There are two incredibly painful, unhealthy coping mechanisms that our society seems to push on each other over and over again: denial and suppression. Even when we’ve been caught red-handed, right in the middle of a mess of a storm, we’ve been shown and raised time and time again to pretend that it didn’t happen, to blame it on someone else, or to make excuses for why we had to act a certain way. Psychologists have explored why it is that we do this and these unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as denial and suppression are a way for us to protect ourselves from feeling emotionally unstable. It doesn’t feel good to know that we’ve acted out of character, to know that we’ve hurt someone or to think that we’d be capable of making bad decisions, but it happens.

What Exactly Do Denial and Suppression Look Like?

Denial and suppression are avoidance tactics that prevent a person from working through the pain they’re feeling. if those painful issues are never addressed, the underlying emotions will seep out in other ways such as through substance abuse, aggression towards others, self-harm, depression, etc. Denial occurs when we refuse to come to grips with the reality of a particular situation. It’s truly difficult for us as human beings to come to terms that we may act out in ways that traditionally go against our beliefs, attitudes, and values. In some cases, we’ll do anything to avoid confronting this reality.

Suppression occurs when we push down our thoughts and feelings towards something. Some people would describe it as having a “ball in their stomach.” Unfortunately, the longer a person suppresses what’s happening in their life, the harder it will be to work through those emotions because a person is essentially creating a wall within themselves to block off what they’re going through. Only through extensive therapy and treatment can a person learn to break through those walls. It’s very rare for a person to suddenly see through the pain and damage that denial and suppression can cause.

If you’re ready to seek help, call Alta Loma today where we have a team of healthcare professionals who are ready to help you work through what’s been holding you back. Alta Loma is a world-renowned, Texas state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center exclusively for men with ranch style housing located in a peaceful, remote area. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at (866) 457-3843 for a consultation.