is a powerful neurotoxin. The way we human beings are, we don’t just need to know something, we need to know that we know it. This is part of what makes scientific discovery so amazing. It’s not just that they figured something out, it’s that they overcame the doubt that is inherent in us that couldn’t have been overcome by going to someone else and saying, “I think I figured something out: is this right?” But as long as there is some doubt about something, our minds are incredibly adept at presenting us with reasons why we’re probably wrong. To quote a book I have been reading, “As uncomfortable as I am with (discovery X), I do not believe we should sit on our results until we can find a reason for them being wrong (that too is not a correct way to do science).” But to dispel this doubt, what do we do? We communicate. We bring our thought to someone to check it, to air it out, to get an outside perspective. Otherwise this neurotoxin metabolizes, paralyzing us.
This process is something that is called social validation. It says that we will naturally and automatically seek the guidance or approval of others in the presence of doubt. When it comes to emotions, we all, perhaps men especially, engage in a game of “emotional chicken.” It looks like this: I feel something that I just don’t know if it’s valid or not. Am I overreacting? Being oversensitive? Perceive something inaccurately? I want to get an “objective” perspective on it. So, I casually, without any emotion or leading words, mention it to someone. I don’t get much of a response back, so I conclude that my reaction must have been overstated and I tell myself that I need to move on.
Kathy West says
My heart aches for the grief you can finally “feel”. I love you so deeply through it all, and through any and all of your journeys! The truth is the loss of Gianna is the most awful, tragic, “fucked up” medical error that ever occurred. IT WAS AND STILL IS NOT FAIR!! 😢
Thank you for acknowledging our loss and for walking with us. It means so much!
We love and miss you!