The Red Flag in the Happy Childhood

There are a couple of things that fascinate me about my job as a therapist.  One is the type of issues that people need fixing and the other is what scenes come up during regression related to that. 

I’ll be honest with you, sometimes I get blindsided and I have to think on my feet.  I can have an expectation that what I’m going to find is neglect but actually what I find is the opposite.


If, when I ask my client’s inner child “are you happy?” and the response is “yes, I’m so happy, I couldn’t want for anything more, my childhood is perfect, I like it here, I want to stay”…

I see a red flag 🚩.   

Not that your childhood shouldn’t be safe and affirming, but if you’re coming to me with an issue and you’re telling me your childhood was perfect, I know we need to dig deeper.

Now what I start to look for is something called enmeshment or covert incest.

It’s when the child becomes the emotional ’spouse’ of the parent….

Husbandification or Wifeification, as it’s often known as.

...and it’s insidious.  This is not the same as overt incest, but in many cases can be just as harmful.

Enmeshment can happen for a multitude of reasons.

Maybe your parent was isolated and didn’t have a good support system so they leaned  on you making you privy to information that was too much for your brain and nervous system as a child.

Maybe your parent lacked awareness of personal boundaries and believed that children don’t have the right to any, so they violated yours and you accepted it as the norm (why wouldn’t you, parents are supposed to know best right?).

Maybe your parent excessively overprotected or shielded you not allowing you to develop independence or personal autonomy. 

Maybe your parent idolised you and treated you like a golden child instilling narcissistic traits. 

If you were 'partnerified' as a child, you might have problems in the following areas:

😞 Intimacy and sexual dysfunction.
😞 Emotional regulation with a tendency towards anxiety and perfectionism.
😞 Forming healthy attachments with partners.
😞 Struggling with a sense of grandiosity and aggrandisement.
😞 Finding it hard to connect deeply and vulnerably with others.
😞 You might be avoidant in nature and find petty faults in your partner fantasising about the elusive ‘one’.
😞 Be confident on the outside but deeply insecure on the inside.
😞 Prioritising your family of origin over your chosen family.
😞 Have blurred boundaries.

If you’re seeing yourself in any of this, I want you to know I feel you.

I understand the shame that is underneath this type of trauma. 

So how do we recover from this?

As always awareness has to come first.  You have to realise what happened to you and explore it in some depth. 

Then it’s about….

Gradual emancipation to the degree that you are able.
Letting go of the apron strings.
Reclaiming your individuality.
Understanding where your parent finishes and you begin.
Deciding it’s not your job to protect your parent anymore.
Allowing the parent to take the loss and processing any guilt attached to that.
Prioritising your chosen family.
Understanding where you may be projecting this wound onto your children.

And breathe, because this is big deep stuff. 

Maybe you’ve been listening or reading my content for a while thinking that Rapid Transformational Therapy is not relevant to you because nothing that bad has ever happened to you and then this bombshell lands in your sphere of awareness.

Take your time, read it twice and if you want some help understanding how this might have impacted you, drop me a WhatsApp message. 


RTT with me is accessible from Brighton, Shoreham, Hove, East Sussex AND online

RTT helps with anxiety, weight loss, depression, low confidence, social anxiety, exercise motivation, stuckness & blocks, public speaking, fears, phobias, auto immune issues, relationship disharmony, frequent urination, migraines, low libido, hot flushes, insomnia, brain fog, scattered focus, vaso vagal syncope, fears around ageing and anything that requires a change of perception or behaviour.  



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