Guilt....or shame?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-11-2006
Guilt....or shame?
2
Wed, 04-13-2011 - 6:03pm
Thoughts?


Shame: we feel badly about ourselves. We feel shame when we think of poorly of ourselves. Shame is the emotion that encourages us
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-11-2006
Wed, 04-13-2011 - 6:08pm

Guilt: they think poorly of me

We feel guilt when others have reason to think poorly of us. We

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-11-2006
Fri, 04-15-2011 - 9:16am

I'm not sure that the website is the be-all-end-all source on defining the differences between guilt and shame, but there were some interesting bits, IMO.

Since "shame" is a personal assessment which reflects the person and "guilt" is an other's assessment of behavior, I think that it provides some insight into why the "you're making me feel guilty" is a common occurance.

Most Lactivists assert that guilt is NOT a goal, they just want informed choices. Many moms, especially those who did their best to BF and it didn't work out, say that pro-BF messages make them feel guilty. Isn't it a reasonable idea that they feel badly because they failed to meet their own goals - shame? Many people who do not breastfeed say "don't let others judge you". For me, I truly do not feel as if I am judging, but clearly others feel judged. Isn't it likely that they are judging themselves?

Many women allege that Lactivists say they are "bad moms" for not breastfeeding. Again, the judgment about a person is consistent with shame, not with guilt.

It seems to me that the differences between guilt and shame, as defined here, explain some of the disconnect between what Lactivists say and what unsuccessful breastfeeders hear. 0.02