I don’t know the origin of my problem and I don’t fully understand it. I always feel guilty. When I see someone suffering, I keep thinking that it should be me that is suffering and not them. I feel so guilty that I am living a normal life while others are suffering. And because of that guilt, I beat myself up. As I beat myself up, I am always apologizing to those who are suffering. I hate myself and I thought that I should be punished and should suffer. Can you please tell me the reason behind this?
A: While the exact activator for your reactions would be hard to know, it does sound like you have what is known as a “thinking trap.” There is a wonderful book called: The Resilience Factor that I would highly encourage you to get. It will help you dismantle the automatic thought processes that you have in reaction to other people suffering.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 3 Feb 2014
Tomasulo, D. (2014). Guilty. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 1, 2015, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2014/02/03/guilty/