, 6 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
Yes. Often therapists focus on the triumph of breaking through a patient's defenses without first considering if and why they still need them.

Protective adaptations (even if they are harmful in outside situations) serve a purpose in the environments they developed in.
Sometimes people are untrusting because it is a necessary thing to not trust those around them.

Sometimes "learning to trust" in the abstract can cause more harm than good by encouraging people to ignore instincts that are functional and protective.
A frequent failing of therapists is the inability to understand that their own environment (with its expectations and presumptions) may be strikingly different than that of their patient.

This means that advice given or presumptions made may not be at all applicable.
Whereas for a therapist whose existence is marked by privilege may have the luxury of extending trust or the benefit of the doubt to others by default, for their patients, doing so may be a harmful or even deadly choice.
Defenses are important.

All living things have them.

They are responsible for keeping us safe and alive.

They should be respected as such, even when they are problematic or need to be recalibrated.
Even if you are not a therapist, it can be really helpful in life to approach people's defenses with the idea...

"This is unpleasant, but maybe it's really necessary for them"

This doesn't mean you can't be hurt or distressed by them, but it can help to understand them better.
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