The essence of repression lies in witholding the thought from becoming conscious. How does this mechanism work?
In Freud's early work, he considered that neuroses in adults were attributable to sexual abuse when those adults were children. Those children repressed these memories as a way of protecting their "selves" and also in order to feel and appear to others what was considered "normal." Freud later supposed that not all neuroses were the result of abuse. He did however continue to argue that neurotics and so called normal people all use forms of repression for similar ends: to repress strange or troubling desires/fears in order to protect the self (by not dwelling on them) and also to conform to what society deems "normal."
To illustrate how this worked, Freud used the terms id, ego and superego. The id represents the instinctual desires, the ego is the realistic function which seeks to manage the id's desires in the real world in realistic ways and the superego is the moral or parental function. These are not parts of the brain; they are functions of the conscious/unconscious workings....
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