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Repressed Memories

When we repress memories, are they really forgotten or just waiting to be brought back to the surface with the right external cue?

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RESPONSE:

1. When we repress memories, are they really forgotten or just waiting to be brought back to the surface with the right external cue?

By definition, repressed memories are repressed NOT forgotten.

There is a general consensus amongst psychologists that it is quite common to consciously and/or unconsciously (depending on the theorist) repress unpleasant experiences, even sexual abuse, and to then spontaneously remember such events later, and sometimes long after the event. Most of the controversy in this area is around recovered 'repressed' memories during repressed memory therapy (RMT). Critics of RMT assert that many therapists are not helping patients recover repressed memories, but are instead suggesting and planting false memories of trauma, such as sexual abuse, alien abduction, or satanic rituals.

However, it is well documented that people will remember a memory that has been repressed, and according to some, like Freud, ...

Solution Summary

When we repress memories, this solution discusses if they are really forgotten or just waiting to be brought back to the surface with the right external cue. References are provided.

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