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Alfred Adler Approach To Psychology To Scam Victims And How They Were Affected – 2024

Alfred Adler Approach To Psychology To Scam Victims And How They Were Affected

A Psychology Approach that may be Beneficial for Scam Victim Recovery

Authors:
•  SCARS Editorial Team – Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Alfred Adler’s approach to psychology is considered to be a holistic approach or a psychological theory. It encompasses a comprehensive framework for understanding human behavior, personality development, and mental health.

While it incorporates various techniques and methods for therapeutic intervention, such as individual psychology and Adlerian therapy, it is primarily regarded as a theoretical approach that emphasizes the individual’s subjective experiences, social context, and pursuit of personal significance and belonging.

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Motivational Denial – Recovery Psychology – 2023

Motivational Denial

Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

How Motivational Denial Can Hold People Back From Emotional Recovery – Especially Scam Victims

One of the things that can be hardest for new victims is total acceptance!

Motivational Denial can hold Victims Back

Relationship scam victims have been through the traumatic experience of believing in a totally false story spun by the criminals who stole from them.

But in the days that follow, that tendency to continue magical thinking remains. Victims are desperately looking for a savior, a path forward, and how to diminish the guilt and shame they feel.

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Trauma Recollection/Traumatic Flashbacks And Scam Victim PTSD – Recovery Psychology – 2023

Trauma Recollection/Traumatic Flashbacks

Understanding Scam Victim Trauma Recollection, Flashbacks, & Memories

Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

Trauma Recollection/Traumatic Flashbacks Or Memories And The Effects That It Has On Scam Victims – PTSD And Recovery Psychology

Most Scam Victims Suffer from some form of Trauma, but for some, this can be the Retriggering of the Original Trauma Over and Over!

While flashbacks are a well-known symptom of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), it’s not the only way trauma can manifest itself – they can also be Trauma Recollection.

Scam victims can certainly re-experience their trauma simply by remembering the crime without meeting the full criteria for PTSD.

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Anger & Self-Radicalization – Recovery Psychology 2023

Anger & Self-Radicalization

How Scam Victims Radicalize Themselves

Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

Anger & Self-Radicalization – When A Relationship Scam Ends Victims Face Many Demons, From Shock To Fear & Horror To Desperation To Anger!

Anger can often be the default state when a scam is discovered, a victim’s world collapses and what they thought was real and certain is proved to be anything but. The desire for certainty in some victims can be overwhelming regardless of what the impact will be on them psychologically.

Many victims will give in to denial as a way of coping with the incredible trauma they experience. While others, more realistic know that something terrible happened to them and they need help to survive it. However, another group trying to cope with their fear transforms their fear into anger, using this as a way to stabilize their world and create certainty where none now exists.

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Scam Victim Empathy – How It Is Lost And How It Comes Back In Time – Recovery Psychology 2023

Scam Victim Empathy

How It Is Lost And How It Comes Back In Time

Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Scam victims often lose their empathy immediately following the end of a scam due to trauma, but it does return over time. Empathy, the ability to understand and share others’ emotions, is crucial for social interactions and relationships. It involves cognitive empathy (understanding others’ mental states) and affective empathy (sharing others’ emotions).

After a scam, the hyperactivation of the amygdala, a brain region involved in processing emotions, impairs empathy by disrupting emotional processing, perspective-taking, and emotional regulation. This hyperactivity can lead to heightened emotional reactivity and difficulty in understanding others’ emotions.

Over time, and with support from therapy and recovery groups, scam victims can gradually regain their empathy as they recover from trauma. Addressing these issues is essential for helping victims rebuild their emotional connections and social interactions.

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Striatum – Psychology of Scams 2023

Striatum – Inside the Brain of a Scam Victim

Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

Striatum – Our Journey Into The Brain Of Scam Victims Continues

The striatum is a cluster of interconnected nuclei that form a part of the basal ganglia, a group of structures in the brain that are involved in motor control, habit formation, reward, and decision-making.

