Are you projecting on to others aspects of yourself that you deny, and are others doing this to you? In this podcast, learn what projection is, how you might be getting caught up in it, and what to do about it.
Hi everyone. This is dr. Margaret Paul with the inner bonding podcast. And today I’d like to talk about an issue that is quite common in relationships. Projection. I want to talk about what it is and how to deal with it in ways that are loving to yourself rather than abandoning to yourself. So, first I want to talk about what projection is. Projection occurs when people deny their own feelings and actions, and then they project them on to other people thinking that it’s others who are feeling angry or others who are upset or doing a unloving things when it’s really what’s going on within them.
And it’s kind of crazy making when this happens, because when somebody is projecting onto you, it gets really, really confusing because you, you likely know that you’re not doing what it is that they say you’re doing, but, but they seem so certain that you are. And so for example, somebody might not be open and then they may be blaming and attacking and accusing another person of not being opened.
So, so some common projections are something like you’re selfish and the underlying translation, if they were to be really honest with themselves is I’m being selfish. And I don’t want to admit it and I don’t want to deal with it or you’re judgmental. And the translation is I’m judging myself and I feel ashamed of this. So it’s easier to blame you instead, or you’re angry. And the translation is I’m angry, but I judged myself for being angry.
So I’m not going to admit to being angry or everything is always about you. And the translation is I’m being narcissistic. And I don’t want to know this or you’re crazy. And the translation is I’m feeling or acting out of control. And I can not let myself know this or you’re abusive. And the translation is I’m being abusive.
And I will not deal with that with myself. So think about how do you respond when somebody projects onto you. If you’re responding from your ego wounded self, then you’re going to try and control the interaction, which is usually going to escalate the interaction. So you might respond by defending and, and hoping that if you can defend yourself, then the other, person’s going to see that they’re wrong about you.
Or if you can explain, they’re going to understand what they’re doing, but when somebody is projecting, they’re in their ego wounded self. And when we’re in our ego in itself, we’re not, we’re not open. We’re not available to hearing what somebody else is saying. So you can defend and explain all you want. And all it’s going to do is escalate the situation. Or maybe you just give yourself up and you, you accept what they’re saying, or you, you actually apologize, even though you know that you’re not doing what they say, but you, you apologize or you just accepted or admit to it just to keep the peace, which means you’re, you’re really betraying yourself and you’re supporting them in blaming you rather than taking responsibility for, for themselves.
And when you’re doing that, you’re willing to lose yourself rather than lose the other person, which is a form of self rejection. You’re, you’re giving yourself up, you’re losing yourself, you’re accepting something. That’s not yours. And what’s going to happen is that your, your inner self, your inner child’s going to lose trust in you because you’re not listening to yourself. You’re not trusting yourself regarding what’s really going on in this interaction.
So if you were to deal with it as a loving adult, which means that your intention is to take loving care of yourself rather than try and control the other person you would be focusing inside on. What’s true for you. And what would be loving to you. You would not think about how to get the other person to see your point of view, to listen to you, to see what they’re doing. You would be focusing on how you’re feeling and what do you need to do for yourself.
So just imagine that you have an actual child and somebody is projecting onto the child and blaming them for something. But you know, that that is not the child that did the thing. That is the person who’s projecting. What would you do for an actual child? Would you speak up? Would you be an advocate for that child? Hopefully you would. And that’s what you need to be doing for yourself. And to say something like this, isn’t about me, and I’m not, I’m not available for this.
And maybe just disengage lovingly disengage, which is what you do when you disengage from an interaction without anger or blame, you don’t go into your own itself and, and, and try and control the other by withdrawing your love. You just kind of get yourself at a range. And that could be one thing that you would do for an actual trial. Just take the child out of range. You need to be honest with yourself. Would you rather lose yourself and try and control the other?
Or are you willing to lose the other rather than lose yourself in order to really take loving care of yourself, you have to be willing to lose the other person. This is true in any relationship. If we’re not willing to lose the other person, we’re going to lose ourselves. And we don’t have much when we lose ourselves. And so in, in any relationship, we have to make the decision that we’re willing to lose the other person, rather than give ourselves up to accommodate or admit to things that we haven’t done or apologize for things we haven’t done wrong.
