If someone was to become aware of the fact that they were mistreated during their early years, they can have a strong need to find out why this took place. Along with this, a big part of them can feel as though they deserved to be treated badly.

However, the reason that they can also feel this way is that they would have been egocentric during their formative years. Therefore, what took place ended up being personalised.


Due to the level of development that they had at this stage of their life, then, they were unable to realise that how they were being treated had nothing to do with them. In all likelihood, how they were treated was a reflection of how wounded one or both of their parents were.

They were then in pain and this caused them to undermine their own child or children. Now, having this understanding is unlikely to truly change how they feel about themselves but it will be a key part of what will allow them to gradually heal.

Looking for Answers

If they were to reach out to one or both of their parents, they might be able to make a lot of headway. Assuming that they have reached out to one parent, this parent might validate most of what they went through.

Moreover, they could be full of remorse and make it clear that they didn’t deserve to be treated so badly. This could be seen as the ideal outcome as having their support will make it easier for them to move forward.

Another outcome

But, although being supported in this way by a parent who was abusive is the ideal, it doesn’t always take place. Instead of receiving the validation, remorse and love that they desire, they could hit a brick wall.

What they went through could be invalidated, they could be criticised and this parent could end up ignoring them and/or making them look bad to other family members. Still, this doesn’t mean that they will just be able to let go of the need for what they went through to be acknowledged by their parent, though.

Going Around In Circles

It can be only too clear that this parent can’t be there for them, but, there can be a big part of them that is unable to accept this. As a result, they can spend days, weeks, months and even years, trying to get through to them.

After a while, perhaps when they feel well and truly exhausted, they could question why they have this compulsion to be seen and heard by someone who can’t do either of these things. If they were to sit with this need and connect to how they feel, they could soon find that this need is fuelled by their unmet developmental need to be loved by them.

One Option

For them to let go of their need to be seen and heard by someone who simply can’t do this, they will probably need to face and work through the pain that they experienced when they were not loved. This is something that will take courage and patience and persistence.

By engaging in this process, they will gradually be able to see that how they were treated wasn’t personal and that their parent was simply a deeply wounded human being. Naturally, as they won’t have done any work on themselves, they will be just as wounded if not more so than they were before.

Another Angle

When it comes to how this parent treated them all those years ago, it is highly unlikely that they were able to truly see them. This means that they wouldn’t have been able to accept that they were an individual who had their own needs and feelings.

What they probably would have seen is a part of themselves that they had long disconnected from. This would have been a part that felt worthless, helpless, unlovable and deeply ashamed.

A Replay

This part would have probably related to how they felt when they were a child and were being mistreated by one or both of their parents. To handle the pain that they were in at this stage of their life, how they felt would have ended up being split off and repressed.

Additionally, how they were treated throughout this time would have caused them to lose touch with their true self and create a disconnected false self in the process. After this stage of their life had passed and they became a parent, what they had lost touch with would have been projected into their child and, while they would have been the victim before, they would have ended up becoming the perpetrator; treating this child in a way that was very similar to how they themselves were treated.

The Main Point

What this clearly illustrates is that how one was treated by this parent had absolutely nothing to do with them. This parent lacked the ability to see them for who they were and could only see their own darkness being mirrored back to them.

How this parent behaved was a way for them to obliterate a part of themselves that they were unable to acknowledge. Ultimately, they were too full of darkness to be able to see their light.


If someone can relate to this and they were ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.

Author's Bio: 

Author, transformational writer, teacher and consultant, Oliver JR Cooper, hails from England. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation, including love, partnership, self-love, self-worth, inner child and inner awareness. With over three thousand, two hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

To find out more go to - http://www.oliverjrcooper.co.uk/

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