I am getting my information from “Schema Therapy a Practitioners Guide” by Jeffrey E. Young, Janet S. Klosko, and Marjorie E. Weishaar. Today we will be looking at three more schemas from the disconnection and rejection domain.
Emotional Deprivation is one of the most common schemas that are worked with but are not generally recognized by the client. People who suffer from this schema feel depressed, bitter and lonely but don’t know why. They don’t expect others to understand them or nurture them. They feel misunderstood, cheated of love, emotionally deprived and feel a lack of affection and warmth from others. They do not ask others to help them with their emotional needs, they tend to ask others questions but do not talk much about themselves. They act stronger than they feel inside and do not seek out what they need, most of which is emotional support. They are overly demanding and get angry when they do not get what they want/need. It is important for these people to become aware of their emotional needs and then to ask for those needs to be met.
People with the Defectiveness/Shame schema feel as if they are defective, flawed, inferior, bad, worthless, or unlovable. They feel chronic feelings of shame about who they are. They can view any part of them as defective. They worry about others seeing through them and finding out who they really are (remember it is an irrational belief of who they “really are”). Typical behavior is to devalue themselves and allow others to devalue them. They secretly feel that they are to blame for their problems with other people. They may seem jealous or competitive. The object of treatment is to help the person feel a higher sense of self-esteem. To help them feel worthy of love and respect.
Social Isolation is the last disconnection/rejection schema. The people who exhibit this schema feel that they are different from other people. They feel isolated from others and that they are not part of a group. These people can be anyone from a gifted person to a child raised by a famous person to ethnic minorities. These people tend to stay on the periphery or avoid groups all together. To help these people they need to learn to feel less different than others. That other people are like them even if it isn’t the mainstream.
It is important to understand that these schemas can be exhibited by everyone but it is the extremes that cause problems in a person’s life. What characters have you read about that exhibit these schemas? How did the author use these schemas to make the book better or worse?