It happens sometimes that a woman finds herself trapped in an abusive and controlling relationship and for various reasons, she is not able to leave her tormentor.
Some people are, in a similar way, captured by a mean ego, which they're not able to drop. They're holding on to an outdated and dysfunctional philosophy of life. They're trapped in an abusive and controlling relationship with their own thinking mind.
For example, to some people it's very important to be good looking, smart and successful and to have good looking and successful children. They disdain losers. If they stubbornly hold on to such ideas when they no longer are good looking and successful, they will of course have problems with themselves, especially if also their children fail.