The CRITICAL INNER PARENT
can take up a lot of space!
PREVIOUS: Parent ego state (Part 2)
SITE : The Child & the Seriously Disturbed Parent (Patterns of Adaptation to Parental Psychosis)
” 5 Harmful mothers“
WHEN our most important caretakers are mis-attuned, invalidating, emotionally neglectful &/ or physically abusive – they create great anxiety in the child. The resulting desperation triggers an unconscious defense :
❥ the child identifies with ‘the other’ (the -CP), taking on the character of the abuser & suppressing its own needs & identity, in an attempt to stay attached, bonded and loyal.
In healthy families the P template will have fewer discrepancies with reality, but —>
—->for ACoAs, this part of us houses the Negative Introject, also called Pig Parent, gathered from a collection of people who deeply influenced us as kids, & who we now carry around in our head.
It’s the voice the WIC is always listening to, who is terrified of displeasing, is trying to obey -perfectly- & constantly failing!
NOTE – kids pick up just as much subliminal information about the people around us just as much as what’s on the surface. AND what we absorbed was their WIC & PigP, which got mingled with our immature thinking.
🔻Along with our inborn personality, this combination (obvious & hidden) becomes the blueprint for the way to think of ourselves & how to function in the world.
So now PigP messages can be very hard to get rid of, since they’re linked to a great deal of original psychological & emotional trauma still held in the WIC‘s ego state.
But since each of us also brings our own style to how we express P2, with Recovery, it’s possible to behave much better than our dysfunctional training!
For ACoAs, the Loving Parent (LP) – for ourself – is usually missing, but can be developed in Recovery as part of the “UNIT”. It requires a measure of Separation & Individuation to be a self-caring, nurturing component in us, capable of empathy for self & others, & can therefore be of help without being co-dependent.
Whenever we notice the OLD voice getting loud or taking over we can ‘de-contaminate the bad Parent’ by calling on the Good P. to help get the Adult back in charge.
Interestingly, many ACoAs do have a version of a Loving Parent, BUT only used for others – in the form of care-taking, rescuing, people-pleasing, AND sometimes being of genuine help (teacher, nurse, leader, parent….) , yet don’t apply that benevolence & skills to our own needs
In RECOVERY the goal is to learn how to always talk to ourself in the best possible way. Harmful internalized messages have to be identified & replaced, & most ACoAs need help hearing what they sound like.
EXP: Sarah was telling a friendly neighbor some frustrations she was going through lately. The older woman was sympathetic, & thought she was helping when she said “You shouldn’t feel that way”. Sarah smiled & replied “I don’t ‘should’ on myself.”
REVIEW : Distorted or Missing Parent states
🗯When Parent contaminates Adult & C. is unavailable, the person is stiff, humorless, always ‘correct’
🗯 When Parent is unavailable & C bleeds into A, the person has no regard for others, & is only interested in self-gratification
🗯 When Adult is unavailable to mediate & guide P & C, the PigParent & WIC are in constant conflict, potentially leading to mental illness
Shows up in stereotyped, predictable attitudes, clung to as long as possible in the face of any threatening situation ⬅️
a. Missing Inner PARENT: boundaries & limits are not respected, person has a weak conscience, missing rules about how the world works
b. Missing Inner CHILD: the person has shut down memories of childhood, & emotions are suppressed, maybe psycho-somatic disorders – most likely victims of early severe trauma
c. Missing Inner ADULT: reality is ignored or denied, producing strange or bizarre ideas, in constant conflict, potentially leading to mental illness
POSTS: 4 Parenting Styles // Replacing Negative Introject // Healthy Rules / Rights // Self-esteem // Talking to the IC // What is Self-Control
NEXT : Parent ES #4