from the world's big
A new study lays out the case for the damaging effects of stress on orcas living in tanks.
- There are currently around 60 orcas living in concrete tanks globally.
- Orcas' brain structures and behaviors strongly suggest they are smart, emotional, self-aware beings.
- The study provides compelling evidence that the stresses inherent in captivity do damage to these naturally free-roaming cetaceans.
The orca brain<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzQ0OTYxOC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1MzE4MjUxMX0.bn_qCqvJWtuLuUtEuDuCV5VJSFl7mqIABEKR4Ywbjnw/img.jpg?width=980" id="3d9eb" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="2c2f955fe43e842b69f329f8aca82b86" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="orca" />
Image source: FineShine/Shutterstock<p>The orca brain exhibits neurobiological traits that are considered prerequisites for complex psychology, emotion, and behavior:</p><ul><li>a large brain size</li><li>an expanded neocortex</li><li>a well-differentiated cortical cytoarchitecture</li><li>an elaborated limbic system</li></ul><p>Even more important than sheer brain size is its size in relation to an animal's body. This is captured as the organism's encephalization quotient, or EQ. Says the study, "Odontocetes, and in particular Delphinoidea [the superfamily to which orcas belong], are the most highly <a href="https://www.definitions.net/definition/encephalization" target="_blank">encephalized</a> nonhuman taxonomic group known … except modern humans."</p><p>Orcas also have the most highly convoluted, or folded, neocortical surface of all mammals including humans, and their ratio of neocortical surface to brain weight also exceeds the human brain's, suggesting an organ well-suited to higher-order functions.</p><p>Among a range of other clues presented by the study that suggest orcas are highly intelligent creatures are these:</p><ul><li>Areas associated in the human brain with high-level cognitive and social functions including attention, prediction, social awareness, and empathy are all highly developed in orcas.</li><li>Orcas have a well-integrated mammalian limbic system that supports having emotions, memory, motivation, reasoning, learning, and abstraction.</li></ul>
Supporting behaviors<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzQ0OTYyOS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY0ODc3NDc5OH0.7SJYid8T8vIb2GsYDlyeLBH7guFBh0dOlzkJOhWbrxw/img.jpg?width=980" id="f32c2" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="503cc66cca99c76a74b0551595cbf87f" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" />
Image source: Willyam Bradberry /Shutterstock<p>Observations of orca behavior richly supports the implications of their neurobiological structures. Marino says, "Free-ranging orcas live in tightly-knit social groups that are necessary during their long juvenile periods and afterwards. They support each other, help each other when in trouble, and grieve each other. <a href="https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2018/08/orca-mourning-calf-killer-whale-northwest-news/" target="_blank">Mothers and calves are very tightly bonded</a>. In some groups, male orcas stay with their mom their whole life and if mom dies [the male offpsring] may go into a deep depression and die as well. Family and social group are everything."</p><p>Orcas also demonstrate culture, with vocalizations and even hunting methods unique within groups and passed from generation to generation.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;"><em>"Orcas at Punta Norte, Argentina, hunt sea lion and elephant seal pups by beaching themselves and capturing the pups, typically in the surf zone," according to the study.</em></p>
Captivity morbidities<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzQ0OTYyMy9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY0Nzk2NTY3OX0.OTstnCedLWwHzzkpjLTrRXm9ivzKg4Rxb2zMdF_BiVI/img.jpg?width=980" id="3446f" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="e616334b186df2be92e659f145ac9405" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="orca performing at water park" />
Image source: Peter Etchells/Shutterstock<p>In the wild, free-ranging female orcas live an average of 46 years — some live as long as 90 years — and males 31 years, or as long as 50-60 years. Captive orcas rarely live more than 30 years, with many dying in their teens or 20s. Their medical histories can be difficult to access due to facilities' desire for confidentiality. Nonetheless, some morbidities, or causes of death, have become clear over time.</p><p><a href="https://www.jwildlifedis.org/doi/10.7589/0090-3558-15.1.99" target="_blank">One review</a> from 1979 identified infectious disease as the culprit behind the death of 17 captive North American orcas who'd died since 1965 prior to the report's writing. The new study cites publicly available documentation revealing that between 1971 and 2017, SeaWorld parks alone have experienced 35 documented orca deaths, and that, "When causes of death were available, the most commonly implicated conditions were viral, bacterial and fungal infections, gastrointestinal disease, and trauma."