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2023-11-11T21:28:26-05:00Uncategorized|

Secrets Can Be Deadly For Scam Victims – Scam Victim Recovery Psychology

Secrets Can Be Deadly For Scam Victims – Scam Victim Recovery Psychology

Authors:
• Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
• Vianey Gonzalez – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

Unmasking the Burden of Secrecy: How Keeping Secrets Deepens the Trauma for Scam Victims

The experience of falling victim to a scam can be profoundly traumatic. Scam victims often grapple with a wide range of emotions, from anger and humiliation to betrayal and loss. Amidst this turmoil, many victims also carry an additional, heavy burden—the burden of keeping their victimhood a secret. This article explores the damaging impact that keeping secrets can have on people, especially those struggling to recover from the trauma of a scam.

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2023-10-16T19:48:39-04:00Uncategorized|

Cognitive Ease – Another Way All Of Us Are Manipulated – 2024

Cognitive Ease – Another Way All Of Us Are Manipulated

An Example of How the Human Mind Makes Manipulation Easy!

You May Not Have Known It, but this is Every Bit as Important as Amygdala Hijacks in Causing Scams

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Scammers frequently exploit cognitive ease as a critical element in their deceptive practices, capitalizing on the human tendency to favor information that feels familiar, clear, and effortless to process.

This psychological principle reduces critical thinking, making it easier for individuals to accept and trust the information presented to them. Scammers achieve this by using tactics such as friendly and relatable language, appealing to emotions, or simplifying complex scenarios, all of which create a sense of comfort and reliability.

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Staring – A Stoic Tool To Aid Scam Victim Trauma And Emotional Regulation – 2024

Staring – A Stoic Tool To Aid Scam Victim Trauma And Emotional Regulation

An Emotional Control Technique that can be used when Triggered

Primary Category: Scam Victim Psychological Recovery

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

The technique of “stopping and staring,” derived from Stoic philosophy, provides valuable support for scam victims by facilitating emotional and cognitive healing. This practice involves pausing to observe and reflect on one’s thoughts and feelings, helping individuals break negative thought patterns and manage emotions more effectively.

By creating a pause for reflection, it allows victims to reframe negative self-talk, view their experiences from different perspectives, and cultivate self-compassion. Additionally, integrating vagus nerve relaxation methods, such as deep breathing and mindfulness, enhances the technique’s effectiveness in stress management.

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Feeling Overwhelmed and Overloaded in the Initial Months After the Scam – 2024

Feeling Overwhelmed and Overloaded in the Initial Months After the Scam

Helping Scam Victims Understand How Overwhelming the Process of Recovery Can Be!

Primary Category: Scam Victim Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

After becoming a scam victim, individuals often face overwhelming emotional and psychological turmoil in the initial months, severely limiting their ability to manage daily tasks. Emotionally, victims experience intense feelings like anger, guilt, and fear, while psychologically, they may struggle with anxiety, hypervigilance, and depression. Neurologically, trauma can disrupt brain functions, leading to heightened anxiety and difficulties in rational thinking and memory.

To stay grounded and overcome feelings of overload, victims should acknowledge their emotions, seek support, practice mindfulness, set small goals, limit exposure to triggers, take care of their bodies, educate themselves about scams, stay connected socially, use technology wisely, and seek professional help if needed. Recovery is a gradual process requiring patience and small, achievable steps to regain normalcy and emotional stability.

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An Insight Into Coping with Emotional Trauma After Becoming A Scam Victim – 2024

An Insight Into Coping with Emotional Trauma After Becoming A Scam Victim

Helping Scam Victims Better Understand Emotional Trauma Coping and Avoidance

A SCARS Institute Insight

Primary Category: Scam Victim Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

The experience of being scammed can leave victims feeling trapped in an emotional cage, where avoidance of uncomfortable emotions and triggers severely limits their ability to live fully. Avoidance manifests in various ways, including delaying or avoiding reporting the crime to the police, steering clear of financial matters, social interactions, online activities, and even conversations about scams, leading to increased anxiety and isolation.

This withdrawal provides temporary relief but ultimately reinforces the emotional cage, deepening the trauma. To break free, victims can engage in strategies such as gradual exposure to feared situations, mindfulness practices, seeking support from friends, family, or professionals, and focusing on self-care activities.

These steps help victims confront and process their emotions, reducing the power of triggers and expanding their comfort zones, allowing them to reclaim their lives and move toward healing and recovery.

