Hiding emotional pain

Many of us will develop a protective shell, to shield tender emotions. We show the world we’re okay, telling others we’re okay, then we begin to convince ourselves we’re okay.

Until I learned how to recognise the signs, I believe we’re not always consciously aware of what’s making is not fine. Sometimes emotional trauma lies below our conscious awareness. That means we’re aware of something that is making us feel unhappy, but we’re not always consciously aware of what that is. We just know we’re not feeling happy, but we have no idea why. Somewhere below our conscious awareness, lies a blockage that stops us from becoming aware of how we feel.

The not feeling happy feelings can range from feeling uncomfortable about something, to thoughts that involve either a physical or emotional pain brought about through certain events beyond our control. When we learn to look within ourselves for the answers we’re more likely to understand why we have trauma and then how to deal with that trauma.

When we learn to emotionally deal with and support ourselves we will also begin to talk more freely about how we feel. From a very early age, through necessity it’s easy to become self-absorbed. By being self-absorbed we begin to understand our pain. Instead of participating in life I would spend time observing life and that’s when I learned how to deal with trauma.

I know what it feels like to hold on to emotional pain, but it’s both necessary and important to let go and quit hiding behind the emotional pain that we feel.


3 Sep, 2013

4 thoughts on “Hiding emotional pain

  1. I’ve had to deal with a lot of emotional pain in my lifetime.

    I’ve dealt with it in some way or other most of the time, but there are times I don’t. Usually it involves another person and to deal with it I would have to confront that person, which I don’t like doing so I keep it within.

    Good post Ilana.

    1. Thanks Lisa. Sorry you had to deal with emotional pain. I know so many people close to me that don’t speak out and this is one of the reasons why I decided to write about hiding emotional pain.

      However hard it is to deal with emotional stuff, it’s even harder to deal with illness too. What we emotionally keep to ourselves can harm us. I have seen first hand what happens when we fail to talk about our issues.

      I hope that as time goes on Lisa, you find the courage to say what needs to be said. It’s something we all need to do.

  2. It’s a funny thing you would happen to broach this subject. I was watching a movie called People Like Us and some emotions that I had been hiding for a very long time bubbled up. I was crying and the subject was being the child of someone who did not recognize their child (illegitimate children).

    I thought I had this all locked away and this movie really hit a sore spot with me. My Mom did a great job of raising me on her own, married again and my step father was like a father to me. When he died, I felt like that chapter had ended and that my father was gone.

    I’ve spoken to my real father a couple of times as an adult, but we’ve hardly discussed these feelings of abandonment and hurt. It is something I am going to speak to my therapist about when I go see her later this month.

    I hope that in the end I will be able to put these feelings aside so that I can move on with my life. Good topic matter again Ilana!

    1. Thanks Maria. I’m so pleased this topic is something you will be addressing with your therapist.

      Perhaps when you’ve managed to work thing through you’ll be able to speak to your father about it. My father wasn’t great at discussing anything, but there wasn’t a day go back where I didn’t at least try.

      If you at least try but fail, you will have done your best. That way you don’t get to live with the what if’s. That’s the way I tend to look at things and it helps.

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