</p><p>Infections such as these may not in and of themselves have necessarily been lethal, but when combined with orcas' "weakened immune system, chronic exposure to chemical irritants or trauma to the skin, excessive or improper use of antimicrobials, and an imbalance in the microbiota of the body or environment (which may exist in tanks)," they become deadly. Common fungal infections may also be especially dangerous in this context "as a result of long-term and aggressive antibiotic treatment, overtreatment of water for purity, or both." The same is true for untreated dental infections.</p><p>Another frequent cause of orca death: gastrointestinal ulceration — ulcers — caused by prolonged exposure to stress. </p>
The destructive power of stress<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzQ1MDMzNC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYwMjc5MTAzMH0.WhJoITh_Tv44-7zUBrvpCqqT7tm9dNwM1kPGdOM2JZI/img.jpg?width=980" id="f5c0c" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="1d83e901a480a0077ca56e99328dd0b6" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="orca in captivity jumping from water" />
Image source: eldeiv/Shutterstock<p style="margin-left: 20px;"><em>"Importantly, the poor health and short lifespans of captive orcas are most clearly understood as connected elements in a cycle of maladaptiveness to the conditions of captivity that involves behavioral abnormalities, physical harm and vulnerability to disease."</em></p><p>The paper shows, says Marino, that "when you examine the totality of the welfare findings for captive orcas the whole picture fits best within a larger common framework of evidence on how stress effects captive animals. We know that, when confined, other animals show the same kinds of behavioral and physiological abnormalities that captive orcas do. This is not mysterious or even controversial. It is basic science."</p><p>Marino cites as especially damaging the manner in which captivity prevents orcas from making social connections. Tanks also deprive them of places to retreat, making conflicts inescapable even temporarily. Finally, captive orcas are likely to become bored and chronically demotivated by the frustration over their loss of autonomy.</p><p>The study also notes physical effects brought on by long-term stress, including:</p><ul><li>the release of too much cortisol by the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal, or HPA, axis, causing elevated blood sugar, suppression of the immune system, as well as metabolism and blood pressure issues.</li><li>alterations of the hippocampus, amygdala, and prefrontal cortex due to prolonged stress, potentially leading to increased anxiety, post-traumatic stress, cognitive impairment, depression, and mood dysregulation.</li><li>organ degradation in response to unrelenting stress.</li><li>a loss of natural sensory information, about which, says the study, "a growing body of research has found that exposure to excessive or unnatural levels or types of acoustic input can cause a number of impacts to cetaceans, including but not limited to … accelerated aging, suppression of the immune response, as well as premature hearing loss."</li></ul>
A valuable conversation<p>Marino explains why it was important to conduct this study, saying, "My co-authors and I wrote this review to bring all of the available information on captive orca well-being together in one place and to suggest that we might all best be able to understand the effects of captivity within a very familiar and well-researched model of how chronic stress effects all organisms. We want this paper to be a catalyst for dialogue and further scientific exploration based on data as to how we can better understand who orcas are and how we can identify the important elements needed in a captive environment for them to thrive."</p><p>The <a href="https://whalesanctuaryproject.org" target="_blank">Whale Sanctuary Project</a> is hosting a <a href="https://whalesanctuaryproject.org/event/chronic-stress-in-captive-orcas-webinar/" target="_blank">free public webinar</a> to discuss the study and the effects of stress on captive orcas with three of the study's authors on Tuesday, July 14.<br></p>
An algorithm may allow doctors to assess PTSD candidates for early intervention after traumatic ER visits.
- 10-15% of people visiting emergency rooms eventually develop symptoms of long-lasting PTSD.
- Early treatment is available but there's been no way to tell who needs it.
- Using clinical data already being collected, machine learning can identify who's at risk.
The psychological scars a traumatic experience can leave behind may have a more profound effect on a person than the original traumatic experience. Long after an acute emergency is resolved, victims of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) continue to suffer its consequences.
