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How Can Reparenting Our Inner Child Help Us Heal Our Childhood Wounds?


A mother holding her child.
Mother and Child

As we go through life, we all carry emotional wounds from childhood. What happened to us when we were young shapes how we see the world, act, and relate to others. It can lead to unresolved issues and inner battles. Taking care of your inner child is a powerful process. It lets you heal and reconnect with the hurt parts of yourself, bringing about healing, self-love, and strength.


I recently read a few articles about the importance of reparenting your inner child. In one article, journalist Yasmine Jameelah interviewed two doctors about the significance of reparenting your inner child to begin healing. One of the doctors explained, "When it comes to reparenting, it's about figuring out what was missing. Asking yourself, what do I do to honor my twelve-year-old, nine-year-old, eight-year-old self? How do I make her feel safe? What was she missing? In general terms, we get nurturing from mom and we get security and protection from dad. If one of these relationships is damaged, you can feel unsafe. So, we're looking at healing those spaces."


I began to reflect that as adults when we recognize behavior patterns in our lives such as being overly self-reliant, tending to please others, having trouble setting health boundaries, or seeking external validation, do we take a moment to reflect on where we developed these patterns of behavior and whether this behavior is connected to my childhood experiences?


As adults, we often do not have time to think and reflect. We are in a constant state of moving, going ... just plain adulting. There is little to no time to take a pause and say to ourselves, am I showing up in a healthy way for myself, and if not, is the underlying reason connected to my childhood trauma?


Our inner child represents the pure, vulnerable, and authentic essence of who we are at our core. It holds the memories, emotions, and unmet or unacknowledged childhood needs.


Understanding the childhood wounds and traumas that may still impact us today is important for nurturing our inner child. We should consider the experiences, relationships, and messages we received in our early years that shaped our self-perceptions and beliefs. Identifying the unmet needs, fears, or vulnerabilities our inner child may still have is essential. By becoming aware of these wounds, we can start the process of healing and transformation.


Seeking a therapist is a great way to begin your healing journey. Also, here are a few activities that may be beneficial to helping you start your healing journey:


Visualization:

  • Find a quiet and comfortable space where you can relax.

  • Close your eyes and imagine yourself as a young child, around 5-7 years old.

  • Visualize your inner child standing before you, seeking your love and attention.

  • Engage in a dialogue with your inner child, asking what it needs and how you can support it.

  • Offer comfort, reassurance, and love to your inner child, addressing any unmet needs or emotions that arise.

  • Practice this visualization regularly to strengthen your connection with your inner child.


Letter Writing:

  • Grab a pen and paper and write a letter to your inner child.

  • Address your inner child by name and express your love, validation, and support.

  • Apologize for how you may have neglected or mistreated your inner child.

  • Acknowledge your inner child's pain, fears, and needs and offer words of comfort and reassurance.

  • Allow yourself to express any emotions that arise during the process.

  • Consider writing back as your inner child, expressing its thoughts, feelings, and desires.


Journaling:

  • Set aside time each day to journal about your experiences, emotions, and reflections related to your inner child.

  • Write about your childhood memories, triggers, and patterns that may still influence you.

  • Explore any unresolved wounds, traumas, or fears your inner child carries.

  • Engage in a dialogue with your inner child through your journal, offering encouragement, validation, and support.

  • Reflect on your progress, insights, and growth throughout your reparenting journey.


Reparenting our inner child is a profound and transformative process that allows us to heal, reclaim our power, and cultivate self-love and resilience. By embracing our inner child with compassion, understanding, and care, we can uncover and heal the wounds of the past, reframe our beliefs and behaviors, and create a more nurturing and empowered relationship with ourself. Remember that we have the strength, wisdom, and capacity to heal our inner child and embark on self-discovery and transformation.


Embrace this process with openness, courage, and self-compassion, knowing you are worthy of love, healing, and wholeness.


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