James Tobin, Ph.D.             

Parent Guidance 
Organizational Consulting

The Men's Group  

Parasitic Love™ 

This talk presents Dr. Tobin's view that human relationships, especially intimate romantic bonds, revolve around a central dynamic in which one's internal representation of relational trauma previously experienced in one's life (metaphorically called a "parasite") gets "injected" into the other (or in one's partner).  All human relationships are constituted by a "sender" of parasitic material and a "recipient" who is unconsciously recruited to host the parasite.  Once the parasitic material nests and proliferates in the identity of the recipient, the recipient is gradually but inevitably transformed into a perpetrator who then inflicts relational trauma back onto the sender.  In this way, the sender's previous relational trauma is re-experienced in the contemporary relationship, confirming the sender's rigid construction of onseself, of others, and of human relatedness.  According to Dr. Tobin, this dynamic of PARASITIC LOVE™ explains the patterns of self-sabotage and self-destruction so common in people's romantic lives.  However, it also suggests a paradigm for understanding all forms of aggression including envy, racism, and overt acts of violence: not only are we consistently injecting our parasitic material into others, but we are constantly inundated with parasitic injections that ultimately alter us in insidious ways so that cycles of injustice and self-hatred are perpetuated. In the next meeting of the Men's Group on Saturday, October 4, 10:45 AM to 12:00 PM noon, we will discuss the dynamics of parasitic love and strategies for interrupting its continuity.   


The Dating and Relationship Group

 Dialytic Presence™: Antidote to Parasitic Love 

Human relatedness is characterized by small and significant experiences of trauma in which one is frustrated, shamed, neglected, or not fully responded to.  These experiences of trauma remained locked in one's psyche and generally go unresolved, resulting in the need to unburden oneself by "injecting" them into others.  This is especially relevant in romantic relationships through a dynamic I have coined PARASITIC LOVE™.  It is indeed a paradox that although we seek out a person to love and care for us, we unwittingly recruit a host for our parasitic injections who then will re-traumatic us in the ways in which we have grown accustomed.  


In this talk, I will describe my view of the antidote to parasitic love, which consists of a recommended way of being in the world that bypasses merely sending and receiving parasitic material -- complementary roles I will argue constitute much of our social activity and emotional lives.  If we can liberate ourselves from transporting parasites that are essentially recycled forms of abuse, rejection, and shame, we can hinder the ongoing repetition of cycles of violence and self-destruction and, what's more, retain/digest our own previous trauma before burdening others with it.  This way of being I call DIALYTIC PRESENCE™, which is a kind of interpersonal "dialysis" in which we are not altered by another's parasitic material but, instead, receive it, contain it, and cleanse it of its toxic potency.  I chose the term "dialytic" from the Greek "dia" (apart) and the Greek "luein" (to set free) to communicate the profound emotional, psychological and spiritual significance of this style of living.  A theory of psychological development that centers on transitioning from PARASITIC LOVE to DIALYTIC PRESENCE ensues from these notions and will be presented in the next meeting of the Dating and Relationship Group on Saturday, October 4, 12:00 to 1:15 PM. Understanding the nature of this transition and how to achieve it will aid one's capacity to form and maintain viable and healthy romantic relationships; it will also launch the equally important process of diminishing our own self-cruelty inherited from the cruelty imparted to us from others. 

If you would like to attend either or both groups on Saturday, October 4, 2014, please RSVP to Dr. Tobin at 949-338-4388 or jt@jamestobinphd.com no later than Thursday, October 2.  There is a limit of 14 attendees for each group and registrants will be accommodated on a first-come/first-serve basis.  The location is The Water Garden Business Center, 23421 South Pointe Drive, Suite 130, Laguna Hills, CA, 92653.  

James Tobin, Ph.D., PSY 22074 | 949-338-4388 | jt@jamestobinphd.com 
Website: jamestobinphd.com
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