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Welcome to the nexus of ethics, psychology, morality, philosophy and health care

Friday, April 17, 2015

We all feel disgust but why do some of us turn it on ourselves?

By Jane Simpson and Phillip Powell
The Conversation
Originally posted March 27, 2015

Here is an excerpt:

Self-disgust differs from other negative feelings that people have about themselves in a number of ways. While self-disgust is likely to happen alongside other self-directed issues such as shame, unique features include feelings of revulsion, for example when looking in the mirror, contamination and magical rather than reasoned thinking. These, taken with other characteristics, such as its particular cognitive-affective content, suggest an emotional experience that is different to shame (related to hierarchical submission and diminished social rank).

Disgust is not about just “not liking” aspects of yourself – the depth of the emotion can mean you can’t even look at yourself without being overwhelmed with revulsion. The feeling that you are disgusting also means that you are potentially toxic to others – so people can become isolated as they do not wish to “infect” and “contaminate” others with their own perceived “disgustingness”.

The entire post is here.

Editor's Note: This article pertains to psychotherapy with trauma, personality disorders, and eating disorders.