Quote from Patricia DeYoung’s Understanding and Treating Chronic Shame
Chronic shame is a hallmark of attachment trauma, of emotional misattunement or lack of validation by caretakers.
Shame is the belief not just that one has DONE something bad, but one IS bad. We hold shame away from the light because the idea that someone else might see and know our shame is so incredibly, sharply painful.
However, the light and a compassionate other are the only things that can truly help. I have yet to know a client whose shame is appropriate in size. Even when they have done truly bad things, their entire being isn’t bad.
And this goes doubly so for my trans and queer clients, because they have had these shameful messages, they internalized from their families reinforced by society at large, and sometimes by faith communities as well.
Isn’t it time to let go of that pain?