Let's face it ... we’ve all got secrets …. Whether we have thoughts and embarrassing experiences we want to keep to ourselves, or we are confidants to the secrets of others.
Why do we keep secrets? Fear. We fear judgment which results in humiliation, punishment, or being ostracized. Shame is very painful and very traumatic. We do whatever we can to avoid it. And so we keep secrets.
GUILT = I DID something bad (self-judgment)
SHAME = I AM bad/unworthy (self-punishment)
HUMILIATION = Others think I am bad (feeling shamed by others)
DISGUST = Someone else is bad (shaming others)
Shame needs 3 things to exist … secrets ~ silence ~ judgment.
You don’t even have to feel shame to be traumatized by it. Fear of being humiliated is traumatic enough.
Shame is the one emotion you should never have to feel. Nothing makes you feel more alone and unworthy. Shame prompts guilt, insecurity, self-loathing, and a loss of self worth.
Using shame, criticism, guilt, or humiliation to parent causes children to perceive they are not worthy. Children begin to believe love must be earned, that they are not lovable unless they are perfect, or that they are different and don’t fit in.
It is your negative childhood experiences that prompt you to become a ‘people-pleaser’. Wearing a mask of ‘niceness’, acting to please others, and not being your true self are symptoms of living with shame. You learned quickly that being a ‘good girl’ causes less friction, blame, upset or punishment.
But, false ‘nice’ behaviours seriously undermine confidence and self esteem, escalating into even more guilt, insecurity, shame, and isolation from others, and a need to control how others perceive you. You begin to lose your real self. You must constantly live with the stress of role-playing and being found out as a fraud.
How we deal with shame:
. move away (secrecy, withdrawal, silence, cry, hide, suicide)
. move toward (seek to appease and please)
. move against (aggression, trying to gain control over others, shaming others (use shaming to overcome shame)
. control and perfectionism (role-playing to maintain an image and stay safe. “If I look perfect and act perfect I can avoid the pain of judgment, blame and shame”)
Inner conflict and feeling unworthy and unable to be yourself are barriers to being close with others. You may create rifts and conflict as a way of avoid vulnerability and intimacy. Or, you may try to manipulate how others perceive you to hide what you don’t want them to see. The underlying goal is to gain approval, love or loyalty from others so that you can feel validated and love yourself.
But, without a commitment to honesty with yourself and with others you become untrustworthy. You can never really be comfortable or at home in your own body. You won't be able to nurture yourself in healthy ways. Meaningful, enduring relationships will constantly elude you. You will never get your needs met and will always feel sadness and longing. You may then compensate with over-eating, drugs or alcohol.
Inevitably these behaviours only lead to even greater insecurity, diminished self esteem, and a greater need to control the perceptions of others. It should be no surprise that narcissism is born of guilt and shame.
Sometimes guilt grows into self-judgment, self-degradation, unworthiness and self-punishment. The result is a life of limitation, struggle, and starvation of abundance, emotional satisfaction, and happiness.
Health issues such as neurological disorders, liver disease, kidney disorders, stiffness or pain in the neck and shoulders, ‘accidental’ injuries, and cancer all reveal that something is eating away at you emotionally.
The older you are, the more likely you are to hold secrets or shame. But, you don’t have to be a wrong-doer to experience shame or feel its effects. You feel guilt and shame equally when you keep someone else’s secrets, or hide and protect their transgressions or lies.
That is how innocent victims of sexual abuse, spousal abuse, and bullying come to feel shame and guilt.
When someone refuses to apologize for their wrongdoing, they are showing that they feel no sense of remorse, shame, responsibility, or guilt. Invalidation and denial makes it very hard for a victim to forgive and let go of a hurt. The victim then takes on the shame, guilt, and responsibility, by feeling that they must, therefore, be the one at fault. In this way, victims are actually victimized three times.
At the age of 13 I became my mother’s unwilling confidant. I carried her secrets and her deepest negative feelings for a lifetime afterward. That’s a tough burden for a young teenager. But, it was my younger sister for whom I have carried the bigger burden of so many secrets.
My sister was a rebel. She discovered early in life how to garner freedom to do what she wanted, and age was no barrier. She was actually quite proud of her clever exploits.
Acting from a sense of what I thought was ‘big sister’ protective loyalty, throughout our childhood and teenage years and long into adulthood until very recently, I covered for, hid, or turned a blind eye to my sister’s escapades, betrayals, manipulations, indiscretions, lies, and sometimes illegal activities, keeping her secrets with my silence, pretending I did not know, convincing my mother not to exact punishment, and often bearing punishment myself for that protection.
