Tuesday, September 25, 2012


It is human nature to feel a sense of attachment with primary figures, e.g. parents and/or grandparents.   If this does not happen during childhood, then it becomes more difficult to have a secure, fulfilling relationship as an adult.  That’s where relationships hit a brick wall.

Some of the physical and emotional aspects of abandonment are: no appetite, light sleeping, anxiety, etc…. In order to heal yourself from deep abandonment feelings, whether it is from childhood or adult trauma, it is not necessary to remember the incidence, just to deal with the feelings.

The way I work with this issue is by first getting in touch with the feelings of the small abandoned child through a Focusing exercise (guided visualization).  This child is the part of you that usually has the feelings of insecurity, worry, aching for kindness, acceptance and approval.

After that, visualize the adult part as the strong and capable part.  Think of when you have felt the most successful and competent.  Then have the 2 parts communicate with each other.  The adult’s role is to parent/adopt the child and give him/her what she needs: acceptance, love, admiration, a sense of being heard, and a person to turn for help. The child’s role is to share her/his feelings and help the adult understand them.

It always amazed me, as a therapist, how powerful the Focusing exercise is for all my clients.  There are often tears of relief and love for oneself.  I see the change in their face at the end of a session, as if a great burden is lifted off their shoulders.  For individual therapy, this is a very powerful tool in my practice which is gratifying for both the client and me.