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Unread December 24th, 2010, 09:30 AM
toddatkins toddatkins is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Posts: 3
Default Re: Shame theory and Gestalt therapy

This is an interesting topic, I see it's been a good while since anyone has posted to it. I see a lot of "shame based" people in my private practice. I learned there was healthy shame and toxic shame. The toxic shame was where a person was given the message (directly or implied) that they are: worthless, less than, defective, damaged, bad, wrong, etc. But yes, the result (and perhaps the intention of the 'shamer') of the shame is disconnection, i.e. "I am better/smarter than you". It certainly drives a wedge between people and can indeed set up the dichotomy of better-than and less-than. People sometimes use toxic shame to maintain that "one up" position in a relationship. They also use it to keep people away---to create a protective distance, and to gain a false sense of feeling better about themselves.
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Todd Atkins, LCSW
Baton Rouge Counseling
batonrougecounseling.net

Last edited by toddatkins; December 24th, 2010 at 09:32 AM. Reason: afterthought.
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