“Every fear or insecurity you have about yourself is a button waiting to be pushed. The fact that people push these buttons is not at all remarkable. What is remarkable is that you blame them for pushing them. When you wear a sign that says “hit me,” are you surprised that a few people come along and take you literally? True, not everyone does. Some people just laugh and move along. But others stop and glare at you or take you at your word. They are wearing a sign that says “hit me” too. They know you how feel. They know you need to be hit to feel better about yourself. You have been a bad girl or boy and you need to be punished. They are only too happy to oblige.
People who attack you are doing what they, in their self-deluded way, think you want them to do. They are doing it “for your own good.” They are always able to justify their behavior toward you and you in turn can justify it too.
Never do you think “This is unacceptable. This should not and cannot happen. I will not permit it.” If the abused were to believe and communicate this fully, abuse could not happen.”
Paul Ferrini, in “The Silence of the Heart”
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