Emotional Neglect: The Root Cause
I’m at the beach with my husband, Doug, and our 2 dogs this week. The beach is our favorite place to be to take care of our energy.
Last night we were sitting on the beach watching the moon rise over the water and I felt sad. This week, I’ve been processing the life-long lack of deep connection with my Mom and how this has affected my relationships with women. Specifically, there have been times when I felt neglected, and know this is a trigger from my childhood.
I am grateful for the moon, the ocean, to the women in my life, and downtime to connect me to my sadness. I honor my sadness, it is as rejuvenating as the ocean. Also, thanks to Doug for holding the space.
Being in touch with and embracing all your emotions increases your self-awareness and empowers you to heal your wounds.
I’m sure that all sounds wonderful. It’s just not so easy, particularly at first, because we are taught in so many ways to avoid our feelings, by our family and culture.
Our culture values the intellect and the physical, leaving most of us emotionally neglected, while tying our emotional well-being to how we look and what we accomplish for others. But this emotional neglect causes many of our problems since our unprocessed emotions are impacting our minds and bodies in a powerful way.
Emotional awareness and processing are necessary for self-knowledge, intuition, conscious relating, and profound healing. Through empathy we can read people and situations and hear what is happening deeper than what we hear and see.
The sad situation for most of us is that emotions are categorized, vilified, repressed, manipulated, humiliated, and ignored. Rarely, if ever, are they honored. “Positive” emotions are often idolized in an imbalanced manner fueling the false facades that society values. “Difficult” emotions are only now being seen as a distinct and necessary healing force by those recognizing the emotional causes of symptoms and problems.
I’ve observed, as I’m sure many of you have, a parent frantically telling their toddler to calm down and stop crying. Maybe you’ve even been that parent. This is not meant to shame parents for how they are responding to their children’s emotions. Rather, I am bringing to awareness the negative patterns we have all learned, as well as their impact later in life.
Parents too often inadvertently teach children that their emotions are not deserving of attention and it’s more important not to disrupt others, including the parents themselves. Children learn that they should ignore their emotions, that their emotions don’t matter, and they don’t matter.
Needing to be seen and heard and valued is not a learned human need. It is innate. We are born with the desire to be understood and to have our needs met. But most of the time, this innate need is shut down as early as our infant years. We’re shushed and sometimes even removed from situations for expressing ourselves.
We feel things for a reason. Emotions aren’t just out of nowhere. There is cause and effect, they are a natural reaction to our circumstances. But sometimes even we aren’t sure what is causing our feelings. Which means we’re not addressing and tending to them…
We’ve all seen a child “throw a tantrum”. As adults, your “fits” might not have you lying on the floor kicking and screaming. They might look like binging on food. Saying hurtful things to your partner. Dishing out undeserved punishments to your children.
You can start changing the way you relate to your emotions by learning the purpose of your emotions, especially the ones you may be rejecting such as anger, sadness, guilt and shame. It’s also important to know when your anger, guilt and shame is healthy and unhealthy so you can take care of your feelings and feel empowered.
Join me for my Workshop: Being Emotionally Empowered
In this online workshop you will learn:
- Where your past and present emotions come from
- The ways most of us were shamed about our emotions as children
- The difference between “being emotional” and releasing repressed emotions
- How many physical symptoms are caused by repressed emotions
- The purpose and gift of each emotion
- How to care for your feelings
- How to respond to each emotion in an empowered way
- How to use your emotions as your guidance system
Space is limited, register now.
I’ll see you then!
Lots of love,