Freeze-Fawn Type

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Dutch Uncle

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #30 on: June 09, 2016, 03:18:25 AM »
Wow. This is a great thread. Thanks so much for all your sharing.


a useful exercise an old counselor had me do was to write down my family's unwritten laws, and examine them objectively. each family has a set of (usually) unspoken/unwritten laws & rules; they are seldom stated plainly but they are expressed and expected. For example, two of my FOO's rules were  "don't draw public attention to yourself" and "never talk openly about your feelings". however many rules your family had, list all of them that you can think of, on one side of the paper. then, challenge each rule from an objective point of view - and write a new rule for yourself. so while on one side of the paper you may have "don't draw attention to yourself", on the other side of the paper you may have something like, "cut loose and have fun!"  and "don't talk about feelings" could become something like, "i will talk about my feelings when and if i need to" or  "my friends and i share our feelings openly & honestly".
That sounds like a useful exercise, thanks.
My first reaction is though that there were no rules... That is: While my parents were very strict and enforced rules with physical and verbal violence, they broke their own rules repetitively. Nut I guess I should still be able to draw up a list of rules that we kids should abide too, even if they didn't.

the reluctance, D/U i am wondering about.  i don't find it easy to relate to that becos of never having done it reluctantly. maybe it is a kind of flight/fight shield that you have adopted to prevent anyone having the chance to hurt you again? kind of like how i self isolate and avoid humans in general? interesting.
I'm a bit puzzled about this myself. But I think the best example of me giving up my boundaries reluctantly is when I stopped running from my physically abusive 'father' and said "OK, hit me. I don't care." I literally gave up on my boundaries, on my "Flight" even, my self-protection/self-preservation, but not because I thought/felt it was OK he would hit me. I resigned in my fate, or some such. If I was not able to escape the inevitable beating, which I wasn't: he always would corner me in the end and hit me, I might as well give up on protecting that boundary. Reluctantly.

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Three Roses

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #31 on: June 09, 2016, 04:56:48 AM »
"My first reaction is though that there were no rules... That is: While my parents were very strict and enforced rules with physical and verbal violence, they broke their own rules repetitively."

This sounds familiar; my FOO also had a similar code I would state as, "you are a child, we're adults. Don't question our authority or else!"  They were also highly inconsistent, doing/saying/expecting one thing one day and the opposite the next.

In fact, one of my dad's favorite sayings was, "Don't do as I do, do as I tell you."

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arpy1

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #32 on: June 09, 2016, 09:21:32 AM »
thanks guys, this thread really resonates with me, and i think the idea of writing down the unwritten rules could be a helpful exercise for me, both for my FOO and for the cult i spent so many years in. trouble is i am terrified of doing it! even thinking about it is horribly triggering, not for the FOO so much as for the cult years.  that had the deepest and most damaging impact on me i think. maybe i might start by writing down just one and then get over that one until over time i compile a list?

i was watching a very interesting Youtube vid about Robert Lifton's eight principles of Thought Reform which come out of his seminal work on brainwashing done when he studied Korean POWs in the second half of the 20th C. One of the principles is about  unwritten rules and the way they work in a group, whether a family, a one on one or a larger group.  they formed a huge part of my cult experience and deeply affect me still.  powerful and frightening stuff. i hate that i was so gullible and easily subverted even though i know intellectually that i was not to blame for being taken in. horrible.

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Dutch Uncle

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #33 on: June 09, 2016, 01:16:34 PM »
thanks guys, this thread really resonates with me, and i think the idea of writing down the unwritten rules could be a helpful exercise for me, both for my FOO and for the cult i spent so many years in. trouble is i am terrified of doing it! even thinking about it is horribly triggering, not for the FOO so much as for the cult years.  that had the deepest and most damaging impact on me i think. maybe i might start by writing down just one and then get over that one until over time i compile a list?
One is a baby step.  :applause:
Alternatively, if your FOO is less triggering, why not start there? With one?

 :hug:

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chairmanmeow

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #34 on: June 09, 2016, 05:15:26 PM »
Iv had much to think about.
The fawning aspect of myself is something I never got a clear view into so I will post some insights that came about the last couple days personally. I dont know where this going to go...

