This is Day 10 of the 2020 Empowerment Guide For Sensitive People! Today’s article is by Imi Lo, an award-winning psychotherapist, a published author, teacher and podcast host, who discusses the common problem of parentification for sensitive people. Her book, Emotional Sensitivity and Intensity (Hodder and Stoughton, 2018), is available worldwide and in multiple languages. Imi is a qualified Clinical Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Social Worker, Certified Schema Therapist (ISST), Mentalisation-based Therapy Practitioner, EMDR Therapist, and Mindfulness Teacher.
She works holistically, synthesising East and Western philosophies and spiritual traditions such as Buddhism, Taoism, Japanese Psychology, the Enneagram and Existential philosophy. She is a Clinical Supervisor and Trainer and delivers workshops and lectures to psychotherapists and trainees.
Young sensitive individuals can be susceptible to having been placed in a role where others lean on them inappropriately. This often happens because of the wonderful empathetic and emotional awareness that sensitive children naturally have.
Imi has provided us with wonderful insights into the important role parentification, especially emotional parentification, plays in our development and how it may have affected your choices and survival strategies as a child. She describes the costs and coping mechanisms many parentified children use and also offers a pathway for healing the harm caused by being placed in such a role. Imi’s article is compassionate and important for all sensitive people who have had too much and inappropriate responsibility at a young age.