Rough Starts

Bumpy Beginnings
Parents are supposed to love and protect their children. Support them, and guide them. Pass on the wisdom and traditions of their ancestors. Provide them with strong foundations and happy childhoods that they can tap into for the rest of their lives. 
And show their children the way to be who they are.

But unfortunately many parents are incapable of doing this. 
There are thousands of ways that parents can fail their children. 
It is very easy to hurt the young, the innocent, the trusting, the weaker, the dependent, the powerless -- through incompetent parenting. Consequently, hoards of children go out into the world
with complicated, compound injuries that need mending.  

If you are one of these children, it may help to know that:

  • You are a unique and separate entity from your parents;

  • They were an influence, but do not decide who you are; 

  • If you are out of your childhood home now, 
        they no longer lord over your existence, 
        and no longer have any true power over you;

  • Just because they had children, does not mean they possessed the maturity or ability to be parents;

  • They were not born with the intention of hurting you. 
        They were only trying to survive, and meet their own needs
        in the only ways they knew how -- inadequate as that may
        have been -- based on their life experiences and how they
        were raised;

  • Even if their behavior was careless, selfish, harsh, cruel, inappropriate, neglectful, inconsiderate, overbearing, abusive, twisted, or cold, this was the best they were 
        capable of (all people function at their optimum);

  • This doesn’t mean that they are not culpable and should not be held accountable for their actions. It just means that their poor parenting had nothing to do with you. It is a statement on them.

  • No matter how it may appear, they themselves are not 
        the result of perfect parenting, and so they were unable 
        to bring to the job of parenting, the necessary ingredients 
        to be great parents;

  • Given ideal conditions from their birth forward, 
        they could have been wonderful human beings and
        wonderful parents—people worthy of love and respect, 
        and capable of giving the same;

  • Perfect conditions rarely, if ever, exist—especially on a continuous basis;

  • June Cleaver (Leave it to Beaver) and Jim Anderson (Father Knows Best) are characters from old TV shows who were perfect parents. They do not exist in the “real” world;

  • Children have to pick up where their parents leave off. 
        Fill in the gaps, plug the holes, in some cases deal with 
        the traumas, re-educate, re-condition, re-parent themselves,
        or throw it all out the window and start from scratch.

  • There is work to be done, yes, but the years are not wasted. Everything teaches you something.
Bumpy beginnings
Children are not casual guests in our home. They have been loaned to us temporarily for the purpose of loving them and instilling a foundation of values on which their future lives will be built 

* * *

Children have 
more need of models than critics 

* * *

A child is a temporarily disabled and stunted version 
of a larger person, whom you will someday know. 
Your job is to help them overcome the disabilities associated with their size and inexperience so that they can get on 
with being  that 
larger person 

* * *

We cannot fashion 
our children after 
our desires, we must have them and love them as God has 
given them to us 

* * *

As a little boy of eleven I entered the Cadet Corps. I was not particularly eager to become a Cadet, but my father wished it. 
So my wishes 
were not consulted 

* * *

I suffer whenever I see that common sight of a parent or senior imposing his opinion and way of thinking and being on a young soul to which they are totally unfit. 
Cannot we let people be themselves, and enjoy life in their own way? You are trying to make that man another you. One’s enough 

* * *

The most loving parents and relatives commit murder with smiles on their faces. They force us to destroy the person we really are:  a subtle kind of murder 

* * *

Parents are 
sometimes a bit of a disappointment to their children. They don’t fulfill the promise of their early years 

* * *

Having children makes one no more a parent than having a piano makes you a pianist 

* * *

A baby is born with a need to be loved and never outgrows it 

* * *

It’s never too late to have a happy childhood
We are not wounded. We do not need to heal.
We merely need to change our perspectives.
And it is this enlightenment that will be our healing.