103 Things We Would Say to Our Inner Child If We Could

103 Things We Would Say to Our Inner Child If We Could

Narcissistic abuse really does a number on your inner child, and most people who go through a toxic relationship that involves a narcissist find they have a lot of inner child healing to do during their narcissistic abuse recovery. Can you relate?

What is the inner child?

We talk often about the inner child in the narcissistic abuse recovery community, but do you really know what it means? On a very basic level, according to psychologists, the “inner child” is simply that part of you that never grows up. It is your inner childlike aspect. It exists within you and seems to only recognize those things you learned as a child before you hit puberty.

It might help you to see it as a separate aspect of your whole self. In analytical psychology, the term The inner child refers to a semi-independent sort of subpersonality. It is separate from your waking conscious mind, but it directly affects your experiences and your understanding of the world.

Healing your inner child is a big part of the narcissistic abuse recovery process and is used in various psychological and health settings. The inner child concept became popularized by the books of  John Bradshaw.

What Would You Say to Your Inner Child?

What would you say if you could talk to your child self? What if you could go back in time and talk to the child you once were? What would you want your younger self to know? What did you need to hear that no one said to you?

Here are the top ten things I’d have said to “me” back then.

1. You’re already enough. Stop caring what anyone else thinks and just be yourself already. Turns out? You’re pretty cool. And you’re a LOT better looking than you think – a lot of what makes people look hot is an illusion. You’ll become a master of it one day.
2. Here’s how to stop the tummy aches. You’ll never believe me now, but one day you’ll understand that getting so scared that you get sick to your stomach is actually part of what’s causing all of your problems. See, when you let yourself get so focused on negative thoughts that you can’t see the good stuff, something called the Law of Attraction causes more of the negative stuff to be pulled toward you like a magnet. This is not hocus pocus. It’s legitimate and as you grow older, you’ll see it for yourself. Learning this now can change your life significantly.
3. Your dream is real. It WILL happen, so don’t give up. You will become a successful writer. Someday you’ll have many, many books published. And you’ll make your living from your writing.
4. You are destined for a beautiful life – eventually. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise and don’t believe anyone who tells you to lower your expectations and that you don’t deserve to have the very best in your life. It is the belief that you can’t have something that ensures it – don’t forget that.
5. There is nothing wrong with you. It’s okay to be pretty and girly and smart and strong all at the same time. You can even love glitter, shiny and sparkly, and watch sitcoms and STILL be awesome. Yup. So stop trying to pretend you’re anything you’re not. You, specifically, have a huge amount of creative power and if you learn this now and stop doubting yourself, you cannot lose. Whatever you are is okay as long as you are staying safe, healthy, and legal. Embrace yourself and trust your instincts. They are spot on.
6. Big boobs aren’t as awesome when you get older. TRUST ME! Someday you’ll appreciate the fact that you never got out of a B cup. I PROMISE. Also, just a random comforting fact about the future: the size of the breast does not in any way affect the quantity of milk you’ll produce for your babies one day. But less bulk makes for easier nursing for all involved. Get yourself some padded bras and move on. You’re welcome.
7. Let that bright light shine and stop trying to cover it up with what you THINK is desirable or expected. Being dark and disturbed is not required to be a successful writer or artist. It’s also soooooo much less attractive than you realize. Stop it and admit you love pink already. It looks really good on you. And baggy grunge clothes don’t look good on anyone – especially you.
8. Give yourself a big hug and apologize for all the mean things you think about yourself – then stop doing that. And speaking of which, stop calling yourself fat. You’re not fat. But you will be if you keep focusing on that. Instead, focus on feeling good in your body and moving your ass. When you’re talking to yourself, don’t say anything that you wouldn’t tell your best friend about herself. Yes, it definitely does matter.
9. Crazy ain’t sexy, and you ain’t crazy. You aren’t bipolar or obsessive-compulsive or anything else. You just don’t fully understand the world and the people who live in it yet because you’re just getting started. But tell your mom to have you checked for ADD. Yes, girls can have it. And you do – learning this at 18 could change everything.
10. Hold on, your time is coming. You are a whole and worthy person with valuable and important things to do in the world. Stop doubting your ideas and your abilities and embrace the truth of who you are. Life will get so much better.

