Adrenal fatigue is a common side effect of living in a home or culture riddled with Narcissistic Abuse.
Cluster B people tend to seek to hyper-adrenalize their own adrenal system for pleasure, stress relief and to alleviate boredom. Their biochemistry tends to process fight or flight adrenaline surge feelings in a way that is neurochemically positive, while victims tend to end up feeling frightened, terrorized, physically undermined, and just plain exhausted.
“The endocrine glands responsible for secreting the hormones adrenaline (epinephrine) and noradrenaline (norepinephrine), which regulate bodily functions and affect mood and emotion, blood pressure, blood sugar level, and redistribution of blood between internal organs and voluntary muscles…” share the writers at Whitman.edu, discussing Psychology terms that are likely to impact all humans.
Fight or Flight response is the body’s reaction to external stimuli. If a person is warm and friendly, humans tend to feel safer and prone to gravitating toward them; if they are abusive, healthy humans not trained to tolerate, enable, and aid in their own abuse (or the abuse of other people) tend to recoil.
In the case of Narcissistic Abuse, Abusers and Abuse Enablers tend to be vertical thinkers. Drawn to social competition and deriving an endorphin rush from combat, the winner of any conversation tends to be the brute force stronger — unless engaged in a battle of wits. Then, the victor is the person who gets their way — not necessarily the person who makes a more logically sound or valid argument.
When horizontal thinkers talk, they do so in an attempt to communicate. Communication, to a horizontal thinker, is pleasurable because neurotypical people and those with high levels of emotional intelligence tend to find the act of sharing information and being understood is exciting — while taking in new data and being able to grow, learn, or improve one’s intellect or grasp of the world is even more psychologically and biologically rewarding.
That is not the case at all with vertical thinkers. The goal of all vertical thinkers is to socially compete… to win… to dominate.
When they engage in attention-seeking tactics, Abusers and their support staff Enablers tend to feel a surge of adrenaline. When they abuse another person, invalidate their perspective, and succeed in emotionally, physically, socially, or psychologically dominating them, they feel pleasure.
While their targets and preferred scapegoats and up worn out, with C-PTSD, and left in poor physical and psychological health, they tend to walk away from dramatic abuse incidents feeling happy, healthy, in control and empowered.
People who suffer from adrenal fatigue from being pervasively exposed to trauma end up developing stress illnesses and chronic, conditioned forms of PTSD.
Those who are traumatized one time run the risk of developing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder; humans forced to endure social persecution, traumatizing physical events, neglect, and betrayal of human kindness over and over again develop life-threatening and comprehensively life-altering physiological injury.
Signs and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency and/or chronic stress-induced adrenal fatigue may include any of the following signs or symptoms according to the Mayo Clinic:
- Body aches
- Unexplained weight loss
- Low blood pressure
- Loss of body hair
- Skin discoloration (hyperpigmentation)
The Mayo Clinic website notes, “Adrenal insufficiency can be diagnosed by blood tests and special stimulation tests that show inadequate levels of adrenal hormones.” However, if you are living or working in a hostile environment, there’s no need to spend money on the tests.
Simply be honest with your medical health care provider.
The more you disclose about your personal life challenges, the more a qualified healthcare provider trained to work with Domestic Violence victims and those who are being bullied can help you learn coping strategies and recovery methods.
Step one is leaving your abuser. Step two is eliminating any and all forms of social contact with any person or peer group who knows or suspects they have been abusive, yet still choose by their own free will choice to show them social support while seeking their favor.
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