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Cultural Selection Theory or Cultural Evolution and the Dangers of Unending Financial Fraud and Scams! – 2024

Cultural Selection Theory or Cultural Evolution and the Dangers of Unending Financial Fraud and Scams!

Understanding How Our Civilization Evolved the Online Scammer

Primary Category: Criminology

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

The theory of civilizations involving the Preservative Force and the Innovative Force highlights the importance of both stability and change in the development and sustainability of societies. The ongoing interaction between these forces drives cultural evolution, influencing how civilizations rise, adapt, and sometimes fall. Understanding this dynamic can provide valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities faced by contemporary and future societies.

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Self-Location Uncertainty And Scam Victims – 2024

Self-Location Uncertainty and Scam Victims

A Common Psychological Phenomenon that Many Experience Can Become Especially Pronounced After a Scam for Scam Victims

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Self-location uncertainty, a cognitive state marked by disorientation in time, space, and identity, can profoundly affect scam victims. This phenomenon, commonly experienced in everyday life through moments of confusion about one’s surroundings or a disjointed sense of time, becomes magnified in scam victims.

The aftermath of a scam can leave individuals feeling temporally and spatially disoriented, unsure of their environment, and distrustful of social relationships. Psychological impacts, such as heightened vigilance, paranoia, and an identity crisis, further exacerbate this uncertainty. Coping strategies, including professional therapy, grounding techniques, and support networks, are crucial for regaining stability and coherence.

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For Scam Victims – The Idea Of Happiness – Finding It Again – 2024

For Scam Victims – The Idea Of Happiness – Finding It Again

Helping Scam Victims Understand the Foundations of Happiness and How to Find It

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Rebuilding happiness for scam victims is a transformative journey of emotional healing and self-discovery. It begins with acknowledging and processing trauma, often with the support of counseling and a validating environment.

Reestablishing trust in oneself, others, and systems is pivotal, fostering resilience and a renewed sense of security. Through dedicated self-care, education about scams, setting achievable goals, and cultivating gratitude, victims can reclaim a sense of purpose and joy.

This journey empowers individuals to convert their trauma into strength, fostering enduring happiness grounded in self-compassion and meaningful connections.

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Getting Information Overload Online? – You Are Not Alone! 2024

Getting Information Overload Online? – You Are Not Alone!

Humans did NOT Evolve for the Online Life We are Living Now!

Primary Category: Scam Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Humans have evolved in environments with limited and manageable information flow, yet today we are constantly inundated with data from digital sources, leading to information overload/cognitive overload. This phenomenon occurs when the brain’s capacity to process information is exceeded, resulting in impaired attention, decision-making, and problem-solving abilities. Scammers exploit this vulnerability by using complex information to overwhelm and confuse individuals, making it difficult for them to discern essential details.

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Hypergamy Delusion and Romance Scams – A Fundamental Vulnerability – 2024

Hypergamy Delusion and Romance Scams

A Fundamental Vulnerability Shaping Relationship Choices and Leading to Relationship Scams

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Hypergamy, the tendency to seek a partner of higher socioeconomic status, influences relationship dynamics shaped by evolutionary instincts, cultural norms, and contemporary aspirations. It can play an important role in romance scams/relationship scams by leading individuals to make biased choices.

Traditionally observed more among women seeking stability and social mobility, hypergamy reflects desires for financial security and status enhancement. In contrast, men often prioritize youth and physical attractiveness, rooted in evolutionary cues of reproductive fitness.

Hypergamy manifests through curated social profiles that project wealth and success, influencing partner selection in online dating and online social interactions. However, this aspiration-driven paradigm also poses risks, as scammers exploit hypergamous triggers to manipulate emotions and perpetrate financial fraud.

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Talk Therapy For Scam Victims – An Introduction – 2024

Talk Therapy For Scam Victims – An Introduction

An Introduction to Talk Therapy for Scam Victims

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Author:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Talk Therapy or Trauma Therapy is critical for scam victims due to the profound emotional and psychological distress these experiences can cause. Scams often result in significant emotional trauma, including feelings of betrayal, shame, guilt, anxiety, depression, and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Therapy specifically addresses these deep-seated issues by providing a structured and safe environment for victims to process their experiences and begin healing. Techniques such as Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) are particularly effective in helping victims manage their distress, rebuild self-esteem, and develop coping strategies. By focusing on the specific impacts of trauma, these therapies equip victims with the necessary tools to overcome the lasting effects of their ordeal, ultimately restoring their mental health and well-being.

