Advice please: How do you parent yourself?

Can you offer advice on how I can parent my inner child? Lots of you write about this, and I know its something a lot of survivors of abuse and neglect struggle with. When you’re so deeply wounded as a little one, its no wonder taking care of that younger part is such a challenge.

The main problem I have is that I lose the adult part of myself so completely sometimes, it leaves my inner child unprotected. Immediately I am frightened of everything in the adult world and I get this sens of being small and vulnerable. This happened at work today and I ended up feeling incredibly helpless, because what I felt I needed was to be wrapped up in a blanket and cuddled. And of course it wouldn’t be too appropriate to ask for that in the office.

What helps you when you feel vulnerable? What can you do to make your child part feel safe? I’d really appreciate some help.

Photo: carrotmadman6, Creative Commons.


12 Comments Add yours

  1. Katrina Mondragon, LPC says:

    One thing I do is schedule my time to be vunerable. For me it’s when I’m at home. So for example, if I get horrible news at work and want to curl up in the corner and cry, I tell myself, “wait, I can do this as soon as I get home” and just giving yourself permission to be vunerable when the time is right might help.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Laura Black says:

      That sounds good. It would be reassuring to know I can allow myself the vulnerability as soon as I have a break from adulting!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Years ago, 20 or so, my psychiatrist suggested I keep a smooth object in my pocket and when stressed, anxious or un-grounded, that I put my hand in my pocket and sooth myself by rubbing it. It sounded a little lackluster to me, but I did it. I collected a basket of chestnuts and always kept one in my pocket. I think I still have one or two around.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura Black says:

      That’s a good reminder. I have done this a while back with a small stone that feels nice to hold. Maybe I need to start doing that again. Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I so wished I had more to offer but am working on the very same things…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Just listened to this and got teary. Also thought of you…
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        Liked by 1 person

  3. nintschgo says:

    Do you have a “safe place”? It’s something I was told about years ago, a place I created in my head where everything’s just fine…with blankets and tea and whatever is required. When I feel vulerable I imagine this place and that my inner child can go and feel safe there until I have time to actually cuddle up at home…that works well for me at work or whereever…hope this made sense…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura Black says:

      Makes perfect sense. I’ve started working on building such an imaginary place recently – actually in preparation for having some EMDR treatment. Thanks for the suggestion.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. nintschgo says:

        Oh great, well then all the best for the treatment 🙂


  4. lisaslarsen says:

    When you are in an adult state and not split off from that, maybe it would help to write a letter to the child part of you and provide all the reassurance, nurturing, comfort, and advice that you would give a small child. You can’t provide the presence and physical touch that you would to the child, but you can provide the intention and words. Put the letter somewhere easily accessed and read it when you feel vulnerable to remind yourself that it does get better and you won’t be stuck in the child state forever. Maybe practice writing this letter to different ages, like 3-5, 6-8, 9-11, etc. Read the letters every day so they become your learning, your more dominant narrative. In the letters, remind the little one of her strengths and resources and how she has overcome obstacles in the past. Just an idea.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura Black says:

      Thankyou for your thoughtful suggestions. I have in the past written a letter to my 11 year old self (here V and it did help me find some compassion you’re quite right. Maybe I need to keep writing to that part, to keep reminding myself she is there are that I should be kind to her.


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