The parentified child | Curio
News and insights read out for you.
10,000+ audio articles. 50+ world-leading publications.

All in 1 subscription.

Aeon logo

The parentified child

29 mins | Apr 13, 2022
story image
How can adults undo the harm of acting like parents as children? The wounds are profound when parents cast a child into a mediator, friend, and carer. But recovery is possible. In this essay, from the perspective of a non-western family, Nivida Chandra reflects on how adults can make sense of their childhood when there is no obvious excuse for the sense of burden placed on them in their younger years. ‘These children need help, yet their families claim the status of normal. The child is perhaps the only one who imagines a different kind of normalcy. She develops a picture of normal – based on whatever she sees on TV or in the homes of others – that she keeps trying to mould her family into by intervening, offering solutions, resolving conflicts.’
Get unlimited access free for 7 days, then $6.67/month (billed annually)
Get started