And, earlier today, I did a post in my SPAN group – asking…well, take a look at the video…

So here were their answers – they really came through.

  1. You’re worth it.
  2. You’re good enough
  3. You’re cute
  4. You don’t deserve your mother’s abuse (beatings, verbal abuse, etc.)!
  5. You are valuable as you are. (Haley)
  6. There is no need for perfection as you think about it, or as you think other people see it. (Haley)
  7. It’s okay to be you. (Haley)
  8. Abuse is not your fault you are good kind person
  9. It is ok to be queer – or whatever you happen to be.
  10. Not everyone be at your spiritual level
  11. Do not rush relationships
  12. Do not do all the giving
  13. Stay put – as in do not move so many times
  14. Look for a man like my father! And take a relationship slow! Get to know someone really good before getting into committed relationship!
  15. Watch for red flags.
  16. “Don’t date this guy, this guy or this guy…”
  17. Get an education
  18. Stop thinking you’re so ugly!
  19. Let go of all the pain you feel about not being loved. And then learn to love yourself! (Linda)
  20. You are not all the things people say you are. You are good, you are beautiful, you are strong, you are caring. All this stuff you feel means you are an empath, learn about it. (Linda)
  21. You are going to be ok.
  22. You are a survivor.
  23. Keep doing what you are doing.
  24. The straight path is the right path.
  25. You will help many on your way. ? (Linda)
  26. It’s not your fault that the people you loved, trusted, and looked up to were not there for you and abused you.
  27. You are enough.
  28. You have a voice.
  29. You are beautiful and not fat.
  30. Slow it down and don’t start dating so early.
  31. You only need you.
  32. Know yourself and learn to love yourself so you don’t depend on others for love and valuation.
  33. Set boundaries. Know you are a survivor. (Mary)
  34. “It’s not your fault.”
  35. “You didn’t do anything wrong by being born.”
  36. “You belong here (on this earth).”
  37. Focus on building yourself first – before committing to a serious relationship.
  38. Life doesn’t come with a guide manual. Try to learn why you are who you are.
  39. These are people you should look out for – and let’s talk about narcissists and codependency and everything in between.
  40. You’re a kind, loving, smart person who has a lot of good in you.
  41. Show others how to treat you by example.
  42. Don’t try to keep up with your brother’s eating habits. He doesn’t know everything he thinks he does!
  43. Learn to let go of negative people
  44. Set boundaries
  45. Speak up more.
  46. Don’t be so scared
  47. Don’t value yourself by how a man treats you or doesn’t treat you.
  48. You are worth more than you realize and don’t put anyone before yourself!
  49. You are lovable and need to find someone that can love you unconditionally and puts God first.
  50. Know your worth because others do – or they would not try to take advantage of you!
  51. You can not fix anyone especially if you believe you are worth nothing.
  52. Believe in yourself – and don’t believe them when they tell you otherwise.
  53. You’re not lazy.
  54. You’re not bad or stupid or otherwise unsavory.
  55. Your feeling and thoughts are real and legitimate.
  56. Don’t believe anyone who pretends to be better than you – everyone is equal.
  57. You are actually pretty cool.
  58. You don’t have to settle – ever.
  59. Choose your friends wisely.
  60. Get into a relationship with someone you know really well.
  61. Choose yourself first.
  62. This is how you do the gray rock method.
  63. One day, you’ll understand why it had to happen.
  64. You will come out of this stronger than you could have ever imagined.
  65. It’s okay to cry – but don’t cry forever.
  66. Being depressed is only making your life harder – be happy.
  67. Nobody’s perfect, least of all your mom or dad.
  68. Wear sunscreen.
  69. You’re going to get through this – and when you do, stay focused on the goal.
  70. Don’t drop out of college.
  71. Date people who get you – not people who hurt you.
  72. You can’t change anyone but yourself.
  73. Your brother (or sister) wasn’t really better than you.
  74. You have to learn how to be enough for YOU – you’re already amazing – but you just have to start owning it.
  75. If you imagine that your life is uphill all the way, it will be.
  76. You’re really, really smart – and that is a very good thing.
  77. You’re right – nobody understands what you’re dealing with right now. Hang tight – you’ll make it.
  78. When you feel paralyzed, just do one thing – make one move. It might lead to the next one – but if not, at least you tried.
  79. It’s okay to fail.
  80. You should never give up on yourself – despite what others say.
  81. What you like is okay and not weird – go ahead and like it.
  82. You don’t have to be what your mother says you are – you get to choose.
  83. Remember that you matter as much as everyone else.
  84. Start focusing on what is good in your life – that will help you bring more of the good.
  85. Don’t give rude people free rent in your head.
  86. Don’t let people walk all over you because you think you don’t deserve any better.
  87. No one who claims to be doing you a favor by treating you politely or even letting you live there is telling the truth.
  88. You don’t have to sleep with someone to make them like you.
  89. You were abused, and it was not your imagination.
  90. You aren’t crazy now, and you won’t be crazy in the future.
  91. Remember that your home life is temporary – the future is where you get to make choices.
  92. You can still trust people – just don’t trust the wrong ones.
  93. Just get through it – life can be beautiful if you let it.

