Author Archives: Lisa Jane

Lido Wellness Center Blog

Trauma Bonding: The Invisible Chains of Pain

September 7, 2023

We humans are capable of a lot of contradictions. Our experiences of love, pain, mistakes, and redemption all come with varying degrees of the full spectrum of life. Sometimes those contradictions are difficult to explain, let alone understand. When we are drawn again and again into our toxic relationships, causing pain after pain, there is a chance you are experiencing trauma bonding.

Understanding Trauma Bonding

Trauma bonding isn’t your usual high school crush or a fleeting romantic phase. It’s an intense, emotional connection developed with someone who alternates between kindness and mistreatment. Said plainly, it’s when someone forms a strong emotional connection with another person who treats them badly or hurts them.

They might get mixed signals of kindness and mistreatment or joy and pain, but ultimately it’s like being stuck in a relationship you know is bad for you, but you can’t seem to leave.

Interesting statistics have surfaced about this concept:

  • According to a study conducted by the Journal of Interpersonal Violence, around 18% of women in domestically violent relationships have reported significant symptoms of trauma bonding.
  • Another study from the Journal of Traumatic Stress indicates that individuals in trauma-bonded relationships are three times more likely to suffer from depression, anxiety, and even PTSD.

Why Do We Trauma Bond?

At a basic psychological level, trauma bonding occurs due to a powerful mixture of intermittent reinforcement, paired with the human need for connection. People are wired to bond with those around them; it’s a survival mechanism. And when you’re shown love, even if it’s sprinkled with doses of mistreatment, the brain releases a cocktail of chemicals, like oxytocin and dopamine. These feel-good chemicals can confuse the mind, making the bad times seem not so bad, especially when a kind gesture follows them.

Add to that the principle of intermittent reinforcement—a cycle of unpredictable rewards and punishments. Within the unpredictability, every positive gesture, even if it’s rare, feels like a jackpot win at a casino, making the person crave more. This unpredictability, combined with our inherent need to make sense of our environment, can trap a person in a loop, always seeking the reward of a kind moment, no matter how fleeting.

Signs of Trauma Bonding

If we’re honest, most of us have seen our share of unhealthy relationships. We allow a little too much in certain circumstances. And some of this can be okay in life’s complexity. But how do you recognize if it’s too much? What if you’re experiencing trauma bonding? Here are some potential signs:


  • Intense emotional connection: Despite the emotional or physical abuse, there’s an unexplainable pull towards the abuser.
  • Justifying abusive behavior: The victim often makes excuses for the perpetrator’s behavior.
  • Isolation: Victims gradually distance themselves from friends and family, usually under the influence of the abuser.
  • Inconsistent affection: The abuser alternates between abusive behavior and kind gestures, creating a powerful loop of reinforcement.
  • Denial: The victim may not acknowledge the extent of the mistreatment or even deny it altogether.

It’s this kaleidoscope of emotions, of intense highs and lows, that makes trauma bonding such a complex and enthralling trap.

Breaking the Bonds of Trauma

Trauma bonding is not a disorder, more like a complex psychological response that arises when individuals form deep attachments in abusive or harmful situations. Often, this bonding leads individuals to stay in toxic relationships, even when onlookers believe it’s clear they should leave.

We must always understand that individuals caught in the grip of trauma bonding are navigating a challenging emotional terrain. It’s a manifestation of the human drive for connection and safety. As such, no one should feel shame for seeking solace and connection, even if it emerges from challenging circumstances.

We all navigate our storms in unique ways, and understanding, rather than judgment, paves the path to healing. 

Seeking professional help, through therapy or counseling, can serve as a vital lifeline for many. It provides a sacred sanctuary where one can unravel the intricate web of emotions and delve into the depths of understanding. Through this process, victims can address and make sense of the roots of trauma bonding.

And remember, healing isn’t just about confronting the external but also about nurturing the internal. Through acts of self-care, be it meditation, journaling, or indulging in passions, we can fortify our self-worth and muster the strength needed to truly break free.

Trauma bonding isn’t just about the clutches of an abusive relationship. It’s about the resilience of the human spirit, the undying hope that dwells within us, urging us to break free and find love and light.

Seek Healing at Lido Wellness Center

If you or someone you love is ensnared in the chains of trauma bonding, there’s hope and help available. At Lido Wellness Center in Newport Beach, compassionate professionals are ready to guide you towards healing and freedom. Don’t wait. Call 949-541-8466 today.

[wp_ulike][addthis tool="addthis_inline_share_toolbox_4mpn"]

Lido Wellness Center Blog

Co-occurring Disorders Newport Beach

August 23, 2023

There is a lot of data showing that millions of people living in the United States have some mental disorder. The truth is that substance use disorders (SUD) directly impact mental health. Therefore, it is best to look for a center that deals with co-occurring disorders in Newport Beach to get the right level of care.

Who Develops Co-Occurring Disorders?

An interesting study presented information that over half of the millions diagnosed with co-occurring disorders are male. Studies have also shown that people suffering from anxiety will more than likely abuse substances compared to the general population. Additionally, those with untreated anxiety, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder are also at risk for substance abuse.