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Boredom: A Potential Principal Cause In Online Scams & Scam Victims Vulnerability – 2024

Boredom: A Potential Principal Cause In Online Scams & Scam Victims Vulnerability

Understanding a Principal Vulnerability to Online Relationship Scams

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Boredom plays a significant role in driving individuals towards risky online behaviors, often leading to scams and financial fraud. The study “Sounds boring: the causal effect of boredom on self-administration of aversive stimuli in the presence of a positive alternative” by Yusoufzai et al. (2024) highlights that boredom, more than loneliness, compels people to engage in adverse online interactions.

Despite being aware of potential risks, the overwhelming desire to escape boredom prompts individuals to seek stimulation in unsafe ways. Scammers exploit this vulnerability, making boredom a key factor in online fraud.

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Existential Specialness And Scam Victims – 2024

Existential Specialness And Scam Victims

Helping Us All Understand the Biases and Mentalities that Make Us Vulnerable and challenge our Recovery

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Existential specialness, the belief that one’s existence is uniquely significant, can profoundly complicate recovery for scam victims. When individuals with this mentality fall prey to scams, they often experience intense cognitive dissonance. This clash between their self-perception of being invulnerable and the reality of being deceived generates feelings of shame and embarrassment, making it difficult for them to openly acknowledge their victimization and seek support.

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Thought Patterns That Sustain Depression – An Overview for Scam Victims – 2024

Thought Patterns That Sustain Depression – An Overview for Scam Victims

Helping Scam Victims Understand Depression and the Need For Help!

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  SCARS Editorial Team – Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Victims of relationship scams often experience profound emotional and psychological impacts, including depression, due to feelings of betrayal and diminished self-worth. Addressing the cognitive patterns that sustain depression is crucial for their recovery.

Almost all scam victims suffer from trauma, and while resilience varies, every victim should be evaluated by a licensed mental health professional to prevent worsening symptoms. There is no shame in seeking help; it is a courageous step towards healing. Mental health professionals provide a safe, non-judgmental space for victims to process their experiences, rebuild self-esteem, and develop coping strategies. Early intervention can mitigate long-term effects, helping victims regain control over their lives and well-being.

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Neurodivergent/Neuroatypical/Autistic Scam Victims And Manipulation In Relationship Scams – 2024

Neurodivergent/Neuroatypical/Autistic Scam Victims and Manipulation in Relationship Scams

Neurodivergent Individuals face special challenges in both Avoiding Scams and Recovering from the Trauma they produce

Protecting Neurodivergent Individuals with Strategies to Avoid Scams and Fraud and How to Recover from Them

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Neurodivergent individuals, including those with autism, are particularly vulnerable to scams due to unique cognitive and social challenges. Scammers exploit difficulties in social communication, trust, and decision-making, often targeting these individuals’ need for routine and connection.

Protecting neurodivergent adults requires tailored education about common scams, support networks to aid in decision-making, and practical safeguards like secure digital practices.

Recovery from scams should focus on specialized therapy to address trauma, rebuilding trust, enhancing executive functioning skills, and providing financial counseling.

By understanding these vulnerabilities and implementing comprehensive support, we can help neurodivergent individuals avoid scams and recover effectively if targeted.

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The Common Cognitive Distortions Of Scam Victims – 2024

The Common Cognitive Distortions Of Scam Victims

Helping Scam Victims Understand Cognitive Distortions and Irrational Thinking

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Cognitive distortions, prevalent in scam victims, are faulty thinking patterns that amplify negative perceptions and hinder recovery. These distortions, including ‘what if’ thinking, overgeneralization, and black-and-white reasoning, perpetuate anxiety and helplessness, leading to emotional turmoil.

Scam victims often engage in catastrophic hypotheticals, imagining worst-case scenarios that fuel distress and immobilize them. To manage these distortions, victims must recognize and challenge their validity, shifting focus from imagined threats to practical solutions.

