Walking Wounded

Saturday, March 14, 2009

life is an open internet..."book"

I just spent the evening learning more about my Dear Nephew...I learned a bit about the circle of friends and family, those lives I missed out on. Life is a tragedy and a triumph too. Seeing the next generation beginning lives and giving birth making families. I am so proud of them.
Having the memory disorder and the forgetfulness of faces, names , even family members. The nieces and nephews, their spouses all strangers to me. I am so ashamed of showing my face at any of the family function for I was the absent Aunt (for survival sake)I the last of 8 children, whose siblings all had, and raised families years before mine. A generation skipped while the years were spent just overcoming those first 18 years of my existence. Never knowing what is from the brain scars and what is from the stress disorder I am just left to accept life. Accept myself while never being able to even hope that those who are a lost generation to me would or could ever understand. To honor my siblings keeping my mouth shut. Children see their parents as "god" in the growing up years. The growing up off all the kids of my siblings...so many many hours , days and years of praying for these kids. I, now, left a stranger to them. Even if and when we do connect I have no idea of what the spouses name is or even most of the great nieces and nephews are. I try and will get one or two at a time. With very seldom sightings and almost always at very stressful times (gathers) they have been left near strangers to me. I look in their eyes and all I can imagine is how hurt they must be by my absence in their youth. By what they may never understand.
Tonight my heart hurts for them. All the years of life lived thinking that their Aunt could care less about them. Oh if only they could ever know how ripped to the core I was when the doctors told me the only way I would not commit suicide was to estrange myself to get out from under the plague the suffocation of dysfunction. The manipulations. Those roles each person played in the family. I had to leave. I choose to live, and yes it may seam so selfish of me.
It was so excruciating, even tried for the sake of many of them to function around the family when the kids were small. With so many secrete and so many hurts wounds anger and hate...I choose to leave and have my life. I choose rightly, but what a great cost...What a huge loss. These kids have grown and now have wonderful families. I, I am judged for other than who I am. Non of them really know me. It is so sad with all the baggage we can not even function in dialog with each other. Now when they all are suffering so hard the loss of a young man who was loved by so many.
This child who came into the world only months after my abortion (done in desperation)...Jason was born around the time that my child having lived...would have been born. This young man who my sweet sister gave life too. This once little boy who bought me "diamonds" one day when he was 6 rs old. Those earrings I wore to his wake. No one knew... no one asked if he mattered to me. One person asked me if I was alright. A young man who was a friend of his. He showed me tattoos that Jason had done on his flesh. Tats that reveled the life he lived. Choices he made.
He was the apple of my eye in my young married life. My husband and I so loved being his Aunt and Uncle. It just killed a part of me (us) when I had to become estranged. Watching his life unfold...ripped my heart out , but non of them ever knew that. Non of them even understand that I think to this day.
I had a vision of Jason coming to my door one day as a young adult...it came to pass right after i returned home with my adopted daughter. He held her. His Mother and I reconnected for a time. I was not strong enough then to keep up the relationship for she was in a real crisis of life and the stress we were each under just seemed to undermine us.
To watch as his new start was circumvented by so many pulling on him to fill their needs. He was without boundary and would do anything for anyone no matter the cost to himself. I tried many months ago to support his hope to get his own apartment. To start his "independent" life. He was stalked at the time by a young wounded girl.
Well life is a tragedy and there are times when you have to walk away to keep your own life from being one.
How very very hard that is to do...That it is to have done.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Trait ascription bias

Trait ascription bias is the tendency for people to view themselves as relatively variable in terms of personality, behavior and mood while viewing others as much more predictable in their personal traits across different situations. This may be because our own internal states are much more observable and available to us than those of others.

This attribution bias has an obvious role in the formation and maintenance of stereotypes and prejudice, combined with the negativity effect.

A similar bias on the group level is called the outgroup homogeneity bias.

Negativity effect

In psychology, the negativity effect is the tendency of people, when evaluating the causes of the behaviors of a person they dislike, to attribute positive behaviors to the situations surrounding the behaviors and negative behaviors to the person's inherent disposition. The negativity effect is the inverse of the positivity effect, which is found when people evaluate the causes of the behaviors of a person they like. Both effects are attribution biases. The negativity effect plays a role in producing the fundamental attribution error, a major contributor to prejudice.

