There is a new commercial for Sonic Drive-Ins. The commercial is advertising a special price on one of their value meals. One of the guys enjoying his meal says he had not enjoyed that price since college. The other replies, “No. I was in college. You were in denial.”
My kids wanted to know where “denial” was.
How do I explain denial to my kids?
My wise response was, “Denial is when you don’t or won’t accept or realize that you don’t know something.”
My son’s response was, “Huh?”
Seriously, how do we explain denial to our children? I tried again.
“You are in denial when you refuse to accept something is true or you won’t believe something because you don’t want it to be real.”
My son’s reply, “Like when I didn’t want the Chiefs to lose tonight?”
My response, “Sort of.”
I don’t think lessons about denial are strictly for our children. I believe denial is a concept which we all need to know more.
When there is a bad habit or an unhealthy relationship in our lives, denial is a much easier route to follow than the realize-your-problem-and-move-on path. The worst part of denial is that others can recognize our denial before we can. It is up to us to serve as the anti-denial GPS for those we love.
As we enter the season of holiday cheer, shopping, and family functions, take time to identify what you may be denying about yourself and your relationships. If you find that you have put your family connections on the back burner because “they will always be there,” realize that your time with them is precious and let go of the denial that we are all growing older. When it comes to shopping, don’t let the whole, holiday sale price thing entice you into overspending. Next month’s rent, car payment, and insurance sure won’t be in denial when it comes time to pay the bill. Be honest with yourself about what you can spend and what is truly valuable in what you give.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. Denial could be a good school, but how do you know if you graduated?