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Rock Bottom: Who’s the Big Girl Kissing My Husband?

Rock Bottom: Who’s the Big Girl Kissing My Husband?

Editor’s note: Please join us in welcoming our new columnist, Sarah Aarssen. Sarah has lost more than 50 pounds so far (and counting) and she’ll be  a regular contributor here at Project Blissful.

By Sarah Aarssen

sarahsfamWhen you hear people tell their “stories” they always talk about hitting rock bottom.

For the drug addict rock bottom was when he snatched the purse from the little old neighbor lady who used to bake him his favorite cookies in the winter, knocking her down and breaking her fragile hip.

For the alcoholic rock bottom was when she smacked her innocent child’s face in a fit of drunken anger or when he smashed his car into a tree killing his best friend.

Rock bottom is always a tragic story.

It’s never very pretty. Nobody ever says “I really hit rock bottom when I drank myself silly at a party and ran around the neighborhood naked on a dare.” No drug addicts story begins with “I knew I had to turn my life around when I was no longer able to afford my weekly massages at the spa.”

Rock bottom is always a gross, murky, muddy, messy, bloody, dirty, shameful tragic turning point in a person’s life. But even below all the muddiness, below all the layers of guilt, shame and filth, beyond the grief, beyond all of that… there shines a light. It may be a small little pin light that is barely flickering, but there’s a definite light.

You will also hear people say that you have to hit rock bottom before you can move forward.

I don’t know if I totally believe that. I don’t believe you have to be in the gutter before you can realize you’re on the wrong path. I don’t think you have to go ‘all the way’ before realizing you don’t like this roller coaster ride and you’d like to get of please. You don’t have to knock your elderly neighbor down, snatching her handbag, before you realize “hey, I think I might have screwed up somewhere along the way.”

But I do believe that there was a point in my life where I said “what in the hell am I doing to myself.” It wasn’t when I looked in a mirror. It wasn’t when my arse got stuck in a chair. It wasn’t when I stepped on the scale. It wasn’t even when I went shopping and couldn’t find anything in my size.

That defining moment, my “rock bottom” happened at work.

We had just had our company BBQ and a coworker had taken some pictures and sent them out via e mail to all of us. Amongst all the great pictues of the beach, the food, friends, the sunset there was my rock bottom.

I saw a picture of myself and didn’t even recognize me. I can sort of see my face in that picture but whose arms are those? Hey that big girl has on my shirt… and my skirt…and is standing next to my husband… kissing him… HEY! THAT’S ME!!!!

