PREVIOUS: Why resist? #5
DIALOGUE or MONOLOGUE?
Since connecting with ourselves in new, we’ll fall back on what was done to us – as harsh or as limited as our family. So when ACoAs first learn about this Recovery tool, we don’t even ‘hear’ the idea of dialogue – a TWO-way communication.
1. Main one = making it about YOU instead of the Inner Child. Worried that you won’t say the right thing, you don’t have time, you don’t know what to do…..That’s treating the IC as if it is our damaged parents & we’re still a child trying to placate & fix them
2. Only talk AT the kid, rather than giving it a chance to let its thoughts & feelings be heard. This is not a dialogue! If your friends, family, mate… only talked AT you, how would you feel?
NOTE: This one-directional form is valid only IF you’re connecting with your pre-verbal IC in any communication with you infant self – which can happen at any time, OR if the WIC isn’t yet willing to respond, from fear & distrust.
3. Only remember to talk to the kid when we’re in distress. By then we don’t know how to help the kid – if we try at all. This is a blatant form of abandonment. Do your close friends / loved ones only talk to you when there’s a problem?
• Waiting until there’s a crisis – when we’re emotionally triggered – sets us up for failure.
Very often we’re too regressed, too much IN the WIC to step back & help ourselves, since at that point we’ve lost even the little bit of Adult ego state we do have, much less being able to activate a Loving Parent. That’s when the Negative Introject (PP) can get really loud – berating & belittling us
4. Only focus our monologue on ACTIONS (do-ing, do-ing, do-ing! – the A of T.E.A.), rather than focusing on the IC’s emotional state & needs. Validation of its experience must come first, then comfort, then correcting any distorted self-deprecating thinking
5. Only make excuses for the other person – when the child hurting or very angry about how we are/ have been treated – explaining their motivation, needs, state of being…. while completely ignoring our kid’s real pain.
This is first-order abandonment – literally taking someone else’s side.
YES, it can be important to give the child another perspective, but ONLY after honoring your IC’s experience!
6. Telling the child “YOU have to” when the situation has little or nothing to do with the kid, because it’s really the Adult who needs to be doing something differently – like a work presentation, cold-calls, do chores, keep an appointment…..
The kid already thinks its responsible for everything, so to say that it should DO / be or not DO / be certain things is both inaccurate & adding more of a burden
7. We try to placate or blatantly lie to the kid – “It’ll be OK, everything’s fine, I’m here, I’ll always take care of you”…. & then forget to talk to the child for days or weeks!
How can the kid ever trust or listen to us when we’re not only inconsistent & abandoning, BUT not dealing with reality? Is everything really OK at the moment? Are you, the Adult, taking care of the kid – & things?……
PLEASE: think before you speak to your WIC. Our younger Self is very smart & intuitive BUT takes everything literally. When you promise something, the Child believes you. When you don’t follow thru, it’s deeply disappointed – just another ‘adult’ who can’t be trusted!
✤ Consider what you would like to have heard when you were little & say those kind, positive, encouraging things – about the child as a person: “You’re smart, I’m impressed by you talents, you try really hard, I’m proud of you”….. even if you don’t fully believe everything – yet. And about taking actions – things you’ll do for the kid, fun places you’ll take it… only say what you can back up & then do it!
NEXT: Why resist ? #7