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A PENCHANT FOR DENIAL

A better part of the childhood and then adulthood, right into old age, is spent in one form of denial or the other. Whether it is the need to escape or to establish credibility or just plain ego or fear of punishment or pain.

Is it a matter of upbringing or is it just built into the Human DNA or are the emotions the culprit here? What makes the human so susceptible to the need to deny and indulge in this negative quality that really adds nothing to character and even less to credibility. It is almost a reflex, a response seemingly without thought and impulsive in the extreme, sometimes to a point of fault where it lends itself to becoming a kind of psychological disease needing treatment. Does it really make the person go in a dreamlike state where there is no accountability or is it just a whimsy to be indulged in the spur of the moment regardless of the consequences and the complexities that it my give birth to almost having a ruining effect to life or property.

Denial can indeed be a costly affair in terms of trust and relationships. It can lead to breaks in friendships and marriages. It can make a person lose his or her job or it may lead to loosing face in front of millions. It may give rise to misunderstandings and create suspicions of an untold kind. It can stop growth and development of nations and it can leave people in power red in the face when proof is presented.

There are people who give a denial no matter what! They can never do anything wrong, they are the best, or so they think, and sometimes they are under the notion that they are a gift to mankind. They perceive themselves as perfect and never accept that they are capable of making mistakes. This can be really frustrating for those around such a person because no amount of reason or plain shouting will make the person see the light. In the end the saner person will have to just let go or just resign oneself to the fact that their perceptions cannot be changed and the best is to leave them alone to wallow in their own falsities, for such is the grip of it on them that most probably they will carry it with them to the grave. It’s a pity for it is their ego that makes them so and the end result is that although many of them are intelligent they cannot be convinced of anything and thus there will be the repercussions that bode no good to anyone. In fact, this can only lead to people shunning or avoiding you, as this lack of change makes it very boring to the opposite party. In fact, such a person will blame his or her companion for all that is wrong with the world and their lives…although there is no truth in the statement although it is rendered with great vehemence in a twisted belief system that leaves you hanging for sanity.

Then there is a denial from fear…this could be fear of punishment or just that the situation or things or people that are too much to handle, or just plain unbearable. So, they will deny its very existence and live in a utopia and say that all is right with their world and even believe it despite all signs to the contrary…. why is it so? Where does this fear come from…is it something that happened in childhood as psychology would have us believe or is it just plain lack of courage or that the skills for facing such situations were just never learned? Yet again was the cause the environment did not pose enough challenges to develop this courage?

Talking of challenges there are the extra courageous, mostly because it is derived from being in the position of power, which makes easy to deny any act one may have done as it is easy at this level to create illusions and to wipe out past acts from the archives or to distract enough to render the act inconsequential to say the least or just hit the delete button.

There are those who deny their very involvement by constantly pointing fingers at others and do so with equanimity and great confidence saying, “Not me it was him (or her).” …. or them for that matter……and get away with it too!

The criminals are always denying until they are proved otherwise, the spouses are doing the same and always projecting their best characteristics, some of which are made up, friends and relatives do the same as do the students with the teachers, and employees with the employers.

Ah! The children the very young and the youth are constantly denying…they are the real naughty ones always saying No when they want to say Yes and refuse to accept their faults and huff and puff and are successful at it too especially with the modern-day parents who are too tired to reason and want to just do away with it in return for peace and quiet after a long day at work.

Humans are masters at denial in one form or the other. They side track. Bluntly deny, avoid, project, daydream and believe anything to find the easy road. It’s the easier thing to do…. just deny and have done with it… and if confronted the more vehement will be the denial, the louder the voice and the greater the gestures and more aggressive the stand.

The question is if denial is an escape mechanism to avoid the unpleasant, unpalatable or the more powerful or distasteful, then we are only making ourselves weak as a species. To be upfront, accept the mistake, face the problem and not hide behind the various kinds of denials will definitely make life far easier to handle and one will become more solution oriented and be able to avoid future mistakes.

Denying something does not stop the existence of that thing nor does it go away if you pretend not to see it.  It will not build character nor will it help to build trust. Denials hurt others and hurt the person denying the most.

We say that so and so is in denial and so behaving in a particular way…its important to find out why and from when. One has to give strength to oneself so that we do not bind ourselves in this prison for otherwise we will be left behind in every activity, every race , every group as one can deny only so much….once the faith and trust are gone…you will be left alone and then if you are given to denial at this level of the situation it will lead to a psychological condition where living in this world will become impossible.

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