I like emotional pain

I Have a Need to Feel Emotional Pain — Why do I Make Myself Cry?

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Reader’s Question

I frequently feel the need to force myself to feel emotional pain by imagining a distressing situation (e.g., imagining a painful breakup, imagining my last words when I die, etc.). I am not normally ‘satisfied’ until I cry uncontrollably to the point where I feel physical chest pains and fall asleep. I usually feel better once I wake up. What’s wrong with me?

Psychologist’s Reply

Various psychological theories could account for the issue you describe. Therapists who assume psychoanalytic or psychodynamic perspectives would theorize that inner, or ‘intrapsychic’ conflicts explain your need to experience emotional pain. According to these psychological perspectives, when we find ourselves engaging in behaviors that are self-destructive or seemingly purposeless, it is because we are disconnected from an emotional memory or emotional state.

In other words, your desire to feel emotional pain could reflect your unconscious attempt to make psychological ‘atonement’ for actions, impulses, or feelings that are difficult to acknowledge or accept into your consciousness. This defense mechanism is termed ‘undoing’; it refers to acting in ways that are opposite to how you feel on a deep, unconscious level. Perhaps part of you feels guilty, for example about wanting to live joyously, so that you actually ‘undo’ this desire for happiness by accessing painful emotional states instead. In other words, you might be unconsciously punishing yourself in order to prevent ‘unacceptable’ feelings of happiness from surfacing.

Therapists using cognitive behavioral or cognitive frameworks would explain your mindset and actions a bit differently. These perspectives contend that the root causes of emotional and behavioral disorders stem from beliefs about ourselves, the world, and the future.

Underlying your behavior, for example, could be a core belief, ‘I am bad and I deserve punishment. ’ A cognitive therapist would assist you in identifying, and changing, the belief system contributing to your need for emotional pain. He or she might help you realize the fears that contribute to your self-sabotaging behaviors. If your underlying beliefs cause you to shy away from joy and happiness, for example, the therapist would help you articulate those fears, explore their origins, and then reconstruct the fear-related thoughts and beliefs that keep you stuck.

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A therapist would need to work closely with you to determine the root causes of your need for emotional pain. If you were my client, I would first want to understand what you find pleasurable about accessing painful emotional states. Is it the painful emotional state itself you enjoy or, instead, the psychological release that comes from crying? Do you feel anxious when you access emotionally painful mood states or, conversely, do you feel anxious if you are prevented from accessing these mood states? An experienced therapist would probably take some time upfront assessing you and your situation, to gather a more comprehensive psychological understanding of you. By doing so, he or she would be better able to treat you and the issue you describe.

Please seek guidance from an experienced therapist with whom you feel comfortable. Doing so might help you feel more emotionally connected and ultimately free you of your psychological burdens.

Please read our Important Disclaimer.

If You Feel It Hurts to Live, This Is for You

Your feelings are valid. You’re not alone and support is available.

Maybe you feel that life is too painful, or you question why you’re here and whether you can handle it all. This is a natural response to many of life’s events.

Even if you can’t quite put your finger on why you’re feeling this way, your emotions are real. But they don’t have to be permanent and you don’t need to go through this alone.

If you’re having a difficult time right now, it may be a good idea to seek the support of a mental health professional. This can help you manage and overcome your emotional pain.

If this isn’t possible at the moment, contacting a crisis line may also help.

If you’re considering self-harm or suicide, you’re not alone.

Help is available right now:

  • Call a crisis hotline, such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
  • Text HOME to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.
  • Call or text the Postpartum Support International Help Line at 800-944-4773 (#1 Español, #2 English).
  • The Trevor Project. LGBTQIA+ and under 25 years old? Call 866-488-7386, text START to 678678, or chat online 24-7.
  • Veterans Crisis Line. Call 800-273-8255, text 838255, or chat online 24-7.
  • Befrienders Worldwide. This international crisis helpline network can help you find a local helpline.
  • DeafLEAD Crisis Line. Call 321-800-DEAF (3323) or text HAND to 839863.

No matter why you’re feeling like it hurts to live, or how dark your thoughts are, there’s a valid reason for it. Your reason. And it really doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else.

You may be facing difficult times that cause you great pain and distress, or you might have unresolved emotions from traumatic experiences. It’s natural to feel that it hurts to live this way.

Or, perhaps you live with a mental health condition, like clinical depression or bipolar disorder, and how you feel is part of your symptoms.

