Inner Child therapy is an approach to healing early childhood trauma. If you experienced abuse, neglect, or trauma when you were young, and there was no intervention, then a part of you stayed the age when that experience happened. There is a frightened or angry or sad part of yourself who isn’t aware that you are no longer in that dangerous or upsetting situation. This is your wounded inner child.
Once you become aware of this part of self, you can begin to take care of them. With the help of the therapist you will learn to cultivate a new part of self, your inner parent, who is capable of giving your inner child the love and attention they need.
You do not need to relive your trauma in order to heal from it. You can learn to recognize when you are triggered and reacting from your younger self and immediately begin to soothe that part of self with your developed inner parent. In doing so, you will experience a dramatic shift in functionality. You will begin to love yourself, and thus have healthier interpersonal relationships. The inner child begins to relax and feel safe enough to be able to become curious and playful again, or maybe for the first time ever.
Modalities can include empty chair work, art therapy, somatic awareness, and constellation work, which is akin to psychodrama. Through these modalities you will have an embodied experience of caring for your inner child. This immediately affects your ability to self-regulate and begin to heal the trauma stored in your body and psyche.
This approach is very effective when working with issues of codependency, love and sex addiction, and fear of abandonment.