PREVIOUS: ADULT E.S. (Part 3)
CES = child ego state
AES = adult ” ”
PES = parent ” ”
NC = natural child / AC = Adapted C.
Everyone has a CHILD Ego State (CES) – the earliest stage of our development, forming our personality in the first 5-7 yrs of life. Similar in many ways to the Freudian concept of id, it operates on the pleasure principle, automatically & persistently aimed at gratifying & fulfilling needs – but available on a conscious level.
We continue in child mode well into our late teens & early 20s, through 7 developmental stages.(“Cycles of Power” by Pamela Levin). For the rest of life the CES is both an influence (what we think & feel inside) & a state (looking & acting like the little person we once were).
🌺 It’s called “archaeo-psyche” because it’s a collection of taped & stored info – behaviors, thoughts & feelings held over from childhood.
In T. A. terms, it’s made up of the Natural /Free Child (NC) – our fundamental identity – overlaid by the Adapted Child (AC), healthy or unhealthy, developed in response to our environment which are ‘understood’ as filtered through our natural tendencies (Part 2,3)
Its goal is to feel pleasure & avoid pain – no matter how or at what cost. It’s focused on Self needs only, even when relating to others or trying to being helpful : “I want, Don’t leave me, I refuse, You can’t make me, I don’t wanna, I want you to….”
This does not mean it’s a bad aspect, to be gotten rid of. We need it, since it holds the seeds of our native qualities, as well as the wounds that influence later behavior. It’s just that as adults it’s not healthy to be ruled by the Child. (See ‘Contamination’)
✦ This E.S. is mainly the domain of the ‘felt’ – the Right brain. Before we were able to talk (Left), our whole world was about feelings & sensations!
So most, but not all, of our emotions (Es) – including all the old stored up ones – reside in the C. part of us
For ACoAs, it is our NC that has mainly been suppressed, ignored, almost crushed. Early on it had to go into hiding to preserve itself from overwhelming harm.
However, it shows up anyway, perhaps sideways – when we use our natural talents – in business, in the arts, in science…. BUT without Recovery we don’t believe they have value, assuming we’re frauds. ◎ Healing works to help us own & happily appreciate them.
▶ In CHILDHOOD
Before we have the grown-up components of the Adult & Parent, we develop rudimentary aspects of them – the Child’s versions of them (+FC), along with the basic tendencies we’re born with – the C’s C. Eventually these 3 parts become the essence of the Inner Child E.S. no matter how old we are. (see Second Order E.S. Map).
✦ C’s Parent – sometimes called mother’s ‘Little Helper‘. Kids, even very small ones, will help a drunk parent up the stairs, rock their dolly to sleep, care for a pet… OR be bossy, lecture other kids, copy their parents’ way of treating their younger siblings…
⚒ Electrode (zaps you with a toxic command, causing a knee-jerk reaction), Witch Mother or Fairy Godmother
✦ C’s Adult – trying to do ‘grownup’ things, even before they’re ready, going to the store or school – alone, ‘being in charge’, showing off their cleverness & knowledge… trying to figure out how things work…. BUT without enough info or mature ego states to process everything correctly
⚒ The Little Professor
✦ C’s Child – our most basic self, the core of our identity, the most vulnerable part, aspect of ourself which, as adults, has often been suppressed to the point of being invisible. This part is composed of our physical self, instincts, biological urges, genetic recordings, and how we learn, our level of sensitivity, social preferences, the full range of emotions – from great joy to great pain, down to how we like our eggs cooked!
⚒ Magical Child or Little Fascist
NEXT: CHILD E.S. (Part 2)