Do you think you struggle with shame?

triptych

Learning
@Friday Thank you so much for your reply! I also feel like I abandoned this thread a bit and would like to hash it out more.

I think shame is difficult, rather than that I have a difficult relationship to it.
I really like this! I think it's defiantly important to acknowledge everyone struggles with this regardless of their different experiences!

The most difficult, is other people & their beliefs around shame.
Yes! I get this as well, I think often other people don't allow you to have the feelings you actually have in regards to shame. There are a few instances where I've told people things and they've said "you have nothing to feel ashamed about there" and whilst I understand it's what they think will be helpful in a lot of ways it doesn't help because it can be a refusal to meet you on your own terms.

In the same way people often assume you feel shame for things that have been done to you and I don't think that's ALWAYS the case.

the moment my trust in what I’d been taught to believe, expect, strive for, fight for, feel proud of, feel shame for, et al, shattered? It was instantaneous. It broke when I did.
I feel the ~moment I broke and a lot of my beliefs changed ~ I think it's always a painful experience and I hope you managed to build something good out of it 💛
 

triptych

Learning
@piratelady Thank you for your reply! I'm sorry you still struggle with shame even after trying to overcome it and I wish you luck in the future 🧡
I feel immense shame about the past. Even as we’ve been processing it and I’ve learned to understand where the blame goes, I can’t let go of the shame I feel. As I type this, I think that’s a big piece of why I’m still stuck on it now, despite all the work Therapist and I have done.

What do you think of the book? Is it worth buying?
I've enjoyed it so far! Although I got side tracked reading some other things. I've never read much else specifically addressing shame so I probably don't have a very holistic view of whether it's The Best Thing to read on it.
Do you think that by not acknowledging the events and the shame that it makes the experience have a bigger impact on you and your life today? Like denying it maybe gives it more power?
Yes, possibly. I think like I said in my other reply there is a big sense in which if you don't acknowledge why you do certain things I think they have a bigger impact on you. If you don't understand how your actions are impacted by shame you probably can't change them much?

@Mee Thanks for the reply!
shame is often something that is external - Something about perception rather than reality . Something about culture rather than what is ‘moral’ or ‘ethical’ or in tune with our integrity . I have found I can feel shame and feel I did the right thing concurrently - and that’s difficult . But logical - think how many times we see shameless, but immoral / out side socially accepted norm behaviour) .
Yes, I agree often I think I act out of ~not feeling shame~ rather than out of integrity.

I like the idea of being in tune with your integrity though, I think it links back to what @Friday said about creating a system of morality for yourself.

I see my shame with two different lenses:
Shame - natural reaction to situations that require shame - coming conscious of losing a face to a friend or in public and hopefully having the strength to apologize or at least recognize it and shudder and move on.
or,
SHAME - with capital letters cause it is so amplified, so huge, so deeply cutting my core, and my gut reaction is to shut it down, oppress it, avoid it, and start to elaborate many ways to avoid it - kill it if I could.
Thank you for your reply!

YES! 100% agree with this-- maybe it's the line between embarrassment and shame? I don't think there's anything wrong with being embarrassed and I often do but SHAME is not a good feeling and something I have difficultly acknowledging too.

I was sexually assaulted at 4yo and 9 yo, but I think my shame stems from what happened after the assault when I was 9. My dad and his sister (I no longer speak to them, btw) forced me to be examined by a doctor b/c my dad didn’t believe me when I said there wasn’t any penetration. My parents were also going through a divorce, and my dad announced he planned to use whatever the doctor found to get custody of me (only me, not my brother) from my mom. I felt my dad’s actions caused more shame than the predator who attacked me. I’m not sure atm, if I’m just confused or if that is a possibility?
I'm so sorry that happened to you, that's awful.

I think it's defiantly understandable that you would feel shame around the actions of someone who is supposed to take care of you (a doctor or parent).

Also, in my opinion, there is no 'correct' way to feel about any of these events. You shouldn't feel shame for how you feel. I think often feeling confused/ashamed about how we are 'supposed' to feel is another way these events have a detrimental impact on our lives and can stop us feeling able to seek help/talk about things.

I hope you manage to work through some of these feelings in the future, sending you best wishes 💛
 

WonderWriter

Confident
I'm so sorry that happened to you, that's awful.

I think it's defiantly understandable that you would feel shame around the actions of someone who is supposed to take care of you (a doctor or parent).

Also, in my opinion, there is no 'correct' way to feel about any of these events. You shouldn't feel shame for how you feel. I think often feeling confused/ashamed about how we are 'supposed' to feel is another way these events have a detrimental impact on our lives and can stop us feeling able to seek help/talk about things.

I hope you manage to work through some of these feelings in the future, sending you best wishes 💛
Thank you for this. I know I struggle with shame for things I’ve experienced and things I’ve done and do currently whenever I’m triggered by something. I’ve only been in therapy about a month, so I haven’t even begun the hard work yet. However, I’m more aware when I am triggered which helps me ground faster.
 

ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
I’m a bit in the same situation of the OP. I never felt shame of anything because intellectually I didn’t see why. But a deep will of burying what I was for no reason, and when the sexual assault happened that was so out of the line with how I thought of myself, I just obliterated it and could not respond. I tried to talk about to a few people and no one understood the freeze respond. Evil ex even blamed it over and over. Progressively my shame for it started to morph into guilt even if I was resisting it, and my ex reaction definitely worsened it greatly. There is a lot of abusive beliefs about assault in society and they cause a lot of shame.

On a broader range, I realized that shame is more or less the fear of social rejection on the grounds of judgement. THAT, I experienced and experience greatly on a daily basis. I previously never associated it to "shame" as I couldn’t find something I did to deserve it. More a vague feeling of my very person to be inadequate or obnoxious or psychopathic. Thanks to my lovely parents.

Shame is a weird one because when you read it at first you don’t know what it means in your body. It is rarely described for what it is, and when you’re a bit on the bolder/narcissist/fighter spectrum it is difficult to identify because your superstructure is somehow all galvanized to counter that precise feeling to the point it seems to cease to exist. But it’s very much there if you peel the onion deep enough.
 

mumstheword

MyPTSD Pro
I have always struggled with shame. It is very socially debilitating. My mother was very big on shaming me and it worked. Having Aspergers/Autism1 on top of c-ptsd just adds to the intensity of social excruciation. And it's even less treatable than the c-ptsd, at this stage. I would love to be in a MDMA trial or something.

I have had little real kindness and social acceptance in my life, despite trying extremely hard to gain it. My natural "oddness", and my c-ptsd producing childhood make social inclusion and a sense of acceptance seem like a distant and unattainable dream.

Add to that a much higher than average intellectual scope in a country that, very much, values playing it small and eroding social confidence ( unless you are sporty, then you have it made) and having had a very eclectic and unorthodox life. At least I live in an area that values "eastenized" and culturally eclectic people.

Still, the shame, I think, is one of the main symptoms of c-ptsd and a hard one to budge.

I combat mine by avoiding most people most of the time, and by only spending time with people I know respect me and allow me to be me, without projecting onto me and undermining me, as much as I possibly can..And by doing things that increase my self esteem. Treating people well. Being honest. Building skills and honing talents. Having a good sense of humour (although "good" is extremely subjective here) and applying the principles and practises of my faith, as much as I can.

That leaves only some of my children and my guy friend and one other phone friend, but, at least I can practise feeling safe and not constantly humiliated and contracting into myself, even more.

My girls are my only neurotypical people I connect with regularly and they forgive me my oddness and love me as I've always loved them.
 
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