What your inner child needs to hear from you
Learning to love your inner child means offering them words of encouragement and support
As part of your inner work and healing journey, especially if you are on a spiritual or twin flame journey, you will likely come across information guiding you to work on your relationship with your inner child. Sometimes this can be referred to as "reparenting your inner child", a term I like, as I think it gives a good indication of what is required in this process. Essentially, what it means is offering your inner being the opportunity to have the childhood they may have needed, but were not able to have. Any unmet needs, any unhealed hurts and wounds, even being allowed to explore, play and be in the way that they needed to be, but could not be, these are all things involved in learning to reparent your inner child.
"Reframing how you experienced your past can lead to solid self-esteem."
― The Highly Sensitive Person by Dr. Elaine Aron
It is important to note that each person's journey of reparenting their inner child will be unique, as we are all different, and had varied experiences growing up. Some of us may not feel we had a troubled or bad childhood, and being guided to work on your relationship with your inner child does not necessarily imply that you had a troubled or bad childhood. What helped me on my journey was seeing that my parents, as my caretakers, did the best that they could, with what they had, and what they knew at the time. I have been able to learn to surrender what happened in my childhood by embracing the process of reparenting my inner child. This also allowed me to see, with grace and compassion, that my parents are human, too.
Whether the idea of connecting with your inner child, and on building a relationship with them is something new to you, or something you feel you have explored before, it is an ongoing journey. The more you connect with and love your inner child, the more whole you will feel within, and the more able you will feel to approach your daily life, and life's challenges, with maturity, self trust and inner self confidence. It can also sometimes be difficult to know where to begin, or how to take the next step on the path of reparenting your inner child, so here are some things your inner child may need to hear from you.
Please only take what resonates with you, and use your discernment to apply what makes sense to you in your situation. If some of these statements, or ideas, cause some confusion to come up, or it brings up painful memories from the past that feel too overwhelming, please reach out to someone for support. This may be in a professional setting, or someone you are close to, but also apply your discernment when opening up about such vulnerable things, and ensure you have built trust in the relationship so that whomever you share this with has the sensitivity to offer you support.
What your inner child may need to hear from you
1. I am here to protect you.
2. I love and accept you, just the way that you are. I love you, and I like you. I am committed to spending time with you because you are important to me.
3. You are wonderful, and so lovable.
4. I am here to take care of you. I will do my best to meet your needs as quickly as I can, and I commit to showing up for you as best I can.
5. I allow you to rest when you need it. I will do my best to offer you as much rest as you need.
6. I am here to hold you and support you, especially when you need support. It is ok for you to be sad, to be upset, and to be angry. I won't leave you.
7. I want to get to know you better, to understand you, and learn more about you.
8. I allow you to take the time and the space to process situations, events, and emotions. I will be patient with you, and give you what you need to feel supported.
9. You are brave, and strong. Even in moments where you don't feel that, I am here to stand up for you. I will not coddle you, but I will be here with you.
10. I give you permission to play, and to express yourself freely. I want you to have fun, to enjoy your life, and be happy.
Offer each of these to your inner child, and see how they respond. If it does not feel natural, or there is some resistance, notice that, and see if there may be something you need to work on releasing, perhaps a limiting belief you've held onto since childhood, or a wound from childhood that has not been resolved and healed. If this is new for you, and it feels awkward and unfamiliar, have patience with yourself, and keep at it, but do so at a compassionate pace. Take your time in working on your relationship with your inner child. There really is no rush, no urgency, no pressure to do so.
The list above is not exhaustive; it's a start. It is important to learn to listen and connect with your inner child so that they may communicate to you what it is that they need from you, so that you may understand them, rather than trying to force on them what you think they need in any moment. That is what will help you to build trust in your relationship with your inner child. Above all, this needs to be a sincere desire within you to want to offer your inner child the love that they require, and deserve. No relationship can thrive if someone is trying to force it, and since your inner child is you, they will sense if there is insincerity in how you approach them.
If you are not sure how to start connecting and communicating with your inner child, you might like to try this meditation I have created for this purpose.
What to do if you struggle to connect with your inner child
If the previous statements felt difficult to offer to your inner child, or you find it generally difficult to approach your inner child, you may need to work on first building trust with them. Sometimes, you may need to begin building trust by first offering an apology to your inner child. That is, to say sorry to them for perhaps having pushed them away, or not having been there for them when they needed you. This is not to blame yourself, but to acknowledge that you would like things to be different. Think to yourself how often you might have held onto resentment after feeling like someone owed you an apology, and see that perhaps your inner child needs that before opening up to a relationship with you. It is ok to say sorry, and to apologise, even if you felt like it was not intentional, or was done unconsciously.
“Caring for your inner child has a powerful and surprisingly quick result: Do it and the child heals.”
― Martha Beck
What happens if you don't build a relationship with your inner child
This may not be the case for everyone, but it certainly was for me, and for many others I speak to, that before learning to build a relationship with my inner child, my inner child would show up in moments and in ways I did not very much like. This would fill me with rage and resentment toward my inner self, as I felt my inner child would almost come and "take over" so that I felt unable to react differently, even if I did not truly want to behave that way. That would make me blame and push my inner child away even more, only perpetuating the pattern and exacerbating the problems.
During my childhood there were certain behaviours or things that I learned, either from a need to survive, or cope with a situation. This is very understandable, as I was not equipped to do differently at the time. But, those patterns of behaviour are not things I wish to have play out in my relationships and life. Once I learned to work with and build a relationship with my inner child, once I started reparenting her, I was able to integrate these hurt and neglected parts of myself. I learned to love and accept my inner child, and therefore all of myself. My inner child learned to trust me, learned that I would protect her, so that she doesn't try to "take over" or throw a tantrum. I listen when she communicates that she needs something. I stand up for her. What's more, I learned to access new levels of creativity, as my inner child is very creative, and loves to express herself creatively. Yes, all of this is still a work in progress, but what a joy it is, and how rewarding it is - even if it feels difficult, or impossible sometimes. It isn't going to feel easy, but it is so well worth the effort.
You deserve to feel whole, to feel nurtured, nourished, and supported. Above all, you deserve to feel loved, and to offer yourself all the love you have to give.
If you would like personal support on your twin flame or healing journey, you might consider working with me.
References: The Highly Sensitive Person by Dr. Elaine Aron