Why Shame is a Core Issue for Men (and How to Heal)

Shame is the sense there is something fundamentally wrong with me.’ the sense is that you are unworthy of love. Shame harms self esteem and even leads to self-contempt. There is man shaming that happens between men who assume every man should know certain things and there is also shaming within a family where people shame kids and family members. Men are not exempt from experiencing shame. Find out why this core issue is so key to healing for men in recovery.

Men’s Self Esteem

Men are shamed in our culture all the time. Alongside major shaming events are small day-to-day humiliations that pile up to undermine men’s self esteem. Some of these include:

  • Men who are not into sports
  • Men who don’t get certain jokes
  • Men who don’t understand cars or computers
  • Men who feel subservient to women in other mens’ eyes
Fear of Shame

Hurt and shame go hand-in-hand. Many men not only have been regularly shamed, they live with anxiety about further shaming. They live in fear of intimidation and humiliation. They are vigilant, guarded, and distant. They may even act out by bullying, abusing, and leaning towards violence to cope. Men go through life like they’re fighting a war and don’t even know it.

Healing Shame

Men who confront their shame head on are able to work on power and control tactics and respect women (and themselves). Cognitive-behavioral therapy can help but it is not enough to heal deep wounds. Men don’t make progress oftentimes just with counseling because they are not treating underlying issues. The major goal is to help people develop shame resilience:

  • Identify underlying triggers
  • Practice awareness
  • Share stories of shame with others
  • Speak about shaming events

Empathy from others can grow out of vulnerability to disclose what feels shaming. It reduces the feeling of shame and makes your view of the incident more balanced and honest.

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.