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The Stories our Shark Music Tells Us

This week, a parent asked me “Are the stories in my head about my parenting and my child Shark Music?”. She went on to share that since becoming a parent, she has been terrified that she will raise “an ungrateful brat” and each time her daughter cries, becomes upset or disappointed she hears this message, and several others: “don’t let her think that it’s OK to cry about everything”, “she’s so spoilt”, “everyone can see this terror I have raised”.

There are many messages we hear about ourselves, others, and our children. Of course, not all of these are bad, but part of learning about Shark Music is recognizing which messages stop us from seeing clearly. 

When it comes to teasing out what is Shark Music, an important question to ask is whether these messages get in the way of our response to needs on the Circle. Shark Music is any feeling or message that tells us that a legitimate need is not OK, and that it shouldn’t be expressed or responded to. For this parent, her Shark Music told her that her daughter’s cries for comfort and need for support to organize her feelings were a signal of her “inadequate parenting” and her daughter’s unreasonable demands.

Hearing these messages is not unique – in fact, Shark Music is universal. Welcome to the Club. The challenge for all of us is beginning to recognise these stories as Shark Music and discovering how listening to these can stop us from meeting legitimate relational needs.

What messages have you begun to recognize as Shark Music? Which needs on the Circle have these messages stopped you from feeling comfortable to express or meet?

I invite you to share with me your comments, reflections, Circle stories and experiences with the Circle of Security. Your submissions may be used in future blog posts, with all identifying information excluded, unless you specifically request to be identified. Contact me at brooke[at]circleofsecurityinternational[dot]com