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Consciousness and Avoidance

Many people, in attempting to cope with something, make the decision of not wishing to know certain things, leaving them rest, hushing up the whole thing, etc. This decision can occur with reflection or be simply practiced. How does this become dysfunctional avoidance? Firstly, there is the danger that unconscious processes affect life and experiencing without control and without being attributed. Secondly, and this is usually the larger problem: If there is something about which I know nothing, or wish to know nothing, then I cannot go into contact with others about it. Therefore, I remain alone. And in this way the bad experience of one’s own tragedy continues. One was alone with it, uncomforted, misunderstood, and for a lifetime this remains so. Even the importance of being alone is usually belittled (“Others can’t help me with this in any case! Why then stir up the old pain?”). This is where much significance attaches to rediscovering the longing to share with others, the processing of repressed aspects of the inner life. Seen in this light, it is accordingly important that the counsellor offers perceivable contact and is empathic as a human. Otherwise many people will not even be able to or wish to talk about certain things.

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