Why Do You Hide Your Pain?

the suffering you don't see cartoon by nakedpastor david hayward

Description: An iceberg. The 10% above water is “the suffering you see”. The 90% below water is, “the suffering that’s never talked about”.

Why Do You Hide Your Pain?

Everybody hurts. At some time. But everybody does hurt.

Maybe you are hurting right now. 
You are in pain. 
And nobody knows but you.

I’ve often asked myself why we hide our pain. Being a pastor for so many years exposed me to a lot of people who were in a lot of pain. But they were experts at keeping it secret. 

As a result, they bore their pain alone. No support. No empathy. No care.

Why do you hide your pain? Here’s a list of possibilities. Maybe one of them is why you hide yours. Maybe all ten. 

Tell me why you hide your pain in the comments. At the end I’ll tell you the main reason I hide my pain.

  1. You are ashamed because you think it makes you look weak. 
  2. You don’t want people to think you aren’t getting over it fast enough. 
  3. You don’t want to be a downer to those around you. 
  4. You doubt anyone will understand. 
  5. You can’t find a good listener. 
  6. You want to share without people trying to rescue or fix you. 
  7. You are upset by your own complicity in the cause of your pain. 
  8. You don’t want to be accused of complaining, whining, or being bitter. 
  9. You know that people are dismissive of pain that’s invisible.
  10. You yourself deny, devalue, or dismiss your own pain. 

Okay. I’ll go first. The main reason I hide my pain is #1. I don’t like looking weak.


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