(1) JEFF BROWN – The therapeutic movement puts a lot of emphasis on…

From JEFF BROWN’s Facebook Page:

The therapeutic movement puts a lot of emphasis on abuse when it talks about trauma. What is often missing is a dialogue about the traumatic nature of neglect. Both abuse and neglect can have a traumatic impact on the receiver and impede their developmental processes. When a child’s needs and presence are ignored, they often experience the neglect as a trauma. With no tools to understand that the parent’s neglect is a function of their own issues and challenges, the child has a tendency to assume that they are being neglected because they are unworthy of attention and love: “If the parent doesn’t notice me, if the parent doesn’t meet my needs, I ‘must’ be unwelcome on the planet.” If this internalization lasts too long, it can congeal into a web of self-hatred that is difficult to overcome. It is difficult to believe in our inherent magnificence if we carry the belief that we are unworthy of love. May we begin to weave a deeper understanding of neglect into our understanding of trauma. If we want children to believe in their value, we have to remind them of it by attuning to them and meeting their needs. Even a comment like “I am sorry I have not been attentive lately- I am overwhelmed- Please don’t take it personally” can make a big difference. A little bit of attention goes a long way…

I can attest to the above coming from a history of (partial) neglect that left its mark on me since it happened at critical times (right after birth for a duration of some weeks and again at ages 2 and 4). I just turned 50 and I still haven’t overcome the inherent/instilled “unworthy” pattern.


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