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Episode 075 - Negative Mother Complex: When Our Painful Childhood Owns Us

This Jungian Life

Release Date: 09/05/2019

77: Chronic Complaining show art 77: Chronic Complaining

This Jungian Life

Complaining is universal, perhaps, like gossiping, one of the first uses to which developed language was put. Overall, a complaint can refer to a perceived legal injustice, medical symptom, or other personally painful matter. The chronic complainer feels a lack of agency, and implicitly pleads for emotional support and/or effective action from another. A complaint may therefore range from a request for empathic engagement to an effort to assign responsibility to others.

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Episode 076 - Animus & Anima show art Episode 076 - Animus & Anima

This Jungian Life

Although these Jungian concepts have become familiar psychological terminology, they remain difficult to understand. According to Jung, animus and anima are innate psychic structures shaped significantly by the archetypal world, whereas the shadow is predominantly shaped by personal experiences of ego formation. Whereas shadow tends to be rejected, animus and anima fascinate and attract.

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Episode 075 - Negative Mother Complex: When Our Painful Childhood Owns Us show art Episode 075 - Negative Mother Complex: When Our Painful Childhood Owns Us

This Jungian Life

As the mother is the generator of life and usual primary attachment figure, the mother complex is universal. As the image of a “personified affect” fueled by an archetypal core, the mother complex is especially powerful. In its negative aspect it  may arise from a mother who was experienced as uncaring, attacking, possessive, withholding, absent, or wounded.

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Episode 074 - Borderline Personality Disorder show art Episode 074 - Borderline Personality Disorder

This Jungian Life

While psychiatric diagnostic labels often reify the complexities of psychological dynamics, they can also orient us to the essential qualities of a particular emotional and behavioral field. BPD is characterized by difficulty with affect regulation, intense and unstable interpersonal relationships, impulsive behavior, and a tendency toward highly polarized emotions: idealization / elation versus devaluation / despair.

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Episode 073 - Procrastination show art Episode 073 - Procrastination

This Jungian Life

We all procrastinate. Tasks from making a doctor’s appointment to preparing taxes to doing the laundry invite us to put off until tomorrow what we can postpone today. We may distract ourselves by going online, doing errands, or minimizing the time a job will take.

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Episode 072 - Puer – Puella: Trapped in the Inner Child show art Episode 072 - Puer – Puella: Trapped in the Inner Child

This Jungian Life

If the passage into fullsome adulthood is avoided, a person can be trapped in the world of childhood. This protected realm is a nexus of potential, defined by avoiding the rigors of the real for the pleasures of possibility. Peter Pan, who chose to remain in never-never-land, is a well-known image for the flighty ingenuousness of the puer or puella.

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Episode 071 - Self Talk show art Episode 071 - Self Talk

This Jungian Life

Although only some of us talk aloud to ourselves, all of us have inner voices, even if we are not aware of them. These autonomous parts of ourselves provide running commentary on how and what we are doing. Are our inner commentators friendly and supportive, or critical and attacking? We turn to fairy tales, stories that arise from the collective unconscious, for wisdom about our relationship with those parts of ourselves that tend to operate autonomously.

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Episode 070 - Dating show art Episode 070 - Dating

This Jungian Life

We define dating as the quest for serious partnership or ongoing companionship. Today’s dating world is radically different from that of even a generation ago, and is light years away from previous generations. Dating apps and social media expedite and expand the range the search for a suitable other - and often turns dating into an exercise in personal marketing.

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Episode 069 - Retirement show art Episode 069 - Retirement

This Jungian Life

The life transition we call retirement mandates a major readjustment in how time, energy and money are spent, whether retirement means becoming a “snowbird” or having a stepped-down lifestyle. Work has structured the rhythm of life and time; most have found aspects of identity, status, and socialization at work, regardless of how fulfilling, arduous or well paid it may have been.

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Episode 068 - Chronic Illness show art Episode 068 - Chronic Illness

This Jungian Life

Chronic illnesses affect many, creating diminishment of physical ability and energy for life activities. Deb, Lisa and Joseph discuss emotional factors in the loss of the healthy, autonomous self –and the possibility of a profound shift in inner life.

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Healing a Negative Mother Complex

As the mother is the generator of life and usual primary attachment figure, the mother complex is universal. As the image of a “personified affect” fueled by an archetypal core, the mother complex is especially powerful. In its negative aspect, it may arise from a mother who was experienced as uncaring, attacking, possessive, withholding, absent, or wounded. It is likely to show up in relationships with others and in the relationship with oneself. Fairy tales like The Raven and Six Swans teach us that healing a negative mother complex takes time and perseverance—and that we may be aided by an animus prince or an anima princess, images of the autonomous unconscious. By responding to the turmoil of the mother complex one can embrace the task of finding the mother within.                                                                                                                                                                                        Dream

"Last night I had a dream I was in a cave that had mosaic designs all over the walls. They were old ancient ruins like from Ancient Greece or Turkey. The first one was of some type of fertility goddess-like Ishtar or Lilith, but I can’t remember the details exactly. But the image frightened me, and I was afraid to go inside. Then above the ruins, there was a church. It was an Eastern Orthodox Church. It sort of reminded me of the Hagia Sofia. A painting of the Black Madonna was hanging on the wall. All the church members were women and the pastor was a woman as well. I don’t recall what we were talking about or what the pastor was saying, but I was transfixed upon that painting. That’s all I can remember."

References

Book: Elinor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

YouTube: Clay Weiner (“Videos”: Mothers Day) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAxfh8ukosQ