According to Sigmund Freud, defense mechanisms are psychological strategies used to cope with reality, protect one’s self-image, or resolve conflict within oneself or with another person; denial, regression, and repression are all examples of defense mechanisms.
Example: Ten years after her brutal rape, a woman continues to avoid confronting her feelings about the attack by denying to herself that it ever took place.
Grinnell, R. (2008). Defense Mechanisms. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 5, 2015, from http://psychcentral.com/encyclopedia/2008/defense-mechanisms/