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Brain Fog - What Is It and Why Is It So Dangerous?

complex ptsd life after narcissism narcissistic abuse recovery Jan 16, 2021

In this video I talk about brain fog, which is something that if people don't address, they can have a really hard time healing even after they're out of toxic relationships.

It's not like physical fog where if you're in a place or in a room where there's smoke right, and you can't see it's irritating your eyes and you can't breathe, but the second you leave that room you're okay - there's no fog in the next room.

Well, it's not like that with brain fog.

You can leave the relationship and still feel the same effects and that can be really dangerous.

So with that in mind, what is it like to have brain fog?

It obviously feels like there's something wrong with your brain. But it feels like the way you used to

think, the the clarity that you used to have – you don't have that anymore. So some of the ways that it shows up is in memory loss. Many people prior to abusive relationships had really good memories and suddenly it's like their memory is completely different.

 So when you have brain fog your memory isn't the same and on top of that the ability to make decisions diminishes and you've lost that trust of your inner self – so decision making it's almost like it comes to a halt.

Another way that it shows up is how confused you become with what is healthy behavior, because what you are ‘allowed’ to feel becomes unclear. This is usually the result of years of gaslighting.

I often hear this with my clients that ask questions like:

Is it wrong to be upset when s/he insults me? 

Am I a bad person if I say no?

Brain fog affects your ability to discern what is correct, what is healthy, what is your reality from what you have been fed by toxic individuals, so there's a lot of confusion.

When you have brain fog you feel constantly in a state of confusion and you certainly don't feel like yourself. So those are a few symptoms but, why is brain fog so dangerous?

 I kind of liken brain fog to the the water in the pot that the frog's put in water that is slowly increasing in temperature. It’s so subtle and covert that the frog doesn't notice and because it doesn't notice what's going on so it stays in the pot and gets cooked to death.

 Well brain fog is kind of like that. It confuses you from realizing what's going on and it keeps you in a situation that is ultimately not cooking you to death…. but kind of killing you emotionally by killing your authentic self.  A lot of people have likened narcissistic abuse to soul murder because you're not allowed to be yourself, you're not allowed to have your own thoughts.

So brain fog is very much like that water that's just being cooked slowly because narcissistic abuse especially covert abuse is confusing you slowly yet consistently enough that you wind up in a situation that by the time you realize what’s happening, it's too late.

The other danger is if you don't work through the brain fog, you can leave the relationship so let's say, using that pot as an illustration you're in the boiling water and you realize it because you stumble on information about narcissists and so you jump out!!

Yes, you've removed yourself from the boiling water but if you don't work through the brain fog you're going to suffer side effects that are going to cause one of two things to happen:

1. You’re going to wind up jumping back into the pot of boiling water because the challenges and the difficulties that you're feeling outside of the relationship – the unhealed wounds and side effects of the relationship are too overwhelming. In fact it is so overwhelming that you actually begin to think life would be easier and better if you jump back into the pot of boiling water!!!

2. If you don’t jump back into that old pot of boiling water, the other danger is that you simply find another one to jump into!!

 So we can definitely see the danger of NOT working through brain fog. Leaving is not the solution, it is simply a step of the journey – healing, transforming within should be the main focus. When we are connected to ourselves within, when we trust ourselves, when we have healed old wounds and we are living and thriving in our lives – that’s the real goal! For any assistance with working through brain fog or any other side effects of narcissistic abuse or complex ptsd, please be sure to check out The Thrivers School of Transformation