“Inner child”
is a concept used in psychology. It refers to, or describes a condition that
can be linked back to a childhood experience; physical or emotional.  Some approaches  
to psychology use the concept of Inner child to describe
the childlike aspect of a
person's psychological make-up
, especially when it is looked at as an independent entity.

Most frequently, it is used to affirm subjective childhood experiences and the remaining
effects of a person's childhood.

Carl Jung referred to a similar concept as the 'Divine Child.' Emmet Fox called it the
'Wonder Child.' Charles Whitfield dubbed it the 'Child Within.' Some psychotherapists
call it the
'True Self.' The "wounded inner child" is a modified use of the inner child
concept. It has been made popular by John Bradshaw, a pop psychology and self-help
movement leader.

Your Inner Child - Divine Child - Child Within
The Inner Child
refers to your emotional body.  Our personalities develop as a result
of our genetic code (DNA, or inherited characteristics), as well as in our (home,
cultural) environment in which we experience life.
Childhood is dictated by those who raise us, and often causes scars that will take years
to heal. In most cases, our issues go back to childhood and the things, events, experiences  
and people which impacted on our emotional and physical bodies at that time. The inner
child remains with us all of our lives. We are all children at heart, innocently searching  
for our meaning in life.

The Inner Child, therefore, is that part of each of us that is ultimately alive, energetic,
creative and fulfilled; it is our
"Genuine Authentic Self", who we know deep within us;
"Real Self."
  • Although they were unaware of it, our parents helped to create this Inner Child, with
    help from our culture and society. Most of us deny (or are unaware) that such a part
      of us even exists.

When your child self is not allowed to be heard, or even acknowledged as being real, a
false or co-dependent self emerges and develops. And you begin to live life as a victim,
and then situations arise in your life where you keep having unresolved emotional  
traumas. The gradual accumulation of unfinished mental and emotional business can     
lead  to chronic anxiety, fear, confusion, emptiness and unhappiness. T
he result: a hurt
and frightened child.

Denial of the Inner Child and the co-dependent self are particularly common among
children and adults who grew up in troubled (
dysfunctional) families. This is where
chronic physical and/or mental illness, rigidity, coldness or lack of nurturing is common.

The behaviour patterns you show at times are direct reflections of the “age” you were
when the pain or hurt occurred in your past.
  • There is a kind of arrested emotional development takes place – and does so with   
    each incident. That’s how we can have more than one “inner child” – all of varying

Not everyone was mistreated or abused as a child.
No one really knows how many people have been loved and guided in healthy ways.   
Some estimates, however, are that from 80 to 95 percent of the people did not receive
guidance and love, which is the way we know how to form healthy and loving  
relationships and to love ourselves.

One of the most important concepts for us to understand: we all have an inner child
(actually many more inner children inside of us);  They are generally only aware of one
inner child –
if that.

Besides the Inner Child, we have many other selves that are trying to take control. We  
can't really hearing the voices until we make an effort to do so. It is very important to
tame the
Inner Critic. The inner critic is  -most often- the voice of the person who
criticized you non-stop when you were young (and became internalized in the child's
mind) - for   more on this, click/tap this

That voice from the past often keeps beating up the Inner Children. This voice invades
whatever trauma and pain there was in our childhoods. On the other hand, it is the job
of the Nurturer to be loving and self-affirming.

This is often where the internal battle begins. The Inner Critic has been keeping the
Inner Children muffled and secluded. When the self starts to rebel and the Inner Children
are finally released to be present to talk about their feelings, sometimes the Children
selves lose control and play havoc with people's lives.

There is a way out - a way to discover and to heal our Inner Child and to break free of   
the bondage and suffering of our co-dependent or false self.  Inner Child work (therapy)
is a way of learning to love ourselves and feel safer inside. It also reduces, or eliminates
the nightmares and anxieties, as well as providing understanding of what happened, how
it affected us, and why our behaviours are what they are. I
t can all be changed (healed).

So now that you have read this, you can begin to transform the Inner Critic to be a good
internal parent,  begin to listen to the Inner Children and to allow them to have fun and be
heard. It is also important to keep  a balance in your life. The Inner Children need
emotional and psychological limits.

Remember the words
"it is never too late to have a happy childhood”.

Examples of some of the other Inner Children:
  • The Playful Child: that self that is naturally playful, creative, spontaneous and fun
    loving child. This self longs to play. Many of us have forgotten how to do this  
      without guilt or anxiety that as adults we must be doing something that is worthwhile.
  • The Spoiled Child: that part of us wants what they want and they want it now, and if
    they don’t get what  they want, they throw temper tantrums.
  • The Neglected Child: the child self that was always left alone without much   
    nurturing and love. They don’t believe they are lovable or worthwhile. They don’t
    know how to love. They are depressed and want to cry.
  • The Abandoned Child: this child self has been left in some way like divorce or  
    adoption or just left because the parents were kept busy working. They are always
    fearful that they will be abandoned again and again. This part of the self is starving    
    for extra attention and reassurance that they are safe and okay. This self is very     
  • The Fearful Child: this part has been overly criticized when they were small. Now
    they are anxious and are in panic much of the time. They need lost of encouragement
    and positive affirmations.
  • The Unbonded Child: this Inner Child never learns to be close to anyone. They are
    isolated. Intimacy feels alien and scary. Trust is a basic issue.
  • The Discounted Child: this is a part of the self that was ignored and treated as    
    though they did not exist. They don’t believe in themselves and need lots of love to
    assist and support them.

Suggested Related Reading:
  • Inner Child-Child Within: Part Two, click/tap HERE.
  • You may also wish to read about the roles children from alcoholic/dysfunctional
    families adopt as survival strategies: click/tap HERE to visit.
  • And there is a separate page for the most severely wounded child from
    dysfunctional/alcoholic families, called the Lost Child: click/tap HERE to visit.
  • Also, The Inner Critic - which is directly related and connected to this page's topic:
    click/tap HERE to visit.

Develop the ability to give yourself a profound healing experience: contact me if you   
want/need assistance.

Peace to you on your journey to loving to yourself:
May you find Serenity.
Klaas Tuinman M.A.
Life Self-Empowerment Facilitation
at Dawn Cove Abbey
Comments and Questions are welcomed