The term negativity effect also refers to the tendency of some people to assign more weight to negative information in descriptions of others. Research has shown that the negativity effect in this sense is quite common, especially with younger people; older adults, however, display less of this tendency and more of the opposite tendency (the positivity effect).

Amazing stories of survival .

Farrel children
These are stories of the tenacity of life. Even in early youth life powers through the most difficult of situations. Notice the lasting effects however of these children. Many of whom are actually raised by animals.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Decision-making and behavioral biases

Many of these biases are studied for how they affect belief formation, business decisions, and scientific research.

  • Bandwagon effect — the tendency to do (or believe) things because many other people do (or believe) the same. Related to groupthink and herd behaviour.
  • Base rate fallacy — ignoring available statistical data in favor of particulars.
  • Bias blind spot — the tendency not to compensate for one's own cognitive biases.
  • Choice-supportive bias — the tendency to remember one's choices as better than they actually were.
  • Confirmation bias — the tendency to search for or interpret information in a way that confirms one's preconceptions.
  • Congruence bias — the tendency to test hypotheses exclusively through direct testing, in contrast to tests of possible alternative hypotheses.
  • Conservatism bias — the tendency to ignore the consequence of new evidence. (Related to base rate fallacy.)[1]
  • Contrast effect — the enhancement or diminishing of a weight or other measurement when compared with a recently observed contrasting object.
  • Déformation professionnelle — the tendency to look at things according to the conventions of one's own profession, forgetting any broader point of view.
  • Distinction bias — the tendency to view two options as more dissimilar when evaluating them simultaneously than when evaluating them separately.[2]
  • Endowment effect — "the fact that people often demand much more to give up an object than they would be willing to pay to acquire it".[3]
  • Experimenter's or Expectation bias — the tendency for experimenters to believe, certify, and publish data that agrees with their expectations for the outcome of an experiment, and to disbelieve, discard, or downgrade the corresponding weightings for data that appears to conflict with those expectations.[4]
  • Extreme aversion — the tendency to avoid extremes, being more likely to choose an option if it is the intermediate choice.
  • Focusing effect — prediction bias occurring when people place too much importance on one aspect of an event; causes error in accurately predicting the utility of a future outcome.
  • Framing — by using a too narrow approach or description of the situation or issue. Also framing effect — drawing different conclusions based on how data are presented.
  • Hyperbolic discounting — the tendency for people to have a stronger preference for more immediate payoffs relative to later payoffs, where the tendency increases the closer to the present both payoffs are.
  • Illusion of control — the tendency for human beings to believe they can control or at least influence outcomes that they clearly cannot.
  • Impact bias — the tendency for people to overestimate the length or the intensity of the impact of future feeling states.
  • Information bias — the tendency to seek information even when it cannot affect action.
  • Irrational escalation — the tendency to make irrational decisions based upon rational decisions in the past or to justify actions already taken.
  • Loss aversion — "the disutility of giving up an object is greater than the utility associated with acquiring it".[5] (see also sunk cost effects and Endowment effect).
  • Mere exposure effect — the tendency for people to express undue liking for things merely because they are familiar with them.
  • Moral credential effect — the tendency of a track record of non-prejudice to increase subsequent prejudice.
  • Need for closure — the need to reach a verdict in important matters; to have an answer and to escape the feeling of doubt and uncertainty. The personal context (time or social pressure) might increase this bias.[6]
  • Neglect of probability — the tendency to completely disregard probability when making a decision under uncertainty.
  • Not Invented Here — the tendency to ignore that a product or solution already exists, because its source is seen as an "enemy" or as "inferior".
  • Omission bias — the tendency to judge harmful actions as worse, or less moral, than equally harmful omissions (inactions).
  • Outcome bias — the tendency to judge a decision by its eventual outcome instead of based on the quality of the decision at the time it was made.
  • Planning fallacy — the tendency to underestimate task-completion times.
  • Post-purchase rationalization — the tendency to persuade oneself through rational argument that a purchase was a good value.
  • Pseudocertainty effect — the tendency to make risk-averse choices if the expected outcome is positive, but make risk-seeking choices to avoid negative outcomes.
  • Reactance — the urge to do the opposite of what someone wants you to do out of a need to resist a perceived attempt to constrain your freedom of choice.
  • Selective perception — the tendency for expectations to affect perception.
  • Status quo bias — the tendency for people to like things to stay relatively the same (see also loss aversion, endowment effect, and system justification).[7]
  • Von Restorff effect — the tendency for an item that "stands out like a sore thumb" to be more likely to be remembered than other items.
  • Wishful thinking — the formation of beliefs and the making of decisions according to what is pleasing to imagine instead of by appeal to evidence or rationality.
  • Zero-risk bias — preference for reducing a small risk to zero over a greater reduction in a larger risk.