In any case, when emotional pain is too much, the way you see yourself, others, and life in general, may change.

It’s like wearing a pair of sunglasses. Even if you don’t intend to, you’ll see everything else through that filter, and things may look darker than they actually are.

But if you look at your pain this way — if only for a minute — you may realize the darkness could be in the sunglasses, and if you can find a way to take them off, things may not look as dim anymore.

You can learn more about cognitive distortions and reframing negative thoughts here.

Thinking it hurts to live doesn’t have to mean you want to act on it. Emotions and thoughts are sometimes just that: emotions and thoughts.

Many people experience passive suicidal thoughts from time to time, explains Danica Copp, a licensed independent clinical social worker in Woodbridge, Virginia. “It’s okay to have these thoughts. A depressed brain tells you that the world is better without you, and the folks who love you won’t miss you. These are lies.”

So, if you wonder “Why is life so painful?” or “Why am I hurting this much?” know you’re not alone and, although natural, these emotions don’t have to be permanent. There’s a way out of pain and into a meaningful and fulfilling life.

If you’re feeling life is painful at the moment, it’s highly advisable that you reach out to a mental health professional, or contact a crisis line and similar resources.

Once you’ve reached out, you may also want to try some of these techniques to help you find relief from your emotional pain. Developing coping skills for grief can help.

Re-evaluate your thoughts right now

“Feeling hurt is an okay emotion to have. It is a part of you but does not define you and does not need to have all the power,” says Sabina Mauro, a psychologist in Yardley, Pennsylvania.

You can take away this power by shifting how you approach emotions.

“Instead of saying ‘I feel hurt’ — a form of the emotion defining you — use the phrase, ‘Right now I am experiencing hurt because…’ and then fill in the blank. This is a way to acknowledge the pain, without letting it control you,” says Mauro.

And if you find yourself asking, “What’s wrong with me?” try this instead: “What happened that caused me to experience this pain?”

Remember, you’re not feeling this way because you want to.

Reframing your thoughts to be more loving and compassionate toward yourself may help you.

“When we’re in crisis, oftentimes we are judging ourselves and ashamed of what we’re feeling,” explains Merissa Goolsarran, a licensed therapist in Miami, Florida. Instead, try “thanking yourself for caring and worrying so much. It may sound counterintuitive but being grateful can bring a sense of calm.”

You’re doing the best you can with the resources at hand.

Do grounding exercises

If you’re overwhelmed with pain, it can be difficult to connect with the present moment. But drawing attention to your senses may help you step away from the hurt.

Consider these tips whenever you feel your emotions rise:

  • Sight. Count the pieces of furniture around you, color in a coloring book, put on your favorite movie, or read a comforting book.
  • Smell. Diffuse calming essential oil scents like lavender, light a scented candle, bake cookies, spray air freshener or your favorite perfume, or put on a nice lotion.
  • Sound. Put on music or soothing nature sounds, talk out loud about what you see and hear, hum to yourself, or repeat a mantra like “I’m love and light.”
  • Taste. Chew a piece of gum, let a mint melt in your mouth, sip some tea, or eat something sour or spicy.
  • Touch. Give your pet a soft cuddle, hold a warm beverage in your hands, let an ice cube melt in your palm, splash cold water on your face, take a cold or warm shower, wash your hands with foamy soap, or scream into a pillow.

“The nice thing about grounding is that many of these techniques can be done in any environment,” says Anjani Amladi, a psychiatrist in Sacramento, California. “Grounding is highly personal. What works for one person may not work for another. It may take some time to find out which grounding techniques work best for you.”

Feel into your body

If you feel overwhelmed with difficult thoughts and feelings, focusing on your body may help.

You may try some somatic therapy exercises, for example. Or you could start moving.

Beyond being a distraction, movement actually activates important processes in your body that may positively impact your mood.

Moving during a crisis may also deactivate the natural alarm system your body has. It may be difficult to convince your mind to think about something else, so activating your body can shift the focus.

“Run in place for a minute to complete the stress response and utilize the cortisol in your lymphatic system,” says Cass Biron, a trauma-informed therapist in New York. “Massage your neck and armpits to drain the lymph nodes of the stress hormones and adrenaline associated with stress and anxiety.”

This type of lymphatic massage can be performed by a or it can be performed at home. It’s highly advisable you speak with a health professional before you try it on your own.

