Defense Mechanism of the Week: Intellectualization

Intellectualization occurs when reasoning and logic are used unconsciously to control intellectualization as defenseinternal conflict and emotional anxiety. People who intellectualize talk about feelings in a way that strikes the listener as emotionless. For example, if a man talks about “feeling rage” since he found out that his wife cheated on him in a detached and casual tone. It is as if they were talking about the weather report.

There are advantages to intellectualization-it shows considerable ego strength to be able to think rationally about a situation fraught with emotional meaning. For those that tend to over-depend on intellectualization, psychotherapy is intended to help these individuals process their personal experiences with more emotional affect and acknowledgment of their feelings. For those that cannot leave this defense mechanism behind, they tend to have limited enjoyment of playful conversations, artistic expression, sex and adult play, limiting their full enjoyment of the human experience.

If you suffer from depression or are interested marriage counseling or psychotherapy and live in the Newport Beach, Irvine, or Orange County area, please contact Jennifer De Francisco, MPA, MSW, LCSW at (949) 251-8797.

If not now, when?

You don’t have to go through this alone. Seriously. Let’s get started.

Recent Posts

Featured Testimonials

Chris B.5.0
Read More
Kids are always hard and as a parent it's not always easy to see objectively what is really going on. Jennifer helped me talk through challenges/issues with my oldest son that were running through my head. In the end she provided me a solid perspective to build on and because of that I have been able to manage the situation much better. Easy conversation and very helpful.
Ravenna S.5.0
Read More
Jennifer is such a wonderful and genuine therapist. She is extremely kind and understanding. She comprehends couple and mental health problems precisely. I would definitely recommend her to anyone that is seeking help.
Ravenna5.0
Read More
Jennifer is such a wonderful and genuine therapist. She is extremely kind and understanding. She comprehends couple and mental health problems precisely. I would definitely recommend her to anyone that is seeking help.
Timothy 5.0
Read More
I have been seeing Jennifer De Francisco for about a year, and she has helped me so much with the unhappiness I thought would never go away. Jennifer’s compassion and empathy made me feel safe enough to open up and talk about the uncomfortable feelings I didn’t even know were causing my sadness. With Jennifer’s help, I am now aware of my negative thoughts. Instead of avoiding them, I can work through them. She has helped change my life.
Denise5.0
Read More
It was tough when we first started with Jennifer , but through difficult conversations and understanding some of the causes of how closed off we were to each other, we worked through it and are in a good place. The idea that we could break up is the furthest thing from my mind now, and going in to work on our relationship was the best thing to do. One of the things that really helped was that I felt Jennifer really cared that our relationship worked and that we improved things between us. I think that is rare, and always helped me not give up hope.
George S.5.0
Read More
I know people hate to hear this, but relationships take work, especially with kids and stress. I would suggest relationship counseling for any married couple, even if it were just monthly or when things get tough. We continue to see Jennifer after our initial problem because it keeps us on track. Best of luck to all couples looking for help- Jennifer is a wonderful resource.