Substitute children are those who have been conceived, knowingly or unknowingly, to replace a previous baby, who may have been born and died or was lost before birth in an abortion.
Any death of a child is very painful and almost always traumatic for their parents and close family such as siblings and grandparents. In my experience in Family Constellations, we see over and over again how difficult it is to grieve these deaths.
After an abortion there is a social tendency to treat it as if it had not occurred, as if that being gestated inside the mother’s womb had not ever existed.
There are many mothers who usually take their time to communicate the good news of pregnancy until after the third month. This is in case it is lost and, if this happens, they remain anonymous, with the difficulty that represents, without being able to grieve properly by talking about it, and without being able to integrate this human being as a member of the family even though now is in another dimension
When pregnancy is wanted, the celebration and joy of the whole family is immense. When it is lost, the pain of this loss generates that the next pregnancy is received with suspicion, with fear of a new abortion and the joy and celebration of these news is no longer the same.
The unconscious cause is, on the one hand, to protect yourself from feeling pain if the pregnancy does not reaches to term, and on the other hand, how am I going to be happy if the first fetus was lost? It is like being disloyal to the previous son or daughter.
What we see in Family Constellations is that the new born baby is attached to the first aborted one and that the parents are looking away.
Does this mean that parents do not take care of their children?
Of course not at all, this means that even if parents work hard to take care of their baby, they may be blocked and from that blocked position the child will not be properly cared for. In addition, children are like sponges, they are very sensitive and feel the subtle. This may generate any kind of pathologies to «wake up» their parents.
If you have had a substitute child or think you are one, we invite you to constellate and to discover a new way to understand what happened.
María Martínez Calderón
Family Constellation Therapist in Barcelona and Ibiza.
+34 622 345 889
Contact us if you want to train yourself as a Family Constellation Therapist or would like to process your personal transformation through Family Constellations.