State of denial
Denial is the psychological process by which human beings protect themselves from things which threaten them by blocking knowledge of those things from their awareness. It is a defense which distorts reality; it keeps us from feeling the pain and uncomfortable truth about things we do not want to face. If we cannot feel or see the consequences of our actions, then everything is fine and we can continue to live without making any changes. Denial comes in many forms. It is not just for chemical dependents either. If you are human, you have denial about something--your relationships, your behavior, your health, your family, etc. We all want everything to "be fine." We have denial to keep us from pain state of denial.
For persons who are chemically dependent, to keep their denial is to die. In the process, they create pain for those around them, and they have denial about that, too. To recover, they need to see their denial and see how it works so that they can loosen the grip of their addictions.
Denial is replaced by the truth and acceptance. To be in denial feels like anger, fear, shame, and isolation. Instead of being cold and cut off from themselves and others, they can be warm and begin to grow again.Defenses are the specific way we ward off attacks on our denial. Some defenses are conscious and we are aware of them. Others are subconscious. We use both to keep our denial intact. Listed below are common defenses, or forms of denial. We use all forms of denial, although there are some that become our favorites tease and denial.
Denaial - Symptom of Alcoholism
One of the most frustrating factors in dealing with alcoholism, as a relative, friend or professional, is it is almost always accompanied by a phenomenon known as "denial."
In the long path the alcoholic takes toward mental, physical and moral decline, usually the first thing to go is honesty. He simply lies about his drinking. Little lies at first.
But these simple acts of denial, lying about his drinking or refusing to discuss it, are clues that the alcoholic himself deep down inside knows that he has a problem. If it's not a problem, why lie about it to anyone? To protect them? But the true alcoholic, the person that has the disease, covers up and denies his drinking out of his own feelings that there is something different or "wrong" about it.
Somewhere inside he realizes that his drinking means more to him that he is willing to admit. As the disease progresses and his drinking begins to cause real problems in his life, remarkably the denial likewise increases. Even though his sprees have gotten him into some real trouble, he denies it has anything to do with his drinking. Some say this is purely a defense mechanism in denial of death.
How is this possible? Usually by the time the disease has gotten to the crisis point, he has developed a support system of family and friends who unwittingly enable him to continue in his denial.Because they love the affable, clever and witty alcoholic, they act to protect him by covering for him, doing the work that he doesn't get done, paying the bills that he doesn't pay, rescuing him from his scrapes with the law, and generally taking up the responsibilities he has abandoned.