Even though my sister often used, sabotaged, or hurt me deeply and quite deliberately, I thought I was being noble, spiritual, altruistic, and a good sister. It made me feel like a hero. She simply considered me a fool and a patsy. It emboldened her and she became quite proud of her exploits and quick-witted ability to talk her way out of anything.
I realize now that I failed miserably as her older sister and mentor. I failed my mother and so many others who were hurt or whose lives were damaged by my sister’s self-serving acts. That hurts.
Most of all I failed myself by carrying that misguided burden of my sibling's secrets all these years as though it were a spiritual badge of honour. Eventually I became angry at my sister, when I should have been angry at myself. Coming to terms with that hasn’t been easy.
I’ve come to understand that I inadvertently taught my sister many unhealthy behaviours and beliefs by always staying silent, pretending that I did not know, condoning, or taking ‘the high road’ when I should actually have spoken up or protested. From that misguided protective love she learned how to hone excuses and manipulation into an art form and came to believe she has done no wrong and is infallible. She carries no remorse or guilt. I carried it for her. There are a lot of parents who have done the same for their children.
My sister hated me for being happy and honourable. She could never understand why happiness eluded her.
Guilt or shame, whether your own or the secrets you carry for others, creates judgment which then causes inner conflict and unworthiness that prevents you from getting too close to others. You avoid vulnerability and intimacy. Or you create a false persona to ensure everyone loves you and can’t see the darkness you are hiding.
Freedom is the reward when you become heart-honest enough to fully own your mistakes and transgressions so that you can finally let them go and no longer have to keep secrets or feel guilt. You don’t have to share openly, if it might hurt others. Write down how you feel, and then burn it. The act is cathartic.
But, if you carry shame or guilt that should rightfully belong to others, sometimes those people need to be called on their actions.
Too many people struggle with forgiving and then feel guilty for not being able to do so. When the betrayal is great or consistent, or holds certain dynamics, there is a fear of letting down your guard and allowing it to happen again. And that denies forgiveness and trust.
You do not have to feel guilty if forgiveness does not arise. Forgiving may prematurely bypass your own rightful anger, confusion, and sense of loss or betrayal, and does not allow for a process of building self-trust.
Here are 4 solutions to help you resolve your painful past ... Choose one that works for you. Or try them all.
1) Don't wait for an apology that will never come. Your abuser is living with their own unresolved inner conflict. Instead, write your own eloquent apology from your abuser--the one you want and need to receive. Imagine that apology actually coming from your abuser.
2) Write a letter to your abuser. Write down everything you feel. Pour your heart out. Every little detail. The act of writing helps balance your left and right brain hemispheres and effectively dissipates the energy of your emotions. You suddenly feel heard, validated, vindicated. You gain clarity and resolve. Healing and release takes place. You don't even have to send your letter. You may even feel more free if you shred or burn it.
3) Resolve is sometimes the only choice. You cut the chord with your dysfunctional relationship. It allows you to accept that the person is just who they are, while you adopt the strength to refuse their influence in your own life. It’s a process of self-honouring and reaching a deeper understanding of what you endured that can allow for greater acceptance and inner peace.
4) We have essence fusions that can help you effortlessly achieve resolve and healing ... Divorce Heal, Serenity, Deep Wounds of Childhood, I Am Not a Victim, Sexual Abuse Release
I am always grateful for the gift of Enlightened Feelings living flower frequencies. 30 drops a day in a glass of water makes the release of one's harmful, hurtful past so effortless and natural.
Healing your past with our flower frequencies fusions is a 2-step process. First remove negative feelings and control issues and overwrite your past experiences. Then instil positive empowering feelings
We recommend taking a control releasing essence formula such as Control Release or I Am Flexible before beginning any protocol for releasing long-held or childhood shame
Helpful flower frequencies fusions for dissolving guilt, judgment and shame: I Am Not a Victim, Guilt Release, Forgiveness, Self Forgiveness, Forgive My Past, Flow, Self Acceptance, My Authentic Self, Soul Retrieval, I Am Deserving
Helpful flower frequencies fusions for increasing your self esteem and personal power: I Am Not a Victim, Self Esteem, Empowerment, Love Yourself, My Authentic Self, Respect Me!, Social Empowerment