Lizard Brain, Trauma Bonding & Social Media Stalking
Q: Why do High Conflict Bio Moms (HCBM) need to know absolutely EVERYTHING about EVERYONE?
A: Oh wow, I absolutely LOVE this question! Because the answer hits at the core of what you will experience with a truly toxic HCBM. It’s a whole lot of stuff. So get comfy.
HCBMs are really just an odd little creature, morphed from a baseline of normal, by some version of a mood/personality disorder, that you shouldn’t even waste your time trying to diagnose, but rather observe.
It’s not their Why we should care about, it’s their How, so we can be pro-active and preemptive. So, sit back and be like a fly on the wall. Simply observe her behavior. She literally does have to know everything about everyone, doesn’t she?
Nosey and Bossy,
defines the HCBM.
Being intrusive is actually what drives the HCBM, and what makes them the most nuts about “no contact” and the “gray rock” method when it’s fully employed.
HCBM HAS to see, she HAS to know all, about everyone, or, and, I can not put to fine a point on it… at least BELIEVE that she does.
HCBM sets herself to be easy to f*** with cuz she will frantically grab onto any scrap of data she can get, and without much capacity to decipher the difference between her spin on it and the reality of things, she becomes very predictable and easy to lead whatever misdirection you like with your social media.
She is going to think whatever wants about whatever you post and twist it to fit her own agenda, no matter what you do, so you may as well take the bull by the horns use this as a means to reclaim your peace and power. You can deliberately post bs and anything you manage to fling out where she can see (with her fake accounts and via manipulation of pathetic bored friends and family she gets to feed her information) will be gobbled it up like she is a half-starved puppy.
She will believe every bs word of it like God had etched it in stone and will parade it around if she feels it fits and will support the narrative she is attempting to sell to others. Simply stated, it’s an impulse she cannot control, not even a little bit. It overwhelms her and she cannot resist it. It’s a prime example of how her behavioral health issues control her, and not the other way around.
The thing is, if you indulge in social media snooping and baiting behavior, even if in some misguided attempt to keep yourself safe, via hypervigilance, you will experience the same addictive bio-chemical spill as HCBM experiences and that anchors you in a trauma bond with the HCBM.
This biochemical spill will take place inside any human being that is being driven by base, underdeveloped emotional states, rather than higher consciousness. Even if the social media info gathering is indulged “only” from time to time.
Our brains are really very fascinating in how they actually work, vs how we just “assume” they work.In my work, I hear a ton of questions and speculations about HCBM and her new attention vampire supply and how Toxic Waste Dump lady is over there posting all kinds of fairy tale, happy fantasies all over social media. So I spend a lot of time confronting clients (with love and an intention to help this person reclaim their power) about how it is they even know that HCBM is doing this…and its because victims get the impulse to “look” too.
It builds, it becomes overwhelming, and it feels like a relentless pull…until you give in. You believe doing this will satisfy this “need” in you, and it will be the last time…but it doesn’t, and hear me on this…it NEVER will! The recovery efforts stop and takes longer when the victims give in and keep looking. And as long as you look, you will tend to keep looking. Your brain wants this information so badly, it’s like an addiction or an itch you have to scratch.
Why are the victims looking?
You already know what you are going to see, so why do it?
Its ego telling them they must do it to protect themselves, that they must be vigilant to stay safe and its clearly unhealed co-dependency at its finest, on display. This results in this weird “trauma bonding” with the HCBM and when couples do it together, its called “common enemy bonding” that starts to become the ropes that bind the victims in their relationship. Any way you slice it, it is NOT healthy, and it keeps us from healing and being able to implement new knowledge we have gained.
If you keep indulging in dead-end, cheap thrill behavior, when will your HCBM drama trauma cycle ever stop?I
t stops when you finally decide “no more” and do whatever you need to prevent yourself from looking. After a couple of months, those impulses fade, I promise. The longer you don’t look, the less desire you have to look in the future. Don’t even look, ever!
This has been my advice to clients for 25 years of coaching and I have witnessed the powerful rebounds recovering co-dependents make when they get on top of this issue. HCBMs brain needs a constant cascading waterfall of information, not just many sources of attention and buy-in “supply” to satisfy the never-ending impulses their behavioral health disorder creates. But unlike you, she can’t weather it out and fight thru the withdrawals of not giving in to her impulses. Her emotional void needs to be filled with a steady stream of information, far more than it craves fawning attention from their chosen fluffers and strokes.
The information she receives, she will twist and pervert to meet her own needs anyway …the never-ending need to feel superior to others or have a way to “get one up” or gather the information she can use to injure, or whatever. But primarily it’s to avoid her buried and unaddressed pain.
It is self-medication, in the same way, eating disorders, skin picking, hair plucking, cutting, drinking and pill-popping are.
Even when gathering information to “hurt someone else”, it is actually “pain avoidance at work” …can’t hurt me if I hurt them first. Its a totally misguided attempt at “getting ahead of it” or a negative version of “flipping the script”. It’s an attempt to create a self-defense arsenal for an overstimulated self-defense system. It’s a knee-jerk, unresolved trauma response.
It’s like only needing a handgun, but having a whole armory, a few cannons, a couple of cruise missiles, etc kind of thinking. It’s self-defense extreme, to the point of drastic overkill.
What victims don’t often understand is that your brain’s defense systems (your reptile brain) are designed to prioritize. Her brain really is no different from yours, but this part of her brain is far more over-stimulated than yours, it’s more active in a sense (I explain later), it’s more “extreme”.
First, avoid pain.
Second, seek pleasure.