Iv allways been a strong freeze type, I am the most profoundly abandoned person, I isolate I keep a distance in my interpersonal relationships, Im allways ready to cut my losses. But something happens when people do get close to me, you cant really freeze when you have a close intimate relationship, its not effective and I have no desire too, a starving man will eat food off the floor without much thought.
Those who get past those frozen walls come at the cost of great amounts of trust, and when your world is so isolated just the warmth of a touch brings about an ecstasy of depth of emotion the ability to even process some hurt safely and comforted, which just presses that bond with a profound deepness that the other party may not even be aware of or experiencing. At that point if you made the mistake of drifting to a narcissistic personality (which is the tendency, when they desire you they do so in such a clear way its almost imposable not to fall into their comforts when you have such a disposition) your pretty much fcked. They become the only source of relief and humanity you experience, you give to them everything you know you need hoping for reciprocation, and the animals that they are they dont work that way. But somehow your ok with that because even a little bit of affection is better then the world of isolation numbness and pain you habitat without them.  Dependency becomes a choice, tearing away I think is even more painful to my type then those more balanced.
Ill share something embarrassing in its own way but also revealing because it confounded me for the longest time in myself and puts the nature of this all in a stunning perspective. 8 years with someone you develop a healthy sexual relationship. We tried new things she liked to tie me up. My own mind is a confusing thing, I found myself letting go without the elements of disassociation, being desired and not able to really go anywhere or do anything left me with no expectations to agonize over, no choice but to accept comfort and love, fully embrace a fawn response unhindered by freeze tendencies. Only to come out of it being shamed by your own inner critic for reasons your can put your finger on other then fear of being so open and genuine. A embarrassing self loathing at the triggering of a freer state like a switch to accept and take and fawn, and indulge in those emotions usually tied to pain.
Its not hard to grasp the emergence of a sub culture full of narcissists and freeze-fawn types, I dont think its a healthy thing either for everyone involved, but thats my opinion. I think Freeze-Fawns live in a world of two extremisms. I dont think Im capibal of having a healthy relationship anymore, even with good boundaries I give in great amounts what I need and the tendency for narcissism is culturally endorsed and measured on the rise. I cant give a little kindness is a trap I fall thoroughly into against my will and my frozen distrust and isolation just push me to hide to deeply into fawning making me Isolated and emotionally reliant on someone who doesnt understand me or my broken needs. I think Im going to give up on relationships Im not good for myself or other people and this is beyond regulation..

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LanaBanana

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #35 on: June 09, 2016, 06:09:26 PM »
Chairmanmeow, I really feel for you. There have been so many times I've wanted to give up on people all together, and I still think I am fundamentally better off alone. But as you said, I end up starved for human contact and find myself in bad relationships with narcissists or unhealthy people. I think that in order to break that pattern, we have to address the fawn-freeze tendencies we have, as well as our Inner Critic, and it's really, really hard. Although you alone know what's best for you, I urge you not to give up on relationships and people entirely. You came to OOTS for a reason, and I suspect you want to heal from the years of abuse you suffered. Don't give up on finding meaningful relationships with healthy people, and don't give up on your own recovery process. It's long and confusing and hard, but I personally think it's worth it.

You said that your Inner Critic kicks in during times when you felt free with someone else. That voice of self-loathing is from the extensive abuse that you suffered for years, and it's stopping you from being able to form healthy bonds with people. But it's not impossible to break free from that voice. You can learn to quiet it down a little with practice, so that you can be able to let go and have a connection with someone. I personally think it is not impossible, and I believe that with time and practice and the right resources, you can heal and let go of your fawn-freeze tendencies.

I hope this helps, I know that recovery is a long and hard process. I hope you don't give up on it though  :hug:  :hug:

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Sienna

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #36 on: June 09, 2016, 06:37:42 PM »
Very interesting to read.
Do you guys know if you can be a Freeze first- then fawn second?
and also, do you know if you can be a Freeze Flight type?
ive never heard of Freeze Flight but think that that is me.
Thanks

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LanaBanana

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #37 on: June 09, 2016, 07:19:12 PM »
Awesome! Thank you Three Roses  :)

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Three Roses

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #38 on: June 09, 2016, 07:39:30 PM »
Yes Sienna, there is that type - but just from reading your posts i can tell you you don't seem even close to this type. i want that to really, really sink in before you even read this. you are a warm and caring, sensitive and loving individual with a heart for honesty and justice. at least that's how u come across here. with that being said, and bcuz i said i would, I'll type it out for you but not completely as i think parts of it would do more harm than good for you, at this point.

