From my old website 2012- transferring to the Blog.
As you are reading this now and have connected with these words. You may recognise this as a part of yourself? Perhaps its time to begin to explore that? I am happy to discuss this with you and explore it further.
Unmothered children is an emotive phrase. I first heard it via Dr. Clarisa Pinkola-Estes in her famous audio book called Warming the Stone Child.
Complex Trauma and Difficuilt Early Attachment.
Trauma comes under many guises and often goes alongside growing up with a difficult or disrupted early attachment to the parent/caregiver. Meaning there were significant times in childhood when you were not seen, heard or acknowledged. And you had difficult later life experiences too. Resulting in complex trauma that comes from a variety of source. Clients often present with PTSD or C-PTSD amongst their symptoms. Trauma Counselling as IFS can help you manage these symptoms. Once symptoms are more managed, we can then begin to look more deeply at the cause.
There is no blame in the term unmothered children, it’s the result of generational trauma. Unhealed , fragmented, parts of self, passed on through attachment wounding, or as neglect. Because the parent, had their own stuff ongoing and was unable to be present enough of the time to connect to the child or children.
Which may mean you are experiencing some of the following
- Stress & Anxiety
- Suicidal Thoughts
- Domestic Violence
- Childhood Abuse
- mood swings
- frequent change of perspectives
- frequent changes of you and your self expresion (eg hair colour, clothes ect)
- Difficulties in Relationships- work or home
- Self Harm
- Trust Issues
As a Counsellor it is not my job to diagnose your mental health. You would need a Psychiatrist or a Psychologist for that. But working with you, as your IFS Counsellor. We can begin to build a professional working relationship and help you make sense of your history and work at your pace to help resolve it.
As different people we each have a unique experience of growing up. If the family we grew up in, did not allow for our needs to met enough of the time.
Then we then have to adapt our self to fit in.
Reasons why this happens, include growing up with domestic violence, parents using substances, alcohol, drugs. Being part of large family, step family or lone parent family. Or living with a parent who has longstanding mental health issues, such as depression/ anxiety.
For whatever reason our parents- mothers, fathers/ primary care giver, were not able to be present enough of the time. Those gaps in engagement did not allow the baby, child, young person to be truly seen, heard or acknowledged. Hopefully, I can help you untangle these early attachment disruptions.
Symptoms – People generally find ways of managing their symptoms, some of these are healthy some are not. People also generally, seek help when their current symptoms or way of life is unmanageable for them or unsustainable.
Internal Family Systems, calls these parts managers- of which there are 2 types – Pro active and reacitive. Reactice managers are also known as Fifefighters. The job of both Mangers is to help protect the exile, where the original wound, is stored. These might be feelings, emotions or sensations. Exiles are the parts of us that carry the original trauma.
In choosing to come to therapy you now have the opportunity to begin to clear and heal these patterns of old, helping at the same time to heal and clear the generation trauma that it is.
Working with the body
In my Counselling work, I would encourage you to work with the body. It allows access to the somatic symptoms, those parts that hold the original trauma. It is especually helpful when working with young parts, who didn’t have words.
Energy healing as Reiki can also help too, as it will help sooth an overactive Central Nervous System.
Alongside the various techniques that can be helpful, the relationship you build with the therapist, and with yourSelf is also vital to the work. I believe, it’s got to be the right time to begin to explore this stuff and it’s got to be with the right person.
I believe we know that pretty much straight away, if it’s the right person and time to work on something. Working with compassionate enquiry, will assist you in your exploration of the past. Your parts of you or sub personalities, will at last be truly seen, heard and noticed in a compassionate safe therapeutic space.
This also allows you to begin to rewire your brain and for change to begin to happen. “Reconnecting with that bright spark at your centre”, as Dr. Estes says.