Parenting my inner child

About a million times a day, I remind myself how stupid I am. I push myself down and beat myself up for the most minute things imaginable. It’s my default, my go to reaction. I have been advised several times by several different people how I can try nurturing my inner child, the part of me that is so broken beyond belief. They explain that I would not talk to a child the way I do when I put myself down so why do I talk to my inner child in such horrible ways. I started carrying a picture of myself from when I was young and when I tell myself that I’m stupid, I am supposed to take out the picture and talk to her, to console her, and to reassure her that everything is ok.

Everything I did as a child was wrong in the eyes of others and I wanted acceptance so badly. I would have done anything and everything simply to be told: “hey, you did a great job.” The sad part of it is that I still would do anything for that validation. I am always helping people even if it is completely inconvenient for me because I want to be praised, recognized, and valued. I’m still chasing the dream and I am not any closer than I was then.

I have come to realize that I need to provide MYSELF with validation. I need to be my own best friend. I cannot rely on others. However, putting that into practice is indescribably more difficult. I have learned through my journey that baby steps count. I know it is cliche but it’s progress, not perfection that counts. My knowledge of what needs to happen has been present for quite some time, years perhaps, yet there hasn’t yet been a change. Sometimes I feel pure desperation and frustration, I feel like change will never come. I feel like in this area of healing, I’m facing a brick wall thicker and higher than I can ever imagine. I think this area is my biggest struggle.

I learned a few days ago that my abuse impacts every single area of my life whether or not I’m aware of it. It’s so unbelievably sad. This semester, I am taking a class which has been taught by a specific professor for years yet this semester, it’s not. My rationale is that because he saw I am in the class, he decided not to teach it. My self-esteem is so low and the only way for me to raise it is to be gentle on myself, to tell my nine year old self that that she’s just fine as she is, that none of what happened to her is her fault, and to acknowledge her progress. It’ll come…..

How do you deal with bashing yourself?