The Hidden Truth About Men and Shame

The topic of shame is a hot one right now. Researchers, writers, and speakers are talking more about the hidden epidemic of shame. Shame lives in darkness and thrives on it for oxygen. The pain also accompanies it and that is a special kind of pain when men are involved. It is difficult to find an authentic voice through it all and experience the personal power that comes from speaking truth into shame.

Core Beliefs

A core issue is a negative self-belief that is validated by negative life experiences. Most core beliefs are born sometime during childhood, and are the result of early abandonment, abuse, loss, or neglect. Core issues are usually ‘unfinished business’ and misguided beliefs coming from traumatic events in a person’s life. Rationalizing the experience is one way to normalize things and minimize emotional impact. Abusive behaviors may be passed down if they are not dealt with appropriately.

Shame and Self-Repression

When young boys become men, they may be shamed by their peers. They are shamed for many reasons including not keeping up with other boys, lack of sexual prowess, or any number of things. Societal shame can be so damaging to men as they grow older. Men can learn to repress their authentic selves and engage in self-destructive behaviors as a result of shame.


The journey of healing shame for men is a long, hard road. The social constructs of masculinity must be taken on for things to make a big shift. Once a person understands that these are just societal pressures put on them for no reason, men can uncover and accept their normal selves. Shame can stem from unresolved childhood trauma, perpetuated by negative core beliefs. Addiction recovery can help men focus on shame and trauma while helping to heal the root causes of it all. Addiction is self-destructive and self-defeating. Shame that stems from childhood trauma can be addressed and dealt with during rehab and in recovery. There may be other mental health issues that pop up also for people who are dealing with shame. There are many layers to the way a man sees himself in the world, his community, and within himself. Working past all the misconceptions about who he is, how he should behave, and who he wants to be should be the focus of all the work in recovery. The main goal is to focus on what is causing some of the underlying issues and to continue working on releasing shame that builds destructive habits and seek a different way to move forward in recovery.

The Last Resort provides a safe, supportive environment for men in a retreat-like setting. Nature is an important component of recovery and healing. We strive to provide a place of enrichment that cultivates the inner as well as the outer journey of recovery. However you find your way to the Last Resort, we endeavor to provide a haven where you can journey through recovery feeling like your life and story have meaning and a purpose. Call us to find out more: 512-750-6750.