Oh my God. That is me. I quickly closed the picture but I knew everybody else in the office would see it. But hey, it’s what they see in me every day. That is what I look like. That is what everybody at the office sees when they look at me. That is what people see in the grocery store, in the mall, in the bank. Everywhere I go, that is what people see. THAT is what I look like.

Gross.

I went home that night and cried. I laid on my bed and just cried. Marco came and laid with me, held me close and asked me what was wrong. Between sniffles and sobs I managed to get it out.

“I’m so gross. I can’t believe what I’ve done to myself. Look at me!”

Of course he said all the right things. He told me how wonderful I was, how beautiful I was. what a great person I am.

He said everything a husband is supposed to say. But as much as I knew that he meant what he was saying, I also knew that I could not go on this way.

From that day on we made changes.

Yes we, he and I, both made changes. He vowed to help me in whatever way he could and from that day on we began our new journey together. We haven’t turned back since.

So I didn’t need to have a heart attack at 40 to snap myself into reality. I didn’t have to learn that I have diabetes before saying “Wake up Sarah!”. All I needed was one picture, one life changing, defining picture was enough to show me that little pin light flickering in the dark.

Have you hit “rock bottom” before? How did it feel? What did you do next? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section, below.

Rock Bottom: Who’s the Big Girl Kissing My Husband?

Identifying Toxic Friendships


“Don’t walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don’t walk behind me, I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend.” ~ Albert Camus

What is a true friend, in your opinion?

Everyone has a slightly different definition–but bottom line, a true friend is someone who is there for you when you need him or her, someone you trust, someone who makes you feel good.

Probably you have great conversations, share interests and support one another in your every day lives.

But what happens when a friend turns out to be “not so good” for you, if the friendship becomes toxic?

What is toxic friendship, anyway?

“The phrase ‘toxic friend’ is pop psychology,” says psychologist Dr. Jenn Berman. “I would say it’s someone who, after spending time with them, makes you feel bad about yourself instead of good; someone who tends to be critical of you — sometimes in a subtle way and sometimes not so subtle; a friend who drains you emotionally, financially, or mentally, and they’re not very good for you.”

How can one truly identify a toxic friendship?

It can be difficult, especially if you have been close to the friend for a long time. If you suspect that a friend is (or has become) toxic, ask yourself the following questions:

  • How do you feel after spending time with or speaking to this person? Do you feel good and positive (for the most part) or do you find yourself worrying, stressing or obsessing about some aspect of the visit or call?
  • Are you afraid to tell your friend about some aspect of your life for fear of how they’ll react or fear of being judged harshly?
  • Do you sometimes find yourself avoiding contact with the person or ignoring their calls? Does your friend consistently “forget” about your plans or cancel at the last minute?
  • Does your friend actively insult or offend you on a consistent basis?
  • Do you find yourself feeling uncomfortable or bothered by your friend’s life choices, behavior or moral conduct?
  • Do you feel comfortable bringing up concerns about your friendship with this friend?
  • Does this friendship benefit you?
  • Do you trust this friend, really trust him or her?

These are just a few questions to get you started. In general, your friends should be an asset to your life, not a detriment.

Does someone in your life seem to be more of a hindrance than a help on your journey to personal bliss?

If so, it may be time to reevaluate your choices.

Mini-Bliss Mission for Those Dealing With a Potentially Toxic Friend

 

My challenge today applies to those readers who are currently dealing with a potentially toxic friendship.

Take a few minutes today to really consider the questions above in regard to the friend in question.

Be brutally honest, and take a quick inventory of the situation.

Have you ever dealt (or are you currently dealing) with a toxic friendship? How did or will you handle it? Share your thoughts in the comments section, below!

 

Rock Bottom: Who’s the Big Girl Kissing My Husband?

