Childhood Neglect

Childhood Neglect

Childhood neglect is something that happens when a parent does not meet your emotional needs when you are a child.  This can be something that is very harmful and is an invisible thing but something that is never forgotten.

Childhood Emotional Neglect can be remembered throughout adulthood and there are things that the adult needs to remember such as that it was not your fault that your parents did not respond healthily to you and second of all it can happen in families that are loving and caring.

The problem is that years later, an adult might feel that they have unanswered questions and do not know what is wrong with them.  They feel that everything that goes wrong is there fault and that they are messed up or flawed as people.

Here are some things you can look for to see if you were neglected emotionally as a child:


If you feel empty and lonely even when you are with people, this can be something that has sprung up from your childhood.

Afraid to Be Dependent

Being independent is good but when you are worried and anxious about depending on someone, you might have this fear.  If you find that you go out of your way not to have to depend on someone, this can be another sign.


Do you feel that you aren’t good enough and that you aren’t capable of much?  What kind of weaknesses do you have?  What do you like about yourself and what do you hate?  If you have a hard time answering these questions, you might not know yourself very well.


Do you feel that you are harder on yourself than other people are?  Do you tell people that you have problems or are you unable to share with them?


If you find that you are full of anger, guilt and shame, chances are that you have negative feelings from past events in your life.  Do things bring you shame that other people never have thought about?  Do you feel bad when you have feelings?

Being Flawed

When you feel that something is wrong with you and you never understand why you are different or you feel that something is wrong with you, this can be a sign.


If you have a hard time telling people about your feelings or you get upset when you are forced to talk to them, this is another sign of emotional neglect.

When parents do not notice or respond to the emotions of their children, they send a message to the child that their feelings do not matter.

As a child, you learn to cope with this, but you always feel that you are a problem.  Then, when you become an adult, you learn to hide your emotions because you are afraid to share them.  Even if you should share them with others, you feel strange and feel that its too late to talk about them.

Not Too Late

One important thing to know is that its never too late for you to get help.  You do not have to feel that you are a flaw or a mistake forever.  You need to figure out how to use your emotions and learn to have skills that can help you to cope.

You need to accept that you have feelings and that they are real and see that you matter.  You can battle your childhood emotional neglect and change your life for the better.  Never give up on yourself or your happiness.