And you actually, you can’t be loving to a partner or another person. If you’re abandoning yourself, it may seem like you’re making peace. But when you give yourself up by abandoning yourself and caretaking the other person, you’re going to resent the other person. And eventually you’re going to try and control the other person. And of course, that, that doesn’t create a loving relationship.
The only possibility we have of creating loving relationships is when we’re focusing on taking loving care of ourselves, not on controlling the other person or taking responsibility for the other person’s feelings, the whole challenge in relationships, or one of the challenges is to stop self abandoning and, and to learn, to take responsibility for our own feelings to learn, to trust what you’re feeling inside. If you feel confused, if you feel crazy made inside, you need to honor that you need to trust that something’s going on.
There’s a lie happening here, and you need to start to trust that and honor that. And this took me quite a while before I understood that. Cause I was raised by parents who consistently projected their disowned wounded aspects onto me and I was their only child. So I was the one that got it all. And I was, I was a caretaker. I w I was used to taking care of everybody else’s feelings.
And I was overly responsible child trying to do everything right. But my mother would often tell me that I was irresponsible because she was often irresponsible. She took no responsibility for herself or her own feelings. And she often shirked her own responsibilities and put them onto me or my father or my grandmother. So she projected that her own irresponsibility onto me as a little kid.
I mean, I remember it being really small and being told I was irresponsible and for an overly responsible child that is incredibly confusing and incredibly crazy making. She would also tell me that I was manipulative when she was the one who was manipulative. And again, this is, this is really hard for a little kid because, you know, you think your parents are like gods. They’re supposed to know things. And so when they’re telling you that you’re doing something that your, your inner self tells you, you’re not doing, but they’re telling you, you are doing it.
That’s incredibly confusing. Well, of course, since I was brought up that way, then w you know, we often pick a partner. Who’s, who’s very much like one or both of our parents, especially if we had problems with one of our parents, we pick a partner that’s like that. So my husband often projected his uncaring behavior onto me telling me that I was the uncaring one and blaming me for his feelings. And so, of course, this continued to be very confusing to me.
I continue to be a caretaker for a long time, until it made me really sick, and I had to deal with it. But unfortunately, this was what was role modeled. You know, we, we become the role models for our kids. And so this, this behavior continued in my family system with my entire family. And one of the things that some of my family members consistently told me was that they couldn’t talk to me because I would spend things and turn things around on them.
And this was always so confusing to me because I tried so hard to be open and to hear what they were trying to tell me, but I just remain confused about it. But as I learned and, and practice inner bonding, after, after some time of really being able to tune into my higher guidance, finally, one day, my guidance enlightened me regarding what was really going on with my various family members.
And so this is what my guidance said to me. These family members are projecting their disowned parts onto you, just as your parents did. And it’s crazy making for you. Here’s, what’s really happening when they project onto you, that you are closed judgmental rejecting, or that you are at fault for something in their lives. You get triggered into the old loneliness of feeling so unseen by your parents, and then you explain and defend.
And as soon as you do that, then they tell you that you’re spinning things and turning it back on them. So defending and explaining was what I learned to do. Of course, that’s what my ego wound itself learned to do to try and control the situation. So defending and explaining was my end of the system that allowed them to continue to project their disowned parts onto me.
So the thing not to do when you’re at the other end, a projection is to take the bait. Now this took me a really, really long time to learn. This was, this was such a hard lesson for me, because I was so used to being projected onto then. And this is what happens when we grow up in a family where this is what’s going on, we’re used to it. And we’re thinking, well, I was always thinking, what did I do wrong?
You know, this is my fault. I’m, I’m always doing something wrong. I’ve got to figure out what I’m doing wrong here. Well, of course, what I was doing wrong was not what they were saying that I was doing. What I was doing wrong is I was taking the bait and thinking I was doing something wrong. I was trusting them rather than trusting myself. And I was betraying myself and not honoring what I felt inside of me.