Biron also suggests experimenting with “removing one of the senses (wearing a blindfold or closing the eyes) as a way to allow for the brain to function in a different way that will likely reset the router of communication in the mind.”

Journal your feelings

Getting your feelings out on paper may help them feel less intense. Some journal prompts include:

  • Why am I thinking this way?
  • What evidence supports these thoughts?
  • How else can I think about this situation, or this thought?
  • What does this emotion need from me?
  • Is this emotion helping me?
  • Is this emotion hurting me?
  • Can I survive this emotion?
  • Can I let this emotion hang around?
  • When was the last time I didn’t feel this way?

Make a list of things you love

During dark times, it can be difficult to remember what you love about living.

When things seem impossible, try making an itemized list of things that you love, enjoy, and are looking forward to,” says Amladi. “It doesn’t have to be anything monumental and can be as small as tomorrow’s cup of coffee.”

“When we actively think about things that bring us joy, it trains our mind to look for positives elsewhere,” she adds.

Recall activities you used to enjoy

Do you remember a time when you laughed and felt joy? Focus on those memories and, if possible, try to engage in those activities even if you don’t feel like it right now.

Some ideas include:

  • dancing
  • roller skating
  • riding a bicycle
  • building a fort
  • playing a game
  • laying on the grass looking at the clouds

It doesn’t mean this will take away your emotional pain. You may still need to do much work to process how you feel. But you can also find temporary comfort and relief in daily activities.

If you’re experiencing unbearable pain at the moment, support is available right now. Consider calling a crisis line and talking about how you feel.

Even though reaching out for help is sometimes hard, you may find that you’re not alone in this and there are people who care.

If you want to try talking with friends or family, try sending out a text or making a phone call to someone you fully trust.

Biron says these steps may help you approach the situation:

  • Check for emotional capacity. Hi there, I have something I’d like to share with you. Is this a good time? Do you have the energy to hold space for some big feelings right now?
  • Explain what you’re feeling. My mind is racing/upset/scared and I would appreciate hearing your voice and being heard.
  • Make a request. Can you tell me a story about your day/pet/life as a way to distract my mind? Could you spend some time with me, just hanging out?

Therapy can help you manage your emotions and thoughts. There are a few evidence-based approaches that can help you. For example,

  • cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • dialectical behavioral therapy
  • collaborative assessment and management of suicide (CAMS)

“Seeking out a therapist can teach you how to become aware of your emotions, connect with your emotions, and manage them in healthy ways,” says Mauro.

If you can’t afford therapy, consider looking into these options:

  • low-cost clinics or sliding scales
  • employer assistance programs
  • university and college counseling programs
  • city-sponsored support groups

You may want to explore Open Path Collective and Ayana Therapy as well.

“Feelings of not being enough, not having a purpose, or even questioning what the point of all of this is are extremely normal,” says Dr. Kate Burke, an emergency medical physician in Milford, Massachusetts. “If you feel comfortable, start by talking with a mental health professional to cope with these feelings. Start by allowing yourself to feel these feelings. You are valid and you are not alone.”

If you are ready to take the next step and reach out for support, consider these resources:

  • American Federation for Suicide Prevention
  • Suicide Prevention Lifeline
  • American Psychiatric Association’s Find a Psychiatrist tool
  • American Psychological Association’s Find a Psychologist tool
  • Asian Mental Health Collective’s therapist directory
  • Association of Black Psychologists’ Find a Psychologist tool
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness Helplines and Support Tools
  • National Institute of Mental Health’s Helpline Directory
  • National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network
  • Inclusive Therapists
  • The Trevor Project
  • Trans Lifeline

Mental pain - Human psychology

As long as a person feels pain, he is alive. As long as a person feels someone else's pain, he is a person.
François Guizot

Perhaps there are people in this world who have never experienced pain in their lives. However, I will not be mistaken if I say that most of us are familiar with this pain quite well, since events often occur in our lives that cause this pain. Emotional pain is a pain that is very difficult to describe in words. One can only more or less intelligibly describe the emotions and sensations associated with it, and even then, basically it can be done well only when the pain in the soul subsides a little. Meanwhile, like any other pain, mental pain gives us considerable discomfort. After all, when such pain overcomes you, you simply stop perceiving the world as it is, it becomes gloomy and lifeless for you, your whole old life collapses, everything around loses all meaning, you have no strength for anything, and you just you don’t know where to get away from this pain - even climb the wall, even howl like a wolf. Heartache, friends, affects our whole life, and not just some separate part of it. And therefore, until we study, understand, and ultimately experience our emotional pain, we will not be able to return to a normal, fulfilling life that gives pleasure, and does not force us to suffer. nine0009

