I understand that regression is stress-relieving and positively affirming for your self; however, please understand that stress should be managed in various ways and not in just one single form. I understand if you were unaware of that or if you just weren't sure where to start, but I have a strong feeling that if you utilized other stress-relieving methods and put less pressure on yourself to "perform deeper regression" then you will get to enjoy at least your more casual regressive tendencies. Regression can
be stress-relieving for some people, but for many others it is something that comes when already feeling relieved of stress.
You are absolutely right about adulthood coming along with greater expectations of responsibility and that it can absolutely being stressful to manage. I believe that the average adult agrees with you on this point. I believe many littles would agree with you that the more responsibilities they have to take on as adults the more they need to seek stress relief. What is also important to tie along with these notes though is that just because something feels
therapeutic does not mean it is
actual therapy or can stand in place of scientifically proven methods of therapy. Just because regressing is also a stress reliever for you does not mean you should only utilize it and not seek other methods or assistance from professionals as well. One can even argue that placing regression in the "tools for personal stress relief" category ends up placing unnecessary stress on the actual regressive experience, and, ultimately, causing it to be another unpleasant chore to complete rather than something that naturally comes and is simply just enjoyable when it happens.
Self-acceptance can be a difficult task to overcome for many people, but it isn't unachievable. I understand that it's been a struggle for you and that you are still fighting that battle. That's okay, but it sounds like you would greatly benefit from a support system so that you can ease yourself back into enjoying things that you want to enjoy once again. Sometimes easing yourself back into things is the right way to go, and that means you don't need an entire room full of items dedicated to an interest but maybe just one item that you can grow to feel comfortable having and associating to this part of yourself. Don't be afraid to talk with others in the community and even ask about the pace they went in their explorations, acceptance, and experiences, and don't be afraid to seek someone educated who can talk with you more about the stress you're experiencing and the self-acceptance battle you face.
My suggestion here would be:
- Explore various ways of relieving stress in your personal life. Utilizing only one method (regression) is not realistically ideal, and expecting yourself to "perform" is only going to cause the experience to dull over time, if not itself become stressful to manage. Search Google for some ideas of general stress relief and try them out in your day to day life and see how some of them make you feel.
- Talk with someone about your concerns, worries, stress, and general problems. Community forums can be great for letting things out. Chat rooms may be helpful. A good therapist is probably best since they can professionally help you work through things and have an educated background on psychology and mental welfare. Absolutely consider talking with a professional about self-acceptance and work toward resolving some negative personal feelings from your childhood so that you can enjoy your self. You're already aware that your childhood had some unfortunate parts to it, and I feel that recognizing that is a good first step to finding a therapist who will support who you are today but also help you overcome feelings from a past that cannot be changed. Bottling your thoughts up isn't helpful, and you deserve a support system.
- Make private time regularly for yourself to allow yourself to feel extra regressed if that's what naturally comes of the moment. Don't place any importance on the experience so that there is no additional pressure to "perform". If you don't fall into a deeper regression then that's okay. If you do become more regressed then that's okay. Set yourself up to just have a relaxing time and enjoy the moment, whatever that moment brings. This comes back to the first point though in seeking ways to reduce personal stress in your life though so don't get all worked up about having not experienced something you had wanted to experience.