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Perception Expectation And Perspective In Scam Victims’ Recovery – 2024

Perception Expectation And Perspective In Scam Victims’ Recovery

Helping Scam Victims to understand the impact that Perception Expectation And Perspective has on their present and future!

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Perception, expectation, and perspective intertwine intricately in the recovery journey of scam victims, profoundly influencing their emotional healing and resilience.

Perception shapes how victims interpret their experiences, directly impacting the expectations they hold for recovery and future interactions. A balanced perspective integrates both perception and expectation, fostering a constructive outlook that acknowledges the complexity of the healing process.

Victims who adopt a positive perspective view their ordeal as a learning opportunity, aligning their expectations with the reality of gradual healing and growth.

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The Paradox Of Relationship Scams – Another Perspective – 2024

The Paradox Of Relationship Scams – Another Perspective

Another Way of Thinking About Relationship Scams from a Paradoxical Viewpoint!

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Relationship scams are full of paradoxes that highlight the complex and contradictory nature of fraud. Victims are ensnared through a blend of trust and deception, where they build deep emotional connections with scammers who appear benevolent but are driven by financial greed.

This trust, intended to provide security, is paradoxically the tool of their exploitation. Similarly, scammers create a sense of empowerment and safety in their victims, encouraging bold decisions and enabling growth, only to disempower and manipulate them, leading to financial and emotional ruin.

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Predurance of Scammers And Their Scam Victim – A Waiting Game – 2024

Predurance of Scammers and their Scam Victim – A Waiting Game

Examining the Unique Role of Patience (Predurance) in Predator (Scammer) Prey (Scam Victim) Interactions

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

“Predurance” refers to the patience and calculation scammers exhibit while grooming and manipulating their victims, akin to a predator in the wild. This concept captures the deliberate and sustained process through which scammers prepare their victims for financial exploitation.

Scammers begin by identifying vulnerable individuals, establishing initial contact through various channels, and building trust by posing as empathetic and trustworthy figures. They create dependency by offering emotional support and advice, often isolating victims from others to reduce outside intervention.

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For Scam Victims – Healing And Moving On When There Are Still Residual Feelings – 2024

For Scam Victims – Healing And Moving On When There Are Still Residual Feelings

Healing After a Fake Relationship Ends: Acknowledge and Honor Your Residual Feelings

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

In the aftermath of a relationship, particularly one based on deceit like a romance scam, it is important to recognize and honor your residual feelings.

Although the relationship may have been built on falsehoods and lies, the emotions you experienced were genuine. Your emotions were hijacked, producing valid feelings despite the manipulation. Accepting these feelings is a vital step in your healing process. Residual feelings are the lingering emotions that remain after a relationship ends, reflecting the emotional investment you made.

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Limerence/Obsessive Love Disorder – When Your Hormones & Neurotransmitters Rule – 2024

Limerence/Obsessive Love Disorder – When Your Hormones & Neurotransmitters Rule

For Scam Victims, it was NOT LOVE – it was Limerence. But watch out that it does not turn into Obsession!

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Limerence, an intense and involuntary emotional state of romantic infatuation, can be manipulated by scammers to control their victims. This emotional hijacking involves the release of key neurotransmitters such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin, which creates feelings of pleasure, arousal, and obsessive thoughts about the scammer.

Characteristics of limerence include intrusive thoughts, emotional dependency, idealization, fear of rejection, and physiological responses like increased heart rate and sweating.

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SCARS ScamsNOW.com Site Privacy Policy – 2024

SCARS ScamsNOW.com Site Privacy Policy

Welcome to ScamsNOW.com, published by the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. (SCARS). This page describes the privacy policy that applies to your use of SCARS products and services through ScamsNOW.com and its mobile applications (the “Sites”). SCARS is referred to herein as “we,” “us,” or “our.”

PLEASE NOTE: There are separate terms and policies regarding SCARS crime victim support services. These Terms of Use apply to the use of this website and related publications and content.

Effective Date RevisedMay 25, 2024

This Privacy Policy Describes

  • the information that we receive from you when you interact with us,
  • our practices for processing and protecting the information that we receive, and
  • your choices regarding the collection and processing of your personal information.