In the U.S. some 30 million patients are annually treated in emergency departments (EDs) for a range of traumatic injuries. Add to that urgent admissions to the ED with the onset of COVID-19 symptoms. Health experts predict that some 10 percent to 15 percent of these people will develop long-lasting PTSD within a year of the initial incident. While there are interventions that can help individuals avoid PTSD, there's been no reliable way to identify those most likely to need it.
That may now have changed. A multi-disciplinary team of researchers has developed a method for predicting who is most likely to develop PTSD after a traumatic emergency-room experience. Their study is published in the journal Nature Medicine.
70 data points and machine learning
Image source: Creators Collective/Unsplash
Study lead author Katharina Schultebraucks of Columbia University's Department Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons says:
"For many trauma patients, the ED visit is often their sole contact with the health care system. The time immediately after a traumatic injury is a critical window for identifying people at risk for PTSD and arranging appropriate follow-up treatment. The earlier we can treat those at risk, the better the likely outcomes."
The new PTSD test uses machine learning and 70 clinical data points plus a clinical stress-level assessment to develop a PTSD score for an individual that identifies their risk of acquiring the condition.
Among the 70 data points are stress hormone levels, inflammatory signals, high blood pressure, and an anxiety-level assessment. Says Schultebraucks, "We selected measures that are routinely collected in the ED and logged in the electronic medical record, plus answers to a few short questions about the psychological stress response. The idea was to create a tool that would be universally available and would add little burden to ED personnel."
Researchers used data from adult trauma survivors in Atlanta, Georgia (377 individuals) and New York City (221 individuals) to test their system.
Of this cohort, 90 percent of those predicted to be at high risk developed long-lasting PTSD symptoms within a year of the initial traumatic event — just 5 percent of people who never developed PTSD symptoms had been erroneously identified as being at risk.
On the other side of the coin, 29 percent of individuals were 'false negatives," tagged by the algorithm as not being at risk of PTSD, but then developing symptoms.
Image source: Külli Kittus/Unsplash
Schultebraucks looks forward to more testing as the researchers continue to refine their algorithm and to instill confidence in the approach among ED clinicians: "Because previous models for predicting PTSD risk have not been validated in independent samples like our model, they haven't been adopted in clinical practice." She expects that, "Testing and validation of our model in larger samples will be necessary for the algorithm to be ready-to-use in the general population."
"Currently only 7% of level-1 trauma centers routinely screen for PTSD," notes Schultebraucks. "We hope that the algorithm will provide ED clinicians with a rapid, automatic readout that they could use for discharge planning and the prevention of PTSD." She envisions the algorithm being implemented in the future as a feature of electronic medical records.
The researchers also plan to test their algorithm at predicting PTSD in people whose traumatic experiences come in the form of health events such as heart attacks and strokes, as opposed to visits to the emergency department.
A groundbreaking Stanford University study explains the areas of the brain that are impacted by hypnosis.
- Hypnosis refers to a trance state that is characterized by extreme suggestibility, relaxation, and heightened imagination.
- According to a Stanford University School of Medicine study, there are three areas of our brains that change during a state of hypnosis.
- This groundbreaking study provides information on how hypnosis impacts the brain, which could lead to new and improved pain management and anxiety treatments in the future.
Hypnosis: a brief history<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzM4MDUzOS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYyODE0NTIxMn0.8i-niurp_iqtQtLAItVe4bYVzsCvP510dhMITGPs47E/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C52%2C0%2C52&height=700" id="ec42b" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="1af341304e578f5bf20858cb7e872c86" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="swinging pocket watch" />
Along the way, there have been many pioneers in the feild of hypnosis research.
