I don’t see a lot of my Teenage part. I think I probably have one, but it doesn’t get triggered out that much. It seems like it is teenage part that sets boundaries. I thought it was Abused Child, but I think it is Teenage part, and it makes a certain amount of sense that I don’t because there is not usually anyone close to me that I need to set them with. I set them with students, but that’s a different kind of boundary. I am not setting them with someone I depend on.
My bloggie friend says Teenage part cannot be reached. She just needs to regulate. Maybe that’s the case. I got all Teenage part-y from VP Ma’am and I started thinking the intrusiveness, or the feeling of intrusion, makes me think it has to do with how dangerous the world feels or is made to feel. It is too dangerous for me to make my own choices, or for me to act independently. The last time I saw C, she appeared to be in Teenage part—It does seem to me that I can start to recognize the modes from her body language, even at a distance, I can see them, and being able to recognize them might help me figure out how to responsive and sensitive to her. It seems to me Healthy Adult is setting boundaries, but Teenage part is setting boundaries while expecting punishment for being allowed to have a boundary.
It seems ironic that C has a Teenage part when she is herself a teenager, but there is a distinct difference between her Healthy Adult setting boundaries and her Teenage part setting boundaries. I don’t know how to explain it, but the difference is distinct.
But thinking this gives me a funny feeling. I want so much to protect C. I feel so worried when she seems afraid, but I feel so proud of her. The funny feeling is pride. It’s a kind of fearful pride, but it is pride. She’s doing a shitty job of setting boundaries with me right now, but she’s doing it. She’s doing it the best she can. I am just so proud. She told me last week not to visit her in hostel. I told her she doesn’t have a choice. Well, she ought to. I don’t know how to tell her that, but it’s the truth. I did want to tutor her in maths, but that isn’t going to happen. It’s hard enough to be mom. I can’t be teacher. It just won’t work.
I think this is really important. Teenage part needs that encouragement and confidence that she can be independent, that she is competent and the world is safe enough that she can do things herself a lot of the time. I didn’t get it, and I think it made me more fearful of taking risks. No one ever thought I could do anything myself. They were indifferent, or they were fearful, but no one ever said, “You got this. You’re fine.”
She was in Detached Mode on Sunday—untrusting of anyone, and then in Teenage part, then in Abused Child. Abused Child I cannot leave. It is like I suddenly feel chained to her, I am so afraid for her well-being, and Teenage part worries me. I don’t have a lot of acquaintance with her. I don’t know how to handle her. But there isn’t the same feeling of being chained. What I want is a check-in. Are you okay? Okay, you’re fine. Off I go. But I doubt C has ever experienced the check-in. She doesn’t understand it. She might experience it differently if she did understand the check-in. I think perhaps Teenage part is setting boundaries, but afraid of having them violated. Healthy Adult is setting boundaries, but she isn’t afraid. That’s the difference.
Detached Mode really scares me. I have seen her in Detached Mode before, although I didn’t recognize it. The thing with Detached Mode is to be a presence. To remain at a distance, but be a presence. I think. I think that is what helps. It used to put me into Detached Mode also. Now I am starting to see it for what it is; I got too scared and now I don’t trust anyone. I don’t trust anyone at all. If I am going to calm down, I have to calm myself, because I can’t trust anyone to help me. But you help me. If you are there, it helps, just as long as you aren’t so close so that I cycle back into fear again. Be in the same room, or in the same building, or on the same campus or the same town. Be there at the distance I can stand, and it will help. So my habit of not demanding interaction, but just being there helps.
And I ought to keep doing it for Detached Mode. Just be there, but at something that feels like the right distance.
I feel like C can do this. She can regulate.
At a practical level, I need to tell her the choices she has—that she can choose how often she comes to hostel. I need to tell her that I’d like to hire someone to give her tuitions. But she can do this.