Updated: Sep 30
It appears like a little anthill from the outside, but once you step inside, you will find millions of traps that make the situation much direr. It's called denial syndrome, and it can make it difficult for a person, from a psychological standpoint, to confront or accept the facts of what happened.
A person's refusal to embrace objective facts or experiences might be seen as an example of the protective mechanism known as denial. A person's ability to deny reality is a subconscious defence mechanism that helps them avoid worry. You can start learning courses to learn more about these issues by clicking here.
The concept of denial, denial, or rejection originates from Sigmund Freud's departure from his daughter, Anna Freud. She established the idea of a defence mechanism against anxious thoughts and feelings. Sigmund Freud's departure led to the development of the concept of denial or denial or rejection. Anna thinks that unconscious ego protection can be achieved by the practice of denying a particular aspect of reality.
What are the tell-tale symptoms that a person suffers from denial syndrome?
The following is an explanation that can be used as material for self-reflection to acquire a deeper understanding of the origins of feelings and more effective methods of coping with them.
1. Unwillingness to discuss the issues at hand
According to Northpoint Recovery, a person unwilling to talk about the situation tends to overlook the problem. Someone in denial may try to alter the topic or distract attention using comedy. Even in casual conversation, one can exhibit these early deprivation indicators.
2. Using the actions of others as evidence that there is not a problem by pointing the finger at others
In the event of addiction, for example, one can utilize this time-honoured strategy to convince themselves that they are not addicted to the substance in question.
3. Bringing up the same point over and again without making any headway
If an explanation or argument against an issue is brought up repeatedly without demonstrating any improvement, this is evidence that a problem does exist. The problem will not go away; all that can be done is to locate a turning point and adjust how one deals with the reality of what has occurred.
4. Justify or excuse your actions.
Individuals have a powerful tool at their disposal called rationalization, which is used to justify their denial of objective fact. For instance, “I'm under a lot of pressure right now. Therefore I could use something to help ease it”. Because of these factors, a person may choose to "escape" from issues that really need to be addressed.
5. Blaming one's troubles on someone or something else.
This sign conforms to rationalization, which is regarded as unsuitable because of its consistency. Instead, it would help if you blamed other people for the issues. If you insist on blaming others, the situation will not improve.
6. Carry forth manipulative activities.
Through this manipulative action, your feelings will be "tricked" into believing the reality of the situation. It is acceptable to feel down, and it is of no consequence whether you are upset. This deceptive move makes the person feel more alone by denying the truth of the situation.
7. "Not even have a Sensation"
People who live in denial will ignore their feeling and eventually give up trying to change how they feel as a natural reaction to the world around them. It is a much larger problem to ignore the pain than to deny that it exists.
How to come out of being in denial
Denying anything is a potent act. It has the power to convince us to believe anything we want to think, even though the evidence may be staring us in the face and arguing to the contrary. It is highly typical for our brains to develop the defence mechanism of denial to assist us in coping with and rationalizing stressful, traumatic, or otherwise unpleasant occurrences and experiences that occur in our lives.
Even though the process of denial is something that everyone goes through at some point or another in their lives, people battling substance misuse disorder(s) are far more likely to experience it. Think back to the moments when you were in denial about unhappy things in your life, your use of substances, such as when you told yourself things like "just a little bit is OK" or "at least I'm doing better than that individual." Then, it was common practice to conceal the truth behind a wall of denial to trick oneself and others into believing everything was OK and there were no problems.
There are a few different ways that one can deny something. Take a look at some of the most widespread forms of denial and ask yourself if you remember using any of the following when you were engaging in active substance use or problems in your life.
The process of overcoming denial can be challenging and frightening, but it can also be as easy as surrounding yourself with reliable people who will support you and help you open up truthly to yourself and them. The path to a successful and long-lasting recovery involves living an honest life and confronting one's feelings head-on.
Reasons someone may be in denial.
Denial is a typical response to uncomfortable emotions such as worry, fear, and insecurity. People have an inherent instinct to safeguard their emotional well-being and make every effort to do so. When people are threatened or scared by an incident, one coping method they may use is pushing these feelings to the side to protect themselves. Because it is a natural defence mechanism, people sometimes find themselves in a state of denial without even recognizing it. Click here, if you want to learn more about our mental health courses.
How to support someone in denial
It might be a challenge in assisting a loved one in getting through their stage of denial. It can be tremendously frustrating and upsetting to witness when a loved one continues to hurt oneself despite being aware of the seriousness of their addiction. There are, however, methods to step in and assist a loved one in seeing the reality of the situation.
When confronting a loved one, it is essential to focus on articulating your worries in a sincere and kind way. If you know someone who has been sober (from alcohol and/or drug misuse) for some time, asking them for assistance while talking to your loved one about getting sober would be a good idea. After all, they will have an understanding of what the person in question is going through and will be able to serve as a living example that rehabilitation is possible.
When talking to the person you care about, it is essential to be considerate of their feelings, ask opened ended questions and really focus on LISTENING
– Non-Judgemental Listening is trying to really understand the other person while putting aside your feeling and thoughts. We cover this in our mental health courses. Communicate to them in detail how your reactions to specific events have changed.
Communicate your worries and concerns to them in as much detail as possible. Use "I" words such as "I feel like" or "I am scared that..." instead of pointing the finger of blame at the person you care about. You might next bring up the things that are most important to your loved one and the consequences that this person has experienced in the past. Make use of your feelings and the wisdom you've gained to show this person how serious the issue is. In conclusion, ensure you are ready to offer assistance to your loved one by gathering the necessary resources for healing.
Unfortunately, denial is a common characteristic of addiction, a sickness. It is possible, therefore, that your loved one will continue to deny the problem even after you have confronted them about it. If this is the case, try not to take what was said to heart. Instead, recognise that you have done everything in your power and accept the possibility that the other person isn't ready to give up just yet and ask for help and support.
You can continue reassuring a loved one that you will be there for them whenever they are ready to ask for assistance. You can prepare by compiling a list of local NA or AA meetings, the contact information for a nearby treatment centre, or the name of a therapist specialising in addiction counselling. You should also set clear boundaries and avoid providing your addicted loved one with support or encouragement to continue their behaviours.
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Drug and Alcohol Resources in the UK
● National Institute on Drug Abuse (2014 July). Drugs, Brains, and Behavior: The Science of Addiction. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brains-behavior-science-addiction/drugs-brain
● Bonanno GA, Boerner K (June 2007). "The stage theory of grief". JAMA. 297 (24): 2693, author reply 2693-4. doi:10.1001/jama.297.24.2693-a. PMID 17595267.
● Weiner JS (June 2007). "The stage theory of grief". JAMA. 297 (24): 2692–93, author reply 2693-4. doi:10.1001/jama.297.24.2692-b. PMID 17595265.
● Silver RC, Wortman CB (June 2007). "The stage theory of grief". JAMA. 297 (24): 2692, author reply 2693-4. doi:10.1001/jama.297.24.2692-a. PMID 17595266.
● Prigerson HG, Maciejewski PK (December 2008). "Grief and acceptance as opposite sides of the same coin: setting a research agenda to study peaceful acceptance of loss". The British Journal of Psychiatry. 193 (6): 435–437. doi:10.1192/bjp.bp.108.053157. PMID 19043142.