What can you do if your inner child easily gets overwhelmed and shuts down by the demands of your adult life? And how working with the inner wounded healer support rapid transform o childhood trauma?
I’m Christel Arcucci, you’re listening to the Soul Purpose Podcast, the lightning path of embodied spiritual awakening with shadow and light integration. Quit people pleasing, reclaim power, and create your soul purpose legacy.
As I am preparing this podcast, I feel the heaviness of this topic since it includes a discussion of childhood issues included unmet needs, family dysfunction, parenting styles, trauma, abandonment and abuse patterns. While I don’t include specific examples, the residual impact of trauma that has not been integrated is discussed which is a GOLD mine that can unlock self-love, self-understanding, self-honoring, self-respect and embracing the inner child issues wounds in order to reclaim innocence, play, curiosity, imagination and creativity.
Inner child healing happens in stages as you learn to re-parent your inner child which and take on the roles of the divine mother and divine father to yourself and your inner child no matter what your gender is, finding this dynamic integrated balance of masculine and feminine essence is a core part of healing.
Stage one of inner child re-parenting is establishing trust and make a commitment from your adult self to your inner child, that you will not ignore or neglect your inner child. If you had a challenging childhood I would encourage you to go further by committing to not abuse or abandon your inner child.
Your brain and nervous systems get hard wired in the first 6 years of your life and the treatment you received from your parents or caregivers becomes the baseline for how you let yourself be treated and how you treat yourself. The good news is the brain and nervous can be rewired with conscious and consistent practice, attention, and loving care.
If you’re new to inner child work rebuilding trust can take a significant amount of time because often in your adult life you’ve shoved your inner child into a closet or the basement. Perhaps you’ve even thought, “I’m an adult I need to carry on, that was my childhood and now I’m over that and I need to move on.”
The lack of integration or a position of denial reinforces stress or trauma patterns that were happening in your childhood which may include abuse, abandonment and neglect.
Even if you grew up in a healthy environment that did not have abuse or abandonment, things that happen in even a healthy childhood, can create stress patterns in your consciousness, which then get reinforced and played out in your life as an adult.
Yes, talking about abandonment and abuse is intense and those experiences are, yet many people have unresolved stress patterns or negative habit loops that come from experience childhood that felt traumatic to the child yet would not be considered abuse/abandonment.
Like being left to cry alone in the crib as a baby in order to learn to self-soothe even before you are psychologically capable of doing so or being told no. These experiences are not necessarily abuse and abandonment yet can create an imprint in the psyche that love equals being left or made to feel bad/wrong or unworthy of attention or love.
And as a human being, especially as a child, touch kindness care and love are the foundation of what creates a secure attachment and a deep understanding of what love really is for some of us. We have to reset those patterns and create them in our adult lives. That is the foundation of this work here.
Stage two is unconditional love and learning to accept, acknowledge, appreciate and love all aspects of the inner child the wonderful and wounded parts. This allows you to reclaim innocence, play, creativity and curiosity that most people of had squashed during your childhood.
Showing up in an unconditionally loving way with your inner child and keep in mind unconditional love IS NOT giving the inner child whatever it wants.
The foundational piece of learning to unconditionally love your inner child is the first step and for your inner child to trust that you will unconditionally love them and not abuse or abandon them is the foundation that needs to happen before anything else happens.
This mean being committed to not ignore or neglect your feeling, thoughts, emotions wounds, traumas as well as your dreams, time to play, create and rest.
Stage three begins when your inner child trusts you, you are practicing unconditional love and next you need to create healthy boundaries. This stage is where the wounded healer comes in, because many swing to the opposite side because needs were not met in childhood the wounded healer can swoop in to “save the day” and overcompensate for the unmet needs from the primary care givers. The wounded healer will them bend over backwards to give the inner child anything and everything it wants which will not create healing.
It just cultivates a feeling of being able to take advantage of and not needing to respect others
Approach re-parenting as if you were to parenting a real child. Often people think that inner child work is like you give the inner child whatever it wants, it doesn’t want to work, you don’t work. The inner child doesn’t want to do some activity so you don’t do that activity or you let them sabotage any plans for it’s whims.
And the challenge with that is like letting an unhappy five year old run your life and say “I want doughnuts for dinner, or drive you car even though I am not old enough, talk to your boss because I am pissed off or tell your partner to fuck off” and you say, okay, because that’s what the inner child wants = bad idea!
