People who have had difficult parental relationships often expect to simply move on from the pain and hardship they endured in these relationships. Many compare their experience to that of others, concluding that, “it wasn’t as bad or traumatizing as it could have been so I should be able to just get over it. This idea of “I should just let it go”, ultimately increases suffering because it discounts how you were impacted by those relationships.
I am not saying letting go can never happen but it usually doesn’t occur just by thinking you should let it go. It is important to validate the truth of your actual experience, to see it for what it was and acknowledge how it affected you. Minimizing it in the name of moving on doesn’t create the experience of moving on. So if you find yourself comparing or feeling you should be over this by now, I encourage you to instead validate the ways it was hard for you, the ways the relationship did feel unfulfilling, painful or conditional.
The acknowledgment of your experience and how it affected you is needed in order to begin to feel compassion towards yourself. This compassion creates a space that can hold the full reality of your experience with gentleness and understanding. Even if it wasn’t as bad as some other person’s, it was in fact hard for you. Why shouldn’t you acknowledge that? We can’t let go of something in a real way if we don’t acknowledge that it actually happened. So don’t be rushed or fooled by the idea that “moving on” is the answer if that forces you to discount the truth of your experience., Real, authentic moving on will happen, but only from a place of acceptance and validation of your experience. It is with this kind of openness that things actually begin to move and letting go can truly occur.