double bind definition

  • noun:
    • A psychological impasse created when contradictory demands are made of a person, eg a child or a member of staff, to ensure that no matter what directive is used, the response will undoubtedly be construed as wrong.
    • A situation for which an individual must select from equally unsatisfactory choices; a punishing and inevitable issue.
    • A dilemma by which someone obtains contradictory directions and cannot act on either.
    • (psychology) an unresolvable issue; situation by which a person obtains contradictory emails from someone who is very powerful

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