Excerpt About Distortion
Sometimes, however, instead of idealizing a particular quality, some people idealize who they truly are, and make the essential self into an ego ideal. People who idealize being authentic, original and spontaneous, for instance, are actually idealizing qualities of who they truly are. However, this idealization does not mean that they are actually being who they truly are. An idealization is always a distortion of one’s reality. Usually, though, a person idealizes a certain quality that he has, and wants to be admired, loved, recognized, and respected for that quality. But as I’ve said, deeper than this wish is the desire for who he simply is, regardless of what he does, to be seen as precious. And there is a deep despair because who he is is not seen as precious, and the ego ideal is one of the compensations for this.