Mental health, hierachies, orders and "double bind" behaviou

The psychologist Oliver James reckons that there is some mileage in the theory that if people regularly put you in a "double bind" position it can make you mentally ill. His example, schizophrenic kid in hospital, the mother comes in, leans over him and presents her cheek to be kissed, he leans forward and puckers up, she pulls back, he sits back - then she fu*king says, "Aren't you going to give mummy a kiss? Don't you love mummy?"

Now, most of us have experienced that kind of "whatever you do you are in the wrong" sh*t, and it is extremely frustrating. Quite a lot of people are skilful at doing this precisely to cause stress. In vulnerable individuals the mind assumes that there is some hidden logic, and they start saying, "The difference between these two apparently identical situations is that I have my purple pants on, therefore whenever I ......"

The thing that I found interesting was my para pal said that "anticipation at all levels" is matched only with "who the f*ck told you to do that?", which is almost a perfect double bind.

Is it possible that at least some of the problems servicemen suffer are caused by the meeting of vulnerable individuals and "skilful double binders" in an environment that makes double bind really, really effective?

[Quiet day, just free associating :) ]