“Someone disrespects me but I cannot disrespect them”…? Yes, that is correct. Describing someone who is not emotionally invested in a relationship with you, and when in conflict you would be just a pawn, where nothing gets resolved.
Recognising this you would probably be seeing narcissistic tendencies in yourself or in others. For some, it may be the very first time that you realise how much of yourself you have given up for the sake of peace and may have suffered at the hands of a narcissist.
Yes… “Someone disrespects you but you disrespecting them is cause to react” doesn’t seem right…?
Your response, not your reaction
Recognising the lack of insight in how to break the cycle of self-defeat and your lacking self-trust, here are some of the responses that disarm and defuse unwanted verbal interaction that trigger anger and control. This is allowing you to begin to regain ground lost, by keeping these responses in mind when you are confronted. Self-trust is knowing who you really are and the words that defuse a situation.
- “I guess I must accept that you are angry”
- “Your anger is not my responsibility “
- “I can accept your faulty perception of me “
- “I guess I must accept how you feel “
- “I am sorry you feel that way “
- “I know I have no right to control how you see me “
- “I accept that I must leave your statement here “
- “I do not want to continue to argue “
- “I cannot control how you see me “
- “Your perception is your perception “
It is important to recognise that anger is a secondary emotion; the driving emotion is fear, feeling threatened by how you think, and not sure how you fit in right now.
Also important to see that anger and fear are usually triggered by thought patterns that precede confrontation and react with a need to extinguish any attempts expose the truth.
Anger is just a cover for the deeper sense of fear having lost trust in yourself.
Self-Trust knows that when confronted, you can work through this and find a solution. Lack of “Self-Trust” doesn’t knows it works both ways. One lashes out and defends when confronted. The other wrongly takes responsibility for the others emotional stability.
Understand their fears:
- They fear being disrespected (when not agreeing with them) they fear a statement that they do not understand and they interpret it as you are disrespecting them. The recurring thought pattern of “you have to agree with me on everything” or they basically do not know what to do when not agreed with. Simultaneously thinking “you have to treat me as a high and lofty being and anything short of that is construed as you are disrespecting them. Keeping in mind that they do not show, or give you respect that they demand for themselves. Which of course is something you may find yourself reacting to… having not remembered who you are and your self-trust.
- They fear rejection. They interpret your disagreement as running away from them and dismissing them. They fear you are saying they are a nobody. They see you as their supply and they need you to be there to be subject and subordinate to them because that makes them feel like a somebody.
- They fear being criticised. They criticise but you can not criticise. They do not recognise their own as criticism as harmful, calling it constructive, yet react badly when on the receiving end.
- They fear ridicule, being sensitive to joking about them and thinking you see them as less than, they go into ridicule mode. When it happens to you, Self -trust tells you “I can accept your faulty perception of me “
- They fear being exposed so if you have something against them, they will turn it around and say there is something wrong with you. In turning it around it makes you out to be the one with the problem.
- They fear being irrelevant and do not like being ignored or being talked over and overlooked.
- They fear of being average and do not like being unknown.
In the presence of a fearful narcissist, anger is going to come out.
Maintaining objectivity when you know:
- what you are dealing with
- not to get caught up in their game or be defensive
- to be yourself and know your self-trust
- not to apologise for who you are
- to move on if not physically, at least psychologically
Outsmart the controller
Recognise the tendencies of a controller, is to know they lack control and their attempt to regain it.
- They tend to require, even demand conformity to their control, and they have a tendency to get angry and ostracise anyone who does not agree in favour of those who do.
A person cannot control you until you hand over your willingness to be controlled. “I guess I must accept that you are angry” “Your anger is not my responsibility “
- They tend to evaluate people on a basis of in/out or for me or against me.
Not playing the “in or out” game will reveal your refusal to comply and say “you can think that way but I do not think in those terms, you cannot label me”
- They tend to think if you don’t agree with their agenda there must be something wrong with you.
Your self-trust says “you can think of me any way you want, but I do not look to you to define who I am. I get to have my own opinion of me. “
- They tend to shame you to others and have other people to do their bidding for them on their behalf.
Your self-trust will determine that you do not belong in that group.
- They tend to squelch and mock your ideas, what you are interested in, your interpretations about doing life, activities you love, or what makes you uniquely you.
Your self-trust says “I cannot control how you see me” I get to choose my own way. I enjoy life the way I want it and the people who appreciate me.
- They tend to mock and ridicule you and all who go along with you, saying they are crazy.
Recognise this behaviour says, “this says more about you than what you are saying about me.”
- They tend to think of you as “other” and are not needed and they have no use for you.
Recognising this says “your acceptance of me is not the final word and “I know who I am.”
The final Word
I have to say that defence mechanisms do work, and many continue to apply them when confronted with adverse situations even out of pure habit. But I do know that this is not God’s best for your life. It’s the Father’s heart that knows more about you than you know about yourself and if you are on the road to discovery about yourself it is easier to consult the one who knows all than to wade through responses to the anger and fears of others looking for answers… knowing who you really are and who God really, is leads to the freedom that is promised in the bible. God has a lot to say about who you really are and the words that bring life or death to the hearer…,