It is said that the only way to heal is through confronting your predator.
The purpose of this book is to confront the predator.
Only then can our society begin to heal.
It isn’t the raping itself that caused the deepest trauma.
It was the treatment by society after the rape that traumatized the most.
It was as if the predator marked the victim for the “tribe” to know who to attack.
One doesn’t need to look very far to find evidence of how dangerous society has become. The rise in predatory behavior is unprecedented and the parallel rise in people standing up against their oppressors and predators is astounding. There is hope, yet there is still much to be understood if we are to ever see a healthy transition for our future society.
That is what this book is really about. The “predator” wasn’t so much the people who did the initial violation. The real predator was the society and how they reacted and responded to the victim after the trauma. That is far more traumatizing.
Many prefer judgment, ostracizing, and financial, physical, or verbal attack on the victim for having been victimized. Healing from trauma requires deep understanding of it. Victims are then placed in responsibility for understanding their trauma as well as understanding the predatory behavior done to them. Only then can they move forward in a healthy manner that prevents further trauma. This is difficult for many to obtain.
This book is also to help those involved in raising future generations to realize their complicity in perpetuating predatory behavior and further victimization. It is widely known that abuse happens in a cycle. Abusers create more abusers. Abusers also create victims. Some victims become abusers. Some victims remain victims because they had no outside support to help them navigate the trauma that was inflicted upon them. How many of those victims become future abusers is also in the hands of those in position to change the trajectory for them, and ultimately everyone that person has contact with for the rest of their lives.
The tribe learned to control their violence by finding a common scapegoat to take their violence out on. ~ Rene Girard
The embedded narcissism in the system is about control and control through emotions is one more arm of that. What results is a transfer of focus from one to another and neither encourages independence and stability. People will be unstable after challenging their beliefs and want to be told what to do and how. This book will offer very clear examples and suggestions to help them with this process. Adaptation to new understanding destabilizes and requires serious introspection. Dismantling of one’s conditioning can be psychologically challenging for many and the goal is not to create a new form of dependence for them.
This book is written using scientific terms and theories based upon actual research studies. Their use is to substantiate any points made and this book will refrain from using softer language often found in self-help guidebooks. The language choice is done so that clarity, effectiveness, and practicality can be embraced and implemented with little obstruction to comprehension. It needs to be clear. It needs to be unemotional. It needs to encourage independence. It needs to offer clear guidance that is paired with self-sufficiency reinforcement.
Codependency is trained in our schools and family structures. Codependency and narcissistic reactions are dangerous. The ultimate goal of education should liberate people. Only then can we have true democracy.
In researching different countries that have experienced dictatorships, we find a commonality of corruption in their post-dictatorship governments. There is a community-wide mistrust of government. People learned to live in secret under the dictatorship, thus they learn to skirt all rules in order to survive. It’s no different than living with an authoritarian parent. Teenagers will sneak around to do what they want despite the authority limiting them. They learn to lie to survive and learn how to be duplicitous to function under the “rule” and still “live.” Absolute power really does corrupt absolutely. It seems very difficult to truly have a healthy democracy after entire generations are raised under such control. Their minds are not capable of thinking differently. They’ve been programmed and will continue to react accordingly.
Empowering dictators happens by fearing them. In fact, that is why dictators incite fear of them. This fear is balanced with providing soothing words or efforts to ensure the populace aligns with the dictator as their protector. This power cannot be achieved without the control of others. The same can be said about anyone in a position of power who seeks total devotion, total adherence, total obedience, and total control. These are a larger scope of behaviors identified in the American Psychological Association’s DSM manual, and all of them are rooted in one common denominator – narcissism.
Tribal people lived in a naturally developed hypervigilant state. They learned that survival depended upon continuous awareness of their surroundings. The difference between this kind of hypervigilance and trauma-induced hypervigilance is that those raised in tribes were taught to be aware and taught what to do when they encounter danger. Those who developed hypervigilance from trauma have not been given any constructive advice. They are left in a state of fear and given no guidance on how to navigate the situation outside of manipulation from the source of the fear. This is when any number of maladaptive behaviors are developed. Coping strategies such as flight, fight, fawn, or freeze manifest in this state. The challenge lies with how society has perpetuated reactive hypervigilance. Rather than teaching survival, it has become a means of abuse and control.
Our education system was designed to provide factory workers for the industrial revolution. Schools were not compulsory until 1856. Those who needed factory workers met their needs by having the government enforce compliance to provide for those needs. There is much more that will be discussed on this particular topic in further chapters.
What is more important to note at this juncture is that the implementation of factory schooling was also the beginning of the demise of the family and their influence on their own children. Allegiance to the school and the state (mandatory attendance) took precedence over family needs and the needs of the child.
