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Independent expert answers
on psychiatry and psychology

Various Ways To Avoid Understanding Oneself

Abstract: Suppressed feelings stops you from handling your situation in a constructive way.

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Various Ways To Avoid Understanding Oneself

Intelligent natural language question-answering in the area of psychology and psychiatry. Ask a simple question  Local help Info


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Written by: Gunborg Palme, certified psychologist and certified psychotherapist, teacher and tutor in psychotherapy.
First version: 22 Jul 2008.
Latest revision: 09 Aug 2008.

I understand now how difficult it is to work with drug addicts and alcoholics and cure them. Their decisions are one thing; their actions are another. Perhaps anxiety is ever present and distorts their most promising intentions. I have gradually understood that I am one of them, although in food abuse. I believe that this time I shall and must succeed if my life is to continue.

To be honest, I wonder whether I really see myself as fat although I feel the rolls of fat on my body. In some way I wonder if I don't believe that I am fat. It feels so strange and confusing that I can't manage this situation but I must for my own sake.

I have an image in front of me of how I want to live and then I flee into a dream-world. I managed to read two books during the holiday and it frightens me that it would be enough if I just had books to flee into and then I could live through them. I live completely in the world of The book, and have no wish to be outside it.

I have pondered a great deal, and as I feel just now it is most important to be free in my mind. I want to feel strong. Self-confidence is something I both have and have not. It is hard.

I wanted to tell you something about my thoughts and I hope you are able to understand what I have written. I wonder if you can explain my anxiety and how it eats into me. I want to be a free person so much.

Answer:

You understand perfectly how an alcoholic feels and reacts when you speak about pushing things aside and not doing anything today. But you must choose to do something at once if you want to get a result.

Your experience of not seeing yourself as fat is common for those who are overweight. You have two different bodies: one is your real body and the other is the conception you have. These can be quite different; there are anorectics who only weigh 27 kilo, who think they are fat, and there are very overweight people who think that they are slim.

You wonder if the anxiety which permeates your body influences your eating problem? It most certainly does. When you are worried it is easy to drug yourself with food as it takes the worry away temporarily, but is quite the wrong method. The proper method is to try to really feel the worry, not flee from it, and then try to understand what it means. In this way you can become aware of your real problems and begin to do something about solving them effectively. Of course, it can be enriching to read books, but it seems as if you even use them as a protection against being confronted with your own feelings and problems.

Eating or drinking alcohol or using narcotics are ways to avoid understanding yourself. Sometimes understanding your own problem will cause anxiety, and some people will then use substance abuse to suppress understanding of their problem. This, however, is not a good solution, since:

  1. You cannot solve a problem if you do not recognize it.
  2. A problem causing anxiety will cause less and less anxiety the deeper you delve into your own anxiety. The anxiety is thus a temporary thing which will go away if you accept it and understand it and allow yourself to feel it.

Feeling mentally free and going down in weight are connected. If you flee from your feelings, difficulties and problems, you will never be free. This can only be done by confronting them.

When you decide to really experience and feel your worries you will be forced to find problem solutions which lead to a new and better way to live.

Intelligent natural language question-answering in the area of psychology and psychiatry. Ask a simple question:
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