abusers project.

they treat you like shit, and then tell you that you are treating them like shit.

they tell you that you are being rude, when they have just insulted you.

Projection – The act of attributing one’s own feelings or traits to another person and imagining or believing that the other person has those same feelings or traits.  —

so when my son says something rude to him, and he tells me he can’t understand how my son could be so mean, that’s projection.  because he yells at my son and then wonders why my son is always yelling.

when he tells me “you’re always angry”, that’s projection.

when he tells me that it wasn’t him who was looking at porn on the computer,  it must have been one of the kids’ friends, that’s projecting, because we all know how he would never do that.

What it Looks Like

  • A mother assumes her children only like the same food she likes.
  • An abusive father hits his children and blames his teenage son for the bruises.
  • A wife empties the joint checking account and accuses her husband of wasting resources.
  • A mother who is embarrassed about her weight problem repeatedly calls her eldest daughter “fat”.
  • An employer who lacks financial discipline accuses his employees of squandering resources.

most people project at some point, and usually without realizing they are doing it.  it’s abuse when blaming occurs with projection, as a way of getting out of something.  yelling at your kids that they “are so messy all the time” and then not cleaning up your own messes, is a perfect example of this.  accusing your wife of stealing your cash when you know that she doesn’t know where you have hidden it is another example.

How to Cope

Coping with Projection is very similar to coping with episodes of False Accusations, except sometimes the false statements may initially appear “nice” or “neutral”. Even these can still be irritating and annoying, and when they veer into negative territory or make inflated or untrue claims, they can also in the long-term be damaging to your credibility or self-esteem.

What NOT To Do

  • Don’t accept any responsibility, blame or criticism which you know is wholly undeserved.
  • Don’t give a Personality Disordered person power over your self-image.
  • Don’t attempt to argue the point, state the truth quietly and clearly ONCE.

What TO Do

  • Know yourself – emotional clarity and understanding of your own strengths and weaknesses is your best self-defense against the erosive power of Projection.
  • Honor your own experience and spend time with people who give you an honest reflection of who you are.

2 thoughts on “Projection

    • I’m so sorry, Ashlee. That’s a crappy way to be raised. I hope you are able to see your worth as a separate individual! I think in my experience, projection is a big part of why I am so confused about my relationship. It makes me doubt my perceptions. Did I really feel that emotion, or am I just thinking I did because that’s what he told me? Learning to discern what is “real” is so hard!


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