Psych defense mech

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  1. Compensation
    is used to make up for perceived deficiencies and cover up shortcomings related to these deficiencies to protect the conscious mind from recognizing them

    A shorter than average man becomes assertively verbal and excels in buisness
  2. Conversion
    is the unconscious transformation of anxiety into a physical symptom with no organic cause. Often the symptom functions to gain attention or as an exuse.

    A student is unable to take a final exam because of a terrible headache
  3. Denial
    involves escaping unpleasant, anxiety causing thoughts, feelings, wishes, or needs by ignoring their existence

    A man reacts to news of the death of a loved one by saying "no, I don't believe you. The dr. said he was fine"
  4. Displacement
    is the transference of emotions associated with aparticular person, object, or situation to another nonthreatening person, object or situation.

    A patient criticizes a nurse after his family fails to visit
  5. Dissociation
    is a disruption in the usually integrated functions of consciousness, memory, identity, or perception of the environment. It may result in a separation between feeling and thought. This can also manifest itself in compartmentalizing uncomforable or unpleasant aspects of oneself.

    An art student is able to mentally separate herself from the noisy environment as she becomes absorbed in her work.
  6. Identification
    is attributing to oneself the characteristics of another person or group. This may be done consciously or unconsciously.

    An 8 year old girl dresses up like her teacher and puts together a pretend classroom for her friends.
  7. Intellectualization
    is a process in which events are analyzed based on remote, cold facts and without passion, rather than incorporating feeling and emotion into the processing.

    Despite the fact that a man has lost his farm to a tornado, he analyzes his options and leads his child to saftey.
  8. Introjection
    is the process by which the outside world is incorporated or absorbed into a person's view of the self.

    After his wife's death, a man has transient complaints of chest pains and difficulty breathing the sympoms his wife had before she died.
  9. Projections
    refers to the unconscious rejection of emotionally unacceptable features and attributing them to other people, objects, or situations. You can remember this defense through the childhood retort of "What you say is what you are"

    A man who is unconsciously attracted to other women teases his wife about flirting.
  10. Rationalization
    consists of justifying illogical or unreasonable ideas, actions, or feelings by developing acceptable explanations that satisfy the teller as well as the listener.

    I didn't get a raise because the boss doesn't like me
  11. Reaction formation
    is when unacceptable feelings or behaviors are controlled and kept out of awareness by developing the opposite behavior or emotion.

    John who despises Jerry, greets him warmly and offers him food and drink and special attention.
  12. Regression
    is reverting to an earlier, more primitive and childlike pattern of behavior that may or may not have been previously exhibited.

    A 4 year old with a new baby brother starts scuking his thumb and wanting a bottle
  13. Repression
    is a first line psychological defense against anxiety. It is the temporary or long term exclusion of unpleasant or unwanted experiences, emotions, or ideas from conscious awareness. This happens at an unconcious level.

    A man forgets his wife's birthday after a marital fight
  14. Splitting
    is the inability to integrate the positive and negative qualities of oneself or others into a cohesive image. Aspects of the self and of others tend to alternate between opposite poles; for example, either good, loving, worthy and nurturing, or bad, hateful, destructive, rejecting, and worthless.

    A toddler views her parents as superhuman and wants to be like them
  15. Sublimation
    is an unconscious process of substituting mature, constructive, and socially acceptable activity for immature, destructive and unacceptable impulses. Often these impulses are sexual or aggressive.

    A woman who is angry with her boss writes a short story about a heroic woman
  16. Suppression
    is the conscious denial of a disurbing situation or feeling. For example, Jess has been studying for the state board exam for a week solid. She says " I won't worry about paying my rent until after my exam tomorrow"
  17. Undoing
    is most commonly seen in children. It is when a person makes up for an act or communication.

    After flirting wiht her male secretary, a woman brings her husband tickets to a concert he wants to see.
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Psych defense mech
2011-11-07 17:18:45

Psych defense mechanisms
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