Holistic Depth Psychotherapy - Nicole Ann Ditz, MA CMHC

Voices of the Inner Child

Peter Rabbit

Beatrix Potter

"I remember that. He was not trying to be bad, he was just being naughty! I remember now!"

~ Small Bunny

"Tales of a Lovable Bunny" (cont'd):

"Oh, Small Bunny," Nicole asks with concern, "What happened?"

"I was bouncing on the love seat in the living room, I don't know why I did it, but I was excited, and I knocked over the lamp on the table beside it and it broke! I didn't mean to do it, but I did!" Her face was crumpled up with anxiety, remembering the experience.

"What happened then?" Nicole's voice is calm, soothing.

"Then my Mommy came in and yelled at me!" the words rush out of Small Bunny's mouth, "and she told me I was a bad, bad girl and that I had done a bad, bad thing and to go to my room until Daddy got home, and it was right after lunch, and it's a long time 'til Daddy comes home, and I didn't mean to be a bad girl, it just happened, and now Mommy's really mad at me, and I feel really, really bad."

"May I say something?" I ask. Everyone looks at me. Small Bunny nods solemnly. "I don't think you were bad, I think maybe you were just a little naughty and made a mistake."

Small Bunny's blue eyes regard me as she thinks this over. "What do you mean, My Bunny?" she asks.

"Well," I answer, "you didn't decide to make your mommy mad did you?" The small blond head shakes an emphatic No! "I think you just forgot the rule about bouncing on the couch, didn't you?" The small blond head nods swiftly. "And then you broke the lamp by accident, and got really, really scared of your mommy's getting angry at you. Is that what happened?"

"Yeah," Small Bunny's face glows with relief, "that's how it was, I didn't mean to be bad, but then I got really, really scared. I knew Mommy would be really mad at me, and she is!" Her face fell again. "Maybe she won't love me as much anymore because I'm bad."

"I don't think you were bad," I insist; "I think you were just naughty and had an accident, and I am sure your mommy still loves you."

"I don't know," Small Bunny sounds completely unconvinced.

"May I say something?" Nicole's voice is warm and reassuring.

"Yes, of course," I say quickly, as Small Bunny turns to her, hopefully.

"You know your favorite Beatrix Potter book Peter Rabbit?" Nicole begins. Small Bunny nods enthusiastically. Just last week she had recounted the entire story to Nicole, at great length, and we had briefly discussed the difference between being naughty and bad. "Well, you know how Peter Rabbit went to Farmer McGregor's Garden when his mother told him not to?"

"Yes," Small Bunny nods solemnly.

"And he ate all the vegetables, soooo many that he got a tummy ache?" Nicole adds.

"Yes and Farmer McGregor went after him," Small Bunny bursts in, "and nearly caught him, and he had to jump through a window and run away! He was really bad!"

Mama Rabbit

Beatrix Potter

"She gave him a tonic for his upset tummy and put him to bed."

~ Small Bunny

"I thought last time we decided he was naughty, not bad," Nicole responds. "He didn't want to be mean or hurt anyone; he just got up to mischief and was naughty because he was so excited and curious to explore the garden...."

"Oh, yeah," memory stirs on Small Bunny's face, "I remember that. He was not trying to be bad, he was just being naughty! I remember now!"

"Tell me again what his mommy did when he came home with a tummy ache," Nicole asks, again in a soothing and quiet voice.

"Well, she didn't yell at him or anything;" Small Bunny looks thoughtful and serious," she gave him a tonic for his upset tummy and put him to bed."

"Do you think she still loved him?" Nicole asks quietly.

"Yes, of course," Small Bunny replies quickly.
(cont'd on next page)

Nicole Ann Ditz, MA CMHC, Holistic Depth Psychotherapist

Voice Mail: (401) 573-6396  Email: info@holisticdepththerapy.com

Serving Rhode Island and Southeastern Connecticut