Put a couple of your favorite photos into special, fancy picture frames that really honor that little girl or little boy. Create an inner child altar with candles, crystals, stones, sea shells, statues/pictures of Goddess/God/Spirit to love and protect you and your inner child, your photos, toys, books, etc., anything that has significance to you as a child! Make it beautiful, magical, fun, healing and very sacred. Your inner child will so appreciate you for doing this for them. This aids in bringing your inner child to life for you as the adult, making them a real, breathing being that is truly part of you. This also assists your child in sharing her/his thoughts and feelings with you, learning to trust you and for both of you to get to know each other.
- Tell them you want to get to know them and tell them you are sorry that it has taken such a long time for you to remember them.
- Most of all tell them that you love them and you want to bring them home. Begin to feel a heart connection from you as the adult to your inner child.
- If you can, speak to your child every day and keep reinforcing to them that you will not abandon and betray them as others have. That you now make a permanent commitment and promise to communicate, share and develop a loving, trusting relationship with them by communicating as often as possible! For example, you might begin by scheduling only 5 minutes a day to check in with them. As your relationship develops, be open to expanding the time you spend together to longer than 5 minutes a day. As the adult, be patient and flexible with yourself at the beginning of this process and forgive yourself if you are unable to talk with your inner child daily. Tell them what’s going on in your adult life and let them know you are sorry if you miss a day. Please know your inner child will be “testing” you to see if you will keep your promises. The more you as the adult come through for them (especially when others didn’t) your child will begin to trust and love you very deeply. This begins the powerful healing for both of you of the deep wounds of broken trust and broken hearts as you keep being there for your little girl or little boy. This is a magical alchemy between yourself and your inner child that generates astounding, positive life changing results.
- Ask them how they feel. Listen intuitively for answers from them. You will feel and sense some kind of a response. This process takes time and patience, your inner child may be afraid and angry with you for neglecting them for so long. Talk to them about how they feel about you. The more you honor their feelings and thoughts without judgment, criticism or punishment and only communicate and send them unconditional love, compassion and understanding they will open up, start speaking to you and begin to trust you.
- Once some love and trust has been built, take your child toy shopping. Let them pick out any toy (within $ reason) that speaks to their heart. Many children tend to pick out a cuddly, soft stuffed toy that can be hugged. Children tend to pick out this kind of toy, may be because when you hold this snuggly toy, you are really hugging them! Many inner children love it if you give the toy a special place of honor (on an altar, the bed or a special book shelf) and if you so chose, they especially appreciate it if you sleep with the toy and snuggle with them symbolically by hugging your stuffed toy. You can also talk to the toy as if it is your inner child by telling them how special they are and how much you love them. Many of you may not have been cuddled, touched with integrity and spoken to gently (especially at night) so sleeping with your toy could be a BIG DEAL AND A VERY SPECIAL FORM OF HEALING for your little girl or little boy. ASK THEM!
Start by creating a list of questions you want to ask your inner child. Some suggestions would be:
1. Did anything “bad” happen to you growing up? If so, what happened?
2. Did someone hurt you? If so, who was it?
3. What did they do to you and how did it make you feel?
4. Did you feel safe in your home? Why?
5. What good things happened growing up?
6. As I am the adult re-parenting you, what can I provide for you to help you to heal, make you happy, feel safe with me and feel my love for you?
7. What fun things would you like to do with me (adult) that would be special for you (inner child)?
8. What was your relationship like with Dad/Caregiver?
9. What was your relationship like with Mom/Caregiver?
10. What was missing in your relationship with Dad/Caregiver?
11. What was missing in your relationship with Mom/Caregiver?
12. What was wonderful about your relationship with Dad/Caregiver?
13. What was wonderful about your relationship with Mom/Caregiver?
14. Do you want to create a partnership with me (adult) to heal our wounds together?
15. Will you work with me (adult) to do this?
16. How will you (inner child) work with me to do this?
Once you have your questions figured out, then gently and lovingly talk to your inner child and tell them you want to ask them some questions. Get their support and their willingness to answer your questions. Help them to feel safe about this process. Tell them they won’t be judged, criticized or punished for what they tell you. Some of you as children may have been severely threatened or abused in various ways to never reveal the “family secrets” of how you were harmed. So, you will need to help your inner child feel safe to share his/her “secrets” with you. Give them permission as the adult to do this. Tell them that it is a very courageous thing for them to do and how proud you are of them! By bringing up “the secret hurts and wounds” you both can heal together.