HCBMs twisted perception of reality is the result of her avoiding her own pain, but is often viewed by victims as her seeking pleasure. It’s actually an avoidance issue not a pleasure issue. The pleasure of it is secondary. (Though she can and does find pleasure in others pain if she is a malignant narcissist. But, even then, it’s still secondary.)
The reason you begin to look at HCBM like a “reptile” (and in most cases the first word to come to your mind to describe her is “snake”) has a legitimate reason, you just aren’t consciously aware of what it is. Her reptile brain is extremely active. She thinks like a reptile (primitive survival mode) more often than not, and behaves like one. Its YOUR reptile brain that recognizes what she is and that she’s a threat to you.
This part of her brain is not necessarily any “more active” than yours, its just not countered by the other 2 parts of the brain as much as yours is, so it appears more active.
We communicate on 3 levels:
primate to primate (intellectual),
mammal to mammal (emotional),
and reptile to reptile (primal).
HCBM lacks empathy, so her mammal to mammal (due to low emotional intelligence) doesn’t work so well. She relies on her more primal communication and it requires an overabundance of information (visual stimulus being the big one, direct visuals or any information her brain can create visuals with), then uses her primate to primate communication mode to convince you of its legitimacy. That “logical argument” that makes the bullshit seem so real, and even logical and valid…commonly referred to in pop psychology as “gaslighting”.
The reason HCBM can even injure you at all, is that in society we aren’t taught to communicate at this very primal level, but to avoid it, and encourage the other 2 forms of communication only. And we have removed the body (our nervous system) from the equation, leaving out a balanced sense of mind AND body working as one. But instead, it is promoted that the mind/brain is the only thing that matters in data collection and adaption to our environment. But it isn’t.
When you first hear this you may be like, whaaa?? “primal communication?
What’s that?” as if it doesn’t exist at all, beyond physical attraction and sex (which in many ways is still taboo in itself). But primal communication is FAR more extensive than this. AND it’s what your brain is designed to respond to…first and foremost, above all else, whether you want to or not.
So your “reptile” brain doesn’t realize it’s actually immune to HCBMs venom. But your other two brain functions are able to comprehend the reality of things, seek solutions, and connect with your self-worth.
You have been groomed to not use your other two ways of interfacing with communication, so your radar becomes jammed (stuck in primal to primal) when dealing with them. Whenever she lashes out on you, availing you repeatedly with vile and often covert, insidious insults to keep you in a devaluation mode with her, this is her way of keeping your other brain functions out of the loop.
Only your primal brain is ever encouraged to operate when dealing with her, and on top of that, your nervous system is fried from the repetitive emotional abuse over time. Thing is, once the primal brain is activated, it’s not able to turn itself off without some new and strong intervention. It listens to and obeys the abuse because it has no choice. It doesn’t respond as well, because it doesn’t know-how.
So, your brain isn’t as good at it, due to a lack of practice. You become atrophied in your full range of communication skills and you just shut down or, go into a panic mode for survival, the primal brain kicks back into ON mode to take care of you. Our system doesn’t even realize it’s a loop of reptile brain reactions that you can’t seem to see your way out of, further problematic, you can’t actually shut this part of your base survival system down either. (you could die, literally)
Yes, Harry Potter, you speak parcel-tongue, you just don’t know you do.
Society and norm programming did you a huge disservice here. Huge. We don’t teach about wellness integration of the mind and body or seek to help kids with their emotional literacy in school, and our parents certainly didn’t teach us much other than to follow their role modeling of often very poor interpersonal relating skills.
You have to learn and understand how this part of your brain works and why it’s important. You have to know that the body collects all the data via our senses and we have a Vagus Nerve that informs the mind. You need to have some idea about having trauma-static interfering on the communication between the data you are collecting and how it is stored and utilized by the mind.
You need to be aware of how it impacts our inner life communication network, and if you don’t, then you can count on misfiring of data and that negatively impacting relating skills.Trust me, study about the mind/body integration doing what you can therapeutically to integrated soothe it, will greatly improve every relationship in your life going forward.
To REALLY neutralize a HCBMs false sense of power, you don’t deny her access to you so much as you DENY HER INFORMATION.Ever see HCBM walk into a room of people and suddenly everyone stops laughing and talking? HCBM gets pretty upset, huh? That’s why. Silence cuts off her info supply chain and nobody is including her in what’s so funny or what everyone was talking about. Instant paranoia trigger.
She NEEDS to know. She NEEDS INFORMATION desperately.
Just like you do, only on steriods.
It’s that everyone-knows-this-“secret”-but-no-one-will-tell-you” kind of thing. Just got a flashback of grade school there huh? Yes, you did, and for good reason.
Prior to the development of empathy and logic, all children’s brains operate from this same primal level of the brain alone. When that 3 year old says “I love you” its meant at the same level, and for the same reason it is when a HCBM says it. (Sorry, very ugly truth there. We don’t call a HCBM an emotional toddler for nothing)When you feel left out of the joke or the conversation…boom! Your mind suddenly believes it’s about you, and it’s not pleasant. Thats your reptile brain springing into action, to defend and protect you from potential harm. Very uncomfortable sensation though, isn’t it?
For a HCBM, it’s much much worse. This is because her mind never leaves this constant “sensation”, or pattern of thought, ever. Over time she becomes more and more sensitive and more desperate to make it stop.
Supply is pleasure-seeking, but that’s SECONDARY.
First, HCBM MUST avoid pain, and that comes from INFORMATION and lots of it.
Information from, to, and about others forms inclusion (wards off more negative feelings of isolation and loneliness which HCBM cannot stand), it feeds her behavior disordered way of processing life, eases her discomfort. … and it’s her primary need above all others……to avoid pain.
Just like yours…..only on steroids.