Introduction to PRI
Past Reality Integration® therapy is based on that we, as adults, often perceive the world through the defence mechanisms that we have developed as children. These defence mechanisms see to it that we do not have to feel the pain which was inflicted upon us as children. However these defence mechanisms is exactly what makes us, as adults; suffer the most as they give a distorted view of our perceptions of the present reality. Our problems in the present are, but are also caused by: fear, dejection, anger, stress and lack of true contact with other people.
The aim of PRI is to help us work towards becoming aware of the destructive actions of these defence mechanisms, to stop the defence and subsequently break them down or dismantle them.
Behind our defences hides the old pain which we have had to repress as a child because allowing ourselves to feel it at that time would have been so painful that we would have not been able to endure it. The situation of the child that we were differed greatly from the situation of the adult that we are now: we were small, dependent and at the mercy of others for the care, love, warmth and understanding that we needed. We had no choice in this: if our parents did not give us what we needed, there was no way out, we could not go away and find other parents.
Moreover young children have no awareness of time. This means that a situation with lack of love, insufficient amount of touch and comforting in times that we were distressed seemed, to the child we were, last endlessly without a prospect of change.
Through dismantling the defence and admitting the old pain we can see and feel the old pain for what it is: old, not belonging in the present but to the child we were still very painful and life threatening.
Deep inside and throughout we realise then that it is not necessary any more to defend ourselves against these feelings through all sorts of defence mechanisms. This was in the past, and the past is gone. We are adults now and not dependent any more on one or two people responsible for fulfilling our basic physical and emotional needs. As adults we now have the ability to fulfil our own needs. We always have a choice now and we have awareness of time, matters that the child we were had no grasp of. Therefore, if it had not developed defence mechanisms, in many cases the child we were would have been exposed to unbearable pain.
The aim of PRI therapy isn’t to feel the old pain in the (false) hope we can do some work on it in order for it to go away. The aim of a PRI therapy is to live our lives increasingly free of defences. Also then when a defence is being activated, we can recognize these ourselves and can dismantle it more effectively, with accelerating speed, so that we can eliminate the destructive effect of it in our daily lives. Then we can experience life for what it actually is: mostly surprisingly unburdened.
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