Psychological protection and resistance

Freud’s great role in psychological science is that he was the first to speak about the role of the unconscious in the human psyche. Before him, the idea that a person might not know something about himself seemed a strange heresy – now it is the cornerstone of psychotherapy. But the rating of this role since the time of Freud has leaped forward. It is easy to guess that protection is, in General, a positive phenomenon: an umbrella protects us from rain, clothing – from cold, insurance of Bank deposits – from bankruptcy. Psychological protection protects us from mental pain – and in the best case there is nothing wrong but good.

How it works?

Sometimes I use a metaphor to represent psychological defenses like the iron armor our souls wear. And then say, with a naked soul for the world to go not recommended: uneven hour, someone forged boots off directly on a soft pass. Not on purpose; maybe even without noticing it – the metropolis! Fuss about, hurry to the soul?

But to languish forever in these iron armor – sad and boring to our soul. Want, want warmth – and it needs to get out of the iron the shell, to touch someone else’s soul to keep her warm and her to share, to touch Eternity… And if the armor is well oiled, it turns out that without any difficulty: they say that psychological defense mechanisms are working adequately. Wanted man – was closed and no one admits. Wanted – opened and enjoyed the intimacy and intimacy.

Sometimes, of course, happens to be opened – and then, instead reach into your soul the projectile arrives. Then of course it hurts. However, well again, nothing fatal, the human psyche is mobile and is able to restore: if the shell fragments of man from your soul erase, then healed his wound, and become again his soul tselenky and cheerful. But that’s if he does.

Here it is “discarding the remnants of the projectile” scientifically called acting out psychologically traumatic situation. In my metaphor, it looks like an explosion – the soul is hurt, and the person explodes: screaming, crying, desperately outraged, stomping his feet and throwing cups into the wall… And as soon as all the consequences of the injury are reacted – the healing process begins by itself. This is a biologically normal process.

But we are beings not just biological! We are social beings. You have seen a lot of citizens, breach the walls of the cups? That’s right. Metaphorically speaking, our “armor” often collapse before the explosion occurs. And all the shell fragments remain inside. What happens when a shard wanders inside? – inflammation. It still hurts inside, but we don’t feel it, because we are protected from this inner pain by the same steel armor. In academic psychology, by the way, this process is called very similar: containerization. Hidden and forgotten. Not feel.

But if there was only one shard! And their whole life typed – Mama do not cry… And have to build up and build up a layer of steel protection, so that this terrible pain not to feel, why they move worse and worse, and at some point are no longer open at all – and the person loses his keen sense of the beautiful, no longer feel compassion, tenderness, love and childish joy of being… in General, “stale soul.” And the inflammation inside grows and grows, and at some point already and the maximum power of protections does not save – some dull pain penetrates into consciousness: it is unclear about what, it is unclear why, just somehow everything is gray, dull, and I want to strangle myself. Hello, disease depression!

Some, however, lay on top of other more protection – not steel, steel nowhere, and others any. Phobias there are some thread, obsessions, panic attacks, rituals of all sorts – well, at least something to distract from this incomprehensible mental pain. And sometimes there is no special mental pain, just psychosomatics blooms with a magnificent color: then the throat will grab, then the heart, then the ulcer of the stomach will swell…

In principle, all this testifies to one thing: the psychological container was overfilled, it is time to release it. If you are a person of exceptional awareness, you can do it yourself by analyzing your reactions, exploring your own unconscious, and allowing the suppressed feelings to spill out somewhere safe. In other cases, with such problems, your choice – psychotherapy.

What is psychotherapy?

Speaking, again, metaphorically, during psychotherapy you need to open these rusted armor and throw out all those fragments of old shells that roam in your soul. And, of course, to revise the usual patterns of behavior – perhaps it is worth something to change them, so that in the future the fragments do not get stuck unreacted?

This process is not instantaneous.

It takes some time (up to 18 months) to form a new behavior after working through the injuries. Fortunately, there is no need to communicate with the therapist all this time, you can work on yourself: the therapist is needed primarily to help find those places in the soul where the fragments of trauma are stuck, in other words – those areas of the unconscious where there is an internal conflict – and pull this pain out “behind the ear and into the sun”; Then it grows all the same, at its own pace, and even nine therapists will not accelerate the process, just as nine women are not able to carry a child in one month.

But there is an important caveat – “after the study of injuries.” How much time will pass before the injury is not even worked out, but only discovered – depends on the strength of those same protections. From how much the client is ready to look into his unconscious, and feel the pain… And he is usually not very ready: he has well protection! This unconscious avoidance of the pain. Here you like, whenever you in the old splinter poke fingers? – well, that’s… that’s him pulling away. Automatically. We’re all human.

In classical psychotherapy, such protections are already called resistance, and are regarded very negatively: well, like a saboteur, he does not want to meet his own pain, although the therapist is standing here, with a leg beats, an ax in his hand, dressing material at the ready…

This position is not close to me, moreover, it seems to be a consequence of the therapist’s own personal problems, entangled in Karpman’s triangle: the desire to drive a person to happiness with an iron hand is perceived by me as a sign of neurosis. I like the Buddhists, believe that “everything in the world is already perfect” and try not to succumb to passion quickly fix everything that life were saved, although of course sometimes succumb to the excitement is difficult, because I am only human. The resistance of the client in this sense is a useful factor, because it is sobering: it means that it is a process that he needs for some reason. Let it be: maybe there is a trauma inside him of such depth and intensity that I can not imagine? Why go there with an axe? The time will come – the client himself will get there and all will react.

After all, strong resistance is a sign of strong defenses; having strong defenses is good, not bad. Psychotherapy, let’s not forget, is only a brief stage in the life of any person – and to live with him further with the protections that are; and let them be stronger… and the resistance sooner or later will dissolve, one way or another: no one has ever resisted forever.

Of all the modalities of psychotherapy, only process-oriented approach supports my approach.

And although we love it, not for it – such a coincidence with my own thoughts can not but rejoice.

local_offerevent_note May 8, 2019

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