In an ideal world perhaps, every adults early years would have been a time when they were given what they needed to develop in the right and were prepared for the real world. This would mean that their caregivers did what they were supposed to do.
Their caregivers wouldn’t have seen them as beings who were there to meet their needs and thus, forfeited their parental responsibilities. To paraphrase the words of Kahlil Gibran, they would have realised that while they came through them, they were not from them.
If this is what actually took place, the world would be a radically different place. There would generally be harmony in each person’s inner world and this would result in their generally being harmony in the outer world.
Heaven wouldn’t be seen as being somewhere else; it would be experienced in the here and now, and for humanity as a whole. What this illustrates is how important childrearing is when it comes to having peace on earth.
When someone has had ‘good enough’ parenting, they will have generally had their developmental needs met and this will have allowed them to grow into a well-adjusted adult. They will be connected to their true-self, have the ability to regulate their emotions, have a felt sense of their own worth, and feel comfortable forming close connections with others, amongst other things.
Now, someone like this is still going to have challenges, but, through receiving what they needed as a child, they will be equipped to handle life. They can also be resilient, courageous, and competent.
A Different World
Due to what their life is typically like, they might not be able to fathom what it is like for those who don’t experience life in this way. If they were to hear about someone like this, it might not really go in; it will then be sad, but they won’t truly be able to grasp what it is like.
Therefore, it is not that they will lack empathy and compassion, but, as their childhood was very different, they won’t have any reference points with which to compare it to. They are going to live on the same planet as someone like this, yet it will be as if they live somewhere else entirely.
When it comes to someone who didn’t receive anything close to ‘good enough’ parenting, their life can be one big challenge. Unlike the person above, their life can more or less be seen as something that has to be endured.
So as opposed to life being seen as a blessing, it can be seen as a curse. This doesn’t mean that they will be aware of how destructive their early years were, though, as this stage of their life may have pushed out of their conscious mind.
The Signs Are Their
But, even if they are not aware of the impact that their early years have had on them, it won’t mean that they are able to avoid the damage that was done. They can be out of touch with their true-self, handing their emotions can be more or less impossible, they can have no sense of their own worth, and forming close relationships with others can be a challenge.
When they are around others, they can embody what is often described as a ‘false-self’. What this means is that they will simply play a role and this role won’t be supported by their true needs and feelings.
An Inner Disconnection
It could go one step further, with them being out of touch with their true-self when they are in their own company. Not expressing who they are is going to stop them from being able to truly show up and deeply connecting to others.
As they are unable to connect to their true-self, it is likely to mean that they are not in touch with their body. The reason for this is that their true-self will be found in their body, so if they can’t connect to this part of them, it is to be expected that they would be out of touch with themselves.
A Matter of Survival
Having a false-self will cause them problems but, deep down, it will be seen as the only way for them to survive. Also, if they were to let go of this self, they might not simply be able to connect to their true-self.
Before they can connect to themselves, they might need to work through a lot of defences that their mind has created. As these defences are removed, they will probably come into contact with a lot of pain, pain that has been hidden from their conscious mind since they were a child.
An Inner Split
During their early years, they may have been abused and/or neglected on a weekly, if not daily, basis. To try to handle what was going on, they would have gradually lost touch with their-true self – their needs and feelings – and developed a false-self, coming to believe that there was something inherently wrong with them in the process.
This would have meant that they wouldn’t have been focused on both their inner and outer world; they would have ended up being completely focused on what was going on around them. The person they became, along with their behaviour, would have the result of their need to please their parents and to minimize the harm that was done to them, not to express themselves.
Merging the Two
The years will have passed but what took place during their childhood, and how they responded to it, will still be defining their life. Allowing their behaviour to be influenced by their feelings and needs can be seen as something that would cause them to be rejected and abandoned, or harmed.
For their true-self to see the light of day, they will need to resolve the trauma that is inside them. By doing this and questioning what they believe, how they come across, and the life that they lead, will be more in alignment with who they are.
If one can relate to this, and they are ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can take place with the assistance of a therapist or healer.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 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.