Reactive Attachment Disorder and the Disturbing Truth Behind Abuse
Sever child abuse, neglect, pain, trauma and emotional detachment at a young age can create extreme emotional disconnection that has the potential to decline at the most horrific levels as seen in this sad story about Beth Thomas. Detachment disorder is something that many people do not understand because it isn't often publicly aired, but it is sadly very common due to the circumstances taking place behind closed doors within millions of homes around the world. Psychopathy and RAD are different, Beth was not a psychopath, she did not have a personality disorder, which is what psychopathic (neuropsychiatric) behaviors exhibited by serial killers such as Ted Bundy, is. Beth knew no other behavior. This is what she learned at a very early age; her memories were formed scarred, emotionless, she may not have had clear and lengthy memories of everything, but she certainly remembered the trauma and the experience of her abuse.
As a child who was molested and violated on different occasions when I was a young girl by a friend of a relative caregiver and other adolescent teenagers who were potentially molested (which is more than likely why they were curious or aware of sexual behavior), I can confirm that the uncomfortable experiences are clear as day. I don't necessarily remember faces or other details, but I do remember the environments, race, age and other details of my experiences clearly. Severity and regularity of any type of abuse and the impact that such behavior has on a child varies. Although I was inappropriately touched by a man who was curious and stimulated by the female body (his bedroom was covered floor to ceiling in Playboy centerfolds), in addition to the sexual behaviors of two different adolescent teenage boys wanting to experiment with their male parts, I come from an extremely loving and supportive family. I was not penetrated nor was I violently assaulted repeatedly or forced to live beneath a terrifying and unsafe roof with family members who repeatedly demoralized and tortured me. I was and am very much loved.
My divine blessing is that I am a very old soul, I was created with pure light and love within my DNA and my mind is strong and independent. I have never once felt as though any of these experiences were my fault. I have always known that these individuals had their own issues and personal experiences that more than likely influenced their individual behavior, and that I always have a choice as to how I perceive and live my life based around each of these experiences and this type of behavior. These experiences are just one reason I love psychology and behavioral science. These individuals are who drive my interest and fascination with serial killers and mental illness. They are who inspire my street smarts and my ability to pay close attention to detail and my surroundings, to know what authentically exists in the world, and the type of people we all walk among every single day, in order to teach and to inspire others to feed wellness instead of illness.
RAD is something everyone should be aware of, especially parents. Poor behavior and bullying frequently begin at home and on multiple levels including verbal, mental, psychological, emotional, physical and sexual. How we treat our children sculpts them and their precious minds. Abuse in all forms directly impacts the development of coping skills, emotional connectivity and a child's ability to feel, to trust, to care, to focus and to decipher between right and wrong, these things are heavily influenced by our surroundings as young ones. Children have no choice but to be where they are when they are little, they have no room to escape the poor behavior of their parents or caregivers. They are forced to do as they are told, to take what their parents dish out and to protect themselves or to escape emotionally in whatever capacity they can.
Poor behavior by anyone does not get a free pass in my book, we are all accountable for our own behavior regardless of where it comes from. The key is assessment, evaluation, troubleshooting, and understanding where it comes from in order to see how it can be healed or whether it can be healed. I do this work because I love it. Feeding happiness and nurturing the wellness of our loved ones helps to establish trust, confidence and all other fundamental skills within individual people. This support and nurturing, connectivity and attention enables people with an ability to connect to other things and people in healthy ways. We all have stories, what's yours?