In Karen Horney's work, she talks about "The Strategies of Disconnection". In it she says when dealing with shame some of us "Move Away", by withdrawing, hiding, silencing ourselves and keeping secrets. Some of us "Move Toward", by seeking to appease and please and some of us "Move Against", by trying to gain power over others, by being aggressive, by using shame to fight shame.
It's important to look at which strategy we use most often, and the only way to find this out is by talking about it. Support groups composed of people who are dealing with the same questions and issues offers a way to do this. A willingness to be vulnerable and honest is all it takes. Unfortunately this is a tall order for a lot of us because our belief systems are, never show vulnerability and never be honest about how you feel. So we believe we are powerless and we suffer.