How and Why to Eliminate Toxic Thinking

Mr. Yuck Child's Warning for Dangerous Substances

 

Being in a good frame of mind helps keep one in the picture of health. ~Unknown

You know all about toxic families and toxic friends, but have you ever considered that your own thoughts can become toxic?

We’ve talked before about why it’s important to keep an eye on your thoughts–because you bring about what you think about.

So, hey–remember that “Mr. Yuck” guy from back in the day? That green-faced frowny type who reminded you what to avoid in the medicine cabinet and under the kitchen sink?

Well, dangerous substances can hurt your body, and toxic thoughts can make you sicker than any chemical sometimes.

So, if you’re focused on all good things, then more good things will come your way. But, if your thoughts become toxic, they can and will draw negativity and toxicity into your life, and can even cause physical side effects if left unchecked.

Research has proven that the way we think can cause a wide variety of chemical reactions in our bodies. When we’re thinking happy thoughts–forgiving people, feeling patient and maintaining self-control, for example–our bodies will release chemicals that make us feel peaceful and healthy.

But when we’re feeling negatively and thinking toxic thoughts–like feeling and nurturing rage, holding grudges or wallowing in guilt or self-pity–our bodies release damaging chemicals. This makes us more susceptible to illness and disease.

 

Dr. Caroline Leaf, author of the book Who Switched Off My Brain, says that “stress and anxiety harm the body in a multitude of ways; patchy memory, severe mental health issues, immune system problems, heart problems and digestive problems.”

Serious stuff, right? The way you think can literally affect not just your day-to-day quality of life, but also your long-term health.

So what do you do when you catch yourself thinking toxic thoughts?

Listen to Yourself Talk

You may not even realize how often you complain or lament about the things in life you don’t love. Maybe you are frustrated because you had to wait in line for a half hour at the grocery store, or the traffic on your way home from work was so terrible that you actually got out of your car and sat on the hood to get a little sun. Perhaps you found out that your kid failed Science or you didn’t get into the college of your choice–or your dog ate your knitting project.
Does it really help you to rehash and focus on these negative things? Nope, it actually hurts you. So, while you should absolutely feel comfortable telling the people you care about what happened to you during the day, try to focus on the positive side of things, even when there doesn’t seem to be one.

For example, if you waited in line at the grocery store, maybe you talked to someone who really needed a good conversation. If you sat in traffic too long–maybe you needed the solitude or you heard your favorite song. You get the idea–find the silver lining in every cloud.

Use Mind Control (On Yourself)

I can’t stress enough how important it is to recognize and monitor your thoughts. You may not even realize how often you think negative thoughts. For example, if your friend wins an award that you wanted, you may think “she must be better than me” or “I deserved that award, not her!” But if you can bring yourself to genuinely congratulate and feel happy for your friend, you’ll not only do her a favor, but yourself too.

If you find yourself FEELING negatively, take a minute to listen to your thoughts. You might be surprised to find out that you may be subconsciously thinking toxic thoughts.

Take control of your mind, because you can. All you need to do is mentally cancel those toxic thoughts and replace them with positive and healthy thoughts that reflect your true desires. (Because whatever you think about and focus on is what you’re drawing toward yourself–so why not think about and focus on what you really want?)

Change Your Scene

When I feel like my thoughts are getting a little toxic, sometimes it helps me to just change the scene around me. Maybe that means just going into a different room or taking a walk–or maybe I need to get in the car and go somewhere. But inevitably, if I make the effort to change my scene, it changes my mind pretty quickly. 

Try going out for coffee with a friend, taking a walk or a bath, working out–or even busting out the Wii for a little karaoke or golf. Whatever works for you–just get away from the spot in which you started thinking toxic thoughts for awhile.
What do you do to control and eliminate toxic thoughts? Tell me in the comments!

 

 

 

Rock Bottom: Who’s the Big Girl Kissing My Husband?

Soul Suckers: On Toxic Family Relationships

Back in September of last year, I wrote a post about how to identify toxic family relationships, and at the end of that post, I promised to come back and explain how to deal with the situation. When I wrote that, I assumed I would have figured it out by the time I wrote that post.

