Denial: It’s The New Black

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This was written initially for the Studio 30+ Magazine. But I wrote something else for it instead. And I decided the timing was appropriate to post it here. For some reason… Hmm. Take it any way you want, but here goes:

Denial is my best friend.

A therapist tried and tried to get me to quit on it. But you never drop a best friend. Denial has gotten me through some really tough times. And yes, denial may have put me through the worst of those times, but it still dragged me out when I thought all I had left to do was drown.

Oddly enough I started writing this post when Eddie B Kuhl started what appears to be a series. She calls it “Sometimes”. I’m not as creative as Edie and call it straight out for what it is, I mean, a cat is a cat right?

How can denial be good?

When I look at a mountain of dirty dishes, I use denial as an ally to attack this mountain. I love a bubble bath, so for me doing the dishes is like a teeny tiny bubble bath exclusively for my hands.

I know flossing may be a burden, and I am most likely one of the rare people (other than dental hygienists and sociopaths) who floss daily. I actually love flossing. Or I should change that to I love the benefits of flossing. When I run my tongue against my teeth its like having a miniature silk factory working for me, those teeth are so silky smooth! When I brush my teeth at night with the flossing I allow myself to pretend my mouth is at the Spa. A Spa for mouthes…  Who doesn’t LOVE a Spa?

Paying bills? Now this is FUN. I pretend I’m some hot sexy secretary in an office and I control everything. Who gets paid when and how… Every bill I open up I sit there playing a little character in my head as I write out the check, add a little something-something on the note section, giggle and make sure all the correct account info is also written down. This secretary knows her boss may punish her for doing something incorrectly and she’s all about pleasing her boss. (I know, this part sounds sick, but it’s my game, MY game, and it works!)

When I craved going to foreign countries but didn’t have the means to pay for it, I’d sit behind this building in our city. It looked like a castle from some old country. Behind it there was this canal with locks they kept in it’s original state. I’d sit there. Close my eyes for a few minutes and picked a country, any country, like say Germany and allow my brain to focus on sounds that could convince me I was there, and also imagine smells and when I’d open my eyes I was there! Totally Oktoberfesting on the sights! And what had it cost me? Nothing. Did I crash afterward? No, not at all, I knew I was doing what Edie calls “sometimes” and it gave me moments of escape.

It’s not like I’m using denial to avoid my responsibilities. I use it as a tool to give me strength when I  come face to face with them. I mean, if I were to let my bills pile up until the bank comes in to take my possessions as I pretend they are movers helping me move into a nicer home it would be different. Or if I looked away from the sink and pretend flies weren’t buzzing around as you grab a dirty plate and shake off the green fuzzy mushroom that’s growing on it and use it (the plate not the fuzzy mushroom). Then what have you got? A bad case of salmonella and a swollen face.

Sadly enough my ex-therapist never agreed with the benefits of denial. I guess you can say she denied everything I tried to tell her in order to convince her of these numerous benefits. I fired her. As a therapist I mean. My happiness bubble may rely on something as weak as all these multiple illusions I create in my little world, but every time my bubble pops I throw myself in my dirty dishes where the bubbles are endless.

How about you? Do you ever use denial as a tool to face the world and conquer it? Or do you agree with the therapist and think all forms of denial are destructive?

p.s. The Minute Man’s Wife has given me award and I’ve been tagged by Chrissy at I Shoulda Been a Stripper. Two delightful blogs by the way… I will get to these soon. I promise!

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16 thoughts on “Denial: It’s The New Black”

  1. If denial is your friend when used to face problems, like you do. It's your enemy when you use it to avoid them.

    I want, so badly, to get to San Diego and hang with you and Denial. The two of you are AWESOME together!

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  2. It's called an imagination. Clearly, your therapist didn't have one.

    I use books to travel all the time. And I might steal the soapy bubblebath for your hands idea. Especially when it gets cold out…

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  3. I would say my powers of denial are very highly developed. I can simply wish things away. If I refuse to deal with them, they don't exist. Of course, my therapist must have gone to the same school as yours did…
    I try not to do it, but denial has served me well when I needed it!

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  4. Isn't that what our blogs are all about? I mean, IF our lives were interesting, people would want to read about it and follow it, right? There is nothing wrong with that!

    talkativetaurus.com

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  5. I just fell in love with you a little bit more. I can't wait to use your GREAT denial techniques! But I have to remember to stop telling my shrink these things. (and thanks for the shout out!)

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  6. when I worked in TBI ( traumatic brain injury) we would actually teach people what we called ” coping mechanisms” . In short it was all based on perspective and the ability to will yourself through a task, a day, a disability. Yes we taught DENIAL. Yes I raised my children with vivid denial. When you approach a therapist and they say you are in Denial, you need to say. ” why are you saying that like it's a bad thing?” It's only a bad thing if it's holding you back, or can cause future pain/injury to yourself or others. You clearly use “coping skills” to make your everyday life much more palatable. If more people did that, and were NOT told they were doing a bad thing, there would be a lot more happy people using rubber ducky fluffies in the shower and smiling.
    Love ya Nik, love this post.

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  7. I don't believe in denial, full stop.

    I do, however, believe in excess, self absorption, hedonism, nicotein, red wine with lemonade (that's like Sprite in the UK) and Spanish men (in general and also specifically Jarvier Bardem).

    I love my life.

    (And this blog. I'll be back soon.)

    – B x

    Like

  8. Denial? I don't use denial, I use “creative reality”….totally different thing right?!? It's healthy… F your shrink! Well, not literally, or at least deny it if you do, ok sweetness??

    Like

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