Internal Family Systems Therapy
Broken parts of the Self:
What is its role in managing my life?
Gives outlet to my desire to love in concrete and meaningful relationships
How does it relate to other people?
Sees other people as opportunities to earn affection and affirmation
How does it protect you from pain?
Takes focus off (ignores/forgets) my unmet needs by focusing on the needs of others
What is its positive intention?
To help me express my deep and genuine love of neighbor
What is it protecting me from?
Emotional deprivation, abandonment of intimacy
Wants to defend truth
Wants communication to reach mutual truth
Freaks out to try and force communication in loud/abrasive words or actions
Desires the truth of self to be known
Not being respected or given the time to be understood
What does it feel?
Unworthy of companionship, isolated from others
What pain does it carry?
Rejection at the deepest level, at the level of my love
What is it afraid of?
Always being alone
What lies does it believe?
That my love is ugly or inappropriate
Where did it begin in childhood?
Relationship with mother
What are its triggers?
Rejection or being ignored in relationships
What Protectors guard it?
Codependent tries to force intimacy through caretaking
2. Invisible man
Feels invisible even in company of friends and family
Carries pain from not being listened to
Is afraid of never being seen
Sometimes believes itself incapable of being understood
Many childhood-adolescent memories of being interpreted superficially and incorrectly
Triggered by lack of, shallowness of, inconsistency of, or stop in communication
Judger/Anger protects by telling the other person why they are wrong (even in my head)
The Self who sits in the seat of power at the helm of my consciousness is an Old Man, he is illuminated with the glow of the Holy Spirit as he observes, listens to, affirms, and counsels the other parts. He exhibits always Love, Joy, Peace, Faith, Patience, Long-suffering, Kindness, Goodness, Gentleness, Chastity and Self-control. Truly, I am he.
We were talking this morning to the Invisible part because his protector the Judgmental communicator has been acting up a lot lately. His words are very loud and demanding of attention and he gets worked up enough to take the seat of consciousness sometimes. He is afraid that no one cares about the Invisible Man. I keep trying to calm him with the truth that God sees him and always has and like the Loner he is not truly alone. He acknowledges that God is real and that we have known and felt his total complete love for us on too many occasions to count. But as we were affirming this Reality and coming to rest in it, another protector emerged to accuse us of being at fault for our loneliness and lack of communion. We call him Accuser. He is hyper-focused on the mistakes we have made in the past and always brings them to the forefront of our memories. He claims to be doing this so that we do not forget his exile: the Sinner. Oh sinner! We love you! You are beautiful! Do you know why? Because you have been redeemed by Jesus our Lord! In his resurrection you are transformed into the innocent child again. And Accuser, you have been a great teacher to us, for each and every mistake has shown us what not to do in the future, and because of your insistence we have taken these lessons to heart and really learned our lessons well! Thank you! We ask that you embrace your role as Teacher rather than Accuser, and we invite the redeemed child back into the light of his divine sonship. We need you child to remind us of the beauty of life, of its wonder and excitement. You are most representative of us all, for your freedom is like those in the kingdom of heaven. Thank you for being with us on this adventure! Keep telling us what you see and feel, we need your childlike eyes.