“Fawning”—A Response to Trauma

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In the face of trauma and conflict, some people respond with anger, some respond by fleeing . . . and some, like Person A, respond with a flood of appeasing, soothing, and conciliatory behavior. “Fight or flight” is an option for some people, but for those with a history of trauma, another option when faced with threat is to go into fawning mode and try to make it all better.

Picture an animal defensively rolling onto its back, trying to appear as meek and agreeable as possible so that it’s spared by a powerful predator. Fawning is an attempt to fly under the radar rather than engage in conflict. It’s a way of deflecting attention.

In a crisis or disagreement, is your first instinct to soothe, calm, or please others?

Do you do anything to avoid conflict—even if that means ignoring your own needs?

In a stressful interaction, is your focus on other people’s emotions?

Fawning behavior is actually a kind of trauma response. This behavior, in other words, is something you might have learned in childhood, where “rolling over” this way was the only thing that helped you survive conflict.

Show notes and/or episode transcripts are available at https://bit.ly/social-skills-shownotes

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#Fawning #RussellNewton #NewtonMG #PatrickKing #PatrickKingConsulting #SocialSkillsCoaching #StandUpForYourself #Trauma #DefenseMechanism #Conflict
Check out the podcast for shownotes and/or the full transcript.