Cognitive Distortions

I am going to post a series of reconstructive thought processes. It is my hope that others will find this not only informative but helpful.

These are things common to socialized dysfunction and or abuse whether emotional or physical.

List of distortions

Many cognitive distortions are also logical fallacies; related links are suggested in parentheses.

  1. All-or-nothing thinking - Thinking of things in absolute terms, like "always", "every" or "never". Few aspects of human behavior are so absolute. (See false dilemma.)
  2. Overgeneralization - Taking isolated cases and using them to make wide generalizations. (See hasty generalization.)
  3. Mental filter - Focusing exclusively on certain, usually negative or upsetting, aspects of something while ignoring the rest, like a tiny imperfection in a piece of clothing. (See misleading vividness.)
  4. Disqualifying the positive - Continually "shooting down" positive experiences for arbitrary, ad hoc reasons. (See special pleading.)
  5. Jumping to conclusions - Assuming something negative where there is no evidence to support it. Two specific subtypes are also identified:
    • Mind reading - Assuming the intentions of others.
    • Fortune telling - Predicting how things will turn before they happen. (See slippery slope.)
  6. Magnification and Minimization - Inappropriately understating or exaggerating the way people or situations truly are. Often the positive characteristics of other people are exaggerated and negative characteristics are understated. There is one subtype of magnification:
    • Catastrophizing - Focusing on the worst possible outcome, however unlikely, or thinking that a situation is unbearable or impossible when it is really just uncomfortable.
  7. Emotional reasoning - Making decisions and arguments based on how you feel rather than objective reality. (See appeal to consequences.)
  8. Making should statements - Concentrating on what you think "should" or ought to be rather than the actual situation you are faced with, or having rigid rules which you think should always apply no matter what the circumstances are. Albert Ellis termed this "Musturbation". (See wishful thinking.)
  9. Labeling and Mislabeling - Explaining behaviors or events, merely by naming them; related to overgeneralization. Rather than describing the specific behavior, you assign a label to someone or yourself that puts them in absolute and unalterable terms. Mislabeling involves describing an event with language that is highly colored and emotionally loaded.
  10. Personalization (or attribution) - Assuming you or others directly caused things when that may not have been the case. (See illusion of control.) When applied to others, blame is an example.

Anonymous Wrote

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Lessons on friendship":

I think you sound like a selfish person with no real feelings for people.

Thank you for sharing "what you think"
I regret if I "sound" like that.
That is not my heart however.

I had a option if I was to keep alive , healthy and be restored from the madness that was my youth. I had to look real hard at these things. Did I do everything right? No of course not. I did however attempt with all that was within me to get off the triangle of dysfunction and the crazy making that it created.
Was I able to keep a strong independent relationship with some family and friends? No unfortunately not. Others however who also gained functional lifestyles I have intimate wonderful friendships. With the level of victims, martyrs and controlling offensive/abusive people that surrounded me I simply did have to become "selfish" in order to survive.
I cared and still do care for those I love, those I have had to walk away from. More than you or they may ever know. I had to fight for life, my own.
I have grieved and watched from a distance those who I have missed as they grew into adults and raised their families. They too perhaps see me this way. Yet they may never really know the whole story. For like any of us we only see from our own vantage. They may never know what it was like for me in the inner circle. The ways I was kept suppressed and laid low before those I walked away from. The freedoms gained in the absence of the adults that raised the kids that I am now a stranger too.
That legacy of appearing selfish, of appearing as if I don't care about others...
That is the price I paid to stay alive!
It is a great sorrow to me that the price they paid was hurt and misunderstanding.
I chose life and fought so hard for it , with such an intensity that they just have no idea.
Neither you nor they have any idea of how painful, how ripped of soul I was to walk away from nieces and nephews just so that I could stay alive. For being in that circle would of cost me my life at my own hand many times over. There were those around me at the time who caused me to be able to be so "selfish" as to walk away. We paid so very dearly in many ways to chose life. That just sucks to have to make those choices.
That is however what I chose. Life...my own.

Songs of my heart