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3 posts from December 2010


Resources that will help you embrace your inner child and grow up


Healing the Child Within: Discovery and Recovery for Adult Children of Dysfunctional Families by Charles L. Whitfield
Growing Yourself Back Up: Understanding Emotional Regression by John Lee
Growing Up Again: Parenting Ourselves and Parenting Our Children by Connie Dawson and Jean Illsley Clarke
Necessary Losses: The Loves, Illusions, Dependencies, and Impossible Expectations That All of Us Have to Give Up in Order to Grow by Judith Viorst

Support groups

Journaling resources

Journal Writing: Your Therapist at Home (free report from White Picket Fence Counseling Center)
Spirit of Change (21-day journaling tool from White Picket Fence Counseling Center)
The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron
The Inner Child Workbook: What to do with your past when it just won't go away by Cathryn L. Taylor
We would appreciate learning about what has been helpful to you -- send us an email or give us a call.


Going Home as a Grownup

"It doesn’t matter how old you are. The minute you set foot in your mother’s house you are 12 years old again." – Erma Bombeck
In the midst of holiday time, thoughts turn to the family you grew up with. Though, as Erma points out, when it comes to our "first" family, it's easy to stay in the same childhood role—long into adulthood.
All of a sudden we want to tattle on our siblings or pick fights with our parents. You may notice that you're more conscious of what you're eating and want to hide or restrict, or maybe you're tempted to overeat because that's just what’s done around here.
Here are a few coping strategies that will help you sail through the holidays as a grownup, even if you go home to your family:
  • Think like a grownup. Remember your adult role in life—what you've accomplished and all of the grownup things (or people) you're responsible for.
  • Act like a grownup. When you notice any default behaviors, nip them in the bud and do something different. Pick your clothes up off the floor, help out in the kitchen; do whatever you can to improve other people's holiday experience.
  • Write down your thoughts. You can do this before you see your family, or even if you're not planning to see them. A journal gives you the place to grieve any childhood issues, or the loss of childhood itself. You can also address any loneliness or other stressful feelings. This is a healthy alternative to restricting your food, or using excess food, alcohol or drugs to numb those feelings away. I'll send some journaling resources next week.
  • Embrace your inner child. Find a photo of yourself at around the age of 12. As you connect with the person you were at that age, consider how you can merge your adult self with this little self. I'll send more resources about this next week as well.
Whether you're planning to see your family over the holidays or not, this is a prime time to revisit your childhood so that you can face your eating disorder as the grownup you are.


Give your mind, body and spirit the gift of a holiday tune-up

With the holidays upon us, we would like to invite you back to the White Picket Fence Counseling Center for a tune-up. If you haven't been here in awhile, we can use this refresher session to see where you're at, tweak what you're doing and determine if there is anything you may need to deal with.
After all, that's what counseling is there for – not to be dependent on forever, but to guide you at turning points of your life, when things are coming up. And the holidays can certainly be one of those times!
We'll talk more about how to prepare for the holidays in next week's feature article. This is also a great time of year to focus on goal setting for next year and closure on this year.
How about it—is it time for a tune-up?