Mental Health News: Secrets Revealed To Heal Effects of Childhood Abuse and Loss of Caring

In the process described here, the College of Mental Health Counseling at presents a summary of the process for healing the effects of childhood abuse and loss of parental caring.
Transforming the effects of abuse and neglect
Transforming the effects of abuse and neglect
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Victoria - British Columbia - Canada

June 24, 2011 - PRLog -- A major contributing factor in adult depression, anxiety, addiction, marital and family conflict and breakdown or divorce, is the childhood experience of abuse and loss of parental caring. As adults, we often choose unhealthy partners or relate to partners in unhealthy ways that repeat and perpetuate the loss of parental caring experienced in childhood.

This report may be distributed freely to friends, family, and used for training purposes by including "used by permission of the College of Mental Health Counseling"

The following is adapted from “Effective Counseling Skills” by Daniel Keeran, MSW, in hard copy and digital format on Amazon at

In this way, we do to self and to others that which was done to us. If a person experienced neglect or uncaring from parents during childhood, he or she as an adult will likely act in ways that are uncaring toward self and others.

A person can be helped to identify the uncaring in childhood by saying, “How would you describe your relationship with your father (or father figure) when you were a child growing up? Were you close, not so close, distant?” This question will draw out the distance in the parental relationship. Then ask the same question regarding the relationship with mother.

Another question to focus the loss of caring is to ask, “If you had miraculous power to change your family in any three ways when you were growing up, what would they be?” The person may respond by saying for example: I would have them talk about feelings more, I would have them not fight so much, I would have my father stay, I would have my parents not divorce.

The person’s responses identify areas of unresolved losses in childhood. The affects on adult life can be altered by saying to the person, “Describe the kind of healthy parents you needed. What would they be like?”

The counselor can assist by saying for example, “I wonder if you wanted a parent who was loving and affectionate, encouraging, reassuring, and who supported your feelings and gave you a safe place to grow up.”

When the person acknowledges this healthy parenting as what he or she wanted, the counselor can say, “So if there is no one else who can give you the caring you missed, who does that leave?” The person will answer, “Just me.”  

The key to transformation and healing is to be the caring healthy parent for oneself in adult life that was needed in childhood. This also means one must learn to recognize and choose a healthy caring partner and to relate to him or her and to self in caring healthy ways.

Most often depression, anxiety, addiction, destructive conflict, and being emotionally distant or uncommunicative, are ways of perpetuating the abandonment or abuse of self that was experienced in childhood. The negative self-talk and negative thoughts about self and others that feed depression and anxiety, need to be transformed into positive self-talk and constructive and caring communication with others.

Examples of positive self-caring and healthy self-parenting, especially during emotional crises and depression, may be to say, “It’s OK for me to feel my emotions. I can succeed. I can do it. I will find a way to move forward. I have strengths. I deserve a happy life, and I can make it happen. I can reach out for help. I will choose healthy caring people. I care about myself and about other people.”

For more information see

See a video presentation from the College President here

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We provide online professional counselor training and on-going online supervision and support for non-profit organizations and for-profit counseling services. Members receive training and support to establish a counseling service in their community.
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