Brief Thoughts About an Instance of Internal Play Therapy

Recently, I did internal play therapy with a client whereby they showed up in their mind in a scene with a small child part of their psyche. I sometimes suggested what they could ask and say to their child part, who presented toys and a story to be acted out with them. The client acted as therapist for their inner child while I was the outer therapist for the adult before me.

The human imagination is amazing, frequently showing us ways to begin transcending difficulties.

4 thoughts on “Brief Thoughts About an Instance of Internal Play Therapy

  1. What a wonderful thing that must have been to witness! I’m often sad that we adult beings seem to have mostly lost our freedom to play and have fun in our this-outerworld-now-embodied reality as well as in the inner world of parts. I had a long, interesting and rather intense discussion with a friend (someone you know) about the concept of having “fun.” He said he doesn’t get it as most people understand it. For him, fun has to have meaning and purpose (which, for me sort of turns the idea of fun upside down). He thinks “fun” is shallow and he’s kind of judgy about it. Parts of me are too, but I’m aiming away from that. LOL I think there ought to be summer camps for grownups where we just have time to let our inner kids do all the fun stuff they were never allowed to do.

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    1. Thank you for your wise comment, Jazz. I am inclined to agree with you. We adults do indeed need summer camps to let our inner children parts do all sorts of fun stuff we were never allowed to do. Frankly, I think “having fun,” if not openly, compassionately fostered and allowed, comes out in assorted sideways– often unhealthy expression– for grownups anyways, such as through excessive substance use, sexual acting out, etc. etc. Having fun is inherently meaningful for young parts anyway. Label such as “shallow” sounds dismissive from a critic part, or certainly that can often be the case. Just some of my thoughts.

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  2. I do wonder why we as a culture generally judge adults so negatively for just having totally silly meaningless fun. Why it always has to be purposeful or competitive.

    It strikes me that, in my experience at least, the only time I ever really had some real fun as an adult was when my kids were little. (It was somewhat qualified of course because I had to ensure their safety and be responsible and alert, but the point is, the fun was “allowable” because I was the parent accompanying them. I am thinking of the day I took them out in a summer rainstorm (ages 3 and 8) and we went puddlejumping, for example.

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    1. I think adults get judged for having silly, “meaningless” fun because of this falling away from the expectation of being productive with goals, goals that are about achieving material success and/or fame (including for doing good deeds) namely. If you’re not doing something towards those kind of goals, then you’re not being “productive” in society. It’s all rather skewed, to say the least.

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