Invalidation, a subtle form of emotional abuse, and often experienced by people who self-harm
Invalidation is to reject, ignore, mock, tease, judge, or diminish someone’s feelings. When we invalidate a person’s feelings, the implied messages are – I know what you should feel more than you know about yourself – You must be weird for not feeling what I feel – I don’t approve of what you feel – Don’t be yourself. Be what I expect you to be.
Psychological invalidation is one of the most lethal forms of emotional abuse. It kills confidence, creativity and individuality. Each person’s feelings are real. Whether we like or understand someone’s feelings, they are still real. Rejecting feelings is rejecting reality. It is like telling water to not be wet. There are many forms of invalidation. Most of them are so insidious that we don’t even know what is happening.
Are you agitated after reading this? You better be! But don’t worry, you will get over it…
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