Adult children

First time I heard it, the term adult child made no sense to me.

It seemed an obvious contradiction in terms, like square circle or military intelligence.

I understand better now.

I understand that an adult child is someone who’s adult on the outside, childish inside.

That the childish part is a collection of unmet needs, unresolved conflicts and unexpressed feelings.

That, under stress, this part gets triggered, and the adult experiences all the fears and insecurities of the child when that child’s growth was interrupted.

And that you needn’t have grown up in an alcoholic or abusive or especially dysfunctional family for this to be true of you.

That it happens to all of us.

In other words, that Andrew Malraux was right when he wrote,

There is no such thing as 

a grown-up human being.

That we are all adult children.


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