12 Denial Patterns (A complete guide)

This blogspot will be based upon the question “what are the 12 denial patterns?”. It will be based on the characteristics of denial patterns and will enlist and elaborate on the 12 denial patterns.

What is a denial pattern?

A denial pattern is a pattern that is often used by an individual to suppress true feelings and maintain a defensive approach to change. 

What are the basic characteristics of a denial pattern?

The basic characteristics of a denial pattern are:

  • Individuals have a difficulty in identifying their true feelings.
  • Individuals tend to deny or minimize the intensity of their feelings
  • Individuals with denial patterns tend to assume themselves as selfless beings and portray themselves to live a life for the betterment of mankind.
  • Individuals with denial patterns tend to project their negative traits upon others.
  • Individuals with denial patterns put down any sort of help from others.
  • Individuals with denial patterns lack empathy for others around them.
  • Individuals with a denial pattern strongly believe that they are self-sufficient and often lack social support.
  • Individuals with denial patterns often mask pain with other negative emotional states like anger, sarcasm, frustration and irritability.
  • Individuals with denial patterns have a greater tendency of strong feelings of covert aggression.
  • Individuals with denial patterns have no insight of poor interpersonal relationships and lack of socialization in their life.

What are 12 denial patterns?

Following are the 12 denial patterns:

  • Avoidance Denial Pattern

An individual with an avoidance denial pattern usually keeps away from talking about his problems. He will talk about anything but not the area of concern relating to life issues.  They completely avoid any attempts by other people and are firm about not having any problems.

  • Absolute Denial Pattern

An individual with an absolute denial pattern has a staunch belief that there is no problem at all. They have a concrete belief that everything around them is alright and they are alright. They are not ready to identify, consider or realize about having any slightest problem around themselves.

  • Minimizing Denial Pattern

The minimizing denial pattern involves an individual to regress the amount of disturbance being caused by a specific problem. They tend to minimize the effect of any problem area and assume that the situation is not as worst as other people  around them are believing it to be.

  • Rationalizing Denial Pattern

The rationalizing denial pattern involves individuals giving justifications to self and others to stand their idea about anything. Individuals with this denial pattern tend to find reasons for the existence of the problem and don’t focus on the solution.

  • Blaming Denial Pattern

The blaming denial pattern involves putting all the blame of any mishap or negative life event upon other people around the self and taking zero responsibility about the situation.

  • Comparing Denial Pattern

In  comparing denial patterns an individual tends to compare himself / herself with someone in a worst condition in order to feel better about themselves and continue believing that things are alright.

  • Compliance Denial Pattern

An individual using the compliance denial pattern tends to use impression management technique by pretending to do what is required whereas actually just masking compliance for an impression management rather than problem solving.

  • Manipulating Denial Pattern

Individuals with this denial pattern tend to manipulate others and push them in a way that they are ready to accept their life problems only if someone else will sort it out for them. 

  • Flight into health Denial Pattern

Individuals under this denial pattern tend to mask their problems and true feelings by portraying their good health as a symbol being cured and healed.

  • Recovery by fear Denial Pattern

Individuals under this denial pattern firmly believe that being problem focused and being fearful of the problem would help them survive through the problem scenario in a better way.

  • Strategic hopelessness Denial Pattern

Strategic hopelessness makes an individual strongly believe that there is no solution to their problem. They assume that no matter how hard and how far they try, eventually there will be no positive outcome. As a result they don’t try to sort the problem at all.

  • Democratic disease state Denial Pattern

The democratic disease state denial pattern is similar to enjoying the sick role. An individual under this denial pattern gets defensive about considering any social support and believes that he is the sole owner of his/her life and thus none has the right to interfere or stop him/her from doing anything.


The current blogspot elaborated on the various denial patterns that are used by people for resisting any state of change. It also explained the various characteristics of individuals with denial patterns who fail to identify their true emotions and believe that everything is alright with masked feelings that chanelize the true feelings without getting them surfaced.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): 12 Denial Patterns

What are the forms of denial?

There are many different forms of denial that an individual can adopt to resist the state of change. It ranges from avoidance to   complete denial, blaming others to minimization, comparing self with others to compliance.

Is denial a characteristic of addiction?

Denial is a major characteristic of addiction. Addicted people often deny their real life problems to find an escape and live in a life of pleasure.

What are the effects of denial?

A life with continued denial can lead to serious health hazards, distorted interpersonal relationships and a devastated life.

What are the three types of denial?

The three types of denial include: 
Denial of the fact that the person is in a state of denial.
Denial of the cycle involves a person’s lack of comprehension of the negative life event.
Denial of responsibility involves the failure to accept and admit one’s role in an unpleasant event. Such a person tends to blame the negative life event upon other people around.





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