Tag Archives: children

Here’s the Reason People Grow Up Idealizing Their Childhood and Parents

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An unexamined life is a gray life. You miss the explosions of insight and groundedness of maturity. Here is a wonderful article by Darius Cikanavicius of the Facebook page: Self Archaeology. He explains the realities of the survival skills children need to survive in precarious situations.

Why People Grow Up Idealizing Their Parents and Upbringing

“With nothing and no one to judge them against, we assume them to be perfect parents. As our world broadens beyond our crib, we develop a need to maintain this image of perfection as a defense against the great unknowns we increasingly encounter. As long as we believe our parents are perfect, we feel protected.”
— Susan Forward, Toxic Parents
Babies and small children are new to the world and their brains and minds are still developing. The biggest influence on a child’s development is their primary caregivers and their immediate environment. That’s where we get our understanding of concepts like love, care, empathy, trust, healthiness, goodness, worth, value, and so on.

Inherently, children believe and trust their caregivers. A child’s parents, other family members, teachers, and similar authority figures shape the child’s beliefs about the world and about themselves. This is how a child learns about self-worth and self-esteem, and about estimating others.The problem is that children have no objective ability to evaluate what they are taught.

As I write in my book Human Development and Trauma: How Childhood Shapes Us into Who We Are as Adults, “Children do not have a healthy frame of reference regarding their family environment and their treatment by their caregivers. Children have only experienced what they have experienced and have nothing to compare it to.” And so the smaller the children, the more likely they are to accept the teachings of their caregivers without questioning. This includes explicit teaching and implicit or non-verbal messages. Since children see their parents as all-knowing, all-powerful, and infallible, they also tend to blame themselves for how they are treated. Often they actually are blamed – and actively or passively punished – for disagreeing, being disobedient, or “acting badly.”

The truth behind this is children need their caregivers to survive. The child will die without their caregiver. Therefore, children are extremely sensitive to rejection and have no other choice but to ultimately be as their primary caregivers want them to be. So idealizing them is vital for their survival.

This dependency on a caregiver for survival follows people long into their adulthood. It manifests in different irrational beliefs, emotions, and behaviors. People grow up with a lot of accumulated pain and chronic psychological trauma. For the most part, even as adults most people remain psychologically dependent on their primary caregivers, unable to feel free and happy.

The beliefs people developed and internalized growing up haunt them throughout their lives. Most people idealize their parents even as adults because they have never truly examined their childhood and their early relationships and resolved the root issues, or at least not to the degree where they would feel safe and secure enough to let go of all their illusions and fantasies about an ever-loving parent.

It is extremely difficult to accept that perhaps how you were treated as a child was not normal even when you are a self-sufficient adult; it is impossible to accept when you’re a child. It is so hard because, for most people, it is unbearable to even contemplate risking their bond with their caregiver, no matter how toxic or downright abusive that dynamic may be.

Healing from all of it and growing is a long and complicated process. It often involves feeling emotional pain and discomfort. But it is necessary in order to finally set yourself free and live a happy and authentic life.


For more on these and other topics, check out the author’s books: Human Development and Trauma: How Childhood Shapes Us into Who We Are as Adults and Self-Work Starter Kit.

Darius Cikanavicius

Darius is the founder of Self-Archeology. He is a writer, educator, mental health advocate, and traveler. Darius has worked professionally with people from all over the world as a psychological consultant and a certified life coach. His main areas of expertise and interest are inner work, childhood trauma, social anxiety, self-esteem, self-care, perfectionism, emotional well-being, narcissism, belief systems, and relationships.

Darius is an author of two books: Human Development and Trauma: How Childhood Shapes Us into Who We Are as Adults and Self-Work Starter Kit.

For more information about Darius and his work, please visit selfarcheology.com. If you consider Darius for online consulting/coaching, you can find his contact information here or email him.

 

Thoughtful Thursdays # 86 – Coloring Books

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Coloring books are mostly thought of  as a children’s activity. We all remember a time as a child that we sat with a coloring book and a new box of crayons.

Coloring books are not just for children. I went to the dollar store a few weeks ago and bought three coloring books and a new box of 64 crayons. I just wanted to color so I indulged myself.

I used only my non dominant hand to color. I went inside the lines and outside the lines. I noticed I couldn’t color very fast so my entire being slowed down. Coloring became a meditation, a stress reliever, my thoughts slowed down. I felt little again. Feeling little felt natural.

