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all defense mechanisms involve this by blocking painful memories and thoughts. By itself, repression refers specifically to our inability to remember things that cause us anxiety. We push them out of our consciousness into our subconscious mind.


defense mechanism that offers self-justifying explanations in place of the real, more threatening, unconscious reasons for one's actions


psychoanalytic defense mechanism by which people disguise their own threatening impulses by attributing them to others


a defense mechanism in which unpleasant thought or desires are ignored or excluded from consciousness


A defense mechanism where undesired or unacceptable impulses are transformed into behaviors which are accepted by society.

Reaction Formation

psychoanalytic defense mechanism by which the ego unconsciously switches unacceptable impulses into their opposites


defense mechanism in which an individual faced with anxiety retreats to a more infantile psychosexual stage, where some psychic energy remains fixated


psychoanalytic defense mechanism that shifts sexual or aggressive impulses toward a more acceptable or less threatening object or person, as when redirecting anger toward a safer outlet


highly imaginative writing that contains elements not found in real life


defense mechanism; thinking abstractly about stressful problems as a way of detaching oneself from them; Example: After learning that she has not been asked to a classmate's costume party, Tina coolly discusses how social cliques control school life.

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