3 Reasons Women Harbor Guilt and Shame: Part 1

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Yanla Vansant

For many women being all you can be is a struggle and a burden that is too heavy to bear.  In a time when women are wives, mothers, single mothers, working outside of the home and have demands from every corner there are some things that may fall by the wayside.  When this happens it can be so devastating to women that she begins to harbor guilt about not being able to do everything that she believes is expected of her.  The shame of not measuring up can also eat at her sense of self.  There are several reasons why women harbor guilt and shame but today let’s discuss these three:

  • Past Experiences of Abuse or Trauma
    • Many women have been victims of abuse.  Some have been abused from an early age.  The abuse could have even caused long-term trauma, or maybe the trauma was a witnessing of a horrible situation.

In these instances, women usually blame self for what happened.   The person who did the horrific thing has moved on but the individual who experienced it or witnessed it has held on to the guilt and shame of it.

Black Tears

  • Feelings of being all things to all people
    • This is an area that many women also struggle with.  It is in a woman’s nature to be nurturing so she wants to do what she can to help those she cares for.  The problem with that is that everyone who knows her will call on her to fix it, serve on the committee, drive the carpool, chaperone, or whatever it may be.

Busy Woman

Trying to help everyone is unrealistic causing her to feel that she is letting people down.  No one is able to be there for everybody.  That is unless you are Jesus, and I do not believe that you are.

  • Oppression
    • Women have been told for centuries that she is not good enough, pretty enough, educated enough, tough enough and will never measure up to her counterpart.  Women have been let down, stomped on, held back, and giving up on to the point when she feels that she is not worthy of any good thing or happiness.

Oppression_Woman

That is what being oppressed can do.  It can devalue everything that God said was good in you.  When women listen to what the world has to say about them instead of what God says about them then she begins to harbor guilt and shame.

Being able to understand why women harbor guilt and shame can be the first step in rectifying the problem.  For those who need assistance in organizing your thoughts Destination Greatness is available to help you sort them out.

Until next time keep the faith!

By:  Kristen Pettaway, MA LPC Liberty University |

Clinical Case Manager Intern Destination Greatness, PLLC

 

 

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