March 31, 2008
Reflections on therapeutic issues
I just read a definition of shame as suggested by Georg Hegel which is that shame is anger about that which ought not to be.
I read an example in Commons, Demick and Goldberg's (1996) treatement of adult development. Here's the gist. As a parent we get angry at our children for endangering their lives and punish them when they get hurt (e.g. falling out of a tree we might speak harshly and say "Didn't I tell you not to climb in that tree!?"), and so the parent's anger and the child's guilt are the recipe for the emergence of shame. From the parent's perspective there is a shame about failing to protect his or her child. Rather than deal with these feelings of failure (or more potently: vulnerability), the parent lashes out at the child. The parent blames the child for the parent's uncomfortable (or unconscious) feelings. Anger keeps the parent out of touch with feelings of vulnerability (which the child probably feels after having fallen from the tree) and in the move from helplessness to blame the parent finds it difficult to respond empathetically with care & concern.
Posted by gschache at March 31, 2008 11:32 AM
I'm not sure if I've ever equated anger with shame.
Anyway, I'm tagging you. :-)
Posted by: Lonely Dissertator at April 13, 2008 9:53 PM
Here's the link:
Posted by: Lonely Dissertator at April 13, 2008 9:55 PM