Sent by our reader Saertna:
Dr. Hilary Knatz, states that “Denial, is a way of coping with unpleasant realities”. Denial, in the psychological/psychiatric vernacular, is a defensive strategy to minimize anxiety. It is defined and conceptualized in a number of ways. In classical Freudian terms, denial is a defense mechanism invoked by a person when there is a danger that he or she will become aware of or act on unconscious primitive impulses that are unacceptable. We defend against such impulses, it is said, by unconsciously limiting our awareness of them, or perhaps attributing them to others.
Having no true identity, for example, necessary to build a new Nation is painful, shocking and unacceptable. The Patient refuses unconsciously to accept this historical fact. He denies it. It is his defensive strategy to minimize anxiety and moral pain. The Oxford English Dictionary defines denial to be “the asserting to be untrue or invalid; also, the denying of the existence or reality of a thing”. Denial is the refusal to believe or accept the reality that certain events have happened, are happening, or will happen. FYROmians express this refusal to believe or accept the reality of the clear fact that they have absolutely no ethnical background and or connection to ancient Greek Makedonia. The refuse to believe that Makedonia has never been a part of their history, is not part of their history, will never become part of their history.
To accept the reality would bring emotional pain, so the events are denied. Denial is the primary psychological symptom of addiction. You cannot work on a problem unless you accept that it exists. There are several defining characteristics that identify the possibility that a patient may be in denial. Some examples include pretending something does not exist when in reality it does.
Our FYROMian patient pretends that the lack of evidence supporting their Illusion does not exist. Seeing the problem as being caused by something or someone else. FYROMians claim that the problem is caused by the Greeks not themselves. The behavior is not denied, but its cause is someone else’s responsibility, in this case the Greeks. Offering excuses, alibis, justifications, and other explanations for behavior. Becoming angry and irritable when reference is made to the condition. One person’s denial can expand into a group denial, most immediately, perhaps, to the family/Nation system. Family/Nation members play along with the addict’s behavior, assume the addict’s guilt, and maintain a secretive united front with the outside world (McCracken, 1998).
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