Disarming the Power of Shame

Shame is the painful feeling that tells us that something about us is unwanted or unworthy of love or belonging.

Shame is experienced most acutely when we are seen by the eyes of another. We’ve all had those moments where something we attempted to keep hidden about ourselves was exposed. Our face might become red, our bodies warm up, we avoid eye contact, our stomach drops, and we become watchful.

While we tend to think watching pornography will influence us to experience shame, the reverse is also true. The more we experience shame, the more we will be drawn to pornography. Although men and women do pursue compulsive sexual choices for pleasure and their corresponding neurochemicals, it’s worth considering that we can also pursue them for the purpose of self-condemnation.

All of us know the experiences in life where we feel shame, but rather than turning toward love or self-care, we turn toward behavior or a substance that we know will amplify the toxic inner critic’s voice.

One of the most enjoyable interviews I’ve read in recent years came from an interview with Andy Casagrande, the cameraman from Discovery Channel’s notorious show Shark Week. Casagrande was asked what in the world he does when a great white shark is swimming at him. He answered that he must do something counterintuitive: swim directly at the shark with the camera. This action seems to trigger a defense mechanism in the shark. “Now they’re like, ‘Wait a second, everything in the ocean swims away from me.’ The reality is that if you don’t act like prey, they won’t treat you like prey.”

Casagrande’s statement has a lot to teach us about disarming the power of shame: We should face it.

For the full article and the three ways to disarm the power of shame visit https://fightthenewdrug.org/3-ways-facing-your-shame-can-help-you-break-free-from-porn/


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Dave ScrivenComment