La Loche – Preventable??

Powerlessness and Anger – the dynamite duo

It is with great sadness that we hear the news from La Loche, Saskatchewan. The tragic loss of life and a life so scarred by inappropriate expression of pent up emotions.
One new report indicated that this young man had been bullied at school and that he had spared those who had been nice to him. But why his teacher, who by all accounts was a very nice person?
Please know that the ideas presented here are not the result of investigative research but rather general principles dealing with emotional issues. Everyone’s story is unique, while the emotional results may fall into categories. The way people express themselves varies widely.
Anger is an emotion that many people experience. In many cases with justification. There are events in our lives which make us angry; those events may be large, small, real or exaggerated. The principle of blame and responsibility comes into play here. We can blame whomever we feel has wronged us, and act out of that. Or we can accept that wrong was done (which would, in many cases, be accurate) and take responsibility for feeling through our anger so we do not act out of it.
4 Causes of anger include 1. Anger can be a way to cover irrational guilt, which is guilt which we take on when we try to take responsibility for events that we have no control over. An example would be a failed parental relationship; 2. The inability to appropriately express or discharge anger as children leads to anger as adults; 3. learning at a young age that expressing anger was unacceptable to others and we may suffer punishment, rejection or the withdrawal of affection or approval if we express anger; and 4. children are not equipped to explain, defend, justify or document their feelings. When we ask them to do so, their right to their anger is diminished.
We do not know which of these events was part of that gentleman’s young life, but we can be sure some were.
Powerlessness may be an underlying emotion in the taking of life. Powerlessness is an ingredient in bullying and being a victim. As you can see by the list of causes, it is difficult to escape childhood without being affected – which may explain the prevalence of bullying in many life stations.
Following are 25 Causes of feelings of powerlessness – 1. to have not experienced appropriate power, control and responsibility as a child; 2. when, as children, we are not respected as full human beings and our needs are not met; 3. physical, emotional and sexual abuse cause powerlessness, even witnessing these is emotionally abusive as it is an invasion of boundaries; 4. expecting perfection; 5. controlling everything a child does including thinking and believing; 6. verbal put downs, screaming, attacking and criticizing; 7. expecting our child to look after us emotionally; 8. indifference to our child’s well being; 9. discouraging independence; 10. demanding loyalty, appreciation and gratitude; 11. expecting our children to be responsible for things we are responsible for; 12. undermining; 13. threatening; 14.trivializing; 15. patronizing; 16. withholding; 17. using scare tactics; 18. denying our child’s feelings; 19. abusing things our child values, such as pets or possessions; 20. isolating our child; 21. harassing; 22. not protecting our child from those who harm them; 23. teasing; 24. scapegoating and 25. using punishment to control.
Two Effects of being exposed to the causes include: 1. use of situational power to abuse, that is intimidate and dominate other people, which we commonly call bullying. People who do this have a poor sense of personal power; 2. children who feel powerless will struggle with adult relationships, either needing to feel power as a defense against old feelings of powerlessness and be dominating and controlling, or will feel like a victim and try to get the abuse to stop and get the love they are missing.
As you can plainly see, there is great possibility that these played a part in the La Loche tragedy.
The potential benefits of people accessing this information include the potential of being more empathetic when others act out by bullying. Also, the possibility exists of being able to speak intelligently into another persons life and/or heart to bring about positive change.
Please consult other posts for more information on feeling through.
The ideas shared here are credited to Janice Berger. They are recorded in her excellent book, Emotional Fitness, discovering our natural healing power. ISBN 0-13-018182-X.

Kind regards, Tim

I appreciate your view point, please feel free to share

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