In this article I would like to approach the topic of mental pain from a side that is not quite familiar to most people. I will not talk too much about why it occurs and how to deal with it, so much has been said about this. Instead, I want to tell you about the benefits that can be derived from heartache. You know, over the years, I began to look at everything that I used to actively fight with the help of psychological techniques, with great patience and understanding. Maybe I have become wiser, maybe just calmer and more reasonable, or maybe my understanding of certain things has simply become deeper. Be that as it may, but our life clearly shows us that nothing just happens in it, everything has not only a reason, but also some kind of purpose and a certain meaning. Only we do not always notice this meaning. nine0009

What is the meaning of mental pain? Well, firstly, like any other pain - it is designed to draw our attention to something. Secondly, it is a call to certain actions, for which a person needs to properly rethink his whole life. He, as it were, needs to reboot his brains in order to get rid of all his old and sometimes absolutely ineffective ideas about life. And thirdly, and most importantly, if you experience mental pain, it means that you have a soul, a living, sensitive soul that makes you human. And if you can also see and feel someone else's mental pain, then you are just a saint. So your heartache tells you that you are not a callous person, you are not an automaton that works according to a strictly defined program and which has no soul - you are a living person, you perceive life more fully, you feel it not only with your body, but and soul. And this is good, this is very good, because the more fully we perceive life, the more joy we can experience in it. But at the same time, there is more grief, more suffering, more pain, because one cannot exist without the other. nine0009

Now, let's think about what our mental pain wants to draw our attention to when we experience it. After all, if the soul hurts, it means that something in our life is going wrong, but what exactly is the question. I believe that first of all, we need to pay attention to ourselves if we are experiencing mental pain. Not on other people, not on those who offended us with something, not on circumstances that are not in the best way for us, but on ourselves. After all, something is clearly wrong with us if we suffer. It is with us, and not with anyone else. So I noticed many times, including myself, that we constantly hang on something, on some beliefs, some aspirations, often meaningless, some dubious values ​​that slow us down and knock us off the right course. . We often believe that our life should develop in a certain way, and we are sure that this or that scenario of our life is the only true one for us. And when our expectations are not met, we get terribly upset, begin to experience mental pain, become depressed and slowly eat ourselves. Familiar feeling? We love to live according to a certain scenario, which we ourselves come up with, or someone comes up with it for us. And this is a problem for us. We, and not someone else, make our soul suffer, because we expect from life a certain conformity to our desires. nine0009

Especially other people often make us very upset by not living up to our expectations and not meeting our requirements. But after all, it is our soul that hurts, it is we who make certain demands on other people, on life and even on ourselves. This means that we need to pay attention to ourselves first of all, when pain torments our soul. We ourselves are to blame for the fact that we close ourselves in some kind of our own, sometimes very limited little world, which, if it does not correspond to reality, becomes hell for our soul. And we just drown in this hell because we condemn everyone and everything, including ourselves, instead of just trying to understand - should everything really be the way we want it to be, or maybe let life be such as it should be, and remain an outside observer? Sometimes, it’s better not to want anything and not to go anywhere, but just to watch how life develops and enjoy it. nine0009

And only our obsession with a certain scenario of our life forces us to experience mental pain, instead of enjoying everything that happens in our life. Therefore, life sobers us from time to time, allowing us to stop and think about how correct our worldview, our choice, our goals, our desires, our life path are. Let's think about what a person's life should be in order to meet his desires and needs? Which? Yeah, we don't even really know. Perhaps we should pay attention to what demands life makes on us, and not ourselves? After all, often, I won’t say that always, but very often - certain changes in our lives and even tragedies that at first make us suffer and experience mental pain - subsequently turn out to be not so much the end of something old, that is, not so much loss, how much the beginning of something new, that is, gain. Simply put, all sorts of changes in life turn out to be good for us. As they say, everything that happens is for the best. Maybe not all, but definitely a lot. Therefore, my opinion is that we all need to listen and look closely at our natural essence and our inner voice in order to understand in which direction we should move. And sometimes the reins of life must be completely let go of your hands, giving them to life itself, resigning yourself to the way it develops. Otherwise, our consciousness will be stuck at a crossroads, where reality diverges from our fantasies. So you don’t need to focus on one thing, trying to see your happiness only in this and nothing else. Of course, there are concepts developed over the centuries that tell us how and why we should live, but I believe that every person must learn to listen first of all to himself, and only then to the outside world. In addition, different roads lead to the same goals, and we are all in different positions from birth, so each of us has our own destiny. Therefore, the wider you look at life, the more different goals and different roads that lead to these goals, you begin to notice, the less reason you will have for mental pain. And sometimes you just need to surrender to the arms of the unknown and accept life as it is, so as not to worry about anything. I repeat - everything originates within us - both joy and pain. nine0009

