Shame Backlash

I think it is worth noting that when you consciously start bringing shame into healing there is often, usually, most likely, going to be a backlash.  If one is not prepared for that it can be really frustrating and often scary.  Many people stop their healing process when this happens.

We have identified with shame as our truth for a very long time.  That part of us has become our identity. When that identity is threatened it fights back.  It is helpful to be aware of this.

It seems innocent enough to start affirming our lovableness, and adequacy, and worth.  After all, it is the truth of who we are.  The part that believes we are unlovable, or inadequate, or unworthy, does not agree with the innocence.  So, the defenses come up, or the self defeating behaviors seem stronger than ever.  It is important to keep moving into our healing.  So, we notice the backlash, name it, and keep moving in a new direction.  It may sound something like:

Wow, I have not craved a drink (recovering alcoholic) for years and right now I really want one.  That must be the backlash that comes when I really start claiming my worthiness.  I will get some support for my recovery and keep moving in that direction, even if I am craving.

(This sort of minimizes the intensity, but hopefully makes the point.)

One time I was in an intention group.  We met and held each others intentions.  So, I claimed that I was done with shame.  I would no longer allow it to control me or be my truth.  OMG- I left the group and went on my merry way, only to be slammed by shame.  It came up all over the place and felt so true.  I learned that although I cavalierly claimed my truth:  “I am lovable and worthy as I am”, the shame was not at all cavalier about responding.  I had read about this reaction previously, and was able to recognize it at the time, but I was still stunned by the intensity of the old shame.

Just telling it like it is!


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