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Centerpointe Research

Protecting Yourself from Pain

Defending your point of view to protect yourself from pain can prevent you from facing and solving a problem.  We all want to avoid pain, especially the painful truth.  Sometimes we get into a situation where we offend someone without realizing it and  the person involved feels that they can’t reach you because you become so defensive when he or she tries to tell you about it.

This appears to happen more frequently with men because they are more accustomed to taking a stand on things and defending them.  Women are more used to giving in to men when forced to argue about something they differ about.  Women may still disagree with men after giving in to them; but they don’t tell men that.  Both don’t change their minds, but men are more open about it.

Frequently we feel very guilty that we hurt someone’s feelings and we find it hard to admit to it.  We, especially men, would like to explain it away.  Men will continue to hold on to their story which explains why they couldn’t have hurt someone’s feelings even though the person says they did.  It is hard to forgive yourself if and when you admit that you misread the situation and came across as an unfeeling lout or crazy stalker.  Taking this stance makes it more likely the person will make the same mistake in the future in a


Pain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

similar situation with either the same or a different person.  Personal growth groups or therapy groups are a place where a person can get confronted on this and encouraged to accept it.  Often feedback is not accepted in everyday situations where it takes the form of confrontation because it is too painful.


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