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Mental defence mechanisms and controversy (or, Why debating fails)

The strategies of mental defence mechanisms are learned during childhood, when the child needs a way to escape from the debilitating effects of fear. At the time, the fear is simple and “childish” — the boogie man, the monster under the bed and so on. Yet these threats are reasonable enough to the child, given his or her limited knowledge of the world. However, the anti-monster techniques are used later by adults who don’t want to think about real-world problems such as war, famine, torture and so on.