The wounded healer plays the “rescuer” and the inner child plays the “victim” while the parents/care givers are the “perpetrator”. I spoke about the trauma triangle in ep 1. VPR or victim, perpetrator, rescuer is a “power over” framework that will not support the inner child or the wounded healer to reclaim power and operate in a ‘power with” framework which is where deep healing and integration is possible.
Your job as a healthy parent aka empowered healer is saying no with kindness and create healthy boundaries for the child this is why I call it Inner Child Re-parenting and not just Inner Child work.
One of the most important teachings in caring for the inner child or a real child is creating healthy boundaries. You will listen, hear, see, love the child and what they want, but also teach them to receive a no and respect it, learn what is healthy, what is possible, and make choices from a foundation that balances present moment enjoyment with long term positive outcomes so that the inner child isn’t running and ruining your life.
As the parent you listen if a child is afraid, excited, overwhelmed, curious, sad, confused, etc.
Open hearted listening is essential to rebuild trust. Listen yet you don’t let the inner child run your life which leads to the wounded child and wounded healer down spiral.
The advantage to inner child re-parenting unlike raising a real child is you can come back later, send the child off on an imaginary adventure with a dragon or to play with a unicorn while you work.
You can have a conversation inside your mind and put things on hold while you’re attending to whatever activity is happening.
When Inner child wants your attention you say, “I hear you. What can I do to support you to feeling safe while I work or get things done?
Listen to your inner child and create healthy boundaries, then your life will transform quickly because the inner child trusts you to show up and take care of them, yet not let them take advantage of you so they will respect you, your authority and your guidance.
The process of reparenting your inner child never ends even if you had amazing parents and a dreamy childhood.
The focus is present moment power where the abuse and abandonment patterns have been cleared on a deep level, so that the inner child gets to be what it’s meant to be, which you may not have gotten in your childhood, the innocent, creative, curious playful part of you.
Healing so there is room for imagination, taking risks and believing anything is possible in your life are the results of this inner child re-parenting work.
This comes from the solid foundation of trust, love and boundaries because your inner child always knows that you’re going to be there and to take care of them. And at the same time, if they throw a temper tantrum, your life doesn’t get derailed because of it. The inner child is not running the show.
The integrated adult aka the empowered healer is running the show. Yet that first two stages are important to distinguish from the third stage where it’s about creating healthy boundaries.
Learn to communicate with your inner child, why something is happening, and also letting them know like, okay, we’re going to get our work done, and then we’re going to play afterwards. You know, just like you would with a real child is the child doesn’t get to run the show.
Be extra mindful about how you speak to the inner child abusive self-talk can be VERY COMMON if you had a critical or abusive parent or caregiver. If you wouldn’t say it to a REAL CHILD adjust what you are saying to match how you treat others and how you want to treat yourself.
The forth stage is when the adult part learns to admit, apologize and cleaning things up when you make a mistake.
This involves making a commitment to not abandon or abuse yourself and if you do to take accountability, apologize and commit to doing better when you make a mistake.
After many years of doing this practice my inner child trusts me and knows that if and when I mess up more like when, when I mess up, she knows that I will take accountability, and that I will apologize and I will make it right. Instead of reinforcing the abuse or abandonment pattern that happened in my childhood.
I started doing inner child work when I was 12 and my dad got sober. I was really lucky to have his support, accountability and love. I have been estranged from my mother since I was 14 and she DOES NOT and has not showed up in any helpful or meaningful way to clear the past.
I’ve had both experiences and I can say with certainty that you CAN heal the deep wounds from childhood while the parent that created the wounds does not even acknowledge the abuse or abandonment that occurred.
The empowered healer and integrated adult part of you is the one that creates the safe space for freedom for a play for in essence, taking these teachings into practice becomes an ongoing practice in your everyday life where. You can have a dialogue with your inner child either out loud while using touch as a way of reassuring your physical body and your inner child that you are present that you hear them.
You can do this simply by placing your hands on your body and saying, I hear you. I see you. I feel you. I love you.
You can do this while placing your hands on your body, on your belly on your heart, giving yourself a hug.
You can dialogue with your inner child as the empowered healer speaking to the inner child, either in your mind or out loud, as well as using reassuring touch, to deepen the work that you’re doing of establishing trust, unconditional love, creating healthy boundaries, taking accountability for any mistakes you make.
Being in relationship with your inner child so that they trust you to be in charge of your life, to know what’s best for them, which gets disrupted in childhood or in traumatic life events.