Please review this Privacy Policy carefully. By visiting our Site and by submitting information to us, you consent to the collection and processing of your information as described in this Privacy Policy.

We reserve the right to modify or amend the terms of our Privacy Policy from time to time without notice. The amended Privacy Policy will be posted on this page. Your continued use of our Site following the posting of changes to our Privacy Policy will mean you accept those changes.


Information We Collect

When you visit our Site, we collect personal information that you provide to us as well as information we obtain from your use of our Site.

“Personal Information” is information associated with you or that Read More …

2024-06-01T15:32:03-04:00

SCARS ScamsNOW.com Terms of Use – 2024

SCARS ScamsNOW.com Terms of Use

Welcome to ScamsNOW.com, published by the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. (SCARS). This page describes the terms and conditions that apply to your use of SCARS products and services through ScamsNOW.com and its mobile applications (the “Sites”). SCARS is referred to herein as “we,” “us,” or “our.”

PLEASE NOTE: There are separate terms and policies regarding SCARS crime victim support services. These Terms of Use apply to the use of this website and related publications and content.

USE OF MATERIALS

We or our licensors own all content and materials on ScamsNOW.com, including, without limitation, all trademarks, service marks, trade names, trade dress and copyrights. SCARS grants you free-of-charge access to the content published on the Sites. You agree not to sell or modify such content or materials or reproduce, display, publicly perform, distribute, or otherwise use such content or materials in any way for any public or commercial purpose, in connection with products or services that are not those of SCARS, in any manner that is likely to cause confusion among consumers, that disparages or discredits us, that dilutes the strength of our property or that otherwise infringes our intellectual property rights.

For a list of SCARS Trademarks and more visit: SCARS trademarks, service marks, and other indicia (againstscams.org)

REGISTRATION INFORMATION AND SECURITY

If you signed up for any of SCARS’s services or features that require you to provide personal information, you agree to maintain and update, true, accurate and current information about yourself. If you have Read More …

2024-06-01T15:12:10-04:00

Desperation – One of Many Normal Scam Victims’ Responses To Fear – 2024

Desperation – One of Many Normal Scam Victims’ Responses To Fear

After a Scam Ends Fear Becomes a Dominant Emotion that can drive Desperation or Despair

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Desperation is a profound sense of urgency and anxiety that arises when individuals feel trapped in a hopeless situation, such as a scam victim’s experience. It is driven by fear, hopelessness, urgency, and isolation, leading to intense emotional turmoil, impaired judgment, and risky behaviors.

While desperation can motivate and inspire creativity, it more often results in impulsive decisions and increased vulnerability to further scams.

Recognizing desperation involves monitoring intense emotions, obsessive thoughts, behavioral changes, and physical symptoms like fatigue and sleep disturbances. Taking action includes seeking support, practicing self-care, breaking down problems, avoiding impulsive decisions, and considering professional help.

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People Often Cannot Recognize That They Have Depression – 2024

People Often Cannot Recognize That They Have Depression

Helping Scam Victims Understand What Depression Is and Why So Many Survivors Cannot Recognize that they Have It!

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  National Institute of Mental Health, and other sources

About This Article

Recognizing depression, especially at its onset, can be challenging as symptoms often develop gradually. Depression, or major depressive disorder, can affect anyone, including scam victims, presenting with persistent sadness, anxiety, hopelessness, guilt, loss of interest, fatigue, cognitive issues, sleep disturbances, appetite changes, and physical discomfort.

There are two main types: major depression, which severely impacts daily activities for at least two weeks, and persistent depressive disorder, with milder symptoms lasting at least two years. The difficulty in recognizing depression is compounded by factors like self-blame, a bleak perspective, internalized stigma, and cognitive impairment.

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Psychological Pain And Scam Victims Recovery – 2024

Psychological Pain And Scam Victims Recovery

Helping Scam Victims to Understand Psychological & Emotional Pain – Its Causes and Ways to Recover

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Visit ScamPsychology.org for more

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Psychological or emotional pain is a form of mental suffering that can feel as real and intense as physical pain. It often manifests as a heavy weight on the chest, a deep ache, or a sense of emptiness, with emotional experiences ranging from intense sadness and hopelessness to anxiety and anger.

