The Martyr Syndrome
Defining Characteristics: Insisting on having one's own way in the completion of a task; which is the hardest, tedious, most time consuming and potentially back breaking way of doing said task; and despite the urging of the majority of adults present to make it easy on oneself; and despite assurances that it will "taste just fine: or "work just as well" (maybe even better) done the easier, faster, way.
Upon insisting on having done it the hard way, The Martyr becomes overly fatiqued and "stressed out," to the point of intolerable crankiness, or poutiness, or both, in repeating cycles; which, in turn, inevitably elicits feelings of alienation and emotional deprivation; and the overall belief that one is not appreciated in the slightest, and therefore not loved, despite (indeed, in spite of) the sacrifices one has made. Heavy sighs and comments such as "But I only wanted to make everyone happy!" may be heard during this latter phase of the disorder. Tears may be present.
Unfortunately, there is very little that can be done to thwart the perpetual enactor of the syndrome. If a Martyr is in your midst, do not, therefore, direct your efforts toward trying to dissuade, shame, or engage in "I told you so's", particularly if you are in the throes of the decades long sufferer. It will be to no avail and could escalate The Martyr into further decompensation.
Recommended Treatment: There is, however, one full proof method that those exposed to The Martyr Syndrome can employ. I call it the "Dayglo Slushie Surprise."
1. Present the kids and The Martyr with a "Dayglo Pink Slushie" made in the blender. Inform recipients that you thought this would be "a fun surprise" and perhaps "the start of a holiday tradition."
2. Hold back a generous portion of the slushie.3. Enact slight of hand.
10. Repeat steps #4 through #8, as often as needed.