Masking Behaviours

Masking Behaviours – Psychology

Masking Behviours In Psychology

Don’t be fooled by the face I wear, for I wear a thousand masks, and none of them are me. Don’t be fooled. For god’s sake don’t be fooled.

I give you the impression that I’m secure, that confidence is my name and coolness my game. And that I need no one. But don’t believe me. That is, if it’s followed by acceptance, if it’s followed by love. It’s the only thing that can liberate me from my own self-built prison walls.

I’m afraid that deep down I’m nothing and that I’m just no good, and that you will reject me. And so begins the parade of masks. I idly chatter to you. I tell you everything that’s really nothing and nothing of what’s everything, of what’s crying within me.

Please listen carefully and try to hear what I’m not saying. I’d really like to be genuine and spontaneous, and “me.” But you’ve got to help me. You’ve got to hold out your hand.

Each time your kind and gentle, and encouraging, each time you try to understand because you really care, my heart begins to grow wings, feeble wings, but wings.

With your sensitivity and sympathy, and your power of understanding, you alone can release me from my shallow world of uncertainty. It will not be easy for you.

The nearer you approach me, the blinder I may strike back but I’m told that love is stronger than strong walls, and in this lies my only hope.

Please try to beat down these walls with firm hands, but gentle hands, for a child is very sensitive. Who am I, you may wonder. I am every man you meet, and also every woman that you meet, and I am you, also.”


What Is Masking In Psychology?

Presenting a certain face to the world is something that most people are familiar with. For example, when you have a day you are feeling a bit off colour and yet you smile and say you are fine when someone asks. Beneath the mask of sounding positive, you are keeping your true feelings to yourself.


This is something very common that we all do. The different masks people wear throughout the day acts as a social disguise and help them get through a variety of situations. Masking is a process in which an individual changes their natural personality to conform to social pressures, abuse or harassment.


It can be strongly influenced by environmental factors such as one’s upbringing, rejection, emotional, physical or sexual abuse. Masking can also be described as concealing one emotion by portraying another emotion, that is concealing negative emotions with other emotions either positive or negative.


Masking is to behave in certain ways that would help one hide or repress their emotions that are not approved by those around them. In a nutshell masking is protecting oneself from feeling the true emotion.

A List of Reasons Why People Mask Their Emotions:

  • To gain social acceptance
  • To be liked
  • To hide excitement
  • To hide happiness
  • To hide vulnerability
  • To hide the truth
  • To hide fear
  • To hide anger
  • To hide sadness
  • To hide depression
  • To hide pain
  • To deceive
  • To manipulate


The Types of Masks People Wear To Hide Emotions:

Anger mask:

Anger can be used to keep people away rather than to genuinely express how you feel. Some people behave as though they are angry knowing that others will avoid them because of anger. Anger feels more powerful than hurt, fear, or sadness and can also be used to avoid those painful feelings. People who use this mask are usually lonely and feel worthless in the inside.

Happy Mask:

Appearing happy is another way of people protect themselves. By being happy people tend to leave you alone and not ask questions, which is precisely why people put on this mask. You joke and smile when you meet with others even though you are not happy inside.

People-Pleasing Mask:

People put on this mask by doing whatever it takes to make other people around them happy. They do this so that they are accepted and not attacked by others. When one is wearing a “People-Pleasing Mask” they go all out for others not because they love doing so, but because they are trying to avoid a negative feedback.

Humour Mask:

Humour can be used as a good way to divert information from oneself. Similar to “Happy Mask”, by making jokes and being a comedian, it makes people believe you are well and happy, but in reality you are trying to hide guilt, shame and pain.

How Can You Remove Masking Behaviours?

  • Awareness
  • Recognition
  • Realization
  • Action

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *