Put Yourself First

Not easy to do is it?

It is vital that we learn how to self protect and to look after ourselves, physically and mentally.

Any trauma we experience can have a devastating effect on our health, and being denied contact with your grandchildren is in itself a trauma.

All of us spend hours and hours going over and over the past, wondering what we could have done to prevent this estrangement happening. We all spend nights staring at the ceiling, tossing and turning, night after night until we notice that we are not feeling well. We are unable to concentrate on anything at all, we focus on our ‘living bereavement.’ it eats away at our very soul.

As with any bereavement we experience stages of grief, and we will all be at different stages.

When I speak to grandparents I talk about self protection.

It is so important that you learn to look after yourselves, and I do mean, learn.

Estrangement is of course a negative place to be, and it is extremely hard to see the positives in anything. So we have to teach ourselves to start a new way of thinking.

How often do you look in the mirror and smile at your reflection and think,

“I look great”

I suspect rarely or never.

We need to release ourselves from this torment.

It may be impossible to forgive family members who have caused this distress, forgiveness is the hardest thing of all. I didn’t say it would be easy to teach ourselves a new way of thinking.

The honest truth is that the only people who are getting hurt is ourselves, the family members actually believe they are right in their actions therefore they don’t give it a thought.

So how can we achieve a place of peace?

We have to start with looking deep within ourselves and continually tell ourselves that we are of value and that we deserve to be happy.

As an estranged/alienated grandparent we have no self worth,  so we need to work on affirmation. Affirmation means to give ourselves emotional support and encouragement.

We don’t find it that easy to say out loud,

‘I am worthy.’

As with all the negative statements, if you say them over and over eventually you believe it, affirmations work in the same way.

If you find it too hard, try writing them down, put them on the fridge or notice board.

Here are just a few examples:

I am enough

I matter

Today I will learn and grow

I don’t have to be perfect to be great

Happiness found within

I have the power to change

I am unique

I am proud of myself

I do my best

There are many others, but the ones you can think of for yourself will be the best.

It may sound a bit whoo hoo, but it works if you practice.

Repeat these affirmations for 5 mins 3 times a day, you have to start loving yourself again, or say your affirmation whilst having a shower or getting ready for the day.

Our minds need to retrain, it wont happen overnight it will take commitment and patience.

There is one permanent relationship in your life, and that is your relationship with yourself.

This needs to be part of your journey of healing.

I for one think you are brilliant.






About Jane

Jane setup Bristol Grandparent Support Group in 2007 after a string of incidents led to the loss of contact with her Grand Daughter.

View all Jane Posts


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