Being with the needs of the wounded inner child creates the opportunity for you to be present with and meet the needs in real time. In present time of unmet needs from your childhood is a deeply healing and helps to reclaim power in the present moment.
The dynamic relationship inner child and empowered healer helps you reclaim your power in the present moment by hearing your inner child by listening to their fears, their concerns, their sadness, yet them also trusting you to know what’s best when it comes to leading your adult life now.
The four stages of Inner Child Re-Parenting and becoming and Empowered Healer, it’s important to know where you are and know that you need to attend to all of them to create an on-going healthy relationship with your inner child and empowered healer.
Are you building trust?
Are you committed to unconditional love?
Are you establishing and maintaining clear boundaries?
Are you able to admit mistakes and clean them up?
These four stages will support you in reclaiming innocence, play, curiosity, creativity and integrate shadow aspects of your childhood and any residual dysfunction in how you speak to and treat yourself.
There’s a link to many additional resources the show notes: Build Trust with your Inner Child Audio, A Guided Meditation & Self-Love Healing Journey, and Self-talk and Unconditional Love Audio. www.SoulPurposePodcast.com/6
The ‘power with’ framework can be deeply healing for the relationship with yourself and everyone else in your life in order to reclaim power from the past and live and love in the present as you create a loving future.
You may have noticed I have not mentioned your parents, partners or human children at all so far…. and for good reason.
Doing the inner reset work and learning to self-regulate and be with ALL ASPECTS of your light and shadow helps ground you in your unmet emotional needs and the core wounds and conflicts you would like to try to resolve with your parents, children or your partner.
The reason is if you can not done the work to trust, love, create boundaries , clean up mistakes with yourself first you will continue to act out the dysfunctional dynamics from your childhood.
You cannot expect anyone else to trust you, love you unconditionally, respect your boundaries and navigate conflicts if you don’t already do this with yourself.
Note on the reality of trust, unconditional love, respect and navigating conflicts with other humans especially the ones closest to you, your parents, children and intimate partners… about to drop a bomb.
HUMAN ARE NOT CAPABLE OF BEING 100% trust worthy, UNCONDITIONALLY LOVING or lovable and honoring of boundaries. Conflict and messes are inevitable, the most important part is how easily you can come back into love and connection after a bump in the road, or an epic fracture or rupture.
You and your people WILL FAIL at trust unconditional love, boundaries and navigating conflicts. Don’t buy into the “happily ever after myth,” it simply does not exist.
Just like sometimes you don’t love or even like yourself the same will be true in your closest relationships… that’s the real talk. If you can be with that truth, not fight it, not expect the impossible you will have more fun in navigating the challenges of human love and relationships with play, curiosity and creativity…. Oh it seems there’s a profound connection to what we’re talking about today.
When a child is safe, loved and respected they are honest, open and more able to go with the flow of getting hurt or misunderstood or not getting what they want.
This is the intention in your adult relationships too.
The reality is is dysfunctional relationships and abusive communication is GLORIFIED in our culture so most people have no idea what a healthy secure relationship even looks or feels like.
The only forever relationship in this life is with yourself and your self-trust, self-love, self-respect and self-talk are the framework that gets repeated in ALL YOUR OTHER RELATIONSHIPS.
So the point is to start there. Work on you in your relationship with yourself? Clear that first
While co-regulating with others is an essential part of healing and healthy relationships if you don’t trust, love or respect yourself you are literally not capable of that in your relationships with others.
If you have a parent, partner or child that is involved in your healing journey you can open transformational conversation to clear the past. I will post a resource in the show notes to navigate conflicts with compassionate communication.
Trust, love, safety, respect and accountability are the golden keys to healthy and secure relationships with yourself and others and are deeply healing especially for anyone that has suffered childhood trauma, abandonment or abuse.
This episode has been a LOT of intensity please take good care of yourself by drinking water, breathing deeply, going for a walk and asking for support if topic has brought up challenges you need support with.
If you are interested to explore working with me to help you integrate the challenges of your past trauma in order to live as an empowered healer in the present you can visit www.SoulPurposePath.com for more information.
Thank you for being here, it’s a pleasure to walk the soul purpose path with you.
You’re listening to the soul purpose podcast, the lightning path of embodied spiritual awakening with shadow and light integration. Quit people-pleasing reclaim power and create your soul purpose legacy.
You can access the Free Soul Success Journal & meditation and all episodes of the podcast and all the goodies mentioned in this episode at www.soulpurposepodcast.com/6
I believe in you and the magic power of your soul.
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I am sending you so much love!