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A couple of weeks ago, I came across a writing about psychological self-defence mechanisms. How humans behave to certain stimuli that they receive in their lives, or diverse shocks they go through, and how that behaviour is categorised under the umbrella of self-defence mechanisms.

For instance, there is ‘denial’. I guess at some point, each one of us would have come across a story or certain news- that for some reason they didn’t want to believe. They thought believing it brought it to life, so they decided the best way to deal with the situation and to soothe their minds was to deny that it ever happened. So their dad never died, they never failed that test, that relationship never ended, even though they all did.

From the point of view of a reader, I dived in each emotion, how I think I related to each type in a specific moment, and I thought I understood after gaining that knowledge- if I am going through it, but I actually didn’t.

You see, I read about a type of self-defence called ‘repression’- when you consciously decide to react to something later, then you keep delaying, then you forget about it. Now that was mine. I went through a situation, it was tough, I got distracted- I don’t know willingly or not, and the more I delayed the healing, the more I forgot what I’d been through. Until one day, it was my birthday, the day in the year you feel loved, because if you didn’t then you’ve apparently chosen the wrong life, or people, or both. And there I was, going through the week like any normal week, until one day, in a gathering, I was surprised by people singing for me. Singing is normal for birthdays- pretty, happy, and collected. But this time it hit like a bullet, like a flashback of everything I’ve repressed. I realised that somehow I was incapable of embracing the love people were trying to give me, the gaps between my pieces were still too wide that people’s love just echoed inside, not knowing where to stay.

After this episode, I decided to face my unhealed wounds- my monsters and my fears, and I’m encouraging everyone to do the same. No matter what you’ve been through, it’s not too late to get working on it. People deserve to be able to love you, and you deserve to be able to accept it, and enjoy it!

GREG RAKOZY IVAN SAMKOV

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