Defense mechanisms is how someone respond to a situation in life. Everyone handles it in a different light, but it’s important to be able to differentiate the defense mechanism that is being used by the patient and to be able to tell the characteristics of the inability to cope.

This includes:

Verbalizing the inability to cope
Inability to ask for help
Inability to make decisions
Destructive behavior on self or others
Emotional abuse
Negative feelings

Defense mechanisms include, but are not limited to the following:

Reaction Formation

Other defense mechanisms not included on the chart also include:

Denial – Rejecting a thought or idea

– Hiding a thought or idea

Acting Out
– Using extreme behavior to get away from the situation

Isolation of Affect
– Thinking about the thought but not really feeling it

Intellectualization – Using rational explanation to avoid the thought