What is an invalidating environment

Dialectical Behavior Therapy is an innovative method of treatment that has been developed specifically to treat this difficult group of patients in a way which is optimistic and which preserves the morale of the therapist.

BPD results from a biological predisposition to emotional dysregulation combined with certain dysfunctional (invalidating) environments which interact over time.

During DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) group today, one of my peers mentioned that out of all of the hell she experienced growing up as a child who was abused and in a very invalidating environment, the one thing she learned from her parents was that she can do ANYTHING on her own.

Our therapist said that this is an example of thriving.

The term Invalidating Environment refers essentially to a situation in which the personal experiences and responses of the growing child are disqualified or “invalidated” by the significant others in her life.

The child’s personal communications are not accepted as an accurate indication of her true feelings and it is implied that, if they were accurate, then such feelings would not be a valid response to circumstances.

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