If someone is an adult, it could be said that they won’t need the same things that they needed when they were a child. This comes down to the fact that they will have grown out of a number of these needs.
As a result of this, what they look for from others is going to be different to what they looked for from their caregivers. Therefore, there will be what they needed then and there will be what they need now.
Far more to it
Yet, although this can sound accurate, this might not actually be the case. One will no longer be a child, that much is clear; but that doesn’t mean that they always feel like an adult and therefore, only have adult needs.
It might be hard to understand how some of one’s need’s can be child needs, even though they look like an adult. Their external appearance is then not going to completely match up with what is taking place inside them.
Ones child needs are going to mix with their adult needs, which can make it hard for them to know if they are operating from their adult self or their child self. When they are coming from their adult self, their needs can be reasonable.
For example, one can need another person to listen to them, to treat them with respect, to accept them, and to support them, amongst other things. This will apply to their friendships and to their romantic relationships.
The things that they need from others are likely to be the same things that other people need from them; that is unless they are operating from their child self. If they are not the same, they are likely to be very similar.
This is not to say that one is entitled to things but, if someone is unable to fulfil needs like these, they can find someone who can. If they value themselves, they are not going to want to spend time with someone who is unable to meet their basic needs.
On the other hand, when one is operating from their child self, their needs can be anything but reasonable. For example, one can need another person to always be available, to love and accept them unconditionally, to make them the most important person in their life, and to always put their needs first.
And, although one can look towards their friends to fulfil these needs, they are more likely to look towards a romantic partner to fulfil them. Their romantic partner could also look to them to fulfil the same needs.
At the beginning of a relationship, it may be possible for someone to meet a number of the needs that their child self has. Nonetheless, as time goes by, this could start to change.
There may be times when their partner has other things going on and is unable to see them, and there will be other things in their life that are also important to them. Ultimately, unlike a caregiver, this person won’t always be available and neither will they be there to fulfil all of their needs.
If one is unable to realise that they have merged with their child self, and are expecting things that can’t be provided, they can get angry at their partner. One could come to believe they are with the wrong person and they might soon find someone else.
Ending the relationship and finding someone else may allow them to fulfil some of the needs of their child self, but they will probably end up in the same position before long. The key will be for them to become aware of what is taking place and to change their approach.
Firstly, they will need to become aware of when they are merging with their child self, and secondly, they will need to give this part of them what it needs. If their child self is in a lot of pain, it can be hard for them to be with this part of them.
They will merge with this part of them and, once they become aware of what is going on, they could lay into themselves. It will be essential for them to be kind to themselves during this time.
Inner Child Work
If someone’s child self is not in a good way and is very needy, it could show that their early years were not very nurturing. As a child, then, they wouldn’t have received what they needed to be able to develop in the right way.
Many years will have passed since they were a small child, but the child that they once were will now exist inside them. This part of them will want to be seen and heard, and to express what it couldn’t say all those years ago.
When one is in touch with their adult self and is able to be there for their child self, they can reparent the child that is inside them. This will allow one to give this part of them what it didn’t receive all those years ago.
To be able to do this, however, one may need to reach out for external support. With the assistance of a therapist or healer, one may find that they are able to be there for their inner child and not to completely lose themselves.
This external support will allow them to work through some of their pain and to develop their adult self in the process. The stronger their adult self gets, the easier it should be for them to hold the space for this part of them and to heal themselves.
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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.