Q: What is an example of a co-occurring disorder?

A: There are many types of co-occurring disorders that someone may have that go hand-in-hand with alcohol or drug abuse. These include schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, anxiety, eating disorders, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), mood or personality disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and more.

Q: What is the most common co-occurring disorder with mental illness?

A: It is difficult to pinpoint the most common co-occurring disorder with mental illness. There can be many emotional issues that impact someone’s addiction problems. This may include guilt, grief, lowered self-esteem, and anger management issues. However, these issues generally get categorized as symptoms rather than disorders. It refers to the actual diagnosis that brings on the symptoms mentioned when speaking of disorders. For example, someone with bipolar disorder may present with several symptoms.

Q: How do you identify co-occurring disorders?

A: To get a successful diagnosis, you need to work with a facility that is also a co-occurring disorder treatment center. Dual diagnosis may have to do with anxiety, depression, undiagnosed psychological traumas, biochemical influences, and more. The initial steps in diagnosis include looking at the different signs and symptoms. Someone may have erratic behavior, mood swings, forgetfulness, and many other characteristics, unlike their usual behavior.

Q: What is the best treatment for co-occurring disorders?

A: It all starts with finding a facility that deals with co-occurring disorders in Newport Beach. This means a center with specialists on staff to diagnose and treat people with dual-diagnosis. The treatment methodologies may include cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), medications, family therapy, 12-step programs, stress management, community support, and more.

When you start to notice the signs and symptoms that you or a loved one is developing a substance abuse problem, you need to look for help. Here at LIDO Wellness Center, we work with each of our clients to ensure they have the tailored treatment plan they need to get on a path to recovery, wellness, and sobriety.

Do you want to know more about co-occurring disorders in Newport Beach and how we work with patients to get them the right level of care? We are always here to address any questions or concerns at LIDO Wellness Center. Give us a call at your earliest convenience at (949) 541-8466 to speak with a member of our team about our substance abuse and mental health treatment services.

[wp_ulike][addthis tool="addthis_inline_share_toolbox_4mpn"]

Lido Wellness Center Blog

Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome

August 18, 2023

We are going to cover a topic that is not very fun. It is messy and filled with difficulty. Be aware, we are not going to go into details, but this is essentially a child abuse issue. So please be aware we will cover parts of this topic. This article/discussion touches on themes of child abuse, medical trauma, emotional manipulation, and mental health issues. Please proceed with caution if any of these topics might be triggering for you.

That said, let’s look at Munchausen by proxy syndrome.

It’s one of those bewildering and painful corners of the human psyche, a space where love and harm are tragically entangled.

MBPS Is Child Abuse

Munchausen by proxy syndrome, often abbreviated as MBPS, is a form of child abuse. Here, a caregiver, usually a mother, either exaggerates, fabricates, or induces physical or psychological symptoms in someone under their care. While the motivations can vary, one commonly believed reason is the caregiver’s need for attention, validation, or sympathy. The “sick” individual (often a child) becomes a conduit for these needs.

Now, if you’re raising your eyebrows or thinking, “Who would do such a thing?”, you’re not alone. It’s important to remember that people are layered, intricate puzzles. It’s easy to think of villains and heroes, but when we start labeling, we close the door to deeper understanding.

Here’s a brief sketch in numbers:

  • Few and Far Between: Only about 1,000 of the 2.5 million child abuse cases reported annually in the US can be ascribed to MBPS.
  • Motherly “Love”: Approximately 85% of the perpetrators are mothers. And this isn’t because mothers are inherently sinister. It’s possibly because they’re traditionally the primary caregivers and are more closely scrutinized in medical settings.
  • Shadowed by Mystery: It’s estimated that up to 10% of cases in pediatric chronic illness might be cases of MBPS, but we really don’t know for sure. It’s a tough condition to diagnose.

Who Has the Syndrome?

It’s not accurate to say the child “has” MBPS. Instead, the child is subjected to the behaviors and actions stemming from the caregiver’s manifestation of MBPS. The caregiver, on the other hand, is the one with the disorder. They are causing the harm or fabricating the symptoms for various reasons, often related to a need for attention, sympathy, or control.

So, in essence, the caregiver manifests MBPS (or Factitious Disorder Imposed on Another – FDIA), and the child is the one being harmed or made to appear sick by the caregiver’s actions.

So, the direct and most profound suffering is experienced by the child, who is subjected to unnecessary medical procedures, emotional distress, and a distorted sense of health and well-being. They might grow up with a skewed perception of their own health, facing potential long-term psychological and physical consequences.

The Whys and How’s of Munchausen by Proxy

It’s important to note that the adult perpetrator, while responsible for the abuse, may also be suffering from psychological issues or disorders that lead them to this behavior. Their actions are certainly harmful and inexcusable, but it’s possible that their own mental health struggles play a role in the manifestation of MBPS. It’s a complex issue that intertwines the mental well-being of both the caregiver and the child. Here are some potential underlying causes:

  • The Need for the Spotlight: We all crave attention. But imagine a need so profound that it eclipses reason. Caregivers might be seeking the emotional satisfaction derived from the attention and sympathy of doctors, nurses, and others who express concern.
  • Playing the Savior: There’s an addictive high that comes from appearing knowledgeable, competent, and necessary. The caregiver feels vital in the medical setting.
  • Control and Power: Inducing illness can be a way to control a child, to keep them dependent.
  • Unresolved Past Trauma: Some caregivers might have faced trauma or neglect in their past. This behavior can be an unconscious attempt to resolve that past pain.
  • Mental Health Issues: Some perpetrators might have underlying disorders like borderline personality disorder or narcissistic personality disorder.

