Child Abuse: Why Would Someone Expect Their Parent/s To Give Them What They Couldn't Give Them As A Child?
While someone may have received the kind of care that they needed during their early years in order to develop in the right way; there is also the chance that this didn’t take place. As a result of this, their early years may have been a time in their life when they experienced a hell of a lot of pain.
But, even though a number of decades may have passed since they were a small child, it doesn’t mean that they have been able to move on from this stage of their life. What took place is then still going to be having a negative impact on them.
Most of the people in one’s life could understand what they are going through, or at least have a rough idea. Having people like this in their life is going to make it a lot easier for them to handle what they are going through.
At the same time, one may be surrounded by people who are unable to empathise with what they are going through. These people may find it hard to understand why one can’t just ‘move on’ and put the past behind them.
Being around people like this is not going to make it easier for them to handle what is going on; it will make it even harder. Through being treated this way, one can end up experiencing even more shame than they already do.
These people will be telling them, in one way or another, that they are making a big deal out of nothing. One is then not going to be seen as someone who is in a lot of pain; it will be as if they are just looking for attention.
A lot of Damage
What took place will have had a detrimental effect on their whole being, meaning they won’t just experience negative thoughts and feelings. Their mind and body will have been undermined.
Focusing on their thoughts and trying to be positive, for instance, is then not going to be the answer. To make out that one simply needs to get their thoughts under control and then everything will be fine demonstrates a complete lack of insight into what one went through and is now going through.
The Foundations were laid
If one does put up with people who invalidate what they are going through, it can be because they don’t value themselves. Thanks to how their caregivers treated them, they will have come to believe that they are worthless.
Being treated in this way will feel uncomfortable on one level, but at another level, it can be what feels comfortable. Their life doesn’t have to stay this way, though, providing they reach out for the right support and work on themselves.
When they think about their caregivers, they could experience a number of ‘negative’ emotions, and it could be even worse when they are around them. Their caregivers might not be willing to acknowledge what took place all those years ago, being happy to make out that one is just making it up.
Then again, they could say that it wasn’t as bad as one makes out, playing down what took place all those years ago. What could make things even worse is that their caregivers may still try to undermine them.
Searching For Love
However, while it will be clear to anyone else that their caregivers are not going to change, one could still look towards them to give them what they didn’t get all those years ago. What this shows is that the needs that were not met all those years ago won’t have disappeared; they are still going to be within them.
Their caregivers wont have been able to meet them the first time around, but for some reason, one will believe that they will meet them the second time around. If one was able to detach from what is taking place, they might soon realise that they are wasting their time.
What they may also find, by taking a step back, is that there is a big part of them that is unable to accept that their caregivers will never give them what they couldn’t give them all those years ago. Regardless of what took place or how caregivers actually behave, a big part of them won’t be able to face reality.
This part of them can fill them with positive feelings if ever their caregivers treat them well or even make out that they will change. To this part of them, a change in behaviour will be seen as a clear sign that they will finally receive what they didn’t get all those years ago.
If one was to forget that these people were their caregivers and to see them as just people, they might soon see that they are replaying their childhood all over again. Yet, if one sees them as their caregivers, it will be harder for them to see what is going on.
Just as they looked towards two people who were emotionally unavailable as a child, they will be looking towards two people who are emotionally unavailable as an adult. So irrespective of whether this relates to their caregivers or someone who they are in a relationship with, the same thing is taking place.
If one was to no longer look towards their caregivers, or anyone else, to give them what they didn’t get all those years ago, they would most likely come into contact with a lot of pain. The child part within them doesn’t want to accept the truth.
This pain will go back to how they felt when they were abused and/or neglected day after day, year after year. Looking towards people to provide what can’t be provided is then going to be a defence mechanism that their mind uses to keep the pain in their body at bay.
If one can relate to this, and they no longer want to replay the same experiences over and over again, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided by the assistance of a therapist or a healer.
Through grieving their unmet childhood needs, they will gradually be able to embrace life. This will allow them to actually fulfil their adult needs as opposed to wasting their time trying to get unavailable people to fulfil their unmet childhood needs.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.