EP 368: Owning How You May Have Hurt or Traumatized Your Children as the Parent with Carrie

This episode is about being the parent you always wanted and wanted to be. Today’s caller, Carrie, wants to repair a strained relationship with her children. She feels shame about her past behaviors and wants guidance on how to build a connection with them and their children. There is a lot of vulnerability and courage in this honest conversation.

It can be scary to be a generational pattern breaker and it takes a lot of courage to follow through but it can transform our relationships.

Many parents carry around a silent shame about some of the choices they made as parents. Parenting is hard. It doesn’t come with a manual. Creating a healthy environment for our children is challenging when we don’t have good parenting ourselves. We are still impacted by our trauma and our hurt; it can feel impossible not to pass it on.

The hard part about trauma, or behavior we categorize as hurtful or bad, is that it is not due to anyone setting out to hurt another person. People who have unprocessed trauma and don’t know how to deal with it. People who are hurt and sad all the time haven’t gotten to their anger. People who are angry and explosive haven’t gotten to their hurt and sadness.

What happens with parent-child relationships is the hurt parent wants a two-way street. Meaning, the hurt parent wants the child to make it okay for them as well, but that is not the child’s job. It is the parent’s job to make it okay for the child.

Give your children the opportunity to hear the things they always wanted to hear.

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Consider/Ask Yourself:

  • Are you a parent that has guilt or shame about how you parented or how you treated your child or children?
  • Do you know that you are passing on generational patterns and trauma? Have you told yourself you would never do it yet you find yourself doing it?
  • Do you have a strained or strange relationship with one of your children that you want to remedy? You want to have a connection with them but you are not sure how.
  • Do you trust yourself enough to parent yourself in a way that can help you parent your child better, and your adult children who still need parenting?

Carrie’s Question:

Carrie was a parent who inflicted trauma on her children. She would like guidance on how to repair their relationship.

Carrie’s Key Insights and Ahas:

  • She was a single mother.
  • Her children were teenagers when she made regrettable decisions.
  • She acted in ways that made her children feel unsafe.
  • Inconsistent behaviors were common while she was raising her children.
  • She is a full-time traveler.
  • Her children don’t acknowledge her as family.
  • Her children’s father isn’t accessible.
  • She feels shame about repeating the actions of her parents.
  • She fears triggering her daughter when around her grandchildren.
  • Her daughter doesn’t reach out to her.
  • She doesn’t want to hear what her daughter may say to her.
  • She fears confronting her anger.

How to Get Over It and On With It:

  • Trust that it is time to remove her shame.
  • Step into her mama bear and expect more from herself as a mother.
  • Have a heart-to-heart conversation, apologize to her daughter, and listen and love her.
  • Allow herself to feel her sadness.
  • Do the Anger Release process.


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Give your children the opportunity to hear the things they always wanted to hear. Click To Tweet You can’t go back in time but you can start to show up differently. Click To Tweet People who are hurt and sad all the time haven’t gotten to their anger. People who are angry and explosive haven’t gotten to their hurt and sadness. Click To Tweet

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