What We Don’t Know Hurts

Does anybody believe in the old saying that “what I don’t know can’t hurt me”?  The reality is that we are hurt every day by what we do not know and, in turn, we hurt others.  It is both a shattering and humbling revelation when we come to know what we did not know and realise how so many of our decisions and choices were unconsciously made. Scientists have finally accepted that we have an unconscious and they agree that only a small fraction of what we do and say is consciously chosen. 

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What Lies Hidden

Leo Tolstoy wrote that ‘all happy families are alike, but each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.’  The reality is that most families are a mixture of hurtful and nurturing experiences, but the most common illusion is that we all come from happy families!  The myth of the happy family is a clever creation that seeks to keep hidden the neglect – physical, sexual, emotional, social, intellectual, behavioural, creative – within a family.  The façade of the happy family is reinforced by regular contact, regular family meetings, family celebrations and an over-involvement in each other’s lives but every interaction stays at the surface level.  What lies beneath is skilfully avoided.  

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