Befriending Your Inner Child

A Catholic Approach to Healing and Wholeness
Author: Brya Hanan

Format: Paperback

Publication date: April 19, 2024


Hurts experienced in our youth, be they traumas or trials, might get stowed away, yet our inner child remembers. It doesn’t matter how much time passes or how mature we become; such hurts can eventually cause friction in our daily lives, casting a long shadow over our relationships with ourselves, our loves ones, and our God.

Written in a compassionate and pastoral tone by licensed marriage and family therapist Brya Hanan, Befriending Your Inner Child: A Catholic Approach to Inner Healing invites you to venture deep into your heart and befriend your hurts, emotional wounds, and childish behavior—or in the world of psychotherapy, your “inner child”—to reclaim your truest self, experience inner wholeness and healing, and strengthen your relationship with God and others.

Part one of the book explains why it is essential to befriend your inner child as well as the wounds and self-protections that this “child within” holds. Through this discovery, you will learn how to transform your deepest hurts into opportunities for healing and integration. Part two of the book offers practical tools to tend to your inner child compassionately.

Through Hanan’s practical “5 A’s,” you will learn how to

  1. anchor yourself in God and in your God-given body;
  2. acknowledge your feelings and where you notice them showing up in your body;
  3. attune to your deepest wounds, core beliefs, and distressing feelings;
  4. ask God to show you what you need and to how to participate in in his healing work; and
  5. act consistently with loving compassion toward yourself.

Hanan vulnerably shares her own journey of “reparenting” her inner child and offers additional case studies from her clinical practice that highlight how different personalities and life stages can respond to befriending their inner child. Each chapter includes charts, lists, and “Befriend Work” exercises that challenge readers to reflect further on the content.

This book is for anyone who desires to experience more fulfillment and wholeness.

Product Details

Pages: 192

Trim size: 6 x 9 inches

ISBN: 9781646803040

Imprint: Ave Maria Press

  • “Exactly what we all need.”

    “The blueprint Brya Hanan has laid out in these pages is exactly what we all need. It is a gift that I look forward to sharing with everyone I know!”

    Melissa Tablada
    Catholic psychotherapist

  • “Fresh, enlightening, and impactful.”

    “Brya Hanan takes you on a personal journey that is fresh, enlightening, and impactful. She tenderly weaves clinical knowledge with scripture and relatable examples that would benefit anyone looking to grow deeper in their faith and sense of self-worth.”

    Regina Boyd
    Therapist and author of Leaving Loneliness Behind

  • “A much-needed book on healing.”

    “Brya Hanan has written a much-needed book on healing, blending Catholic teaching with psychological research. I can't say enough about the practical exercises and prayer experiences at the end of each chapter. They are valuable tools and gifts for healing, no matter where you are on your journey.”

    Michelle Benzinger
    Abiding Together podcast co-host, creative director, and speaker

  • “This book is a must-have resource.”

    “In a culture that is hurting and longing for deep and lasting healing, this book offers a much-needed message of hope. Through a compassionate and integrated approach, Brya Hanan provides practical strategies, stories of resilience, and evidence-based insights. This book is a must-have resource for anyone on a healing journey.”

    Julia Marie Hogan-Werner
    Therapist and author

  • “Heals us from within.”

    “Brya Hanan continues to offer the most holy, healing work in her office, on Catholic social media, and now in this book. We are all so lucky to get to learn from her and be invited to see in a new way how God desires to heal us from within.”

    Erica Tighe Campbell
    Author of Living the Seasons and creator of Be A Heart

  • “Healing wounds we often never knew existed.”

    “Brya Hanan does an incredible job diving into what can seem like rough territory by Christian standards. She artfully expresses the importance and meaning behind inner child work while upholding the value and dignity of the whole person, body, and soul. Utilizing anecdotal as well as research-based evidence, she demonstrates the power of becoming like little children again and healing wounds we often never knew existed. Her personal examples also help immensely as she combines her own Catholic experience with that of her work with clients.”

    Lisa Gormley
    Wife, mother, and Catholic therapist

  • “I loved every chapter.”

    “In Befriending Your Inner Child, Brya Hanan gives us a tried-and-true path to finding inner peace and wholeness in Christ. I loved every chapter and gleaned many valuable insights as I read through it. I have already recommended it to several people. I strongly encourage you not only to read through it but, in the process, to discover and befriend your beloved inner child, buried beneath all the ways you have learned to survive.”

    Bob Schuchts
    Author of Be Healed

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