Megan Caroll:

I have been undergoing some kind of a massive, healing transformation for many months now. It’s been quite uncomfortable, and it’s also unclear as to what exactly is going on or where exactly I’m headed.

I have been trying hard to fix it and to create comfort and clarity where there is none. It hasn’t been working. When it doesn’t work, I get stressed out, and even more uncomfortable and more unclear. [My] teacher said that at least 50% of my suffering is happening just because I think things should be different.

Right. Just let yourself be in your process, Megan.

When I remember that, it feels like relief.

Until I forget again.


No one would fall for a scam if they understood clearly what was going on, so creating confusion is fundamental for any scam to work.

One of the most effective types of confusion is when the scammer pretends to be the victim. It’s the ultimate redirection, creating confusion about who is getting scammed.

This is common in abusive relationships, where the abuser pretends to be the abused. The abuser loudly denounces any slight offense against themself as abuse, while claiming that their own actual abusive actions are merely appropriate responses to the abuse they are receiving. This creates the necessary confusion — the victim starts to wonder if they are actually a perpetrator, and onlookers either believe the fake story or at best stay neutral because the claims look too similar to distinguish.

Unfortunately, this technique is also becoming common in politics. The politician simply turns any accusation back on the accuser to muddy the waters. This is perhaps best captured in the recent rallying cry “investigate the investigators!” This creates the necessary confusion by making both sides appear to be similarly wronged. We also see legitimate journalism accused of being “fake news” (creating confusion about which is fake), legitimate whistleblowers accused of being political operatives (creating confusion about who is politically motivated), and the list goes on and on. I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that multiple current world leaders rose to power by scamming their electorates.

Note I’m not here to fault anyone who voted for such politicians or stayed in abusive relationships. Confusion works, and these scammers are very good at what they do. One of the hardest parts about confronting confusion in my own life has been coming to terms with how thoroughly I had been fooled.

Rather, I hope to remind myself and others that the feeling of confusion can be a signal that a scam is at hand — or even an echo of a scam or abuse perpetrated long ago. More often than I’d like to believe, the situation is actually quite clear — someone is lying to you. Most likely, it’s the person who seems the most confident.