The Guilt-tripper is the Inner Critic part that makes you feel bad about certain things you have done. It holds on to the past and reminds you of hurtful actions you have taken, or even accidents that have caused harm to someone. It punishes you unmercifully for what it sees as your wrong-doing, making you believe you are a bad person. It won’t allow you to forget what you’ve done or forgive yourself for it. It views you through the lens of your failings or misdeeds, making you feel guilty and unworthy of life’s blessings.
The Guilt-tripper is especially concerned about relationships. It honors the values of your culture, family, or religion. It expects you to be a loving daughter, a devoted mother, a protective father, a loyal brother or son, etc. If you have failed in any role that has resulted in perceived harm to a loved one, this critic will attack you mercilessly. It attacks you for what you have done or haven’t done; for acting foolish, or unkind; or not acting when action was called for.
One kind of Guilt-tripper tries to keep you connected. It wants to make sure that you belong to your “tribe” or any other group that it feels is important to your welfare. It doesn’t want you to be alone or alienated. By continually reminding you of what you have done, it aims to make you a better person, so you never do “such a terrible thing” again.
Another Guilt-tripper just wants to punish you to prove that you really have the right values. It believes that you seriously violated your values and harmed someone; therefore, if it relentlessly punishes you, this demonstrates that you, at least, believe in the right things.
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