Hammer Down

Hammer Down

You may have heard the childhood rhyme, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” It was the thing to say growing up trying to deal with the hurt of someone saying something that hurt you. The idea of rhyme was that children did not have to be so upset by what someone said but take responsibility for their own feelings no matter how hurtful the comment was. Studies show that people how gone through or have been exposed to negative words by parents or peers’ risk chronic health issues and social anxiety later in life. Adverse childhood experiences are stressful and traumatic, lasting a lifetime.

Overly or prolonged exposure to negative conditions results in a disruption of the neurological development of a child. Such disruption of neurological development can change the brain in very unhealthy or damaging ways. Significant parts are that the brain becomes affected, interfering with regulating emotions and coping with frustration. This makes parts of the brain contribute to increased aggressive behaviors and learning problems.

I have lived this having a learning disability which I overcame, but it was a challenge to do so, having to struggle through things more than most.  Sometimes this means doing things that seem counter-intuitive to make sure our kids are actually hearing what we are saying and learning from situations. Sometimes kids say things like a dumb, because they hear it from a parent or peer and repeat thinking that they are that way! Don’t just brush it off. Talk with them about why they feel that way. As an adult, I still struggle with hearing that all my life and I have to remind myself of all that I have accomplished. “The hammer of negativity represents the hurtful things our parents or peers have said in the past that affected us. No one is immune to words they can hurt as well as encourage. My father said he wished he never had a retard for a son and this can be a negative thought that stays with you. Taking positively, you can strive to do better and prove people who put you down wrong.”


Written by: Minister Darren LaBrecque

Co-Site Director of Mental Awareness Support Group

Pilgrimage toward Recovery (p. 12).

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