“Sadness wants to be held, not healed.” Jeff Foster
As your child grows up, it can be natural to not run to them for every scraped knee, not to scoop them up in a hug when they cry. We think we are supporting them being able to “take it”. When my 8 year old daughter began crying over a lost toy, I sat quietly watching her. “She should be over this by now,” I thought to myself.
She jumped up with a red, tear covered face and yelled, “You hate me! You didn’t even give me a hug! You don’t love me! I must be terrible!” With this, she ran to her room.
I sat stunned for a moment. I could not believe I had communicated so much to her, both through my inaction and my judgement of how she ought to experience things. I had communicated a form of hatred, and it was a form of violence.
So, I stood up, asked to come into her room, and opened my arms wide to hold her. She pouted first, so I remained silent with my arms open. Soon she ran into them, and we sat together while she cried some more and I held her.
Sadness wants to be held, not healed. This brief video speaks to how our minds are violent with us when we have thoughts like “Why am I still suffering? Why do I still feel this way? I thought I would be over this by now.”