Do I have to talk about my childhood? I’m not sure I’m here to bash my parents.


No, but it’s probably a very good idea and a great place to start. Therapy is about providing a safe and supportive space for you to explore thoughts, feelings, and experiences at your own pace. It’s important that you feel in control and we may ask, but we won’t pressure you to discuss parts of your story you are uncomfortable addressing or not ready to talk about.

That being said, by examining family dynamics and early experiences, we can often uncover patterns of thinking, behaving, and emotional regulation from childhood that contribute anger, anxiety, depression, relationship distress, and other symptoms you may be experiencing now. Understanding is the first step in healing.

Often in this process, we rethink some of the ideas we had about our childhood and our parents. People often believe as long as they were given the basic necessities in life such as food and shelter, they will be fine. The reality is that basic human needs also include love, acceptance, and support to develop a healthy sense of self and healthy ways of dealing with emotions. If these needs aren’t met, you may feel fine and continue to dismiss issues as they arise in your teens or early adulthood. However, sooner or later, difficulty regulating emotions and unhealthy patterns of thinking and behaving start to impact our daily experiences and relationships. This includes work relationships, family relationships, and personal relationships. If not addressed, it’s common that everything gets progressively worse, and we are left wondering why. Diving into the family dynamics from early development provides answers to these issues and serves as a catalyst for change and healing.

Understanding our childhoods doesn’t necessarily involve criticizing or blaming our parents. It’s about gaining insight into how our early experiences, culture, or generational histories have shaped us and recognizing the impact of family dynamics on our development. While it’s natural to have complex feelings about our upbringing, therapy can provide a space to explore these feelings without resorting to bashing or blaming our parents (although sometimes we do may the space to do that too). Our families, our parents, and our lives are complex.

We can hold the belief that our parents did the best they could with the resources and knowledge they had at the time and also recognize the impact of not having our needs met. It’s possible to understand and accept that our parents may have had limitations or struggles that influenced their behavior or the resources they could provide us while also recognizing the harm it did to us (it’s also valid and a lot of times important to feel and process anger that they didn’t do the best they could).


Click here to schedule your appointment with a counselor who specializes in understanding and healing from the patterns we learn and experiences we have in childhood.