Have you ever been in a crowded space and still felt completely alone and separate from everyone else? Do you secretly wonder if you’re the only one who doesn’t know the joke? If you have, you’re not alone. Many narcissistic abuse survivors feel this way.
Have you ever felt disconnected from everyone and everything around you?
There’s a chance you’re dealing with “human disconnect,” a term coined by Dr. Judy Rosenberg, and it’s a bit more complex than it sounds.
As society progresses to the point that we are less and less able (or willing) to be “out there” in the world, doing normal, real-world things, the more isolated we become as individuals. and this is exactly why it so important to understand the definition of human disconnect.
We now order groceries at 3 a.m. and wake up the next morning to find them gently stacked on the front porch. We can have nearly anything we want hand-delivered and left at our door.
Since I recently had the privilege of discussing this with Dr. Judy herself, I was able to ask questions and get clarification on the meaning of “human disconnect,” and what it means in relation to narcissistic abuse. I’m sharing our conversation with Dr. Judy’s permission.
What is Human Disconnect?
Dr. Judy explained that “human disconnect” is a condition that is relatively common among humans, but it doesn’t affect only individual humans and no one else. In fact, it affects society, communities, and cultures.
“What (Human Disconnect) means is that it’s a disconnect from your own soul, self, community, and family.” Dr. Judy said, adding that, “it can mean a disconnect from your own ability to feel emotions as well as to truly connect in a healthy way with others.”
She explained that when we experience pain from abuse or neglect, it causes a disconnection from the person who is inflicting the pain.
In other words, you emotionally detach from that person – and in my experience, that makes a lot of sense. And, in so many cases, you emotionally detach from yourself somewhere along the way too.
Human Disconnect Leads to Global Disconnect
“The disconnect can take the form of fight, flight, freeze, or fawn – and it breaks trust,” Dr. Judy said. “This breaking of trust can then project on other people and communities and create more human disconnect.”
Of course, for each person who deals with human disconnect, a few more could be “broken down” and destroyed, left feeling alone, abandoned, and disconnected.
All of that, Dr, Judy told me, is the perfect storm to create Global Disconnect – which she says she’s working to help solve as part of her larger missions. It occurs to me that human disconnect is some kind of viral outbreak of loneliness and separateness. It can feel almost like it’s out of our control and we don’t have a choice.
What causes Human Disconnect?
Human disconnect starts with the original human disconnect, Dr. Judy told me, nodding when I asked if she was referring to attachment styles.
“Yes, think John Bowlby and attachment theory,” she said. “And then it becomes projected onto other people and relationships. All of this can lead to globally creating a global disconnect – we as a society are currently staring in the eyes at this right now. Bigtime.”
The original disconnect would be due to the development of attachment styles as early as birth. “When there is not healthy attachment,” Dr. Judy says, reminding me to consider Dr. Bowlby’s attachment theory.
What is attachment theory?
Attachment theory states that our relationships with our mothers can affect us and our lifelong development (and even our relationships with others) in profound ways. The theory first originated in 1958, when John Bowlby recognized the importance of a child’s relationship with their mother.
Bowlby found that our emotional, social, and cognitive development are all directly affected by our attachment to our mothers, which begins at birth and can be affected by her own attachment style, which would be affected by her mother’s, and so on.
He also noticed that children who were separated from their mothers experienced extreme distress, which he assumed led to anxiety related to the idea that their mothers fed and cared for them.
But Bowlby and his fellow researchers noticed something kind of unexpected: that the separation anxiety would not diminish even when the kids were fed and cared for by other caregivers. Even the youngest children seemed to still miss their mothers.
Bowlby was the first to propose that attachment could be an evolutionary thing – the child’s caregiver obviously is the person who provides safety, security, and food.
So, he reckoned, being attached to the mother would increase a baby’s chance of survival.
Toxicity Runs in the Family
In this video, I break down attachment theory and how it explains narcissists, codependents, and the reasons this sort of toxicity tends to “run in the family,” so to speak,.
Resources for Healing Human Disconnect
- Learn about the four attachment styles or see an overview of attachment theory and the four attachment styles in this video.
- Check out Dr. Judy’s upcoming online group therapy webinar to heal human disconnect with her Mind Mapping system for healing after narcissistic abuse where she will personally guide you through every step you need to heal from narcissistic abuse. (Affiliate link)
Start Getting Help with Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Today
Online help is readily available for survivors of narcissistic abuse. Here are some options to begin healing from narcissistic abuse right away.
- Sign up for our free email newsletter service that includes a free guided recovery experience via your inbox.
- Start your narcissistic abuse recovery here with our free narcissistic abuse recovery support system and program.
- Join one of our free online narcissistic abuse recovery support groups!
- Join one of our private small coaching groups!
- Get private, one-on-one narcissistic abuse recovery coaching or counseling.
- Get a therapist who will work with you online. Check out our guide to finding a therapist or psychologist who understands narcissism and narcissistic abuse.