Emotional Parentification

Our most recent post brought up an interesting subject: emotional parentification.

“Emotional parentification is particularly destructive for children and frequently occurs in parental alienation cases. The custodial parent implicitly or explicitly dumps their emotional needs on the child. The child becomes the parent’s confidante, champion/hero and surrogate for an adult partner. This is extremely unhealthy as it robs children of their childhood and leads to difficulty in having normal adult relationships later in life.”

Imagine a young child, teenager, then young adult sharing and commenting about entirely inappropriate situations, observations and remarks which originated from their parent. And then expressing the need to take care of that parent, especially when she “freaks out.” Definitely appears to be a case of emotional partentification, doesn’t it?


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