Photo by Brian A Jackson on Shutterstock<p>The "modern father" of hypnosis was Austrian physician Franz Mesmer, who gave us the word "mesmerism", which can be another word referencing a hypnotic state. Mesmer had an idea for which he called "animal magnetism" - and the idea was that there are these kinds of natural energy sources that could be transferred between organisms and objects.</p><p>Along the way, hypnotism has had many other pioneers who have furthered the fascinating phenomenon. One of the most notable is James Braid, an eye doctor based in Scotland who became intrigued with the idea of hypnosis when he discovered a patient in his waiting room had fallen under something of a trance after staring at a lamp. He gave the patient come commands, and the patient obliged, remaining in a trace-like state the entire time. </p><p>Braid's fascination grew and through more tests, he determined that getting a patient to fixate on something was one of the most important components to hypnosis. He later would publish a book on what we now know as the <a href="https://books.google.be/books/about/The_Discovery_of_Hypnosis.html?id=Vs35STwQYQoC&redir_esc=y" target="_blank">discovery of modern hypnosis</a>.</p><p>Later, James Esdaile, a British surgeon based in India during the mid-1800s established that this kind of trance hypnotic state was extremely useful in pain relief practices. He performed hundreds of major operations using hypnotism as his only anesthetic. When he returned to England in an attempt to convince the medical establishments of his findings, they paid no mind to his theory in favor of new chemical anesthetics such as morphine, which was <a href="https://www.drugfreeworld.org/drugfacts/painkillers/a-short-history.html" target="_blank">relatively new at the time</a>. This is where the use of hypnotics for medicinal purposes halted and much of the reason why hypnosis is considered an alternative approach to medicine in today's society.</p><p>Jumping forward to the 1900s, Frenchman Emile Coué moved away from the conventional approaches that had been pioneered with hypnotism and began his work with the use of auto-suggestion. </p><p>He is most famous for the phrase: <em>"Day by day, in every way, I am getting better and better." </em>This technique was one of the first instances where affirmation hypnosis was used and it has been growing through various counseling programs and therapy techniques ever since.</p><p>In modern times, one of the most recognized authorities on clinical hypnosis remains to be Milton Erikson, a well-known psychotherapist who did most of his work around 1950-1980. He was fascinated with human psychology and devised countless innovative ways to use hypnosis in his clinical practices. </p>
Scientists scanned the brains of 57 people during a guided hypnosis session.
Image by vrx on Shutterstock<p><strong>Changes found in three areas of the brain during hypnosis may suggest future alternative treatments for anxiety and pain management.</strong><br><br>Over the years, hypnosis has gained a lot of traction and respectability within both the medical and psychotherapy professions. According to a 2016 Stanford University School of Medicine study, there are three areas of our brains that change during a state of hypnosis - and this could actually be used to benefit us.</p><p>Scientists scanned the brains of 57 people during a guided hypnosis session, similar to one that may be used to help treat anxiety, pain, or trauma. </p><p><strong>First, there is a decrease in dorsal anterior cingulate activity. </strong></p><p>This is part of the brain's salience network that is responsible for <a href="https://www.alleydog.com/glossary/definition.php?term=Anterior+Cingulate+Cortex" target="_blank">psychological functions</a> like decision making, evaluation processes, and emotional regulation as well as physiological functions such as blood pressure and heart rate. </p><p><strong>Next, there is an increase in the connection between the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the insula. </strong></p><p>The <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/neuroscience/dorsolateral-prefrontal-cortex" target="_blank">dorsolateral prefrontal cortex</a> is associated with executive functions such as working memory and self-control. The <a href="https://www.spinalcord.com/insular-cortex" target="_blank">insula</a> is a small region of the cerebral cortex that plays a significant role in pain perception, social engagements, emotions, and autonomic control. </p><p>This is described by the lead researcher of the study as a kind of "brain-body connection" that helps the brain process and control what's going on in the body. </p><p><strong>Finally, there are reduced connections between the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the medial prefrontal cortex. </strong></p><p>The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex becomes less connected to the medial prefrontal cortex and the <a href="https://www.jneurosci.org/content/32/1/215" target="_blank">posterior cingulate cortex</a>, both of which are strongly associated with neural activity and cognitive tasks.</p><p>This decrease very likely correlates to the disconnect between someone's actions and their awareness of their actions, according to the lead researcher on the project. </p><p><strong>How does this change the way we view hypnosis?</strong></p><p>Understanding exactly which areas of the brain are impacted during hypnosis can pave the way for groundbreaking research into the use of hypnosis for medicinal purposes.</p><p>"Now that we know which brain regions are involved," says David Spiegel, MD, professor and researcher on the project, "we may be able to use this knowledge to alter someone's capacity to be hypnotized or the effectiveness of the hypnosis for problems such as pain control." </p><p>While more research is needed, the study is certainly a groundbreaking head-start in what could eventually be known as hypnotic treatments for things like anxiety, trauma and pain management. </p><p>"A treatment that combines brain stimulation with hypnosis could improve known analgesic effects of hypnosis and potentially even replace addictive and side-effect-laden painkillers and anti-anxiety medications," explains Spiegel. </p>
There are countless studies that prove ecotherapy (often referred to as nature therapy) is beneficial for your physical and mental health.