My, my inner child knew that I wasn’t the one doing those things that I wasn’t, the close and judgmental and rejecting and blaming one that I wasn’t the one who was actually spinning things and turning it back. But when I was defending and explaining, then in that way, I was spinning because when you defend and explain, you’re, you’re basically not dealing with what’s really happening. You’re, you’re trying to control the other person, which is a form of turning it back onto them.
And so I had to see my participation in the system, and I had to understand that this came from the loneliness of being unseen as a child, that this is so painful for a little child to not be seen, not be heard, not be, gotten, not be understood to be projected upon in that way. And the loneliness that I felt not only from the projections, but from being an only child was devastating to me.
And, and there was no way as a child that I could manage the depth of the loneliness and the depth of the helplessness that I felt at that time. And the heartbreak of not being seen. I had no idea how to handle that, but once my guidance enlightened me and I began to understand the system, my participation in it, then I had the choice to not do that anymore.
I had the choice to be very compassionate with my loneliness, my heartbreak, my helplessness, to no longer defend or explain to just not participate in the system to disengage from and say, no, I’m not available for this projection. And to name it and to disengage from it. Now the worst others feel about what they have done or want or feel the more attacking they might be towards you.
And it’s truly a crazy making situation. So generally the only thing you can do is remove yourself from the conflict. And sometimes it means removing yourself from some aspects of your family. Because if you come from a family who’s consistently projecting onto you, and that that’s, that they’re sort of addicted to doing that.
And you become the scapegoat, you become the one that they project everything onto so that they don’t have to deal with themselves. You can’t make them stop that. And it’s just so painful to be at the other end of projection, to be at the other end of being a scapegoat of people who are supposed to care about you. And so sometimes the only thing that we can do is just not be a part of the system.
We can’t convince them. We can’t get them to see what they’re doing. We can’t use logic. We can’t explain. There’s nothing we can do to get others, to stop being crazy, making a stop, projecting, blaming, and scapegoating us. And so sometimes what we need to do, even with people that we dearly dearly love is we need to completely disengage from the system. And I’ve worked with a lot of people who have had to do this.
And they asked me, many of my clients asked me, is it okay to take time off from my parents? Is it okay? I haven’t seen my parents in a year. I haven’t seen my parents in two years and they’re after me to, to reunite with them because I’m upsetting the family that I’m doing this. But, but I know that if I go back into the family, the same thing’s gonna happen, my father or my mother or my siblings or whoever it is, they’re going to keep on blaming me.
They’re upset because they don’t have anybody to blame right now. And they want me back in the system because they’re not going to deal with themselves. I haven’t heard any apologies from them. I haven’t heard them taking any responsibility. They’re still blaming me from disengaging from the system. I can’t tell you how often I hear this from my clients. So this is a fairly common situation and families. And interestingly, generally the person who’s getting projected on the person who’s getting blamed is the more open person in the family.
Usually a person who has a lot more light and they’re more vulnerable. They’re, they’re the kinder or more sensitive person. And so they’re often the ones that it’s easy to project upon because they want to be good and they want to be kind, they want to be open. And so they’re, they’re vulnerable to that projection. And often if they’re in a family of people who are not as not as kind, not as loving as they are, those people might be threatened by their light threatened by their kindness, and actually want to pull them down into their lower frequency.
So it’s really important if you think that you’re being scapegoated in your family, you’re being projected on, you’re being blamed, that you tune in to an end to how you feel and tune into higher your higher guidance, and really focus on what’s loving to you. And if it’s loving to you to disengage from one or more of your family members, even though they might be very angry with you, then do.
So. If that’s, what’s actually loving to you, I hope all of you visit inner bonding.com and take our free inner bonding course. Those of you that are not practicing inner bonding to take the free inner bonding course learn the basics of inner bonding. There’s so much on our website about inner bonding, so much free help and courses and books and ways to learn how to truly love yourself rather than continue to abandon yourself.