I was reconnected with simplicity, coloring was a quick creative fix. I noticed when I was finished with a few pages I was more focused and calm as I resumed my daily life. And occasionally forgot myself and used my non dominant hand for various actions like writing and picking things up.  That made me smile.

What a wonderful form of therapy. Cheap, works fast and gives both sides of your brain an equal workout.

I bought the simplist coloring books however there are many types of coloring books. Check your local craft shop or bookstore.

I plan on continuing coloring.

Try feeling like a child again and color. It’s endearing and delightful and it will brighten up your day.

Happy Coloring.

Blue, Pink, Indigo, Purple, Yellow, Cornflower, Timberwolf, Magenta, Black, Orange, etc., etc., etc…………………………

 

Life is Short

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The stroke was unexpected and sudden. His wife rushed him to the hospital after he vomited all over himself. As he lay in the hospital waiting treatment, he drifted into a coma. He was a hemophiliac. Did I know? No I did not.

Those are the words I remember at the wake I went to yesterday of a friend I knew since I was a child. He passed away this past Friday because the stroke severed an important communique in the brain. The part that tells your brain when to eat and breathe.

He lay in a coma for two months then on Friday when is body gave out he passed.

My friend is Chinese. I had never been to a Chinese wake. Upon entering I could hear the Amitoufo chant. If you are not familiar with this Buddha, he is the Buddha of Light and Life. He comes for you and brings you to the Pure Land when you pass. The wake  is very much like Christian wakes but if you were Chinese you were asked to light incense and bow three times. Those who were non-Chinese where told where to walk to view the body. The family rolled paper tubes with silver and gold on it and threw them into a small fire furnace. This was to release his spirit into the great beyond.

As I walked up to the casket, he was unrecognizable. All the plumpness had evaporated into thin leather skin. The make up helped make him look like he was sleeping. But not really. He lay in a  beautiful coffin in mahogany red and he was in an impeccable suit and tie. Of course the coffin was in the customary half open from the hips up and closed from the hips down. Much like a flat dutch door. An easel with a picture of him healthy and casual. He was always casual. This was the first time I saw him dressed up.

The eulogy was said by a Chinese officiant and a born again Christian man who my friend worked with. The words were of how he was always helping people, volunteered at 9/11, would go out of his way for his friends, and loved his wife and two small children. He worked at the same job for twenty seven years. The tears were endless. His father and mother, sisters and brother, nieces and nephews, wife, children, in laws, friends were openly sad. Me included.

 

I took notice that there were fifty three funeral arrangements. I have never seen so many flowers at a wake. How wonderful to be remembered in such a fond way.

We were closer when we were younger but over the years we would run into each other here and there  and give updates  about how our lives were going. I ran into him at the grocery store about a month before the stroke. I was meant to see him one last time without knowing I would never see him again.

I feel so lucky to know someone for such an incredible amount of years. And be a part of  his life. Most people I meet come and go quickly and there is not enough time to be comfortable. With him I was comfortable.

After the eulogy most of the crowd walked into the lobby to eat some Chinese pastries with coffee and tea. We went from one board to another looking at his life from childhood to fatherhood.

It is my belief that when you die your spirit has to become acclimated to its new form so you stick around for a while. That has been my experience with loved ones who pass away. They stick around and then become less and less dense when they are ready.

As I looked at his pictures there he was in spirit right next to me. Smiling and happy and plump with life  that he was so richly remembered. I know I will always remember him. And how in his short life he used goodness and kindness towards others in remarkable ways to make a difference.

I am inspired to do the same. Thank you for the reminder that life is very short and to do the best you can.  Thanks for being in my life.

That is an incredible way to be remembered.

Amitoufo, buddy. RIP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Affirmations #17 Relationships

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In my life, I attract only those people who are in sync with me and who love me unconditionally.

I love my children unconditionally and accept them as they are.

I love my children unconditionally and accept them as they are.

My brother/sister and I are a perfect foil for each other. We love, respect and appreciate each other always.

My life partner/lover and I are soul mates. We compliment each other, respect each other and love each other immensely.

I am a model student. My teachers are the best. I love them and their teaching.

self-help-and-self-development.com

Peaceful relationships are very important. No one wants burdensome relationships. Feel free to change around the words to make the affirmations believable and accommodating to your relationships

Write them 10 times each, say them many times during the day especially in the morning and bedtime. Also say them in the mirror.