Read "A Guilt-Based Home is Best" offline:

Episode 34: Shame is the enemy of the soul. It causes you to judge yourself poorly which sets up a cascade of badness. Depression, guilt, self-loathing, self-neglect: all can be the result of shameful attacks on your character.

Guilt vs. Shame is one of the core 21 video lectures in The Mental Component, but here is a summary:

Guilt says “I stole the piece of gum.”

Guilt is about the act that was wrong. Own it. Admit it. Don’t do it again. But MOST importantly, make amends. Offer to make the situation right no matter what the request. This will improve your spiritual health and you may even sleep better once it’s over. (This approach also helps heal moral injury.)

Shame says “You’re a thief.”

Shame goes much further and attacks the character of the person. This must never be allowed in a household where PTSD healing is supposed to occur. It’s simply incompatible. At best, you’ll be held back in your growth. At worst, you’ll be made worse in the continued presence of shame, degradation, disrespect and the other junk narcissists try to get away with.

By Doctor Dan

[veteran, physician, psychiatrist]

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