stefanie Lauvray, who is a transplant from California, like myself. We had a great time catching…

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Telehealth Vs. In-Person: Modernization Removing Integrity

As our world moves away from customer service, people’s lives continue to be disrupted more and more with the lies about modernization being “Better” and “More Efficient” for our lives. The pandemic forced people out of business, whether it was a large corporation laying off or a small business who was told that they had to close up shop and stay home – for fears – due to the mass hysteria created by the government. People were then treated to “government paychecks” to stay-at-home, and this created isolation, more fear, depression and anxiety.

This was an opening that created a diversion for what was next. Psychotherapists were now working from their homes and saving on rent for office space. Non-profits, had already been doing this for years, claiming that in-home therapy was conducive to supporting low-income clients by keeping them stuck in their houses, under the guise that we were “treating them in their own environment. In reality, this meant they did NOT get a break from the chaos of drugs/alcohol, abuse, filth, and the crisis of being in the projects or low-income housing.

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Building on Faith: My Recent Trek to Saint Meinrad

Ellen’s Photo from our Guest House as we were walking over for vespers.

This past weekend I went to Saint Meinrad, Indiana with a very good spiritual friend. We took a three day mini-retreat to focus on Lectio Divina. This is a four and a half hour drive from Columbus, Ohio and they are one hour behind. We met with two other ladies, just over the border from Cincinnati (in KY) and thus, became a four-some the entire event.

It takes some mental preparation to go to such a retreat. I was quite nervous but excited to attend. I knew that my life was going to be unlike any other weekend I have ever had. I had no idea what to expect would change within me. I imagined living like a nun, in a convent, for this brief time period. The difference being, I chose what to do and not to do and I wasn’t entitled to wear a habit. The twin bed, however, was probably quite like what the nuns and monks sleep on. Hard as a rock, but as Ellen noted, it keeps you from wanting to lounge around all day. Our two friends, coincidentally had the room across the hall from us.

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The Pathological Liar: The Spin Doctor – Learn From and Grow

If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State. Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf

The pathological liar is a covert narcissist, an addict, a psychopath, a sociopath, a gaslighter, or you could say a spin doctor. No matter what you attribute it to, if you are listening to someone who is trying to make you believe something, that you know in your heart to be untrue, this person has prepared their case very well. You may love them, you may have given birth to them, they may be your parent or grandparent, nonetheless, you must trust your soul. Learn from this and grow.

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The Physicians Daughter: A Historical Fiction

My book review and thoughts. Well worth your time!

Ohio Women's History

When I read a novel about a heroic woman, it fills me with pride. Even though it is historical fiction, these things did happen, just a different name or city or country. The Physicians Daughter is a historical fiction written by Martha Conway. Ms. Conway is Cleveland born, now living in San Francisco, where I also lived (on the Bay side) just 12 years ago. Of course, I was a transplant from Columbus and moved to the Bay Area after having lived in California for a couple of decades. I loved this book because it is filled with all the good things you want in a novel. For us history buffs, it takes place post-Civil War. It appears that Ms. Conway has done an incredible amount of research about the details of not just the war but also about being a doctor and many other things that occur in this…

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Phantom Thread – Controlling Narcissist and the Trauma Bond

Phantom Thread is a 2017 movie directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. It stars Daniel Day-Lewis as the Controlling Narcissist (Reynolds), Vicky Krieps as the Victim in his trauma bond (Alma) and Lesley Manville as his sister, and dominant female ally (Cyril). The film is well-done in many respects, showing the trauma bond that is created between perpetrator and victim. However, there are some key moments where I felt that Daniel and Vicky came out of character. One scene was him giggling with her in the bathroom, with bowl on his lap and asking her to kiss him. It didn’t feel real to me. Another scene was when she was telling him about the egg dish and again there seemed to be an odd moment between the actors. I was also confused about how the director brought us into the movie. Was there another woman at the beginning of the film that was his girlfriend (I thought his wife, due to the time period) or was this Vicky’s character and we are later going back in time when he meets her in the next scene? We also hear Alma talking to some guy that we will later learn is Reynolds doctor. It was confusing because we see her (the girlfriend) for a brief moment, get to know the character Reynolds, his sister and then suddenly he is meeting his victim or next one, Alma and says he is not married. I already knew he was a controlling narcissist by now but not sure about the women.

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