P 127 of Pete walker's "complex PTSD; surviving to thriving" book states: "The fight-freeze ... demands that things go his way, but he is not much interested in having any human interaction. no one gets to talk at the table, not even him - unless of course someone needs to be put in their place.... The fight-freeze type is a John Wayne couch potato, dominating family life with foul moods and monosyllabic grunts and curses. he is typically as untreatable as the extreme fight types mentioned earlier."

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Sienna

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #39 on: June 09, 2016, 09:15:00 PM »
Hey three roses, thanks a lot for your reply.
I think you may have misread what I wrote/
You thought I meant I think I am a fight type but I think I am a freeze-flight (run away type)
I know  counter dependant and maybe co-dependant. Maybe I flip and I very much "used" to be a fawn people pleading type who would also escape myself by listening to others problems but I never felt any worth from doing for others 
I fawn if it eases the situation but not to make others like me.
T says I'm definitely freeze and they I'm very flighty.
Hope this makes sense.
Like my mother I can be fight but I'm much more avoidant - so you are right. Thank you.
Do u know if freeze-flight is a type?
Ps. Thank you for your compliment.
What did u mean when u said it would do more damage than good!

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Sienna

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #40 on: June 09, 2016, 09:15:55 PM »
Ugh they was meant to be a ? At the end!

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Three Roses

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #41 on: June 10, 2016, 01:02:41 AM »
Yup, I sure did misread what type you wanted to hear about! I'm so relieved lol, that 4F type sounded really negative in the book and I was super afraid it would hurt your feelings, and that is the last thing is ever want to do! Whew! Ok I'll put my glasses on and get back to you! :D

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Sienna

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #42 on: June 10, 2016, 01:54:32 AM »
Hey Three Roses, I'm sorry you worried!
If I was that type, it wouldn't be cool and I guess it might be rare if I accepted it-
But I would be researching reasons why I'm like that.
You defiantly I didn't hurt my feelings - the article didn't.
Thank you so much for researching for me from the book.
I have it but have no space on my phone to download it a again and I don't know how to fox it-
I really appreciate you doing this for me  :hug:

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Three Roses

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #43 on: June 10, 2016, 02:02:20 AM »
Sienna, there is no freeze/flight. There is a flight/freeze type but seems this would be different than what you're looking for? Anyway, if you think of something else I'll look for it for you. :)
« Last Edit: June 10, 2016, 02:56:12 AM by Three Roses »

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chairmanmeow

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Re: Freeze-Fawn Type
« Reply #44 on: June 10, 2016, 03:30:58 AM »
The Flight-Freeze Hybrid The Flight-Freeze type is the least relational and most schizoid hybrid. He prefers the safety of do-it-yourself isolationism. Sometimes this type may also be misdiagnosed as Asperger’s Syndrome. The flight-freeze type avoids potential relationship-retraumati-zation with an obsessive-compulsive/ dissociative “two-step.” Step one is working to complete exhaustion. Step two is collapsing into extreme “veging out”, and waiting until his energy reaccumulates enough to relaunch into step one. The price for this type of no-longer-necessary safety is a severely narrowed existence. The flight-freeze cul-de-sac is more common among men, especially those traumatized for being vulnerable in childhood. This then drives them to seek safety in isolation or “intimacy-lite” relationships. Some non-alpha type male survivors combine their flight and freeze defenses to become stereotypical technology nerds. Telecommuting is, of course, their preferred mode. Flight-freeze types are the computer addicts who focus on work for long periods of time and then drift off dissociatively into computer games, substance abuse or sleep-bingeing. Flight-freeze types are prone to becoming porn addicts. When in flight mode, they obsessively surf the net for phantom partners and engage in compulsive masturbation. When in freeze mode, they drift off into a right-brain sexual fantasy world if pornography is unavailable. Moreover, if they are in intimacy-lite relationship, they typically engage more with their idealized fantasy partners than with their actual partner during real time sexual interactions.

Walker, Pete. Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving: A GUIDE AND MAP FOR RECOVERING FROM CHILDHOOD TRAUMA (pp. 125-126). Azure Coyote Publishing. Kindle Edition.

If it helps...