anyone have methods that help you be kinder t... - Heal My PTSD

Heal My PTSD

7,913 members11,701 posts

anyone have methods that help you be kinder to yourself?

I grew up with neglected or hurt by the adults around me and ive come to realize I need to nurture my inner child who was hurt by all the adults growing up and try re-parenting myself since I can’t/couldn’t trust my own parents or anyone else to do that for me. I keep in mind something I heard about how to remember to be kinder to yourself from someone else’s therapist- imagine your 10 year old self is sitting in front of you; Would you talk to them the way you hyper criticize yourself now? no, of course not, no good person would or should bully a child like that so why do you criticize yourself so harshly ‘now’?

Anytime those harsh inner thoughts in my head (my depression, anxiety and ptsd rearing its head) tell me im stupid, lazy, etc. I respond to it immediately out loud to myself in a way I would to 10y/o me- “you’re not stupid, its just a jar, youll get it open or just ask for help”, “you’re not lazy, you’re overwhelmed and have anxiety”, “you’re not useless, you’re doing ‘your’ best and thats all you ‘can’ do”, “stop, youll only make yourself miserable comparing yourself to others like that”

Has someone else tried re-parenting or just being kinder to themselves and found ways/methods that help? Im still working on it, reminding myself that my feelings and my self do matter and wonder what worked for others so maybe I can get better at it. please comment, im interested in what has worked for y’all.

12 Replies

This is actually a very hard question. I know in my life I have been told I wasnt good enough, cant do it, etc and etc. I come to find that whatever I do I hear the voices come to me about my useless traits. I just go ahead try to do something that I'm told I couldn't do. Sometimes it works and sometimes not. In order for me to be better I have to treat others as I would want to be treated. Sometimes I think we dont realize how we tend to pull away when we can be engaging with other to be better. I don't know if this makes sense or if somebody could translate it but it is hard to explain. Sorry if I may have confused people more.

in reply to

“I know in my life I have been told I wasn’t good enough”

I want you to know that your value is inherent despite your level of usefulness. It doesn’t matter what you can do for others and anyone that says otherwise is ignorant or apathetic to you.

I was told I was useless, dumb or not enough growing up too and for years I was convinced because people can just beat that into your head until you believe it.

“sometimes I think we don’t realize how we tend to pull away”

people in pain tend to isolate and withdraw many times because they often don’t think anyone cares, are afraid of getting hurt more if they open up or dont think they deserve help.

“I just go ahead try to do it something I’m told I couldn’t do”

It’s good to get out of your comfort zone sometimes, can’t live life without taking risks on occasion which im still working on myself.

“In order for me to get better I have to treat others as I would want to be treated”

It’s a nice sentiment but the problem with the saying “treat others how you want to be treated” Ive found, is that it isn’t very helpful if you dont think much of yourself or hate yourself; Not everyone wants to be treated the way you want to be treated either. I find valuing empathy and the phrase “be good to yourself and others but remember you’re not a doormat, you’re a human with inherent value” more reliable/good method even if you dont know how to treat yourself yet or know how to treat others.

willingtoheal profile image
willingtohealVolunteer

Oh yes you are not alone..

Right now think of what you do well. Think about what is and live in the moment.

Give yourself the encouragement you would give your friends.

Be ok with you and know you’re enough

Take care

wallflower_fairy profile image
wallflower_fairyMajor Contributor

Hi there kara 😊

Thankyou for sharing. You're certainly on the right track - having self compassion and paying attention to how you talk to yourself.

I have a lot of thoughts on this topic generally, that I want to share, but I need to find the headspace to express them in a clear and comprehensive response.

For now, I do want to share an extract of a comment I left on peacefulandcalm's post from a while back as I feel it has relevance here and may help some people.

Here it is:

I agree self care is important and a good way of demonstrating to other people how they should be treating us. Furthermore, having self compassion, and learning to forgive oneself, can be extremely beneficial in alleviating anxiety and depression symptoms.

That said, people outside of ourselves also have a responsibility to treat us with care and respect. Just because we may struggle to care for ourselves, this does NOT give other people an excuse to treat us poorly, nor does it make us any less valuable - everyone has inherent value. I know it may sound obvious, and people probably realise this already but I just want to make sure people hear this.

peacefulandcalm, you are valued, loved, and worthy of respect and care. This is true even if other people have hurt you; even if you've intentionally or unintentionally allowed them to do so; even if you've directly hurt yourself - heck, even if you ARE hurting yourself in some way. You are beautiful.

I want to say this to anyone else who may be reading. To anyone else who may be struggling with self worth or with taking care of themselves, you are valuable. Change takes courage, and you may not get it right all of the time, but personal growth and healing is not a linear process - to quote a Youtuber that I like, it's "process NOT perfection". You can always try again tomorrow.

I think it's very positive, peacefulandcalm, that you have posted on here and asked for support.

So, of course, do keep practising self care. But my advice would also be, if someone that you trust tries to treat you with kindness, let them - even if you haven't managed to look after yourself on that occasion, and are feeling undeserving and low in yourself.

I'll link the post here > healthunlocked.com/healmypt...

so you can see the full thread if you want.

There's more I want to say and I'll come back at some point and comment again. I just need time.

Thankyou for opening up this dialogue as it's a really important topic.

Xx

Hidden I am not sure if this will help but I thought maybe and even if only a little then its worth sharing again. Hugs

What’s your self-care love language?

