Level iii neurotic defenses intellectualization

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Level III - neurotic defenses (intellectualization, reaction formation, dissociation,  displacement, repression) Level IV - mature defenses (humor, sublimation, suppression, altruism, anticipation) Denial Denial is an ego defense mechanism that operates unconsciously to resolve emotional  conflict, and to reduce anxiety by refusing to perceive the more unpleasant aspects of  external reality. Denial is being used in a situation in which a person faced with a fact that is  uncomfortable or painful to accept rejects it, instead insisting that it is not true, despite  what may be overwhelming evidence. The subject may deny the reality of the  unpleasant fact altogether (simple denial), admit the fact but deny its seriousness  (minimization), or admit both the fact and seriousness but  deny  responsibility (transference). The concept of denial is particularly important to the  study of addiction. The theory of denial was first researched seriously by  Anna Freud . She classified denial as a mechanism of the immature  mind , because it conflicts with the ability to learn from 
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and cope with reality. Where denial occurs in mature people, it is most often associated  with death and dying. Research in this area has significantly expanded the scope and  utility of the concept.  Elisabeth K ü bler-Ross  used denial as the first of five stages in the  psychology of a dying patient, and the idea has been extended to include the reactions  of survivors to news of a death. Thus, when parents are informed of the death of a child, their first reaction is often of the form, "No! You must have the wrong house, you can't  mean our child!" Unlike some defense mechanisms postulated by  psychoanalytic theory  (for  instance,  repression ), the general existence of denial is fairly easy to verify, even for  non-specialists. On the other hand, denial is one of the most controversial defense  mechanisms, since it can be easily used to create unfalsifiable theories: anything the  subject says or does that appears to disprove the interpreter's theory is explained, not  as evidence that the interpreter's theory is wrong, but as evidence of the subject's being "in denial." The concept of denial is important in "twelve-step" programs, where the abandonment  or reversal of denial forms the basis of the first, fourth, fifth, eighth and tenth steps. The  ability to deny or minimize is an essential part of what enables an addict to continue his  or her behavior in the face of evidence that, to an outsider, appears overwhelming. This  is cited as one of the reasons that compulsion is seldom effective in treating addiction— the habit of denial remains.
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