What does your strong-willed child need?
You are the only one who will decide where the path of your strong-willed child is going.
Research has shown that one of three things will happen if the strong-willed child is not heard:
In my case it was possibly the most self-worth destroying of them all:
I retreated and felt that I needed to give myself up to be loved by others.
This fell on my feet very, very badly in recent years.
After not remembering how to speak up for myself and communicating my needs clearly, I reached the decision that I separated from the father of my children earlier this year.
The break-up of my marriage is not something I can blame myself or him for.
The break-up is the result of generations of women not being allowed to be who they are as young girls.
I grew up believing that I would only be loved if I was ’the good girl’.
These are the girls who had to be suffocated:
the angry girl
the loud-laughing girl
the disappointed girl
the sad girl
the crazy girl
the weird girl
the truth-speaking girl
the needy girl
the heavy girl
the playful girl
the creative girl
the winching girl
the worrying girl
the negative girl
and finally the sensitive girl.
Who are the little beings you needed to mute as a child?
What I believe happened is that I taught myself that I must be silent when it comes to expressing my needs.
You become the child, your parents expect you to be.
This is why parents find it so hard when it comes to working on the relationship with their own inner child.
Often we hear this quiet voice that knows we are not put on this earth to full-fill our parents’ dreams about us.
However, here is the dilemma I discovered in recent years:
The need to belong to receive approval from our own parents is like the invisible force that rules everything.
We act as a grown-up in relationships as if we are here to heal a complicated dynamic with one or both of our own parents.
You might be attracted to this at the start when you meet somebody and you are full of hope and courage.
Then it may take a turn and you may find yourself replicating patterns you watched when you were growing up.
For me it didn’t work out and I couldn’t fix the dynamic I set up for myself.
What all this has to do with parenting is the overwhelming burden that we know on a sub-conscious level that the relationship we have with our child, will have the deepest impact on their future self.
If I haven’t lost you in the previous sentence, thank you for staying reading this.
This is one of the toughest truths of parenting and it is why we may struggle as a parent.
However, imagine how unbelievably beautiful this moment will be when your child has now grown up and comes to you one day and says:
“You were the best parent I could ever imagine having.
You were able to deal with all your own challenges and on top of it gave me all the tools & skills and prepared me to accept disappointment and hardship in life with grace.
You were the parent who had the courage to parent differently.
This must have been really hard to not follow the crowd and fit in.
Thank you for allowing me to be who I came here to be."
What would that feel like?
Living a life in acceptance with what the reality is, is my idea of pure happiness.
The pain to resisting each situation where things don’t go according to plan - is what I have answers for.
You can gain access to the root cause of this pain by looking at your beliefs about your parenting style.
Once awareness has been brought to it, you can work with it.
What lies hidden will continue to cause the pain.
It’s a bit like a splinter you can’t see.
It my not hurt you at the start.
When then your body starts rejecting this foreign object and you can see it and feel the pressure of the puss under the skin - you may feel really uncomfortable for a short period of time.
Then you do something about it and take a disinfected needle and release it.
Still not comfortable.
Later, when the splinter was removed - you feel the relief and the healing begins.
It is a strange analogy, I will admit.
However, it amazes me how a small finger tip or toe can cause so much agony and when we get over the sensation and have felt the discomfort, we can move on.
Sometimes, I relate that to the feelings we had to bottle up as a child.
All our own children do - is trigger these feelings in us that finally want to be felt.
We sometimes still believe that we are the young child who is told to not feel the discomfort.
Our grown-up self may forget that we are now an adult who can handle everything and anything.
What you can learn when you work with me is to help your child feeling these big emotions without needing to shut them down.
Parenting is one of the hardest things you will ever do and you were born to be a parent.