Understanding MBPS requires us to face the shadowed alleys of the human heart. It’s about realizing that sometimes, the lines between love, pain, and attention can blur into a heart-wrenching shade.

Seeking Light in the Shadows?

If you or someone you know is navigating the intricate maze of mental health challenges or Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome, remember that seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. Lido Wellness Center in Newport Beach offers a place to find clarity and work towards healing. You don’t have to walk this path alone; Lido is here to guide, support, and uplift. Call today: 949-541-8466.

[wp_ulike][addthis tool="addthis_inline_share_toolbox_4mpn"]

Lido Wellness Center Blog

Signs of Anger Issues: When Flares Become Fires

August 16, 2023

Life can be a sea of unpredictability and we’re all trying to stay afloat, preferably on a sturdy raft, without any punctures, and with some chocolate chip cookies. Some days, the waters are calm; on others, it’s as if the sea is personally offended by our existence.

But anger … anger is like the unexpected squall that takes us by surprise. The suddenness of its arrival, the ferocity, and, sometimes the aftermath can leave us wondering: “Where did that come from?”

In the idyllic world of our imagination, we’d like to believe that anger is just the warm fire on the camp that keeps the mosquitos away. But sometimes, that small fire flares up, scorching everyone around.

Signs That Anger May Be Signaling Deeper Issues

The point is anger happens. To be human is to get angry once in a while. And we even hurt people out of anger. But when is the anger too much? When are the apologies too frequent? What are the signs of anger issues? Here are a few points to consider.

  • Sudden, explosive reactions to minor provocations.
  • Regret or guilt after an angry outburst.
  • Consistent feelings of being misunderstood or unappreciated, leading to resentment.
  • Physical symptoms, such as tension, tightness in the chest, or headaches when angered.
  • Avoidance – friends or family subtly distancing themselves due to your anger.
  • Consistent use of alcohol or drugs to suppress or deal with emotions.
  • Issues at work or school resulting from confrontations or suppressed anger.

Anger Issues By the Numbers

Now, while all of us feel anger from time to time, some statistics shed light on its more extensive presence in society:

  • Around 9% of adults in the U.S. have a history of severe, impulsive angry behavior.
  • 1 in 10 U.S. adults have regular outbursts but don’t seek the help they need.
  • Those with anger issues are 5 times more likely to experience poor health outcomes, including cardiovascular disease.

Alright, breathe. We’re in this together. If the fire is burning a little too brightly inside, the universe (and modern psychology) has some answers.

What Disorders Are Associated with Anger?

Anger can sometimes be the tip of the emotional iceberg, hinting at deeper issues lurking below the surface:

  • Depression: It’s not just sadness. Many people experience anger, irritability, and frustration.
  • Anxiety Disorders: Chronic anger can often be a coping mechanism for underlying anxiety.
  • Bipolar Disorder: Manic phases can manifest as periods of intense irritability and anger.
  • Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED): Characterized by sudden, unwarranted episodes of anger.
  • Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD): Intense anger episodes, often in response to perceived rejection.
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): Impulsivity and frustration can lead to angry outbursts.

Therapy: A Torch in the Dark

Does therapy help? Emphatically, yes. Just like we might need a guide in an unknown forest, therapy provides a roadmap for navigating the complex paths of our minds.

  1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): It helps individuals recognize patterns of thinking that lead to anger and teaches coping strategies.
  2. Anger Management: Structured programs providing tools and strategies to control anger.
  3. Mindfulness and Meditation: Focusing on the present, grounding us, and giving space between stimulus and reaction.
  4. Talk Therapy: A safe space to discuss and process emotions, often revealing underlying issues.

What to Do About Signs of Anger Issues

So, when does anger signal deeper problems? When it’s chronic, when it’s hurting you or others, when it’s affecting your health, or when it feels uncontrollable. Recognizing that you’re not alone is the first step. Seeking help, the second. You need a reset—someone who can come beside you and help you reconfigure how you understand yourself.

Lido Wellness Center: Your Harbor in the Storm

Life sometimes paints outside the lines. But just as every tempest needs its lighthouse, every soul deserves its sanctuary. Lido Wellness Center in Newport Beach has an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) that understands the waves you’re sailing on.

When the waters get rough, when you feel adrift, remember that anchors exist. This is your call to the harbor, where dedicated professionals await with open hearts, a listening ear, and therapeutic tools that have guided countless souls back to the sunlit shores of hope.

Reach out to Lido Wellness Center. Let the journey to calm waters begin.

Phone: 949-541-8466.

[wp_ulike][addthis tool="addthis_inline_share_toolbox_4mpn"]