‘therapy & psychology’

Sex, Secrets, & Shame

As an everyday therapist, shame isn’t some abstract idea—it’s quite real to me. It’s why people keep secrets. It’s why they do exactly the opposite of what they want to—to prove that they don’t want it. It’s a big reason people behave self-destructively—unable to talk about their impulses, their feelings, or their curiosity, they act them out, despite the consequences. (Note: When the behavior involves sex, this may be mistaken as “addiction.” Nonsense.) There is no part of being human about which Americans feel more shame than sex. Predictably, that leads to sexual secrets, sexual violence, sexual acting out, and…

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