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i.e., people who use Fear, Obligation and Guilt to manipulate and control.?
We have threads and articles that cover detaching with love, setting boundaries, the power of the emotional blackmailer and how to overcome it.

Those are good resources, but when we see someone in our virtual online life here or in our face to face world, how can we best help them to see what is going on in their lives and begin helping them to deal with it, if they want to deal with the emotional abuse going on in their lives, beyond just getting them something to read her online or printing something for them to read.

I had a good but inexperienced therapist 12 years ago whose approach to anything was another handout of me to read, but I got the most out of us actually talking about how what was in the article would help me in the present and in the future. Knowledge by itself was not enough. The therapist that I've seen since about 10 years ago does not use handouts and we have covered much more in my life and at much deeper levels than was even stated with the handout therapist.
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So, I've created a list of questions for caregivers who seek to help other caregivers here online or in their face to face world with the emotional blackmail and abuse that comes from either a F.O.G.y parent, spouse, relative, friend or others.

1. What has worked and not worked for you in seeking to help someone see that they are victims of emotional abuse that is coming from what I've labeled as a F.O.G.y parent, spouse, relative or friend?

2. What has worked and not worked for you in seeking to help someone stop being a victim to taking steps toward them taking back control of their own life?

3. What have you found to be the most frustrating aspect of seeking to help a victim of F.O.G.y parents, spouses, relatives or others? What have you learned about yourself, about others, and about trying to help other from those frustrating aspects of trying to help?

4. What have you found to be the most joyful aspect of seeking to help a victim of F.O.G.y parents, spouses, relatives or others? What have you learned about the dynamics of seeking to help a victim of F.O.G.y parents, spouses, relatives, or others?

5. What do you do with the feelings that surround those times when you gave it your best shot and you were very hopeful for them and supportive of them, but things did not work out well at all and they are still being emotionally abused or they have let their boundaries down and are back to being emotionally abused?

6. Which of the following seven are the most important and helpful to you in seeking to help others? 1. A passionate zeal to "save" people out of the abuse they are in. 2. Knowledge about emotional abuse, boundaries, etc. 3. A compassionate detachment that does not get lost in the victim's emotions and confusion. 4. Wise patience with the person making progress at his or her own rate which probably will involve making some mistakes and backsliding some along the way instead of just being a straight line of continual progress from point A to point B. 5. The ability to respect how hard it is to make choices contrary to being a victim, no matter how small us us they may appear, are for the person who is the victim. 6. The humility to recognize that this is about them and their choices whatever they may be and not about us being successful as bad as we would love to be. 7. Deep unconditional love that gives one the ability to continue to care for this person and to let them know they are cared for even if they choose to not to get free from emotional abuse.
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I think that raising this main question and the related questions can help us all be better equipped in seeking to help people here online who are victims and people who we see in our face to face lives who are victims as well.

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Bringing this back to the top.
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5. What do you do with the feelings that surround those times when you gave it your best shot and you were very hopeful for them and supportive of them, but things did not work out well at all and they are still being emotionally abused or they have let their boundaries down and are back to being emotionally abused?

Answered just above, previous post.
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In the last three days, even though my heart was tugged to help someone not willing to help themselves or take other's advice, I have extricated myself already!

I don't feel bad because the caregivers needing help will do it in their own time; and others can also help them and are much better at helping than I can.
Be well, everyone.
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Hoping that some more recent posters, identified themselves as stuck in dysfunction, will follow this thread, come on over for help, and ideas to make some positive changes. Also hoping others with positive changes being made can offer compassionate and constructive advice, real help.
My heart goes out to many on here, and even though I understand why they don't
help themselves and become unstuck, I often allow myself to get caught up in their situation and must withdraw support for a time.
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Does that line up of Zzzzzzzzz's look straight to you?
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Wait, reality check here....I have just been declared sane by someone who calls themselves ass and ache? Lol. I'll take it! Thanks!!
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Thank you for that! Assandache, I just could not sleep, it's 3:20 a.m. so it's been a miserable night for me. Now, I am glad I wrote in, and happy you were here!

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
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Sendme2help it seems you have analyzed yourself.. You are sane!

If you are anything like me this situation will happen again and again you will be kicking yourself in the *ss afterwards...

We didn't become caregivers because we don't care!
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Looked up this thread again after coming across a person who was a stranger before I was in a position to spend 3 hours under her control. I might not have the correct terminolgy to use to identify her problem. I don't want to go into why or how a stranger was able to control me, and for 3 hours.
I just know how bad I feel, and that I don't want to do that ever. And to say I saw it coming and went ahead anyway. And I am really angry at myself. And no wonder it is safer for me to isolate than to go out and meet with people. And to avoid family gatherings. And I will need time to recover. I hate myself. But I was overly kind to someone to keep the peace. People on here would say I enabled her instead of confronting or keeping boundaries up.