Thus, if something happened in your life that caused you severe mental pain, and it is often associated with other people, then I advise you not to rush to get rid of it, I advise you to listen to it and understand that it trying to tell you. Don't rush into a decision, heartache is not the pain of a burn to make a reflective decision - think about what is going wrong in your life, what you may have gone wrong, what decisions you made were wrong, what your expectations were not met? You are on the threshold of something new and important, something in your life must change. Therefore, think, think carefully - what prospects does your pain indicate to you? And believe me, they are always there. There is no such suffering, there is no such pain that would not open up new possibilities for us. But in order to use them, pain cannot be ignored, it must be comprehended. Mental pain passes very quickly if you do not concentrate your attention on it, but give it to what it consists of. People usually ask themselves the question - how to cope with mental pain, or how to get rid of mental pain, but for some reason, few people are interested in the question - why did it arise? And this, I think, is a much more important question. Even the cause of mental pain is not as important as its purpose. After all, when a person has a toothache, it makes no sense to think about why this happened, you will think about it later, and at the moment you should think about what needs to be done to get rid of this pain. With our soul, things are similar, if it hurts, then you should look forward, not backward, into the future, not into the past. Yes, of course, with the help of psychoanalysis, you can dig deeper into your past and find in it the cause of your suffering, in order to then correct these causes. But such an approach to a person will allow him to return to the present, to the old life, albeit calm, but old, while mental pain is aimed more at changing our life, it opens the door to a new life for us. nine0009

Learn to get not only benefit from mental pain, but also pleasure. But don’t misunderstand me, I’m not saying that pain itself should give you pleasure, it just shouldn’t be, you and I are not spiritual masochists, pain is not an end in itself for us, you don’t need to strive for it, otherwise you yourself drive yourself into a dead end of suffering, from which it will be very difficult to get out later. The pleasure should be derived from understanding that this pain changes you and your life, that it gives you a taste of life, it allows you to know more about it. It’s hard on your soul, your heart aches - immerse yourself in these experiences, live these sensations, feel with your whole being all the grains of your suffering. There is nothing wrong with suffering a little, it gives life a taste, albeit bitter and salty, but still a taste. The more you suffer, the more joy you will experience when your life changes. But it will definitely change, suffering is not eternal, life is a striped thing, and a dark stripe is always followed by a bright one. Moreover, what is important is that the dark band appears only against the background of the light one. That is, without suffering, without pain, without experiences - you will not be able to experience great joy, you simply will not appreciate the pleasure that you can experience not only from something good, but also from the absence of something bad in your life. It's like you know, when your shoes are tight and you feel uncomfortable, even hurt, but you know that now you will come home, take them off, put on your favorite slippers and you will feel very good. And this anticipation of relief, joy, comfort, bliss, due to which endorphin is released, makes you happy. So that's the kind of pleasure I'm talking about. The path to joy and happiness lies through pain and suffering. nine0009

However, I must say that some people get carried away with this too much - they poison their souls, drowning in suffering and pain, not looking forward to anything good and therefore not striving for anything good. They begin to live with their pain, driving themselves into a dead end and, as it were, stop the script of their life. They have no joy and happiness behind pain and suffering, they have only pain. This is already an extreme, or better to say, freezing, similar to the one that happens to people with psychotrauma, only it, this freezing, is on a conscious, and not on an unconscious level. Simply put, some people start to enjoy suffering. Heartache for them is a kind of comfort zone, no matter how contradictory it may sound. I'm not going to talk about why this happens now, this is a topic for another article. I will only say that in order to get rid of dependence on suffering and pain, you need to feel the taste of joy and happiness, that is, you need to try to look beyond the black streak of life in order to feel all the advantages of the bright streak. Nobody really wants to suffer forever, it's just that some people forget about how to live a full life, in which there is not only pain and suffering, but also joy, pleasure, happiness. Such people wean themselves from the good, so they stop striving for it, and therefore they stop getting pleasure from all the good things. But as soon as they are pulled out of the swamp in which they are bogged down, their life will begin to move forward again. nine0009

