I have gasped at the comments that some have made directly to me (the most recent was how garbage bags are the perfect way to move a child and we shouldn’t be so quick to get rid of them).
Mostly, however, I have found compassion, honesty and shockingly individuals who minimize or invalidate their own thoughts and feelings. “ It has been one of the big surprises for me, and I started to get curious about the emotions behind it.
Many times someone has approached me after an event and started with, “I didn’t have it as bad as you, but . What are they, and how does minimization of self-come about? If someone asked me the simple question, “what’s wrong with you? I was constantly second-guessing my feelings, my perceptions, my memories and myself.
” I had the same answer, “I’m crazy.” I didn’t answer that to be ironic or even a smart ass. I found myself often asking This came to a head while I was writing the book.
Shenandoah Chefalo is a former foster youth, and advocate.
She is the author of the memoir, Garbage Bag Suitcase, and co-founder of Good Harbor Institute an organization focused on translating evidence-based research on trauma into skills that can be used immediately by individuals and organizations.
How does someone else’s situation have anything to do with this child? However, that doesn’t mean that they didn’t have the experience or that their feelings should be minimized just because the event wouldn’t overwhelm or traumatize me.
We then rationalize those feelings by saying things like, “other kids have it worse.” The point of the article was clearly missed.
Comments from numerous indicated it is ok to minimize a child’s feelings if the parent believes the child is having an irrational response.
What, if instead, we said: Don’t these validate without minimizing?
Don’t these teach without questioning the feelings the child is having?