As a result of how unsettled I am feeling, the store clerk said: Well, if you are in a bad mood (as you described), you are the sweetest, kindest person in a bad mood that I have ever met. This is just not normal!!
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From what I've seen, hardly anyone digs far into one's past at all to see where the fire started and all of the details unless the person needs to unload all of that. Most therapist are cognitive behavioral therapists who are more focused on what is going on now and offer cognitive and behavioral ideas to help the person deal with the present and the future. Unlike older therapy approaches, CBT or cognitive behavioral therapy is not opened ended, but often reaches closer in less than 20 sessions.

Here's some quotes from an article about it online.

" CBT therapists believe that the clients change because they learn how to think differently and they act on that learning. Therefore, CBT therapists focus on teaching rational self-counseling
skills."

"Cognitive-behavioral therapists seek to learn what their clients want out of life (their goals) and then help their clients achieve those goals. The therapist's role is to listen, teach, and encourage, while the client's roles is to express concerns, learn, and implement that learning."

So, if we can effectively live in the present and into the future without thinking about all of that painful stuff or finding various experiences or people triggering us to react because it reminds of the painful stuff, then we probably don't need counseling.

The counseling world has come a long ways from the days, of Freud, along with laying on the sofa talking aimlessly about one's past. The past, for the post part, is important only to the degree that it is hindering us in the present and on into the future. Some people just find it helpful to get it all out particularly if they have been out of touch with their deep feelings of anger for some time. That's understandable and sometimes frightening.

Basically if you can live without it fine, but if you need it fine.
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Tessi, yes, I am going to go that far, again, and get new cards, pins, and accounts.
On second thought(s).
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Tessi, thanks, taking care of business with the credit issues. Nothing too awful has happened yet, but there could be many consequences if a family member uses your name for any reason. I will protect myself. Thanks for taking the time to consider my security. You all have been great! You, too, Cmagnum!
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Ashlynne, what you describe, imop, about your life, your lifestyle, is the best therapy there is. I agree with Jeanne, not everybody requires therapy, and therapy is not helpful for everyone.
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I see many giving advice on this site that people should see a therapist. It may help some but imho I don't think it's for everyone. My mother was every bit the N, every description I see on this site, ruling by FOG and tantrums. I could bore you for hours with all the dreadful things she did to me, my late father and anyone who dared cross her path since I was a child. I now realize she was mentally ill her whole life.

She passed away a few weeks ago. I'm an only child, there are no relatives and she had no friends. In accordance with her wishes she was cremated and I scattered her ashes. For myself seeing a therapist would just rehash and drag up a lifetime of misery ... why?

I live way out in the country with 2 dogs and four cats, renovating a tiny house, gardening and having a "chicken palace" as I call it built soon to keep chickens come spring. The simple way of country life, my beloved critters and peace and quiet feed my soul. It's only been a short time but I no longer have palpitations and a thundering stomach 24/7.
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Send, Ouch! Did your doctor tape up your toes? No pedis for you, at least for awhile! I am not sure what your situation may be but if someone else has access to your credit via credit cards, bank accounts and such, I think I would be getting new cards and accounts. Just to be on the safe side. Take care!
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Many, many years ago I had a college friend over for dinner. (I am a great cook and I was pretty good even back then.) He said he liked my onion soup. I said, "Thanks. I liked it too, but it isn't as good as my sister makes." And he jumped all over me with, "Don't use negative self-talk like that. You are a worthwhile person and you should not compare yourself unfavorably with others. You need to work on your self-esteem." (He later became a counselor.) I did not HAVE problems with my self esteem. I was a competent judge of food, and I was just stating a fact. (I later asked by sister for her recipe.)

Also many years ago one of my sisters went to Planned Parenthood for a pregnancy test. While they were waiting for results a counselor asked her what kind of birth control she used. Her answer was "none." "None?! None!!! Why are you not using any birth control?" Sis told her, "Because my husband and I are planning to become parents."

What do these memories have in common and why are they on this thread?

Sometimes we have really good answers, and we offer them even if they don't fit the question.

Not everyone who says "someone does this better than I do" has low self-esteem. Not everyone who goes to PP for a pregnancy test is hoping they are not pregnant. And not everyone who says, "I think I should take care of my mother" is being blackmailed.

I think I'm guilty sometimes of answering questions that aren't being asked. I'm going to try to be more aware of that.
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Tessi, I knew that, thanks.
Today, after breaking two toes, the big 3 credit reporting companies made if really easy to add a fraud alert via automated phone system.
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I have found the Karpman drama triangle to be another good illustration of the roles and dysfunctional psychological games in which some individuals may be unwittingly conditioned to participate. I agree, Golden, that there is a great distinction between helping and rescuing.

