Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN): When your parents fail to respond enough to your emotions and emotional needs.
What happens to a child whose parents too seldom say, “What’s wrong?” and then listen with care to her answer. How does it affect a child to have parents who are blind to what he is feeling? Parents who, through probably no fault of their own, fail to offer emotional support, or fail to truly see the child for who he is?
Childhood Emotional Neglect teaches you, the child to avoid feeling, expressing, and needing. You are learning to avoid the very thing that makes you most real and the most human: your emotions. CEN is a breeding ground for shame, low self-worth, and yes:
When you grow up this way, you grow up feeling invisible, and feeling that your emotions and emotional needs are irrelevant. You grow up feeling that your emotional needs should not exist and are a sign of weakness. You grow up to feel ashamed that you have feelings and needs at all.
This post probably falls more into the category of emotional abuse than any other type of childhood trauma, but really, if you were abused physically or sexually, doesn’t this kind of describe the situation in your childhood too?
Has that translated into avoidance in your adult life? I know the description of it makes it seem very familiar to me!