I Need My Pain

“Damn it Bones, you’re a doctor. You know that pain and guilt can’t be taken away with the wave of a magic wand. They’re the things we carry with us, the things that make us who we are. If we lose them, we lose ourselves. [to Sybok] I don’t want my pain taken away! I need my pain!”

James T Kirk, Star Trek V

Pain Makes Us Who We Are

The Star Trek V movie is interesting for so many reasons, but the soliloquy Kirk delivers to Sybok about pain is meaningful to me. There are many soliloquies in the Start Trek movies delivered by William Shatner in his classically trained Shakespearean way. But this one talks about pain and how it makes us who we are.

There are many people who hide who they are, hide their pain and hide their guilt. A lot of these people are driven into it by shame. The dictionary defines shame as a painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior.

Christine Caine is an Australian activist, Evangelist, author, and international speaker. She has written many powerful books, but the one that hits closest to home for me is called Unashamed.

“Shame makes us feel small, flawed, not good enough, and controlled. Shame is the fear of being unworthy and it affects our relationship with God, ourselves and others.”

Caine, C. (2016). 
Unashamed: Drop the baggage, pick up your freedom, fulfill your destiny. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondoveran.
The dictionary defines unworthy as:
  • not deserving effort, attention, or respect.
  • (of a person’s action or behavior) not acceptable, especially from someone with a good reputation or social position.
  • synonyms:unbecoming, unsuitable, inappropriate, befitting, unfitting, unseemly, improper, incongruous; More having little value or merit.

The strong words of pain, fear, and unworthy are words that ring strongly to someone who struggles with depression and anxiety. These are the words that cause people with anxiety and depression to recess into their worlds and their shells and hide from the world around them.

We feel shame. We feel ashamed. This is why so many of us hide our true feelings and thoughts from those around us.

The pain, fear, anxiety, depression, and shame that you and I feel are cannot be simply taken away. These are things that we have to process through. I know that this is a task that is easier said than done, but once it is done there is a sense of freedom.

These things that we struggle with are what make us who we are. When we deny them, we are denying who we are. We need to embrace who and what we are and become unashamed.

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2 responses to “I Need My Pain”

  1. Well stated. When I was in treatment for depression, Ithought ifvone more person tells me to just pull myself out of it or get over it, I would have went to jail for temporary loss of control. I wish we did not make mental illness a sign of personal weakness. So ridiculous. I now trumpet on my blog my 28 days in a mental facility, hoping it will help someone know that there is no shame to getting healthy.


    • It shouldn’t be something that holds you back. Or hide. My boyfriend worries about how sharing will lead to being blocked from employment opportunities or being treated differently. But my boyfriend also wantw everyone to know the real me. So, he’s going to put shame on me for sharing, but wants me to be me. It’s who I am. It’s apart of me. I am my PTSD. I am my ADD. I am my MDD. I am my anxiety disorder. I am my shame… I am what I am, because of my pain and guilt. If I take away any of that, then I am no longer me.


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