I was reading Charlie Glickman’s blog earlier today and I came across a couple of posts, particularly this one, on the notion of shame and how it’s intertwined with distancing. As in: the act of distancing causes feelings of shame, but feelings of shame also cause acts of withdrawal.
I mean, it’s kind of a no-brainer when you think about it. People pulling away from you (rejection, distancing, whatever) makes you feel ashamed, and feeling ashamed makes you want to withdraw (or, for that matter, result in people being disinclined to hang out with you and your self-loathing, as the case may be). I realize that there’s a huge “duh” factor to this.
How does this relate to things like Healthy Relationships and the dance of coming together, moving apart that is basically a requirement if you want your relationship (friendship, romance, whatever) to not become seriously messed up?
Basically, I’m one of Those People who had to make a concerted effort and Do Research in order to get a decent understanding of what Boundaries are and why they are a Good Thing to have. But it never occurred to me that the normal shifts into, and (more to the point) out of, heightened states of intimacy might result in the same feelings of shame and withdrawal as acts/fears of rejection do.
I couldn’t help thinking that this explains a lot about me, and about how rotten and defensive I feel when I’m coming down after a really intimate experience. Like the crash after a big social weekend or an intense S/M scene, for example.
Has anyone else picked up on this?
– Ms Syren