I recently heard about a 6 yr old who instinctively put into practice one of the core strategies for protecting yourself from Emotional Predators. Her mother is a selfish narcissist, unable to put herself in her daughter’s shoes, and bent on throwing her daughter under the bus to protect her boyfriend.
Mom only sees her daughter two weekends a month. During one visit, mom’s boyfriend abused the daughter and the daughter reported it to dad and the authorities. For the last few visits, mom has been pressuring her daughter to tell the authorities that she (the daughter) lied when she reported mom’s boyfriend’s abuse. Mom threatened, browbeat and even tried to bribe her daughter to start lying by saying that her earlier truthful report was “made up.”
After her last visit, the daughter told her dad that this time when her mom again started threatening her she just put her hands over her ears and started singing until her mom went away. Mom tried again a few hours later, but daughter did the same thing – with the same result.
This 6 yr old instinctively put into practice the powerful protection strategy of using Emotional Predators’ tactics against them – playing their game better than they do. Emotional Predators are masters at passive aggression withholding. By putting her hands over her ears and singing, this brilliant little girl simply withheld any response and refused to “let in” or accept what her Emotional Predator mom was dishing out. This re-balanced the power between them.
Protecting Yourself from Emotional Predators describes all of this in detail, including most importantly why playing Emotional Predators’ games better than they do doesn’t make you one of them. To an uninformed observer, it might look similar, but there’s a world of difference.