What are things that can reduce your PTSD

What are things that can increase your trust in yourself and the feeling that you can rely on yourself?

What are things that make you happy or calm or are fun for you?

What are things that you need to avoid or stop doing?

Make a realistic plan to start to implement what you can to create a gentle life for yourself. Start small.

If you are resistant, what are the thoughts that come up?

Have self compassion.

Self compassion is treating yourself as a friend with care and kindness. In order to heal we have to be able to know what we know to be true, and to feel what we feel, without becoming dysregulated– overwhelmed, enraged, ashamed, or shut-down.

Self-compassion helps us safely approach what is going on inside so can we start to befriend, rather than obliterate, our internal world. It helps us face those heartbreaking and gut-wrenching feelings, giving us stability which leads to self-agency and self-trust. Compassion is a really amazing thing. We think of it as being empathetic and caring, but there’s another big component to it too. It also causes people to find solutions and take action.

Nathalie99 profile image
Nathalie99Partner in reply to

Beautifully written, Rainbows4Life.

I agree about self compassion and how important it is as being a key component in healing. All the trauma processing I've done with my therapist was with self compassion and without judgement. It was so important that my therapist repeatedly said it during our sessions.

What I find most challenging is going out of the therapeutic environment and into the outside world where I find it a bit of a shock as the pressures and lack of compassion are really hard to cope with and I don't really want to share that I have PTSD.

Eventually I forget about that self compassion and need to rebuild the relationship with my inner self again and again, every single day.

For me it's important to remind myself of my inner self and to practice kindness to myself because it's so easy to forget and fall back into the inner critic mode.

Thanks for bringing this topic.

in reply to Nathalie99

Thank you for your thoughts and comment :)

I have been working on a lifetime of Trauma and the complexity of it all with the added challenge of being and HSP and empath. I am learning so much about how the body keeps the score, what trauma does to you from a young age and finding how to be my own hero. The rewards have been getting to know the true me for the first time, healing from a foundational level, tools to cope with the daily stress and anxiety/depression that can haunt me, what triggers are and what mine are, emotional regulation, self-soothing, self care, and of course self compassion. :) There is much more too and I know this journey will be long but the reward will be so worth it.

You're brave to take the hard fought journey and brave for speaking out on the difficulties even after we learn so much. Much love and thoughts to you as you find the healing you deserve and the self acceptance that is yours to take.

I also grew up with a lot of criticism...I think everyone has an inner critic, even those who grew up in relatively solid homes. What helps me is knowing that this voice, this critic is a function of the mind, even though it is twisted one. The mind has a survival instinct and it always searches for the easiest way to survive..in its weird way it thinks its protecting you by keeping you down, keeping you from trying and also just speaking in the pattern that it is used to speaking, the patterns we grew up with and around. What helps me is to recognize it, to be familiar with the pattern, the shape it speaks in and then when it comes up just identify it as a tape recording on repeat, as a piece of machinery in my mind and know that it is not true. NLP has also helped me incredibly, that is a therapy that goes so far as to go to the source of where that pattern started and root it out in the neural pathways of the brain. We all deal with this, with talking to ourselves badly, ptsd or not.

Good morning Kara951,

I understand where you are coming from too! I as well as many others of us on here have dealt with the same situation that you are in now. Do you have any family/ friends who are encouraging and supportive people who can help you? I had gotten involved in church years ago. My husband and I really enjoy being around our church family. People, there are very encouraging and supportive, and getting involved to help others helps lift up your spirit and gives you hope and confidence. You can get your kids involved as well and meet new friends. I also, put my radio on to a Christian radio station, they have positive uplifting music and wonderful discussion programs that I can learn different essential lessons from marriage, parenting, family, depression, social events, and public conversations, world views on how to best address them... and much more. I learn a lot about myself and how I can improve my life and how I can improve and how I can be engaged in life, whatever might come my way. - How to walk in a manner worthy of... Also, I have learned how to find peace, love joy, faith and hope through these programs as well. It is a daily walk of how to learn how to endure rough, tough days...I am praying for you!

lots and lots of therapy. I call warmlines and talk to people I don't know regularly now and this helps a lot. They can't be mean or toxic or abusive. I take things slower and reflect on how I feel. Plus I have a therapist who is great. I believe that I can be happy because a therapist told me that. I actively try doing what I have learned makes me happier. I have a trauma box where I write down traumatic thoughts and then share with my therapist regularly. I write down my feelings in letters to people that hurt me in red ink. I don't send the letters. Good luck.

Lindyloo53 profile image
Lindyloo53Volunteer

Self talk is very powerful. I also do fun things with my younger parts. I have been known to sit on a swing at a playground and swing myself. I will go to children’s movies. I will snuggle up with a soft blanket that sort of thing. I also thank the younger parts for getting me through.

The journey towards recovery will take as long as it will and can’t be rushed, it’s a good idea to not compare yourself to others as we all deal with stressors in life in our own way and own time, nobody is a failure or not good enough as it’s that we all simply have a difference of expectation so please don’t get uptight about it cus you’ve done nothing wrong and therefore shouldn’t blame yourself for someone else’s lack of understanding 👍 remember that we all deal with our struggles differently and that not everyone will always understand our ways of interpreting, processing or coping with difficult situations or trauma we have been faced with and survived throughout our lives 😘

You may also like...