The RIGHT AND LEFT HAND technique is done by:
1. writing the question out with your dominant hand,
2. asking the question out loud to your inner child and
3. then putting the pencil in your opposite hand, to intuitively write out the response from your inner child. When you switch hands you automatically access your unconscious which in essence is your inner child.
This is an amazing process that produces astounding insights. I did this technique with my “little girl” and wrote out the question with my dominant right hand asking her, “What does love mean to you”? Her answer blew me away, when I switched hands and intuitively heard her response in my head and wrote down, “Love is being in prison”! I had absolutely no idea that this child part of myself was so wounded and in despair about love.
Once you get answers from your inner child, it may bring up many emotions for you bothto release. To go deeper in your healing process, you both can express those feelings by crying, hitting a pillow to release your rage, yelling, drawing pictures of your feelings, etc. Giving this wounded child part of yourself a voice for maybe the first time in your life is huge! It opens so many doors of honestly feeling, healing, integrating and releasing what happened.
I highly recommend hitting a pillow with your inner child to release childhood woundings and repressed emotions that have been deeply buried. Your conversations with your child will bring up painful memories and feelings of being harmed and hurt by parents and/or caregivers. It will be very important to release these intense repressed feelings (for both of you) of rage, fear, frustration, grief, shame, being numbed out/paralyzed in healthy balanced ways. I have found that one of the most effective ways to do healthy release work is by hitting a pillow.
This powerful physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and karmic releasing by hitting a pillow insures that you begin breaking the pattern of turning all your unresolved toxic emotions onto yourself. Stuffing emotions is extremely destructive causing physical illness, depression, self hate, low self esteem, fears and phobias, unhealthy behavior patterns and much, much more. Hitting a pillow begins to unfreeze your feelings, so you and your child in a very safe way can get mad, yell, cry, feel your fear, shame, pain, grief and hurt. I have found that when people can express their anger, they can then get to the more difficult feelings of fear, grief, pain and heartbreak.
When you and your child can get mad together you are saying to the abuser(s),“What you did to me is not OK and I didn’t deserve to be treated that way”!
You are standing up for yourselves and taking your power back! You are also reinforcing to your child that you believe them in terms of the memories and feelings they have had the courage to share with you.
Give your child a big hug and kiss for being able to do this, it is HUGE!
I recommend taking your inner child shopping to pick out a big pillow and a plastic bat to use for your rage (and other emotions) release work. Your child will love being a part of this and enjoy picking out a “special” pillow and bat. This pillow is never used for anything but release work (don’t sleep with it, etc.), when not in use put it and the bat in the closet. The bat is also only used for hitting your pillow, do not hit yourself or anyone or anything else with it! These are sacred healing tools, respect and honor them, yourself and all others.
This handout is a guide to improve inner communication with your inner child to assist in authentically feeling, raising your self esteem and creating real reunion and wholeness with this sacred part of yourself. Use these techniques regularly and you will be amazed at the results. They work!
If you want to truly heal, work with your inner child!
1. “Homecoming: Reclaiming and Championing Your Inner Child” by John Bradshaw
2. “Family Secrets” – The Path to Self-Acceptance and Reunion by John Bradshaw
3. “Healing the Shame That Binds You” by John Bradshaw
4. “Self Parenting” – The Complete Guide to Your Inner Conversations By John K. Pollard, III
5. “The Courage to Heal” – A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse by Ellen Bass and Laura Davis
6. “The Courage to Heal Workbook” – For Women and Men Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse by Laura Davis
7. “Broken Boys/Mending Men” – Recovery from Childhood Sexual Abuse by Stephen D. Grubman-Black
8. “Victims No Longer” – Men Recovering from Incest and Other Sexual Child Abuse by Mike Lew
9. “Eastern Body, Western Mind” – Psychology and the Chakra System As a Path to the Self by Anodea Judith
10.“Healing Trauma” – A Pioneering Program for Restoring the Wisdom of Your Body by Peter A. Levine, Ph.D.
11.“Anatomy of the Spirit” – The Seven Stages of Power and Healing by Caroline Myss, Ph.D
12.“Why People Don’t Heal and How They Can” by Caroline Myss, Ph.D
13. “Recovery of Your Inner Child: The Highly Acclaimed Method for Liberating Your Inner Self” by Lucia Capacchione Ph.D.
14. “The Art of Emotional Healing” by Lucia Capacchione Ph.D.
Reminder: To save money, buy your books used or check them out from your local library.