But It Was Personal

What I didn’t mention in that post was that I was dealing with a toxic family situation of my own which had culminated into an event of painful betrayal that affected me on an emotional level so deep that I was physically ill for weeks afterward.

It wasn’t with anyone in my household, thankfully, but it did involve a couple of extended family members I had been very close to at one time. One of them had been toxic for many years, but because of the nature of the relationship, I had continuously “turned the other cheek.” I tried and tried to make it work and I now realize that I developed a shockingly codependent relationship that I couldn’t even recognize while immersed in it.

The other family member involved had been a ghost in my life for the previous 15 or so years, only showing up on rare holidays and special occasions, and the act of betrayal on this person’s part shook me to the core because it was completely unexpected.

How I Handled My Toxic Family Situation

So, as I often do when I experience challenges in life, I wrote through it. If you’re familiar with my work, you know I’m not a poet and I don’t do flowery (very often) so I did what I do–I did some research and wrote a logical, fairly informative article on how to identify toxic family members. Though I wanted to share with my readers how to handle such a situation, I stopped there because, at that point, I had only identified my toxic family members–I didn’t actually know how to deal with them.

In the last few months, I have had a lot of realizations. I have connected the dots, so to speak, of my own experiences. I have come to understand those toxic relationships on a whole new level, and in fact, after many hours of reflection and emotion, I have managed to forgive the people involved–at least within myself. I needed to do that for the sake of my own sanity.

What’s Happening Now With the Toxic Relationships

As for the relationships with my toxic family members, you might be surprised to know that I haven’t repaired them. Considering the events that took place, I don’t know that those relationships can be repaired at this point, and I don’t think it would be healthy for me to try.

But what I do know is that now that I am not dealing with these people on a day-to-day basis, I don’t have to try so hard to see the positive side of things. The weight of the relationships has been taken off my chest, and I can breathe. There is a new lightness in and around me that I’m not sure I’ve ever felt before. In some ways, I can be grateful for the situation, because in dealing with it, I found a level of strength within myself that I never knew was there.

What’s Happening Now With Me

It would be easy for me to sit around and feel sorry for myself and to cry over the things that happened, but I choose to hold my head up and keep smiling. I prefer to live in the present moment instead. I don’t want to focus on the negative and the past–I want to live in the now and look expectantly to the future.

So that’s what I’m doing. I’m enjoying my relationships with my kids and husband and some extended family members. I’m following my passion, rocking my career and exploring the new-found freedom that comes with healing–and generally all is well in my world. These days, I’ve decided, I’m writing my own ticket.

I’m Still “Human”

Don’t get me wrong, I still have feelings of sadness about the situation and the lost relationships. I have those moments of self-pity when I wish things could have been different, just like probably anyone who has dealt with a toxic family member or situation.

Staying Positive is the Key

If I sit around worrying about what happened and constantly rehashing the events in my mind, I draw more of that type of negativity toward myself. On the same note, if I focus on feeling love and gratitude for the wonderful people, things and events in my life–guess what? More of that comes my way.

So when those feelings of sadness or depression or self-pity creep up, I intentionally change my mind and focus instead on all of the awesomeness in my life.

If you’re in a similar situation, you should try intentionally focusing on the positive too–and on changing your mind if the negative thoughts do creep in. It might feel forced at first–but once you get the hang of it, it comes naturally. And the more you focus on what’s good and right in your world, the more power you give to those things. The less you think about the things you don’t want in your life, the less of those things you’ll draw toward yourself.

I don’t know about you, but I’ll take happy and positive over negative and soul-sucking any day.


Have you ever dealt with a toxic family relationship? How did you handle it? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this sensitive subject. Please tell me in the comments.

Image Credit: PixelPlacebo/Flikr

This post was originally published on InPursuitofFulfillment.com. If found anywhere else, this content is illegally copied and should be reported.

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