More importantly, it also changed the way that people raised their children. Parenting shifted from producing productive family members to producing productive students who learn how to take orders and operate within compliance of the school’s expectations. Nowhere in this model was emotional development considered. The awareness of the trauma induced on the child in order to maintain this compliance was never questioned.
Simultaneous implementation of the Indian Boarding Schools influenced the universal stripping of culture(s). There is significant focus on how abusively the Native American peoples were treated by the American government forcing their children into boarding schools. These schools were designed to strip them of their cultural heritage, mother tongue, and cultural identity. However, a less obvious version was simultaneously happening in the White schools and boarding schools for African Americans. One can see how the overall psyche of the United States citizen is one of distrust and hatred toward anyone who shows loyalty to their cultural heritage. This failure to adhere to the “accepted” American narrative prescribed through the education system and its focus on how to celebrate American holidays is aggressively addressed to this day. Only in recent years have people begun to challenge this exclusionary focus. People today are unaware of how this was intentionally designed to create a uniform workforce and a society conformed to one predetermined identity. In essence, cultural annihilation of all peoples was the goal. Creation of a new identity that can be controlled was the purpose.
Rude behavior is one of two things: a psychological disorder that cannot be helped or a need to be heard. Sometimes even within the psychological disorder it is still the need to be heard. If someone is shouting over them, threatening them in any way, enforcing some kind of smothering force on their being (this can include psychological smothering or manipulation) only exacerbates the issue. This frequently leads to reactionary behavior such as school shootings, rape, destruction of property, and many other antisocial behaviors. It is short-sighted to place all of these reactionary behaviors on the mentally ill. Most get to this extreme reaction after attempting to be heard by those who don’t listen. Instead they are met with behaviors designed to control them and dismiss their experience. Humans are tremendously creative in finding ways to say, “You don’t matter.” In the end, they will be heard.
Anger is the result of feeling helpless. This is tied to having outsiders take control over another’s experience. This is identical to predators dominating and threatening anyone who dares to stand up against them. The same is true when people or organizations threaten survival of those they impact if those impacted do not behave or do exactly what that person or organization demands of them and do so immediately (no room for actual reality to be considered – cold policies).
If the teacher is feeling anger, they are feeling helpless. If the natural reaction to that is to become bigger, scarier, and more dominant in order to “harness” control, they are using the fight response. This scares the students, makes them not trust the teacher (or authority figure), instills a fear that cannot be easily overcome by those who are already conditioned by abuse, and it makes the students dissociate.
This literally eradicates the learning platform. There may be the few who respond to this due to conditioning at home. Some of the best students are just as likely to be abused as the worst students are. Some use music and books as a means to escape reality. They dissociate by going into other worlds that can be picked up anytime and anywhere. This is another reason why the arts matter so much.
Also, abusers use this strategy to garner control. They fear being out of control. They fear what will happen to them. So, if the person (or people) impacting them are not creating a safe space, then they will test and push to see if the person (or people) are truly trustworthy and safe. If they feel the person (or people) are unsafe, they will take that control into their own hands so they can feel safe again. How they accomplish this control is what is more worrisome without a healthy role model teaching them what healthy self-control is. They will be abusive to gain that sense of safety.
When dealing with students who behave in abusive manners, it is important to understand this core component. Behavior disorder or not, this is a critical factor and if not acknowledged, the behavior will be exacerbated by intervention “control” systems such as awards, punishments, and “discipline” models. In this book, I will address how schools are playing a role in traumatizing many students further.
We’re creating ticking time bombs not only for school shootings, but also adults who cannot handle life. They may find healthier experiences after school ends or they may carry that trauma with them. This can manifest as a need to dominate, usurp, or cause harm to others who may have done nothing but resemble a previous wound. This may be a need to see punishment served in some manner. They received no justice nor acknowledgement for what happened to them. They may recreate similar situations or they dominate to obtain the control they never had as a child. This can be found in every work environment.
Healthy boundaries are not possible in schools as they are now. Students are forced to hand their boundaries over at the door in schools. This also happens in many work environments. Schools allow children to violate one another and all of the adults violate the students’ boundaries. The students aren’t allowed boundaries to protect them from adults in schools and in many “traditional” American households. When people are raised without boundaries, they violate others or they are violated easily. They are prepared for predatory behavior.
The same is true in classrooms. Student rebellion is a predictable response to boundary violation. Many parents and teachers say “rebellion” is a normal part of development, when in fact it is a direct result of having one’s boundaries disrespected and violated. Rebellion is undeveloped boundaries trying to find footing.
After having taken a small stroll through the varying factors at work, we will now delve into the deeper implications suggested in this introduction. This will include more specific details relating to education, teaching, parenting, and schools. It will also include more in-depth investigation on trauma, epigenetic trauma inheritance, neuroscience relating to trauma, and psychology.