This goes for lover, parent, friend or child. Most of us think that our mind is like a single continent and can’t explain our sudden or slow transformations of mood and thought from love to hate and back to love. Since all thinking is analogous, words substituting for the essence of things, I say that the mind has many islands. One of the islands is love. One of them is hate and fear. This is an island of constant struggle and surrender. It has a tremendous impact on our conscious mind. Other islands represent different aspects of the self, many of experiences secretly desired.
The island of hate and fear represents early childhood with parents who were hateful to the child. By introjection the child absorbs that harmful parent as a feeling/acting person that acts within its mind; or by identification with the parent’s behavior as actor or receiver of mistreatment. Once grown, the introject which I call the freezing parent continues to order the adult you around. The introject which I call the freezing child hides, fights back a little and then obeys. The adult, when subjected to abuse or abusing is acting like a puppet on the strings of its childhood accommodation to mistreatment
The adult part of the mind which is a latecomer in the person’s cognitive development and therefore weaker tends to follow the freezing parent’s orders and to feel the frozen child’s emotions. He considers what comes from both of them to be his true self. The freezing parent says “hate” the one you love for this or that fault so the adult hates. Due to the freezing parent’s directives, this relationship is extremely unhappy. Often there is a return to the adult consciousness, the person feels pained and guilty for what was done to the loved one. Apologies are made along with pleading for forgiveness.
The swing from past to present does not end. Messages from the freezing parent and the frozen child keep the adult in a see-saw of confusion. The adult needs to separate his current thinking and feeling from childhood experience. How the child was mistreated then is not acceptable to do to enact as perpetrator or victim now. Our adult mind has to grow strong enough to insist upon growing up. You can learn from the past but not reenact it. Strength comes from doing what the frozen child is afraid of, to defy the freezing parent and then get on with loving.
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