Solution – Gentleness
"We learn to reparent ourselves with gentleness, humor, love, and respect." BRB p. 590
How do we reparent ourselves with gentleness if roughness or even cruelty was a staple of our childhoods? As we grew, we may not have felt capable of kindness toward ourselves because our critical inner parent was always in our heads saying things like "You fool! Your life's a mess! And you're to blame!"
But we knew we wanted to treat ourselves better; we wanted desperately to have an inner voice shift to something kinder, like "Have a cup of tea with me and tell me what's wrong."
In ACA we learn that if we can catch our critical inner parent at work, we can shift gears and try to do the opposite. When we feel criticized, we can hit the "Whoa!" button and stop ourselves from joining in the frenzy. We can tell ourselves "I can't do better than my best, so I will simply do my best right now." We can even teach ourselves techniques that help calm us down in these situations, like changing our visual image of another person from someone who is menacing to perhaps a kindly cartoon character. Something this simple can help us get through the critical patches.
On this day I will treat my Inner Child and myself to twenty minutes alone over a fresh cup of tea or a glass of juice so we can just listen to each other.
Copyright © 2018 by Adult Children
of Alcoholics / Dysfunctional Families
World Service Organization, Inc.
All rights reserved.
Page Number - 54