Why We Hide Emotionally (2 things we need)

Today I woke up feeling strange. Have you ever done that? Just felt weird inside.

There was a vague sense of discontent rolling around inside me.

I didn’t like it so I practiced some gratitude. I looked for reasons to be content and counted my blessings expecting it to fix my problem.

I thought my problem was just a superficial emotion and wanted a quick fix so I could just go on with my day as I’d planned.

It helped. But it didn’t take care of ALL the feeling of strange happening inside of me.

It was deeper.


I wanted it to be simple. I didn’t want it to be deeper.

That made me sad and mad. Now I needed to find out what was going on inside of me or waste a day to this strange weirdness.

I became pondery, like in my article How to get the support you need going from subject to subject pondering things.

I realized I had a pile.

I started to see my discontent was a thin blanket covering those deeper issues. It made we want to hide.

Have you ever wanted to hide?

The last week and a half I’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster of elation, frustration, sorrow, stress, disappointment, anxiety, relief, fear, and anger caused by circumstances beyond my control and the results of choices I made.

On Friday I got sick. It’s the second time this year I’ve gotten sick.

In January I had a moment of joy when I realized I hadn’t been sick all winter. And maybe even been healthy for over a year.

Then I got sick. Real sick.

And then I got better.

But then here I got sick again.

I was getting better. But then this morning I felt like I was getting worse and I was pissed.

I hate being sick. My heart ranted, Do I have to go to the doctor again?

I hate going to the doctor too. I prefer to use faith when I can but obviously, there is something I don’t know going on.

I spent time in prayer seeking comfort, answers and a way out of the inner darkness.

I remembered an old post of mine When it’s dark inside and read it. Even though it was from last June and my life has changed so much it still helped me.

It reminded me it’s ok to not be ok.

It reminded me that faith is not magic.

I knew these things. But sometimes I’m pretty hard on myself.

I’m a work in progress. Things don’t always go like we plan. And that has to be ok. Sometimes it even becomes good.

Things don’t always go like we plan. And that has to be ok. Sometimes it even becomes good. Click To Tweet

I reread my article on what it means to be seen and one of the comments about hiding. It seemed today was the day to address the hiding part instead of my original intent.

So what makes us want to hide?

I just finished the book Daring Greatly by Brenȇ Brown. It talks about vulnerability and shame. It champions courage. I thought about our need to be seen and how far we are willing to go to get that need met.

But there are the times when we feel insufficient.

Or we make a mistake.

Or feel sucker punched by life.

Fear arises and we want to hide instead of being seen.

What drives this fear?


Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging. -Brenȇ Brown

Shame speaks against your inherent worth and value. Shame says you don’t deserve to be seen, to be known or to be loved.

Shame entered our world via a poor choice by two people who believed a lie. The lie was that they were incomplete and they needed to go rogue to gain what they lacked.

The truth is they didn’t lack anything and they already were complete. It was their going rogue that caused separation, disconnection leaving them incomplete.

When the one who made them complete in Him from the start (God) came to visit, they hid in shame, afraid to reconnect.

But shame lies. We ARE worthy of love.

Shame lies. We ARE worthy of love. Click To Tweet

God determined it from the beginning of creation!

We were created for love, for connection, for belonging. That is why they are basic human needs.

When they are unfulfilled we feel the disconnection, the aloneness.

That is why even when we are hiding our heart holds onto the secret desire to be found.

But that secret desire is afraid.

The fear says What if no one notices I’m hiding? What if no one comes looking? What if no one cares? What if I really am all alone?

The things that drove us into hiding are things we want to hide — but we also desperately want to reveal.

We know it is in the light that we can get rid of those things.

We know it is in the light that we will be really seen.

But we feel that fear. We feel the possibility of being wounded.

Two things are needed here.

Vulnerability and empathy.

Vulnerability picks up courage and takes a risk to be seen. It comes out of hiding.

Sometimes that can be as simple as admitting something to yourself. Yes, we humans try to hide things from our self. You are not alone in doing this. I have done this.

Other times it may be a bigger or broader issue and we need to talk with someone else. Not just anyone, but someone who you have reason to trust. That can be a friend or a counselor or God.

Empathy connects.

It says things like I understand. I feel you. I’ve been there. I’ve felt that. It’s normal. It validates that we are not alone in our normal human condition.

In essence what we need is for love to find us.

This begins with just us but doesn’t end there. We need to have compassion on ourselves when we fail regardless of how big or small it feels. Remind ourselves of our value. Remind ourselves that we are loved.

It is with this remembering we gain the courage to emerge out of the darkness, to come out of hiding. Then we can connect with others. Call out for help. Ask for support.

Sometimes before we can reach out we need to look inside. Like I did today.

In this case, we can find a safe hiding place in God until we are ready to come out. If you are in this situation watch/listen to this video You Are My Hiding Place to comfort your soul.

Or if you aren’t convinced that God is safe. That He is the love to find you. Maybe you’re even hiding from Him. I’ve been there / done that. If you want to be found watch/listen to this video to help you come out of hiding.

But wherever you are. You are not alone.

How can I support you?

Take courage & share in the comments here or hop over to the original article at my website.

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Danielle Bernock is a the author of Emerging With Wings: A True Story of Lies, Pain, And The LOVE that Heals. Follow her on Twitter at @dbernock

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Originally published at www.daniellebernock.com on March 16, 2017.