LAUGH AND PLAY

Sue me if I have violated your copy right, this disgusts me. As it did the just-humor-me.blogspot.com

“Adults are obsolete children, and the hell with them.”  

                                                                       Dr Seuss

TOPIC 64  Distortion: According to Wikipedia distortion is “the alteration of the original shape (or other characteristic of an object, image, sound, waveform or other form of information or representation.”

I have occasionally watched the reality TV show Toddlers and Tiaras.  Well, watched briefly; I get too upset if I watch it too long.  Makes me agree with the quote by Dr. Seuss.  But I want to talk about another distortion.

This distortion occurs as we humans move from childhood to adulthood.  It is loss of our ability to play as a child plays.  Dr. Seuss never lost that ability.  He may have tried to send us adults to hell, but reading his books to our children and grand children made us all a bit less obsolete.

One of my favorite bloggers posted the following tribute to that good man to celebrate his birthday which was March 2nd.  Thank you Elizabeth.

Of course, I have a Cranky Old Lady counter view to the above quote.  But it certainly applies to the TV show that picture refers to. Children need some taming and distorting in order to be adults that can laugh and play without hurting others.  More about that after the tribute.

Dr Seuss: Books For Obsolete Children….

As a clinician I was fortunate enough to do some Transactional Analysis (TA) Training.  “Games People Play,” “I’m Okay, You’re Okay, and “Games Alcoholic’s Play.”  I was also fortunate enough to take some training with Claude Steiner.  I have added his web page to my links.

The TA people were among the first I met who tried to make psycho-babble more easily understood.  What I loved and still love about TA is that they see parents and children as the complicated beings we humans are.  The basic premise of TA is that each of us has nine ego states. An ego state being a controlling self.  The analysis part deals with figuring out when two people are communicating which ego state is talking to which ego state in the other person. Here are all the possibilities:

Who is talking to whom?

This image was put together by energyenhancement.org.

At the same time I was learning some TA, John Bradshaw was promoting the “Wounded inner child.”  Yes, we are all wounded in one way or another.  But I think Bradshaw and those who focus only on the hurt, shamed, or angry inner child do great harm.  This includes many talk therapists.  The Holocaust survivors who tried to put the horrors behind them or to focus on what they could do to make the world better lived better lives than those who stayed locked in the horror or sadness or anger that was part of their experience.

I use Albert Ellis (Founder of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy)  term “Awfulize” to describe the harm done by focusing on the wounded inner child or past hurts.  Awfulize means to make a mountain out a mole hill.  Teens do this a lot, we should grow past it, but many don’t.

Now mountains that avalanche pain down on us exist and some of us can get so buried, we cannot dig ourselves out.  That is when therapy and medication need to be brought into play. Getting such trauma behind you, so what is good can be enjoyed is the purpose of therapy.

So when I speak of awfulizing pain, I am not talking about truamas.  I am cranking about staying angry at a parent who said the wrong thing or pushed you too hard but didn’t abuse, was good enough by anyone’s standards but yours, holds you back. Same for those parents angry because a child walked a different path. Cannot understand a parent who abandons a child who finds a different religion of marries someone the parents doesn’t like.

End of my crank.

STAYING STRONG TIP  Find and free your happy inner child.  So many ways exist to laugh.  Make play dates with yourself to enjoy and nourish your happy inner child.  One of the reasons I feel blessed is that carrying for my grands lets me laugh and play.  So does having a new puppy.

FUEL MY HOPES: Practice kindness and strengthen both of us  Like, comment, or share. Kindness is an Emotional Fitness Exercise.  Click here for all 12 Daily Emotional Fitness Training Exercises.

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