The Wounded Child archetype holds the memories of the abuse, neglect, and other traumas that we have endured during childhood. This may be the pattern people relate to the most, particularly since it has become the focus of therapy and accepted as a major culprit in the analysis of adult suffering. Choosing the Wounded Child suggests that you credit the painful and abusive experiences of your childhood with having a substantial influence on your adult life. Many people blame their Wounded Child, for instance, for all their subsequent dysfunctional relationships.
The painful experiences of the Wounded Child archetype often awaken a deep sense of compassion and a desire to find a path of service aimed at helping other Wounded Children. From a spiritual perspective, a wounded childhood cracks open the learning path of forgiveness. The shadow aspect may manifest as an abiding sense of self-pity, a tendency to blame your parents for your current shortcomings and to resist moving on through forgiveness.
Films: Diana Scarwid in Mommie Dearest; Dean Stockwell in The Secret Garden; Linda Blair in The Exorcist; Natalie Wood in The Miracle on 34th Street; Leonardo di Caprio in This Boy’s Life; Jon Voight in Midnight Cowboy.
Fiction:Native Son by Richard Wright; Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens.