When it comes to toxic people, the advice always is to keep your distance and/or eliminate them and do what is healthy for you. For example, a toxic best friend, you can cut ties and lose him/her. When it comes to a toxic spouse, you can divorce if you are strong enough to break free even if it is a battle at courts for most. Basically, whomever mistreats you, you can just walk away without second thought and watch out for yourself.
However, when it comes to parents it is a different scenario. Saying this I understand no parent is perfect, every child or teen at some point complains of his parents to his friends.
Societies people are living lives being half-versions of themselves, and let me tell you it is the worse half. They settle only to play picture perfect for approval; paste the false smile, pose the family pictures, and even endure abuse emotional and/or physical just to fake an act like they never struggle in their relationships, marriages, and so, life. I honestly do not think that is healthy. Children see more anyone these false acts and know what is real or not between their parents. If they come out dysfunctional and traumatized, it is most likely due to their parents marriage and raising.
The fact our parents bring this to this world leads many believe this justifies the thought that we owe them our life or respect, even if they are toxic for us.
In all honesty, it is not a hard job to make a baby and pop it out. Having “legal” or illegal sex requires no educational checks, no financial checks, no mental health checks, or even criminal background checks. Anyone can do it and conceive a baby even if they are not fit. They can be insecure immature parents with personality disorders, harmful to their own children with or without awareness. The parent can be the one person that emotionally or even physically abuses her/his own child bringing out their worst and wrecking them beyond repair day in and out.
Plus, giving birth is the easiest part of bringing up a child. Pregnancies, if you are a woman who is actually physically healthy and fit enough and in a true loving relationship (where that baby is a product of your love and not just a pressure to have it due to extended families, society or to keep your man) having a baby would be a bliss, like two of my best friends call it!
Secondly, we are born into a family without choice so it is the only relationship were a person can really feel responsible and “stuck” unlike in marriages- you are always free to choose, you made your own bed one day- you didn’t wake up and find yourself tied to a spouse you do not love, is wrong for you, and/or probably even despise. But as a sibling, it is all you grew in and know of. In a sense, you feel an entitlement to take care of your parents- or not really depending on a persons character and cultural upbringing- but it is simply that much harder to break away. Particularly with many religions preaching heaven is under your mother’s feet and that you need to respect them regardless.
Personally, I cannot respect people that do not respect me, for me respect is earned. But when it comes to my own parents, one particular member actually, I have found that the only way for me to feel good towards that person and to respect them is from a distance and through cutting my interactions with them. Otherwise it is just too may emotionally abusive games since day one together.
I always said it is the woman that makes the home, in foundation and atmosphere. If the wife/mother is not happy the house is a drama hell hole or a dead silent grave. So women, their beliefs, their own self-fulfillment and love, what they utter, and how they behave is of utmost importance when it comes to family. It is unfortunate that so many women run into marriages escaping their loneliness, immature, clueless about themselves and having and raising babies, pressured by society, listening to their parents and continuing their miserable chain of marriages/families, and not having nurtured their self-love and esteem. It really is so dangerous.
Other than the fact so many women have issues with themselves that when they have kids particularly daughters all their personality disorders reveal. From the need to exercise control over their child thinking they are entitled to them and posses them. To emotionally mature mothers that want to live vicariously through their daughters and/or make their child responsible for meeting their emotional and physical needs. To insecure mothers that would get jealous from their own daughters and play games to get attention. To those that fear abandonment and infantilize their children. And finally the mothers that lack empathy and are self-absorbed bullying their own children around.
Moreover, parents need to know the power of words! Words are so significant they stick with a person FOREVER, particularly a child believe it or not cause they are that much more vulnerable and cut open to really register and absorb what you say and do. You cannot stab someone and over and over and tell them to forget, especially not your own offspring. The wound always remains even if it is just as a scar, and the more you repeat the same behavior and words the more you reopen it and deeper. Till one day it is irreversible, especially if it is a person who grow to love him/herself and fully regardless of all the issues their parents had.
So it is a matter of any unhealthy parent as an individual in some cases but in others it is a matter of an unhealthy union of the wrong two as parents. Maybe the spouse brings out the worst in the other and it is reflected upon her kids. A thought I have believed and preached for years:
Children become unconsciously programmed according to the parental relationship, they grow up to replicate them because they are what they define relationships to be. Even if the children consciously hated their parents behavior, they grow up to reproduce them unconsciously as a mere pattern of emotions.
Misery and unhealthy love can feel like ones home when it’s all they’ve known or when they have their parents still interfering into their marriages as adults simply to escape their own! And let this be a note to all parents:
How you treat one another, as spouses, becomes the blueprint for your children in their future relationships.
Doesn’t matter how great and loving you are as parents when it comes treating your kids, what matters is how both of you as husband and wife are together as a couple and as individuals how you treat YOURSELF. Kids can tell what is real and what is an act when it comes to love and respect, and so on. They can sense when emotions are lacked and fake versus when they are present by choice of the giver and genuinely, better than most adults too.
If you as a parent do not know what is better for yourself (or maybe you do know but are in denial and fear) and cannot be healthy in mind and body.. then how could you know what is better for your child and raise him/her healthy? You cannot. This whole, “I’m in it for the kids” is no more than insecurities of self. It is certainly not only about the kids. Never is.
Also, many parent’s, particularly mother’s, assume they know their children better than they can no themselves. It can be true in early years as a baby and toddler and so on. But I assure you, not as mature adults or sometimes even teens. Knowing someone is not through giving birth to them or living in the same house. Truly knowing another at heart and soul takes emotional intimacy that is granted to you by the other, you cannot force it.
Not cause you are his/her parent then they have to best friend you either. The fact you see your kids sick, naked, angry and in all their states is not knowing them! That is the definition of a roommate and no more! Refer to this post.
And honestly, okay, it is an amazing to conceive. Sure most kids would thank their parents for bringing them to this world but like said having sex and a baby is not so hard. What matters is what you tell that child till they are adults; if you help them feel good and grow to love themselves through your own self-love to begin with, or if you use them to reflect your own insecurities and issues with yourself and bring our their worst!
What matters is not the fact you love them just cause they are you are children and “a part of you” biologically, but that you show that love in a way that builds them up instead of destroys them like so many parents do. Show that love in belief, intent, thoughts, words, encouragements, and actions.
What matters is you respect your own spouse and children so you would earn their respect in return. If you as a mother or father had your own respect, self-esteem and loved yourself you would never bring your own children down, push them to react and hurt to use it against them so you would feel better about your messed up self or feel good judging or hurting others to begin with.
I am sure almost every parent loves their child, but it does not have to be an unconditional love. Many times, abuse is masked by the word “love”. Unconditional love should apply to no one but your own children above all else.
In summary, one’s genetic makeup and biology or how many months you grew in a stomach is of little significance when it comes to love and respect! How that baby is nurtured through his childhood and adulthood is what is vital; the love and respect is taught by how they deal with him/her and as spouses. Period.