In psychology class, we learned about Sigmund Freud’s theory on humans and the many defence mechanisms which underlie our subconscious. These defence mechanisms act as a wall or filter to help ease against feelings that don’t want to be felt. Feelings like anxiety, sadness and loneliness. Humans typically strive to avoid feeling these ways at all costs and without even knowing it, their defence mechanisms come into play.
One of the most common defence mechanisms we learned was DENIAL. We humans, deny without even knowing it sometimes. We’ve been doing this ever since we were kids. We deny, because we refuse to accept reality or refuse to face painful thoughts and feelings.
We deny others when they ask if you’re okay and we respond with “yeah, of course”, when in actuality deep down we know we aren’t. We deny ourselves. We deny feeling hurt by telling ourselves that what we’re going through is “whatever” or “no big deal.” We try denying the fact that everything is falling apart by distracting ourselves or by distancing ourselves.
We sometimes even deny love. You love someone deep down, but you deny it because you know it’s best if you don’t. You lie to yourself. You convince yourself that you’ll just get over it. But why? Love isn’t a painful feeling, so why do we deny love? We’re afraid. Afraid of falling in love? Afraid of being stuck in love? Afraid of rejection? Afraid of becoming attached? Maybe even afraid of having to deal with the responsibilities and consequences that come with loving a person.
What people don’t realize as they unconsciously deny, is that denial just hurts themselves even more. Denial makes it harder. It tears us down day by day. We store and hide these feelings for it to painfully break us down when our last button is pushed, or when we can’t bottle anymore emotions and thoughts inside. We burst. Instead of embracing these feelings and learning to grow and overcome it – we deny.