It’s a sad thing, but a vicious cycle, and a real one, in many families: reverse flow.
In some families, and to some degree or other in many families, sad to say, it is the children who sacrifice, the children that spend their days protecting the adults from their bad feelings, making sure the adults feel loved.
Adults know how important it is for children that they feel loved. Unfortunately, for so many, that is not always the priority for parents and caregivers, too often the priority seems to be discipline first, and love second. For children, however, for that very reason, that choice is not available, they are not able to exercise that sort of prioritization.
When an adult requires a child’s love, that child had better just give it up. An adult in the throes of feeling unloved, and adult who is experiencing their infantile lack of love is a dangerous thing to a child. A child in this situation has no choice. This child must set aside his own needs and serve the adult’s needs; this is a matter of self-preservation, and the child, almost invariably will look after his life first, and search for love later.
Unfortunately, what often happens is this search for love later in life becomes a desire to have children and continue this backward cycle.
(As a half-humourous aside, I must observe that in the world I am hoping to help create, saying “I want a child” will begin to be seen as a form of “I want a human being,” alongside of horrible phrases like “I want a Negro,” or “I want a pair of Vietnamese nymphets.” These are human beings, not possessions of some sort. It should be seen as a horrible thing to say, and it should be obvious that saying it signals an unhealthy psychological need as much – and more importantly – as it does a natural manifestation of the procreative urge.)
I’ve said it before, and I know I’ll be saying it again:
This generation needs to lose at both ends. We may not have gotten the unconditional love we needed as children, but we need to break the cycle. We need to not get that love again, we need to not suck it out of our children. That doesn’t save us anyway, it only continues the cycle, it only hurts our children, and theirs, and theirs, ad infinitum.
The buck should stop here. Let’s be the last unloved generation.