Part of our recovery process includes allowing parts to have time and space to be who they are so that we can welcome them and help them feel safe and loved. By far – the hardest alters for us to accomplish this with are the littles.
We are learning to heal our dissociated child parts by meeting the needs they never had met.
Hello bodies and souls – it’s Lydia and Lily
For our DID system, we have several “littles” – which are child parts below the age of 9. Age regression causes the way we think, act and speak to change when they front. Before the system hid the littles but that isn’t how we want to live our life now that we are healing – nor is it the best approach for our system.
Our littles respond to certain positive triggers and we wanted to use those to work toward giving them more space. Immediately, we noticed many of the adult parts taking issue with the littles being out in public, which is where they wanted to be out the most. We had to come up with a solution that enabled the littles to be out and the adults to feel calm.
During our meditation circle meeting, we discussed this at length and determined that the adult parts were just worried about how others would see or react to the littles being out. With Jennie – it is very obvious as her toes still point in a bit when she walks and she also is loud and child like and that made the adult parts self-conscious.
We developed a plan that allowed our littles time and made the adults be adults.
Ultimately, we decided that the best thing to do would be for the adults to get over themselves and let the littles have time and space as long as it was safe. We knew the change couldn’t happen overnight so we agreed to take baby steps so everyone could get more comfortable.
We decided to start practicing giving the little alters time and space with Lily, our oldest little.
Lily is 9 and very intelligent. The signs of a little being out are not as prominent with Lily so we thought giving her time would help us get used to displaying age regression in public – but with as minimal noticing as possible.
But there was a different issue – Lily wasn’t really keen on fronting. She had been in the black space for like 20 years when Izzy found her a few months ago so getting this to happen would take some coaxing. In our system, we bargain, barter and bribe to facilitate healing – we are actually quite proud of the positive ways we use these tactics.
So – we asked the other littles (mainly Jennie who will blab anything for ice cream or candy) what Lily loved to do and we learned she loves bugs, flowers and nature. So we used that knowledge to bribe her to front for an exciting, safe, and fun experience we knew she would want to have. – B R I B E R Y D O E S W O R K –
Lily was invited to go to a Bug Museum – and she did not hesitate to say yes.
For a few days – she ran around the headspace announcing over and over about going to the bug museum and then the day finally arrived. After therapy, we drove about an hour and half to get to the nearest big city and the location of the bug museum.
From the adult perspective, it wasn’t bad at all. Lily is self sufficient and one of our partners was with her to keep her safe – so she fronted for most of the time by herself. I (Lydia) was hovering around the front and did push to co-consciousness a couple of times when employees or other museum goers greeted us. I found myself doing it to protect us though – not for my own reasons which I think means I’m growing up or something.
Lily did come out at lunch and then had a wonderful time being at the chocolate house for dessert after – I admittedly pushed to co-con to try the hot chocolate. I don’t have remorse but I should probably feel guilty about that.
We let her roam free and fronting mostly by herself for a couple of hours – she had a blast and so did our partner. We (the adult parts) eventually calmed down a bit and by the end she was freely being her – even around other people in the museum. It was pleasing and exhausting.
Afterwards – we were so drained. It was like it had taken all of our brain power and all of our spoons to do that. It was worth it and we planned a rest day on the following day to recover – but we did it! (and yay for coping ahead)
We hope to continue to experiment with Lily in public places to get more comfortable – and hopefully you can follow along on the journey here or on Instagram (where we post daily updates and stories)
And now for the best part of this blog – – – Below are the details and photos as Lily has told it in the headspace.
***Trigger warning for spiders and creepy crawlies***
Lily’s on visiting the bug museum.
First – there was a purple tarantula and it was really really cool. But that wasn’t the coolest part.
There was a chameleon and he had a big horn but wait – I saw that after we put the UV light on the scorpions. DID YOU KNOW THEIR SHELLS GLOW???
Then there were these things called whipspiders with big long arms and hands and they reached out and moved around funny! I saw the biggest cockroach species in the world and they were actually pretty! There were some really cool frogs that hid in their bedding and you could barely see them!
Oh and the cutest snake in the world (pictured above) – it was a hog nosed one and they have the cutest faces ever.
So then there was my NEW favorite animal ever! An Axolotl (pictured with me at the beginning) – it’s got the most cutest face and stuff. It’s got external gills which is like your lungs as your ears! Oh and we saw a lungfish too – it’s from dinosaur times. It breathes air and breathes underwater too – can you believe that?
Then there was the big water monitor and his eyes looked like he wanted to eat me – but he was behind glass so he couldn’t and then there was this black and white lizard, I don’t remember the name of but he had a big old belly like he had just ate something.
and then – my new favorite beetle ever. There’s a picture here of that too!
I love beetles – they are my favorite kind of bug. Before I saw this blue one my favorite was the “June Bug” but now – it’s definitely this one! Isn’t it so cute??? This is a fancy picture by our partner who takes these kinds of pictures and sales them!
We are grateful that we are able to give our little alters time and space to grow and flourish. Once we learned how to comfort our littles – these types of experiments became possible.
Do you give your littles space and time to be little? Tell us in the comments (and share pictures if you want)