Repression or dis-associative amnesia involves pushing the unpleasant thoughts, feelings, and impulses deep into the unconscious part of the mind. In other words, the person completely forgets the act and the circumstances surrounding it. Repression is thought to give rise to anxiety, which starts when a forbidden impulse threatens to enter the conscious mind.
Some of the examples of the repression defense mechanism include:
- A child, who faced abuse by a parent, later has no memory of the events but has trouble forming relationships.
- A woman who experienced painful labor but continues to have children (and each time the level of pain is surprising).
- An optimist remembers the past with a rosy glow and repeats mistakes.
- A man got a spider bite in childhood and may develop intense spider phobia but doesn’t recollect the incidence.
- A person tends to spank others while greeting others (the repressed idea of violence toward the other person).
There are two stages of repression:
- Primary repression: It is the process of determining what is self, what is other, what is right, and what is wrong. Once done, the child can differentiate between desires, fears, self, and mother/other.
- Secondary repression: This starts when the child realizes that acting on some desires may bring anxiety. For example, a child who is denied their mother’s breast feels threatened with punishment.
What is a defense mechanism?
A defense mechanism is a way to escape from unpleasant thoughts, events, or actions. These psychological coping strategies may help people to remove threats or unwanted feelings, such as guilt or shame. The concept of defense mechanism was first proposed by Dr. Sigmund Freud and has evolved over time. Defense mechanisms are not under a person’s conscious control, and they use them without realizing that they are implementing any strategy. These psychological strategies protect the person from anxiety arising from unacceptable thoughts or feelings.
The different types of defense mechanism include:
- Denial: In this defense mechanism, the person consciously refuses to accept that painful facts exist. For example, smokers may refuse to admit to themselves that smoking is bad for their health.
- Projection: In this defense mechanism, the person attributes their unacceptable thoughts, feelings, and motives to another person. For example, a person dislikes an individual, but instead of accepting that they dislike them, they blame another person for disliking that individual.
- Displacement: In this, the person may direct their strong emotions and frustrations toward an object or person. For example, getting angry at the child or dog after having a bad day at work.
- Regression: This defense involves returning to the earlier developmental stages when one faces stress or trauma. Some children may act as if they are younger again when they experience a sudden trauma or loss. Moreover, they may even wet the bed or suck their thumb.
- Rationalization: It is a substitution of a safe and reasonable explanation. For example, people who might be angry at coworkers for not completing work on time may be ignoring the fact that they were late for work.
- Sublimation: In this, the person may direct strong emotions and frustrations into something constructive or socially acceptable. For example, sports are an ideal way to turn our aggression into something useful.
- Reaction formation: People who use this defense mechanism may identify how they feel, but they choose to behave differently from their instincts. For example, a mother who bears an unwanted child may feel guilty for not wanting the child. So, she reacts by becoming overprotective to convince the child and herself that she is a good mother.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
McLeod S. Defense Mechanisms. Simply Psychology. https://simplypsychology.org/defense-mechanisms.html
Top What Is an Example of Repression Defense Mechanism Related Articles
Anxiety DisordersAnxiety is a feeling of apprehension and fear characterized by symptoms such as trouble concentrating, headaches, sleep problems, and irritability. Anxiety disorders are serious medical illnesses that affect approximately 19 million American adults. Treatment for anxiety may incorporate medications and psychotherapy.
Anxiety & Panic Disorders: Risk Factors for AnxietyDo you feel anxious? Many things could make it more likely. Learn more, including what you can do if you feel anxious.
Anxiety, Stress, and WorryWhat is the definition of anxiety, stress, and worry? Find treatments to relieve stress, eliminate worry, and combat anxiety as you discover how stress affects your body. Learn whether stress fights colds or encourages them, why some stress is bad and some is good, and why exercise and diet can be relaxing.
Common Medical Abbreviations & Terms
Doctors, pharmacists, and other health-care professionals use abbreviations, acronyms, and other terminology for instructions and information in regard to a patient's health condition, prescription drugs they are to take, or medical procedures that have been ordered. There is no approved this list of common medical abbreviations, acronyms, and terminology used by doctors and other health- care professionals. You can use this list of medical abbreviations and acronyms written by our doctors the next time you can't understand what is on your prescription package, blood test results, or medical procedure orders. Examples include:
- ANED: Alive no evidence of disease. The patient arrived in the ER alive with no evidence of disease.
- ARF: Acute renal (kidney) failure
- cap: Capsule.
- CPAP: Continuous positive airway pressure. A treatment for sleep apnea.
- DJD: Degenerative joint disease. Another term for osteoarthritis.
- DM: Diabetes mellitus. Type 1 and type 2 diabetes
- HA: Headache
- IBD: Inflammatory bowel disease. A name for two disorders of the gastrointestinal (BI) tract, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis
- JT: Joint
- N/V: Nausea or vomiting.
- p.o.: By mouth. From the Latin terminology per os.
- q.i.d.: Four times daily. As in taking a medicine four times daily.
- RA: Rheumatoid arthritis
- SOB: Shortness of breath.
- T: Temperature. Temperature is recorded as part of the physical examination. It is one of the "vital signs."
What Does Anxiety Do to Your Body?It increases a person’s chances of suffering from other medical conditions, such as heart diseases, raised blood pressure, high cholesterol obesity, depression and diabetes. In short term, anxiety may cause sleep disturbances and poor work performance.
What Symptoms Are Caused by Anxiety?It's normal to feel stressed or worried about things that happen in our everyday lives. However, people who experience anxiety disorders often feel heightened fear or worry about common situations.