The Super Hero Exam
by Nancy Thomas
Why are our children looking for a super hero? Why is this such a HUGE issue for our kids? Do we have to wear spandex and a cape to qualify?
Children from Trauma are Looking for Protection
Our challenging children are looking for a protector to keep them safe from whatever happened to them in their past. A child with early childhood trauma will often have trust issues because they were not kept safe. When a child does not trust the adult in charge of them they are often controlling, defiant, anxious or aggressive. For them to feel safe enough to trust they must have a leader they see as both strong and loving.
Who can they trust?
They will not trust the person who allows the sick child to manipulate and control them, not the person who abdicates the leadership role, and not the person who loses control and blows their lid. They will trust a loving leader who passes the tests and is not conned or manipulated by them.
Think about it.. if you needed a protector would you want one you could out smart and control or would you feel safer with someone stronger and wiser than you? I would like a solid person that could outsmart the bad guys! Children will follow the leader. When they learn to follow, we then start giving them choices so they can learn from them. Some of our children were born to be leaders. They become great leaders by following one. So what are the tests all adults must pass before a traumatized child can begin to trust them?
The Tests for Trust
- Can I interrupt you?
- Can I get you to repeat yourself? (or wait while they repeat because they intentionally were unclear or not loud enough)
- Can I get you to believe my lies?
- Can I steal from you?
- Can I hurt animals or another child?
If you flunk test number one they will move on through the list! Respect is the foundation for trust. Trust is the foundation for love. We have to help our children to feel safe in order for their brain and heart to heal. Next time you get tested… Pass the test with an A+. Be a super hero! (Cape or no cape) That way your child can be a winner soon too! Whew, I am so glad I don’t have to wear the spandex!!
Keep your sunny side up!
We can make a difference, Nancy