There are as many forms of psychic attack as there are personality types in this world. One of them is the famous “guilt trip” in which a person takes out their frustrations on another person who failed to meet their egoic and usually childish demands. Everyone has experienced being either on the receiving end or the giving end of a guilt trip. Many have experienced both.
An example of how a guilt trip might play out is the following scenario:
A widowed mother gets used to her 38 year old son swinging by on Saturdays to bring her food, mow the lawn, walk the dog, and fix whatever things have fallen apart in the house. One Saturday he gets called to an important business meeting. He calls her that morning to explain that he won’t be able to make it this time and apologizes that he won’t be making it. She is very displeased and in a whiny tone she accuses him of not letting her know much sooner that he wouldn’t be able to make it, because she was planning a huge meal and wanted to introduce her to one of her friends that day. He had no idea about what he would be missing, but he did in all fairness call her as soon as he knew about his change of plans. He goes to the meeting, feeling queasy the whole time, with the weight of guilt upon his shoulders. He replays the conversation that was had over and over like a broken record inside his head, questioning his own morality. He wants to leave the meeting early so he can placate his mother, but simultaneously feels anxious and afraid of what kinds of things she will say. She pretends to be very hurt while holding a grudge and insinuating that he was very inconsiderate to her and that his actions threw her whole entire schedule off. She has taken zero responsibility for her frustrations, and obviously has come to take his services for granted, as though he should feel obligated to do such things for her. In his tension and anxiety he comes up with another excuse to avoid her the following Saturday and the guilt trips intensify via telephone messages. He feels like a horrible son, but at the same time a bit relieved. She brews with toxic anger and pushes him away for awhile… until he falls back into her trap.
There are of course a multitude of ways that guilt trips can be laid. People lay guilt trips according to their own temperaments. A guilt trip can come from a person of nearly any age, race or gender. It can be subtle and difficult to identify or or outright obnoxious.
Types of Guilt Trips
- The “Silent Treatment”
- Playing the strong victim – crying, whining, complaining
- The passive aggressive guilt trip – it was all a set-up from the start
- Anger, insults, accusations
- Emotional blackmail (leads to verbal abuse or physical violence) – the vengeful guilt trip
- Sometimes all of the above, but in stages, not necessarily in order
Although guilt itself serves a specific function in the human psyche it can also undermine one’s confidence, energy levels with the ability to focus and make rational decisions. One major problem with guilt is that the people who have done the most harm tend to have the least amount of it, if they have any at all. The other portion of the population suffers enormously with the burden of guilt looming in their subconscious that they have internalized from parents and other adults and caretakers from a very young age. Some people learned early on how to toy with other people’s guilt reflexes in order to manipulate them. Those are the people you need to watch out for.
People are not just guilt tripped by individuals but in some cases by their general community or by the country they were born in. Remember, “The majority is not always right.”
In order to defend yourself against a guilt trip you first need to understand what and how another person is targeting your weaknesses. They know you well enough to know what your triggers are and where you feel inadequate. They know if you feel like you owe them something and they will continuously tug on the cord they have hooked into you. You may or may not actually owe them something but this should be clarified as soon as possible. If you do owe, then pay them off immediately and cut the cord that exists between you. If you don’t, then cut the cord. Yes that is easier said than done. Here are suggestions for doing so.
Tell them you are done interacting with them, or that you are taking a long break. Don’t bother to explain why because they will only use your explanations against you. Trying to reason with a person who is in the mode of doling out a guilt trip is like trying to reason with a drunk person.
If they are aggressive and won’t take no for an answer block their number. If they intrude upon your living and working environment notify them that if they do it again you will file a restraining order. If they cross that boundary again, follow through with your word. Do not make this statement if you don’t intend to follow through! Your hollow threats will be used against you.
Take a long bath or shower yourself. Light a candle and some incense. Listen to your favorite album.
Take a vibrational flower essence of Black Cohosh for releasing toxic people from your life.
Hold, wear or place Turquoise, Aquamarine, Amazonite and other stones with similar blue-green colors in your environment. They can help you speak your truth and protect you from the lies and accusations of others.
Defending yourself is especially tricky when the person who guilt trips you is your spouse or other close relative. It may not be appropriate to just eliminate that person from your life altogether but it’s important to establish healthy boundaries in your relationships to these people. There is no substitute for knowing your own psychology well enough to control your reactions and steer your own course. Discrimination is key.