Friday, October 20, 2023

Perfectionism, Liberation Psychology, and Perception Matching Reality

 Hi all,

Yes, this will be an almost direct repeat of an earlier article about social anxiety. It's a very similar concept at play with perfectionism. Another look at Blame the Individual thinking, this time as relates to perfectionism.

This short article is a reply to the following web comic that came across my social media feed...

My reply..

It is astoundingly rare (possibly even "never") discussed, when perfectionism is brought up, about the impact of external standards and oppression. In that second row of the comic, almost everyone reading it, especially anyone who's come into contact with mainstream mental health narrative, will assume the yellow figure with the sash represents some kind of internalized, made-up, self demon. This is exactly what most therapists will try to "teach" you about the concept of perfectionism. That it's all in your head. That it's a disease of the mind. And so on. 

Not discussed is either of...

1) They just outright, though ignorance, don't understand that for many people the demand of perfection is coming from a real person or systemic institution. A real, not imagined, entity demanding perfection under threat of violence (socioeconomic and/or physical).

2) They believe #1 exists, but still attempt to blame the individual for "letting" that external force treat them that way, wholly denying disempowerment as a real thing that exists. Going full-blown into Blame the Victim, which is a whole article that needs to be written. If you think victims only ever "do it to themselves", just .... no. I'm sorry but no

Again, as with the social anxiety article, this is not to deny that sometimes, only sometimes, perfectionism is some self-standard that is more in your head alone, and you are free to behave differently without consequence. But mainstream mental health never brings up the sometimes. And that's not just a "problem", it's a direct abuse-enabling support structure and form of abuse itself. A full-throated denial of actual reality under the guise of "care" and "compassion". 

You don't solve oppression with "I'm sorry", gaslighting reality, and blaming the individual. You solve oppression by stopping oppression. And act which requires actions on the part of the everyone, not just the victimized.

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