Sometimes it may appear that there is resistance to the therapeutic process. When this happens it is the therapist’s responsibility to listen to the ‘part’ of the client that is protecting another ‘part’ from something.

Protector parts are highly creative and compassionate and may have been around for a long time. Without the protector part there, the vulnerability may have been too much at that age. Often the protector part doesn’t know that time has moved on and its safe to let the vulnerable part back into the self system again. This is where therapy can really help, by validating the work the protector is trying to do and reassuring it when appropriate that it’s safe now for the vulnerable part to come into the light.

The cost of blocking aspects of self from awarenesses is high. Firstly they tend to come out sideways maybe as anger or avoidant behaviours etc. But secondly, the self system cannot be whole and integrated, meaning that the life force cannot flow, meaning that a full life cannot be lived. This is quite a trade, to be safe rather than free!

When the protector part is heard and understood it will stand aside and allow the vulnerable part to be seen, known and embraced again.

So resistance is a sophisticated insult really, it fails to acknowledge the creative complexity of the human psyche. It fails to remember that we are all doing the best with what we have at any one time. So a child that was neglected or abused would have needed to have a strong protector part to keep them safe, even a baby has the instincts to split off from self when needed.

The clue to the next phase of healing is always right in front of our nose, we simply have to look, and if the protector is showing up, then we must listen there first. It never ceases to amaze me how wise the psyche is when given the right conditions to heal.