This pain can also lead to physical symptoms like headaches, stomachaches, fatigue, and muscle tension, disrupting sleep, appetite, and overall well-being. Psychological pain arises from various sources, including loss, trauma, mental health disorders, chronic stress, social rejection, and existential struggles.

Brain regions such as the anterior cingulate cortex and the insula, which are involved in processing physical pain, also become active during emotional pain. Neurotransmitter imbalances, stress responses, and changes in neural pathways further contribute to the experience of psychological pain.

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The Relationship Between Pain and Pleasure In Scam Victims – 2024

The Relationship Between Pain and Pleasure

How the Brain can Confuse them and what this means for Scam Victims

Primary Category: Recovery Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Humans have a complex relationship with pain and pleasure, with the brain often linking the two in unexpected ways. Activities like eating hot peppers or intense exercise can be pleasurable due to the release of endorphins and dopamine, which act as natural painkillers and “feel-good” neurotransmitters.

This extends beyond physical pain to psychological experiences, such as those endured by scam victims. During a scam, victims experience emotional highs and lows, manipulated by scammers to create a cycle of hope and despair, engaging the brain’s reward system. After the scam, the realization of being deceived leads to psychological trauma and chronic stress, mirroring the dynamics of physical pain.

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Are You A Serial Scam Victim? Do You Know One? – 2024

Are You One? Recognizing If You Are A Serial Victim

Some People Jump from One Online Relationship Scam to Another – Each One Another Scam! Technically, we refer to these as Serial Victims. they need Professional Psychological Support to Break Free from their Chains

A Scam Cycle of Abuse that Many Victims Fall Into for the Same Reasons that Domestic Abuse Victims Do!

Primary Category: Scam Psychology

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

Previously published in 2022 on RomanceScamsNOW.com

About This Article

Serial victims of relationship scams often fall into a cycle of deception due to a combination of psychological and physiological factors. These individuals are particularly vulnerable to repeated scams because of attachment disorders, low self-esteem, fear of abandonment, and trauma.

Rebounding into new relationships quickly after one ends is a common behavior among these victims, driven by a need for emotional support, personal validation, and fear of loneliness.

Hormonal and neurotransmitter dependencies, such as those involving dopamine, oxytocin, vasopressin, serotonin, and endorphins, further entrench this vulnerability.

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Hedonic Adaptation And Scam Victims Finding Happiness – 2024

Hedonic Adaptation And Scam Victims Finding Happiness

Hedonic Adaptation: Understanding the Stability of Happiness and the Path to Lasting Contentment

Primary Category: Scam Victim Recovery

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Hedonic adaptation, often called the hedonic treadmill, is the psychological phenomenon where people return to a baseline level of happiness despite significant positive or negative changes in their lives. This concept suggests that while new circumstances can initially alter one’s emotional state, people quickly become accustomed to these changes, leading their overall happiness to stabilize over time.

Both positive events, like promotions or new relationships, and negative events, like job losses or breakups, see initial emotional spikes or dips, but eventually, individuals return to their baseline happiness level. Of course, trauma changes this in many significant ways.

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The Similarity/Attraction Theory And Relationship Scams – 2024

The Similarity/Attraction Theory And Relationship Scams

Another Example of How Our Own Psychology Heavily Influences Our Susceptibility to be Deceived!

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

The Similarity/Attraction Theory posits that individuals are drawn to others who share similar characteristics, such as attitudes, values, interests, and backgrounds, creating a sense of comfort and predictability. This theory is linked to cognitive biases like confirmation bias, in-group bias, homophily, stereotyping, the halo effect, and similarity bias, that reinforce our natural preference for similar others.

Scammers exploit these biases in trust-based relationship scams by fabricating similarities to establish credibility and manipulate victims. By creating a sense of familiarity and emotional connection, scammers gain the victim’s trust and deepen their dependency.

Understanding these tactics and biases is important in recognizing and preventing scams.

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Do The Fake Names Scammers Use Play A Role In Luring In Victims? 2024

Do The Fake Names Scammers Use Play A Role In Luring In Victims?

Do Names Play a Significant Role in Aiding Luring and Grooming of Scam Victims?