Those of us who read and post to these particular threads, like myself, may be seeking enlightenment as well as a safe place to vent their frustrations. I appreciate the postings and sharing by those with experience and advanced training in dealing with these matter. We can choose to to embrace that which may pertain to our individual situation and leave the rest.

Send---My comment about the cookies was my feeble attempt at adding some humor. Hugs!
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golden23, I love the distinction between "help" and "rescue." Thanks for sharing that.
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Sendme2help, I love cookies. I'll take a cookie hug any time. I had/have no notion that they are related to the topic of FOGy parents. (So if they are, that went way over my head.)
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Good points, Jeanne

Here is part of an article about rescuing titled The Cruelty of a Rescue by Dr George Simon, PhD
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It is crucial to distinguish between helping and rescuing. Parents, relationship partners, and therapists are often drawn into misguided attempts to rescue. This can prevent a dysfunctional character from recovering.

One of the most important things I learned early on in my clinical work was the difference between genuine “help” and a “rescue.” Help is what caring, principled people want to provide to those who have fallen victim to tragic circumstances not of their own doing, and from which they cannot reasonably recover on their own. Rescue is an unwarranted, undeserved, and often uninvited attempt to save someone from themselves. And in my experience, despite how well-intended a rescuer might be, there’s almost nothing more cruel than a rescue. That’s because, inevitably, a rescuer is also an “enabler.” And enabling someone to continue self-destructive patterns of behavior is in itself an act (albeit an inadvertent act) of cruelty.
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There is another good article called Rescuing the Rescuer - Can he be saved? by Andrea Mathews LPC, Ph.D.in Psychology Today 2011. Here is an excerpt - "If the Rescuer identity is ever to be given up for something more authentic, it will be for this singular reason: The Rescuer comes to understand that he can't really save anyone. All saving is self-saving. All help is self-help."

Hence posting information and discussing issues is helpful for those of us wrestling with these problems, but trying to fix someone else is a different matter. Quote from the 2nd article about rescuers - "this identity, like many others, is based on the stage of grief, or the stage of acceptance, called bargaining..."

This supports your last point, Jeanne - ...it is good to be discussing what might help, when help is asked for.
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The over abundance of cookie-hugs this past evening was in no way an accusation that anyone here known or unknown had a problem with f.o.g.y. parents or was a f.o.g.y. parent. My avatar at that time was the cookie hugs, that is why cookies were mentioned by me.
However, Jeanne, your advice is wise, and we should be careful when identifying the topic here present in our own lives only., not assuming or jumping to conclusions that someone else has these issues.
If anybody got cookies from me, it was because they are some of the favorite people I know on here (I couldn't get to everyone), and NOT an accusation of foggorinessness or fogginess victimizationalism.
This is a very personal topic, and I am leaving for fear that seeking help in public may offend others.. It is good to know that my mother was in the minority.
Nuff said, but thanks.
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This is a very interesting and useful discussion.

I would like to remind us that in spite of what it looks like on AgingCare, FOGy parents are in the minority. They are the exceptions. They are sick.

While MANY caregivers who wind up here really are dealing with FOG and emotional blackmail, don't assume all of us are, and don't jump to conclusions based on a phrase or two in our posts. Ask some questions before you offer help based on assumptions.

But it is good to be discussing what might help, when help is asked for.
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Sorry, was away from the topic just long enough to read Darlene's article and then to attempt a rescue of someone stuck in abusive fog. Hoping she gets free tomorrow with her children. I am starting to understand why someone cannot get free, either right away, or later.
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Tess, chocolate chips, ac baked them, glad taught me how to copy them, these cookies have really been used alot for hugs. I am only taking responsibility for stealing them, not putting anything into them. Lol, what did you think was in them?
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Send---I guess it would depend on what is in the cookie.
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How to help fog victims? Give them a cookie or two, or three.
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Private messaging now...no need for this to go viral. Predatory family members have always plagued me = much stronger now. The confusion only lasts as long as the panic, and I have recovered from panic attacks. No money is missing, yet.
The Same Power, song, Jeremy Camp on youtube.
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Who is not accepting No; going ahead with their plans for your life anyway; and evidently getting into your money which has led you to put a freeze on your accounts?
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Ok, thanks for that helpful answer, Cmagnum, Golden, and Tess! Guess it is time to contact the three credit reporting agencies and put a freeze on my accounts. Some people cannot accept NO, and will go ahead with their plans for your life anyway. The hard work of therapy never ends.
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