“Self” Expression and Unlosing the Self

Illustration: bravegirlsclub.com

I’m drawn to this illustration today because I’m feeling the need to express my self.  “Self” as a separate word, not “myself,” and in quotation marks to denote the critical importance of the self, to help that word, that concept be unlost.

My tendency to lose touch with my self is one of the most disturbing features of the abuse and neglect I experienced in my infancy, childhood and youth.  When an infant, child or youth is not seen by her primary caregiver then it is not possible for the infant, child or youth to know her self, to know who she is.

The task of good therapy is to bring the self back into primacy for the individual.

My early patterning was to subsume my self to the wholly irrational needs of my father and his demands, including his demands that I be of service to him.  I had no choice but to do this, for my survival.  I was a child and was overpowered and there was no intervention on my behaIf.  Furthermore, I was punished severely when my self tried to emerge.

As an adult, my intimate personal relationships and my connection with employment are two of the ways that I most easily allow my self to be swallowed up.  I subsume my own needs and who I am to the needs of another or to the corporation.  Never a good idea, to put it mildly.  It becomes very painful to feel buried alive.

A task that I am setting for myself is to give primacy to using my voice, painting my colours and listening to and heeding my quiet voice inside.  The pain subsides when I express who I am.  And when I give voice to her, I emerge.  I unleash my power.

Yours in healing,

Annie.

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