Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Parenting & Writing

-- Parenting As A Catalyst for Inner Healing --

By Kassandra Brown, mother of 2 and self-employed entrepreneur at, where she offers parent coaching by phone.  She is sincerely passionate about making a difference one parent, one child at a time. When asked recently what she does for fun, she responded “Inner work. I love it when people let me into their inner worlds.”

When one first hears the phrase ‘parent coach’ images of a soccer coach with whistle in the mouth telling you to do your parenting push-ups might come to mind. With that image you might think: “Who needs that?” The answer? We all do!

Everyone needs someone on his or her parenting team. We would like that person to always be our spouse, friends, parents, and in-laws. Unfortunately those people closest to us are often the ones who drive us craziest. They show us exactly where we’re stuck. And no one shows us our clay feet better than our own children.

Being a parent is rich soil for healing old wounds. If you have not yet healed your own childhood hurts and fears, if you have not already encountered and grown-up out of the underlying beliefs you made about the world and how it worked when you were a kid, then our own children will stimulate those things.

Just like flipping a light switch turns on the lights, having your own children re-energizes the beliefs and fears you formed when you were a child. 

What happens if you don’t have help working with these fears and beliefs? You will continue to act as though they are true. You will keep trying to get the needs of your childhood-self met through your own children, spouse, and parents. And you will keep passing those wounds on, generation to generation, to your children. Even worse? Those fears and underlying beliefs will keep sabotaging your efforts to succeed in all areas of your life.

Living Through Your Kids

When you live through your kids, everyone suffers. Just think of the child who wants to be an artist but is pushed to go to law school and be ‘practical’. I’m betting you can resonate with this from your own life experience. Is there something you really wanted to do that your parents talked you out of? How do you feel about that now?

Am I saying that every time a parent sets a boundary, says no, or encourages their children in the direction of the parent’s values that they are flawed and messing with their kids? No. The motivation really matters. When you are acting from beliefs and fears created by your childhood wounds, then you must recreate your fears. You must.  Just as a ball thrown into the air must fall back to earth, due to the law of gravity, a similarly inarguable law will keep creating the same situations in your life until you grow out of them. 

In addition, when you are motivated by fears, you act out of context with current data. You won’t be able to see what happening right now because of your beliefs. The old phrase ‘seeing is believing’ is better stated ‘believing is seeing’ and you won’t be able to see your children, self, spouse, friends or others clearly because of the veil of your underlying beliefs.

The Way Out of the Trap

The absolutely wonderful news is that your children are the way out of the trap of underlying beliefs. They provide the opportunity - through energizing these old wounds and beliefs - to allow you to heal. The very pain you’re trying to avoid is the doorway to healing.

As parents, most of us have had the experience of doing something we swore we would never do. We say something that seemed to jump out of our mouths and we wonder: “Where did that come from?” We reach out and spank when we swore we’d never hit our children. We offer treats to get our children to go where we want even though we don’t believe in bribery.

When you heal your own fears and reeducate your underlying beliefs, your child’s behavior will change and improve. Most parents come to parent coaching because of something that is happening with their child - tantrums, bad grades, or bullying may seem on the surface to be all about the child. It turns out children’s behaviors have a lot to do with the parents. When parents look more closely at the reactions they have to their child’s behavior, they heal. And when the parents heal at a deep level, the children heal too.  

Take some time to ask yourself a few questions before seeking coaching services:

  • Do you want to take a look and see if all this is true for you?
  • What’s driving you crazy about your kids?
  • How is your spouse letting you down?
  • What do you need them to do that they just refuse to do?
  • What thoughts keep you up at night?

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