I dont want to be writing this blog.
This image is from some homework my therapist wanted me to do. She is trying to help me get away from black and white thinking, so she asked me to conceptualize my relationship with my mother as a spectrum instead of only two choices: forgiveness or rejection.
I struggled with what could be in between those two choices until I saw that it was a false dichotomy. It's not even a spectrum with opposites at either end. I could choose to do neither, or both, and that breaks up my whole way of seeing my relationship with her. Instead of labeling her either a villain or a sick woman in need of help, I'm forced to look at every point where our live's touch and decide how I want to proceed on a case by case basis.
Upon closer examination it seems these dichotomies are built into the basic code of my OS. It's how I decide what's right and wrong, what's moral and immoral. I don't have to struggle with how to respond to any little situation, because if I can label something then how I act is already predetermined based on that label. Furthermore, labels have associations. The more I can put people and situations into clearly defined boxes, the more sure I am of the world and the more control I feel I have.
In times of trauma I tend to tighten up those definitions and hold to them more rigidly.