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Were You Validated As A Child? The Three Types Of Validation

validation, invalidation, lack of validation, insecurity, approval, acceptance, emotions, feelings, thoughts, opinions, invisible, attention-seeking

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to like to reveal the three types of validation and the way each one affects you and your feelings of worthiness.

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Did you know there are three types of validation?

The first builds confidence and security in you.

The second shapes you to be both critical and sensitive to criticism.

The third motivates you to either constantly seek attention or to hide & isolate yourself.

These three types of validation occur in childhood – by your parents or primary caretakers.

Validation is the action of giving value to someone or something.

I like to use the example of a parking ticket to illustrate the concept of validation.

You have just finished dining at a restaurant, and you ask the host to please validate your parking ticket. The host stamps the ticket. You return to pay for your parking. You exit with the validated ticket and instead of paying $20 for parking, you only pay $4. When the host validated your ticket, he gave it a value of $16 and so you only paid the difference of $4. If he hadn’t validated your ticket, your ticket would have been worthless and you would have paid $20 for parking.

So, what are the three types of validation?

Three Types Of Validation: 1. Validation

Your parents gave you value. They expressed and reinforced your value to you and others. How?

They listened to you, and you felt heard. They saw you, and they noticed what you did and expressed interest in you and what you did. They spent time to try to understand you – your personality, your likes and dislikes, your hobbies, and the way you see and perceive the world. They encouraged your expression and your emotions while still teaching you coping skills and emotional intelligence. They did not necessarily agree with everything you believe in, but they gave you space and freedom to express yourself.

In front of others, they would speak highly and fairly of you, respecting you, and they would allow you to express yourself within the guidelines and boundaries of appropriate behavior.

Accordingly, you feel that you matter – your thoughts, feelings and opinions are worthy and valuable. And as such, you believe you are worthy and valuable, and you are secure in relationships. You express and welcome the expression and communication of others as well.

Three Types Of Validation: 2. Invalidation

Your parents invalidated you. They devalued you. How?

They criticized, judged, condemned, compared, or constantly expressed disappointment in you. They reinforced that you are not good enough and therefore devalued you – they invalidated you.

They saw you, they listened to you, but they negated you, your thoughts and expression. They criticized you and your emotions and perhaps they enforced perfectionism. Therefore, you felt that nothing you did was ever enough to get their approval and validation.

In front of others, they may have continued to criticize you or humiliate you.

This invalidation may have led to Twisted Love – you developed a twisted definition of love attaching it to criticism. Accordingly, you are critical of others and yourself, and you react harshly to criticism. You subconsciously think you are not good enough and you suffer from perfectionism, hopelessness or exhaustion.

Three Types Of Validation: 3. Lack of Validation

Your parents failed to validate you. They gave no value to you.

They ignored you or they only gave you attention in extreme cases, such as when you did something wrong. Overall, they did not notice you, did not give you the opportunity to speak, to share your opinion or perspectives, or to express yourself.

You felt invisible.

Perhaps they were busy, worked long hours, were not around or they had other issues, relationship problems, self-destructive behavior, or addictions. If a parent was alcoholic, you might have avoided being noticed to avoid being hit, punished, or scolded. Therefore, you deliberately tried to be invisible.

If you came home to an empty house, and even when your parents arrived home, they gave you no attention, ignored you or just left you alone, then you will feel you have no value. You will think you are not good enough; not good enough to even be noticed. Your parents never celebrated you or your existence.

Accordingly, as an adult your behavior might fit into one of two extremes: 1. You hide and isolate yourself – you want to remain invisible believing subconsciously you are not worthy; 2. You seek attention; you take extreme actions to be noticed and get validation in the subconscious desire to get the validation you never got and to convince yourself that you are worthy and good enough.

I can help you if you were invalidated or you did not receive validation. I can help you to resolve the pain and the subconscious feelings of unworthiness and shame. I have helped clients who were raised by a prostitute mother, alcoholic father, addicted parent, absent or perfectionistic parents.  Get the help you want, need and deserve. Do it now gently, easily, and quickly with my SRTT process. Book an SRTT session and be set free from the past.

You can add to the conversation below.

I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.

Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

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