Shame

March 15, 2020 John R. Hatfield 0 Comments

John R. Hatfield

“A PERVASIVE SENSE OF SHAME IS THE ONGOING PREMISE THAT ONE IS FUNDAMENTALLY BAD, INADEQUATE, DEFECTIVE, UNWORTHY, OR NOT FULLY VALID AS A HUMAN BEING.”

Merle Fossum

Shame does not know a gender, sexual orientation, or racial boundary. Its destructive nature
does not discriminate. Shame causes us to hate ourselves and hating ourselves ultimately leads
to death of the soul, our very being. Self- hate pain, as well as being the hate object by others,
that you are fundamentally flawed can lead to destructive behaviors and many times suicide.
The pervasive sense that one is fundamentally bad, inadequate, defective, unworthy, or
not fully valid, has given definition through the years to many by the following agents of shame:
family, religious communities, media, schools, peers, workplace, and culture. It has robbed the
person of their identity, self –respect, dignity, and personhood. These destruction agents pass the
verdict of condemnation, judgment, and hate. When someone or a culture takes the position of
judging, they are taking a position of superiority over the person they judge. This self -righteous,
arrogant, condescending, damning position comes from unhealthy people.
Renowned shame researcher Brene Brown (2007) defines shame as “the intensely
painful feeling or experience of believing we are flawed and therefore unworthy of acceptance
and belonging-something we’ve experienced, done, or failed to do makes us unworthy of connection”. Alan Wright (2005) defines shame as “a feeling of being inwardly flawed-of not measuring up”. One of our deepest needs and longing as humans is to feel and be loved not for what we accomplish but simply to be loved unconditionally for who we are. Everyone has a deep need to belong, to be connected.

Shame dominated my life for years. I hid in fear and presented a false persona not the
true me. Honestly, I hated myself and that was a terrible place. It was destructive, no one knew
because my persona carefully created a beautiful mask for my masquerade. Actually, I had
several masks I could wear depending on the situation. Christianity believe it or not became
something to hide behind, defining my masculinity from being an athlete or from my muscles
was another, especially when I was called a sissy in middle school.
They all gave me incredible validation, acceptance, love, and yup the applause. But they
were just masks, not the true John.

Our calling is to come along side you, shoulder-to-shoulder, heart-to-heart, and help you master yourself, enter your fear arenas professionally, personally, and relationally calling out your BRAVE and strengthen you to embody certain brave ass virtues needed to persevere life’s adversities.

 

 

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Have you created and worn masks that hide the true you?
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Shame was last modified: June 21st, 2021 by John R. Hatfield