Understanding that our parent’s reactions have very little to do with us is a painful process. A process of awakening to a different reality than what we have known. Our identity is compromised, our way of living put in question.
When we stop and realize that our parent’s reactions stem from their own unmet needs, we begin to see their inner child peeking through. Their need for connection. Their need for acceptance, for love, for approval. They want to be noticed, they want to be seen. Just like we do. And here we are, expecting to be seen by them.
And we realize, that we have been parenting our own parents. That our role as children as become
meeting their needs.
And we question ourselves. We question if the life we have built for ourselves is based on meeting those needs. Our career choice, our partner, our friends, our lifestyle, our living arrangements. How much of who we are have we done to meet their needs.
And we now know it’s time. It’s time to build a new identity. One that is our own. One where we don’t have child fantasies of seeing our parents be who they can’t be. One where we become who we want to be come, authentically.
And there is pain in that.
And we need to heal, because if we don’t, we will ask our children to play the same role with us.