Tag Archives: #psychology

Weinstein Defense Takes Ill-fated Run at Impugning Memory

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Friday, 2/7/2020- In an effort to impugn the memories of terror and  outrageous attack, sworn to by Harvey Weinstein’s victims, his defense trotted out a highly established expert on memory and cognitive perception.  Distinguished UC Irvine Professor and Psychologist Elizabeth Loftus, testified to how memory can become “distorted.”

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Distinguished Professor and Psychologist Elizabeth Loftus

Even before her testimony began, a battle ensued between the defense and prosecution without the presence of the jury. Judge James Burke set ground rules for the testimony he’d allow.  The concept of “gist memory” and specifics of memory related directly to the sexual assault of victims in this case were ruled off limits.

Loftus supplied the typical perceptions of memory fading with time.  The prosecution reminded the jury that Loftus was  not a medical doctor. In fact, when shown a diagram of brain sectors, she declined knowledge of how memory was stored, and the diagram was  removed.

Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Joan Illusi=Osborn

Countless times, she used the word “can,” not “shall,” or “will,” to describe possible impacts of Post Event Information (PEI) . She could not supply data on the likelihood of memory becoming tainted by any specific circumstance except the use of Valium. Her statement drew Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi-Osborn’s intense ire.

While “expert witness” testimony was allowed in order to provide overall knowledge of how memory works, inclusion of “Valium” seemed coached and specific to a victim who had testified.  Loftus acknowledged she was aware of the use of Valium by one of the victims and that she shaped her remark because of that knowledge. She also readily admitted she was being paid $600 per hour for her expert testimony.

When Loftus referred to military testing on soldiers who were being trained to endure the harshness of captivity, and how the researchers conducting the experiment were able to distort their memories, Illuzi-Osborn was able to secure her admission that these subjects knew their lives and their safety were not actually in eminent danger. She pointed to the difference between real trauma and staged events in which the actual danger did not exist.

Ultimately, Loftus had to admit that core memory for trauma could be stronger than for other types of non-traumatic events.

If weighed on the scales of courtroom justice, it seemed that the prosecution made the stronger argument.

 

New Light Shines on Cause of BPD!

At last, a study identifying the genetics of Borderline Personality Disorder!

Borderline Personality Disorder is now estimated to be  more  prevalent in society than Bipolar Disorder or Schizophrenia. It’s attributed to 2% of the population.

Society needs to understand the prevalence of this and other character disorders, and that the root cause is genetics. We can’t fix them, but there are treatments for BPD that will enable them to “fix” themselves.

Until the science of nuero-psychology began, such as back in Freud’s time, the only plausible explanation was the impact of the parent on the child. Today, we’re beginning to know better. And thank God! Parents who lovingly nurtured their horribly disturbed children were often fingered as the cause. They lived under a cloud of shame.

Children with Borderline Personality Disorder are extremely difficult to raise. They’re identified as “conduct disordered” while under 18. Mental Health professionals fail to address their issues in a meaningful way that helps the parent cope and addresses the growing manipulative character of the child. They incite, enrage, distort, bully and blame. It feels like the child you adore, who you’d lay down your life for, sees you as the enemy because you’re responsible for curbing their outrageous behavior and attempting to encourage them to become caring and concerned beings. There is no escape from the child who behaves like an enemy in your midst.

Hopefully, there will be more recognition of the anguish the parent experiences in raising a BPD child, and that someone will develop treatment protocols to mend the family.

 

 

 

It’s Mother’s Day- Mothers of abusive kids have little to celebrate

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Rarely do we hear discussions where people who have character disordered kids can vent about their anguish. We look around on Mother’s Day and see all the joyous, wonderful expressions of appreciation we never received despite how hard we knocked ourselves out for our children. And we wonder what we have to celebrate.

I gave it some thought and decided to share….

If they’re grown and have moved away…. you can thank your lucky stars you’re no longer having to deal with their day-to-day abuse. They can stand on their feet despite what they say was the terrible job you did raising them.

They fought every effort you made to guide their development down a moral path. It was hard. But it’s done. You’re no longer responsible to build their character. And, no matter how much you love them, you don’t have to like them. You’re free of that burden.

You can be glad you know what being a mother was really like. If you didn’t know you’d be knocking yourself out over what you thought you’d missed. Instead, you know that lament would have just been wasted torment and totally unjustified.

Hoping all mothers of grown up abusive children get a sense of peace today knowing you did the best you could and being glad that now, they’re somebody else’s problem.

And I hope those who are still in the throws of raising them can find solace in knowing that time will pass and they’ll be out of the house one day.

Don’t tolerate their abuse

There is nothing to gain by doing so. They will not appreciate your caring and your tolerance won’t change them. In a character disordered mind, tolerance will make them feel entitled to abuse you more. Only proper therapy can make a difference and there have been great strides in understanding how character disorder develops in children. Get help, Find a specialist who, like Dr. Essi Vettig, Professor of Developmental Psychopathology at University College of London  knows; “Character disorder does not pop into their psyche as a birthday present when they turn 18.” Get strong. Make it your Mother’s Day gift to yourself.

Here are some signs you need to find a therapist for them: 
Tantrums and rage
Self harm
Breaking property
Impulsivity
Playing with fire
Oppositional Defiance
Animal mutilation
Truancy
Drug Abuse
Alcohol Abuse
Fighting
Gross and constant disrespect
When a child rages with no empathy or remorse and only thinks about their own needs and wants, beyond the age of six, it’s a sign that they are not developing a conscience. Get professional help before it becomes too late. Borderline Personality Disorder is a treatable condition  and the earlier it is caught, the more successfully it can be dealt with.  But at any age, treatment can help. While you may not be able to prevent character disorder in your child because genetic factors can influence their development, you can help their behavior become less anti-social than if left untreated.
© Copyright, Joyce M. Short- All rights reserved