PREVIOUS: ACoAs & Emotions #3
SITE: “I Don’t Want to Talk About it: The Secret Legacy of Male Depression.” by Terrance Real
Resistance to FEELING Emotions (Es)
• The source of personal power is Self-esteem – which is fueled & sustained by the emotion of unconditional Love, which allows us to feel Pease & Joy. But when we had to shut down our feelings because the pain was too much to handle, we also shut down the pleasurable ones!
Resistance to experiencing our emotions stifles the natural flow of life built into every human being. So it takes a lot of psychic effort to push down Es & keep them down – leaving very little energy left over to function, causing long-term Depression.
This is why ACoAs barely have any reserves to deal with unforeseen events in the present – so much of our effort is used up by our Shadow-storage of unwanted feelings & memories.
Repressed Es get trapped in various part of the physical body & in the layers of the energy body that radiate from our core. Such a backlog can cause holes in our spirit, leaking out vital power, which creates fatigue, vulnerability & low self-confidence!
• Emotions, as such, are never dangerous – only the suppressed ones that have piled up year after year, causing them to fester.
Our body wants to eject emotional poison the same way it does physical toxins. If we don’t allow this to happen they cause PMES damage. In the long run, releasing them voluntarily is best – so we don’t explode all over ourselves & others. If we carelessly ‘dump’ our pain on others or act them out in a self-destructive ways, we end up feeling even worse about ourselves (more S-H)
The BRAIN: our ability to repress emotions comes from 3 general areas : the mammalian fore-brain, the reptilian early brain, & the mid-brain which connects the other two.
To function well we need the capacity to choose how we act on emotions (see posts on T.E.A. & Anxiety). But if our Recovery isn’t far along, sometimes we also need to disconnect, because the panful ones get so intense that our weak self-care gets even worse. SO —
• When we want to remember, we access the information stored in any one of the 3 parts, altho what’s available varies according to which data bank is holding it
• When we want to forget, we disconnect the memory links between the fore-brain (thinking) & the other two – creating temporary amnesia
BTW, ACoAs are notorious for having a built-in forgetter as result of trauma, which sadly includes all the good things that happen to us day by day in the present!
The mid-brain, as the go-between, is responsible for keeping it all straight, & does so very well – especially if we live in a ‘civilized’ society.
EXP: Not letting blind rage erupt in public prevents getting fired, thrown out & in some cases killed (road rage, gangs…). Not acting on every sexual impulse will preserve our promise of fidelity to a mate, maintain the family’s integrity, eliminate STDs….. & potentially prevent getting killed.
• If we wonder what Es we’re denying, there are many ways. We can always start by asking some basic Qs, like the obvious ones :
“What emotions can I name? Which ones do I think I have felt ? (depression, rage, anxiety….?) What am I feeling right now?
From there we can go on to: “What Es am I not expressing?” & then to “If I knew what I was feeling, what might it / they be?”.
If the answer is always the same “I don’t know” – it’s time for outside help (which we can all benefit from anyway), such as 12-Step meetings, therapy, reading, spiritual gatherings, healing groups …..
POST : “Getting to your Es – Over & Under” has a list of tools
NEXT: Repressing Es = Part 2