- What was once considered a simple practice and ideology about the benefits of nature has been proven in multiple studies to positively impact our physical and mental health.
- Some of the benefits of spending time in nature can be: a boost in killer-cells that fight off viruses, an ability to maintain focus and improvement in mental health conditions such as anxiety, depression and other mood disorders.
- To explain the all-encompassing benefits of nature, the Japanese have coined the term "shinrin yoku", which translates to "forest bathing."
How nature therapy works to better your physical and mental health<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMzI4ODczOS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1MzAxMDI2MX0.vJdHUPtd6Ca9gwe0okWsDNdjLEq0HCdsfHfKewgykyI/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C263%2C0%2C1&height=700" id="c0920" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="138dd9a6e3620f581b2a2d2816c6d83f" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="forest and trees concept of nature therapy ecotherapy" />
A simple walk in the forest can have more of a positive impact on your health than you may realize.
An inside look at common relationship problems that link to how we were raised.
- Fear of abandonment or other attachment issues can stem from childhood loss (the death of a parent) but can also stem from mistreatment or emotional neglect as a child.
- Longitudinal studies have proven that a child's inability to maintain healthy relationships may be significantly impaired by having an insecure attachment to a primary caregiver during their early development.
- While these are common relationship problems that may be rooted in childhood experiences, as adults, we can break the cycle.
Fear of abandonment<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjkwMDIzNC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzMjIzOTMzM30.GHKoKY2vF5ox5-KNnJt9029oJW6QtmI2gT2n1ZuXz5M/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C6%2C0%2C98&height=700" id="77411" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="d572625c55cd2b7768d84420083dde2e" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="sad man staring off into the distance on porch concept fear of abandonment in relationships" />
Fear of abandonment can stem from childhood loss or childhood maltreatment.
Photo by Koldunova Anna on Shutterstock<p><em>"Powerful experiences can alter the functioning of an adult brain, but with children, traumatic events may change the entire framework of their brain."</em> - Dr. Bruce Perry, Senior Fellow of the Child Trauma Academy.</p><p>Fear of abandonment can stem from childhood loss - the death of a parent or loved one - but it can also stem from maltreatment during childhood. Maltreatment or neglect as a child can be difficult to pinpoint, especially if that mistreatment isn't physical but more of an emotional nature.</p><p>Brain development, according to this <a href="https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/earlybrain.pdf" target="_blank">Child Welfare Information Gateway study</a>, is actually the process of creating, strengthening and discarding connections among the neurons we're born with. </p><p>These connections are called synapses and they organize the brain by forming neural pathways that connect various parts of the brain governing everything we do. </p><p>The growth of each region of the brain depends largely on receiving stimulation for that area - think of it as a muscle that needs to be exercised in order to grow strong and be useful. Leaving that muscle unattended, not giving it movement and strength, will eventually lead it to atrophy, making it a deterrent for your entire body to function properly. </p><p>This is how maltreatment works. To remedy this issue in your relationship, work on exercising that "attachment muscle", allowing yourself to become more vulnerable and open with your partner.</p>
Inability to commit to your partner<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjkwMDIzMS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzMTY1NDM4OX0.X94zwH9qvRyEBg1OJt1uqcrQX8NzuAsfJNloEyuMqmg/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C0%2C0%2C0&height=700" id="c1200" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="a5e1908dd2edfe49f4aa04a6f6293040" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="concept of commitment issues in a relationship woman offering hand to man who doesn't take it" />
An inability to commit to the relationship can be really difficult to overcome.
