Emotional Midwifery

by Scott Noelle

Today, if your child behaves in a way that you find particularly annoying or upsetting, try this perspective:

My child’s behavior is not what’s really upsetting me. The behavior is triggering unresolved feelings that have nothing to do with the present situation.

In other words, your child is doing you a favor! S/he’s giving you an opportunity to heal — to resolve an old hurt and release the stress it has been creating.

You don’t even have to figure out the cause of the unresolved feeling. Just allow yourself to feel it, and it will resolve naturally. The following will help:

  • Take some deep breaths and locate the feeling in your body.
  • Don’t judge, express, or react to the feeling; just be present with it, and let yourself experience it, even if it hurts. (Notice it hurts less if you don’t resist it.)
  • Be like an empowering midwife to the feeling, which is giving birth to new awareness, clarity, and freedom.
  • Silently bless your child for playing a part in your healing.
Originally published on 2006-10-13
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