Primary Category: Psychology of Scams

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Common names make it easier for scammers to lure victims because they evoke familiarity and trust. Familiar names like “John,” “Michael,” “Sarah,” or “Emily” reduce initial skepticism and increase engagement since they are associated with real-life individuals the victim might know.

This sense of normalcy helps scammers blend in, making their fake personas appear legitimate and trustworthy. Additionally, common names are easier to remember and pronounce, which enhances communication and rapport building.

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Scam Victim Psychological Trauma And Weight Gain – 2024

Scam Victim Weight Gain And Psychological Trauma

The Somatic (Physical) Effects of Psychological Trauma are many and most of them are bad!

Primary Category: Psychological Trauma

Authors:
•  Vianey Gonzalez B.Sc(Psych) – Psychologist, Certified Deception Professional, Psychology Advisory Panel & Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Psychological trauma, an emotional response to intensely distressing events, profoundly impacts both the mind and body. Originating from incidents such as crimes, accidents, or prolonged abuse, trauma triggers the “fight-or-flight” response, releasing stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol.

While adaptive in acute scenarios, chronic activation of this response leads to significant health issues, including cardiovascular problems, metabolic disturbances, and immune system compromise.

Elevated cortisol levels result in increased fat storage, particularly visceral fat, and altered insulin production, promoting weight gain and insulin resistance.

Historically, these responses ensured survival during physical threats and food scarcity by mobilizing and storing energy efficiently. However, modern chronic stressors misalign with these ancient mechanisms, leading to obesity, metabolic syndrome, and other health complications.

Addressing psychological trauma through holistic approaches that consider both mental and physical health is crucial for promoting overall well-being and resilience.

Psychological Trauma has many effects on the Human Body – Almost All of them are Bad! One noticeable effect is Weight Gain

Introduction to Psychological Trauma and Its General Impacts on the Body

Psychological trauma is an emotional Read More …

Why Are We More Likely To Trust Total Strangers Now? 2024

Why Are We More Likely To Trust Total Strangers Now?

We were not always like this! Even 120 years ago, trusting did not come normally in society.

An Anthropological & Sociological Essay

Main Categories: Cognitive Biases / Anthropology / Sociology

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

The evolution of trust from cautiousness to openness towards strangers reflects a complex interplay of historical, cultural, and technological factors.

Initially spurred by post-pandemic euphoria and the Roaring Twenties’ optimism, trust eroded during World War II, rebounded briefly post-war, and waned again during the Cold War.

The Flower Generation challenged norms in the 1960s, fostering unity and trust.

The digital revolution accelerated trust normalization, facilitated by social media, e-commerce, and peer-to-peer economies.

Today, familiarity, social proof, and cognitive biases shape trust behaviors, despite vulnerabilities exploited by cybercriminals.

Balancing trust with vigilance is a survival necessity in maintaining safe interactions with anyone now! Where the allure of trust often collides with the reality of exploitation is where the criminal element hides.

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Relearning Critical Thinking And To Think Skeptically – For Scam Victims After A Relationship Scam – 2024

Relearning Critical Thinking And To Think Skeptically – For Scam Victims After A Relationship Scam

Trauma is known to cause Cognitive Impairment and Brain Fog after the Scam Ends. Relearning Critical Thinking and Skepticism again are vital skills Scam Victims Need!

Scam Victim Recovery Psychology

Author:
•  Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

About This Article

Rebuilding critical thinking skills after becoming a victim of a relationship scam is essential to restoring a sense of control and trust in oneself. Scam victims often experience profound emotional trauma and cognitive impairment due to the manipulation tactics used by scammers.

Recognizing the impact of trauma on cognition is the first step toward recovery. Victims can use self-assessment tools, engage in mindfulness practices, and seek professional support to identify cognitive distortions and improve decision-making abilities.

Rebuilding skepticism and learning to question assumptions are crucial for protecting against future exploitation. By practicing self-compassion, prioritizing self-care, and seeking support from trusted individuals, victims can gradually regain their confidence and move forward with resilience.

It’s important to acknowledge that healing takes time and patience, but with dedication and support, scam victims can restore their critical thinking faculties and reclaim their lives.

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