When my clients hear the words “abandonment wound”, it's often the first time they've ever heard of it. Abandonment wound is something that affects a huge percentage of people on the planet, as it occurs when our parents are unable to love unconditionally. We experience abandonment in so many ways including:
~ Being taken away from mother at birth and put into a nursery in the hospital.
~ Being left to cry in a crib or playpen.
~ Being given up for adoption or being left in foster care.
~ Being physically and/or sexually abused.
~ Being emotionally abused – ignored, yelled at, shamed.
~ Being pushed aside at the birth of a new sibling.
~ Having a parent or caregiver who is emotionally unavailable.
~ Being unseen or misunderstood by parents or other caregivers.
~ Being lied to.
~ Being unprotected by a parent or caregiver.
~ Being left alone in a hospital during an illness.
~ Losing a beloved parent or grandparent at a very young age.
~ Being ridiculed by a teacher.
~ Being forgotten – not being picked up from school or other places.
~ Being left at a young age to care for oneself, a parent, or other siblings.
When we are wounded as children, we can’t handle the pain, so we find ways to dissociate from the intense feelings. These wounds are buried deep within, and rule our lives on many levels until they are healed. Abandonment wound can actually create “gaps” in the brain called LACUNAE, which leaves you with fewer inner neural reserves to rely upon.
As a result, when the body becomes overwhelmed with emotion, the wound views the only way out as fleeing or isolating (emotional unavailability). As adults, abandonment issues come up when our spouse or partner gets angry, withdraws, gives attention to someone else, says critical remarks, lies, doesn’t stand up for us, comes home late, leaves us in a crowded public place etc… These events will trigger pain that has been hidden. So while we believe we are actually reacting to what is happening with our partner, it is really the unhealed abandonment wound.
There are many paths to wholeness, and healing abandonment wound is often an important part of that process. Energy work or Journeying to discover these wounds so we can see them, acknowledge that they exist, and then heal them is the way to free yourself. We can't simply leave these wounds "in the past" because they are very much a part of your every day life as your inner child until they are exposed. The pain has to be released from both the heart and the body. These memories are stored in the physical body and need to be cleared in order for you to regain true and full self-worth and self-love.