Photo by Motortion Films on Shutterstock<p><a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5330336/" target="_blank">This 2016 study</a> by Winston and Chicot offers proof to the theory that parental inconsistency and lack of love can lead to long-term mental health problems as well as to reduced overall potential and happiness later in life.</p><p>The human brain is made of over 100 billion brain cells that each connect to over 7000 other brain cells - it's an extremely complex system. And yet - by the age of 3, a child's brain has reached more than 90% of its adult size. </p><p>The experiences that a baby has within the first three years of life lay the ground for how their brain is wired well into adulthood. While it's possible for us to "re-learn" things as adults and change the framework of our brains this way - there is much importance laid on the connection and relationship that an infant has with their caregiver.</p><p><a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1016557824657" target="_blank">Longitudinal studies</a> have proven that a child's inability to form and maintain healthy relationships throughout life may be significantly impaired by having an insecure attachment to a primary caregiver during their early development years. </p><p>To address this common relationship problem, consider how you view attachment, dedication and loyalty in relationships - there is a good chance you are already very committed to your partner but simply fear the "label" of being so invested in a relationship. </p>
Entitlement<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjkwMDIzMC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNTg0MTY5MH0.gmOD0qXv4Txk0qFiN0H3jRp6GUJtojEOhPOXqTGLmhs/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C52%2C0%2C52&height=700" id="3ffd8" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="a826f4d765f4a80fb92a0b9181589748" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="concept of selfishness and entitlement me, myself and I chart" />
Entitlement can be an unrealistic, unmerited and inappropriate sense of how you should be treated and what you deserve.
Image by Artur Szczybylo on Shutterstock<p>Entitlement, defined as an unrealistic, unmerited or inappropriate expectation of favorable living conditions and treatment by others, can also stem back to the experiences we have during childhood. To remedy this issue in a relationship can be quite difficult, as entitlement is an inherently selfish quality. </p><p><a href="https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/personality-disorders/the-psychology-behind-sense-of-entitlement/" target="_blank">According to Better Help</a>, there are two main reasons why people act entitled in relationships - they are either overcompensating for never getting what they want or are so used to getting what they want that they can't even entertain the possibility of not getting what they want. </p><p><strong>Overcompensating for past wrongs</strong> - an example being a child who grows up lacking the toys, games, and clothes owned by their peers may grow up to believe they are entitled to what they missed out on. </p><p><strong>A habit of getting what they want all the time</strong> - an example being a child who was given whatever they asked for without reason which can lead them to believe they should always get what they ask for even if it's not realistic. </p>
“Defectiveness” or feelings of worthlessness<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjkwMDIyNy9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzNjU0MDgxNn0.nljZ5Jb-pODxWu5RUqE-0Dq-0KLiwA3yCYcYccu0riA/img.jpg?width=980" id="18275" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="b56016f7f0406e5767a4d65300d327da" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="concept of worthlessness in children teddy bear with hands over eyes in empty room" />
Childhood emotional neglect is a deep and long lasting wound that can impact all future relationships.
Photo by rawf8 on Shutterstock<p>Childhood emotional neglect is a deep and long-lasting would that isn't always easily detectable. In fact, many times, these feelings of worthlessness and defectiveness that children feel aren't imposed by parents who mean harm to their child.</p><p>According to <a href="https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/how-to-recognize-overcome-childhood-emotional-neglect-0218165" target="_blank">Good Therapy,</a> there are four different kinds of parenting styles that can lead to your child feeling worthless or defective.</p><p><strong>Authoritarian parents:</strong> they want their children to follow the rules but have very little time or inclination to listen to their child's feelings or needs. </p><p><strong>Permissive parents:</strong> they have a very laid back attitude about child-rearing, but they may be too laid back - which may let children do what they wish and "fend for themselves." This can lead to children feeling as though they "aren't worthy of their parent's time" and in the future, they may feel unworthy of their romantic partner's time as well. </p><p><strong>Narcissistic parents: </strong>they feel as though the world (and their children) revolve around them, placing their own needs and desires above those of their children. Adults who were raised by narcissistic parents may always allow their partner's needs and wants to overshadow their own, feeling as though they are not worthy of having their own needs met.</p><strong>Perfectionist parents: </strong>they always believe their children need to do better, which can lead to their child believing they are inadequate even after accomplishing something good. Adults who were raised by perfectionist parents may also believe they are never "enough" for their partners, placing themselves at a lower level, causing an imbalance in their relationship.<br><br>Addressing issues of self-worth often involve therapy, self-help programs and a lot of time to heal and retrain your brain in how you view yourself.