In general, any pain makes us wiser. We begin to understand a lot when we live through some kind of pain, even mental, even physical. We understand those causal relationships that lead to this or that pain and begin to take them into account when making decisions and committing certain actions. Provided, of course, that a person learns from his experience. Especially useful is the heartache of love, which teaches people to love. After all, heartache after a breakup always, well, or in most cases, makes us reconsider our attitude towards people, it teaches us to love those who are really worthy of love, and not those who just seem attractive and interesting. I will tell you this, dear readers, based on my experience of working with people - the best, most reliable, happiest relationships are created mainly by those people who have experienced unhappy, painful relationships, which, as they say, have suffered in their lives. And only the severe pain they experienced made them appreciate what they have or those whom they did not notice before. So only a person who is left with nothing is able to look more wisely at life and at himself, therefore we need pain, in particular mental pain, as a cure for immaturity and unreason. nine0009

But in the end, emotional pain must be endured, it cannot be dwelled on for a long time. Are you sad, sad, hurt? - Cry, suffer for a while, suffer as much as necessary to make it easier, and then wipe your tears, pull yourself together and fight again. A monstrously interesting life awaits you, friends. You definitely have a lot more to experience, try, feel, experience, do, so do not waste time in vain. Better think about what you live for, look into the future as far as possible and set yourself a great goal, then nothing will stop you on the way to it. And the pain, the pain will pass. It would be something for her to go through. As Friedrich Nietzsche said: “If a person has a “why” to live, he can endure any “how”.” After all, what is mental pain, in comparison with the greatness of the meaning of life, which penetrates a person to the depths of the soul, if he has this meaning. I don't want to sound overconfident, but sometimes I am absolutely convinced that I could cure any mental illness in any person, with only the meaning of life, which I would just need to help him find. nine0009

Please note, dear readers, that no pain, including mental pain, and especially emotional pain, is not a tragedy, not the end of life, this is not a reason to torture yourself at all - it is rather an incentive to give up something old and start something new. I don’t know what will be new for you, in your life, but I know that the pain in the soul will definitely lead you to this if you use it as a guide at the crossroads of your life, and do not let it use you. In life, everything needs to be experienced - both joy and sorrow, and love, and pain, and happiness, and suffering. But you can’t stop at anything, you always need to move on in order to truly live. Because life is multifaceted, you cannot fully experience it and you cannot fully enjoy it if you reject something that it offers you to experience. Therefore, do not bother yourself with thoughts about how to relieve mental pain, just survive it. And in order not to stop, not to hang on it - look into your future and look at all the beautiful and interesting things that await you in it and what you can come to when your pain passes. nine0009

Mental pain affects the brain like physical pain, scientists believe

https://ria.ru/20110329/358830290.html scientists - RIA Novosti, 03/29/2011

Mental pain affects the brain like physical pain, scientists say of Sciences. nine0009





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Federal State Unitary Enterprise MIA "Russia Today"


MOSCOW, March 29 - RIA Novosti. Physical trauma and a strong sense of social rejection cause the same reactions in the human brain, American scientists write in an article published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Social psychologist Ethan Kross of the University of Michigan (USA) and his colleagues have shown that the same areas of the brain are activated both in response to pain sensations and in response to experiences caused by strong feelings of loneliness and rejection. nine0009

"At first glance, the feeling of spilling hot coffee on yourself and the feeling of being rejected should cause very different types of pain. But our research shows that they may be even more similar than thought ", - said Cross, whose words are quoted in the message of the university.

The authors of the article showed for the first time that pain and "feeling of abandonment" cause activity in two areas of the brain - in the secondary somatosensory and insular cortex.

For the study, scientists selected 40 people (21 of them women) who had experienced a romantic breakup in the last six months and felt rejected. Each participated in two parts of the experiment - one was associated with the feeling of "social" pain, and the second - with the feeling of physical pain.

During the first part of the experiment, subjects looked at a photograph of their former partner and had to think of the most positive experience they had with that person. nine0009

During the second part of the experiment, using a special heating device applied to the participant's left forearm, the experimenters caused pain.

Learn more