The Shadow Side of Human Resiliency
The title of this article could be “When Healthy Denial Becomes Unhealthy” but the human capacity for resilience seems to be the real issue. I’ll tell you why.
Indeed the problem I believe we are facing involves both denial and resiliency. In some situations it is more difficult to tease the two apart. So I will comment on both. First, a little explanation: Human resiliency is usually called to mind when a person has gone through a particularly traumatic experience and they spring back from it to a rather normal state of mind relatively quickly. The level of trauma, and what is considered a “normal state of mind,” and what is considered “quickly,” are obvious variables to consider. Psychologists have never been able to quantify these “confounding variables” and what makes one person “spring back” and another person stay mired in a similar trauma has remained a mystery. Some people reading this will say, “well, that’s a no brainer to me!” (no pun intended) and will possibly check another black mark to psychologists. Keep in mind it is just as difficult to quantify the quality of psychologists—they come in a very diverse variety.
Resiliency therefore can be said to vary from person to person, but the person in question generally knows the trauma they are being resilient toward—to be resilient to something, i.e., “get through it,” you have to know what it is. Denial is a bit different. You may know for a moment what you are denying, but the whole point of denial is to not see what it is you are denying for what it really is. Denial could be an element of resiliency, and if so, there may be an issue. But just to keep this article relatively simple, let’s just say the two could go together, and function together, in a particular way in a particular situation.
So what? Well, my obnoxiously inquisitive mind had this thought venture into it after writing one of my last articles, Waking Up in a Nightmare, which concerned itself with the trans human track we seem to be on, and the fact that as we recklessly bulldoze our way into better and better ways to kill ourselves and destroy our very humanity we don’t seem to have the ability to stop and say, “hey, wait a minute, what the hell are we doing?” I believe we do NOT do that because we are too resilient to the harm we have already done, and at the same time are in denial of the harm we are currently, and will continue in the future, creating.
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