What a child needs is what every human being needs and wants. Safety, love and emotional connection. Children develop well in a safe environment, where available parents give undivided attention and become secure attachment figures by simply being there.

Offering predictability and encouraging children to do what they can do when they can, allowing space for movement, time for free uninterrupted play and taking time to explain them even the most basic caregiving routines like changing diapers and bathing are just a few of the blocks that build a confident child that loves to collaborate and thrives in childhood and adulthood. (RIE parenting)

On the opposite pole, some behaviors damage personality for life. They create patterns that need endless hours of healing and awareness to come back to the positive birth wiring and original programming. Those mostly become visible during adulthood and often affect when in interaction with another close person, likely your partner. Here are 10 of the most obvious behaviors affecting the way you love as an adult

  1. Verbal and physical violence; if you find yourself angry and on the verge of becoming violent, better take some time out, put the child in a safe place and take few minutes to ground yourself somewhere else. Its better she cries alone than to shake her or scream at her.
  2. Parents putting themselves on the first place and not making space in their lives for the child (busy, traveling, often engaged in non-family inclusive activities, nervous, difficult, putting career and obligations at first); perception of time for my activities and time for the child has to change; building quality time together nourishes both needs and there is almost no activity where you could not interactively include your child; ideally the child would have been allowed from early on to play by himself independently, allowing you some mindful and resourceful time alone
  3. Verbal apostrophizing: public critique, comparison with other children, calling names with negative connotation (even as joke), blaming without proper situation grounding; instead offer a description of the process and what you are seeing, express gently how you feel even if its not cheerful and use open ended questions to de-stuck the situation (”I see you struggle with this…what could you do different”)
  4. Conditioned love based on school achievements, particular behaviors or delivery of certain actions; needless to say, love is unconditional and unrelated to performance
  5. Disallowing expression of emotions: don’t cry, don’t shout, don’t laugh, you are okay, you shouldn’t be scared, etc; emotions come all from the same place, numbing sadness results in numbing joy. Rather model for your child how to express them in a non-aggressive way or redirect them in an activity that doesn’t offend others (walking, running, singing)
  6. Parents working abroad and depriving their children from their presence on long-term; insecure children will become insecure adults, which rarely will be able to bond in safe love relationships; they would have walled their emotions as a protection mechanism and not allow any vulnerability as a basic condition for adulthood bonding
  7. Parents working late hours and emotionally not available; affection and love are basic needs and unfulfilled they shut down development; a child/adult who is constantly seeking for affection will not have resources for curiosity, exploration and natural development
  8. Parents caught too much in their worries or misery, depressed or with overall negative life perception; rather practice positivity and gratitude for everything you have no matter how hard it may seem
  9. Parent’s death and association with abandonment; help your child work through this with the help of a counselor or therapist
  10. Parents’ divorce and child’s feeling of guilt; take time to explain thoroughly your child what you are going through, don’t just hide it under the carpet, they understand much more even just from the tone of voice and body language.

As parents we rarely do things with a negative intention with regards to our children. Yet, we may overlook the subtle messages we send. If a child feels unloved or unworthy of love, he will not love himself either, thus constantly searching for validation, affection and lacking resources to give and offer love and emotions to another one.

The difficulty in a couple comes when we unconsciously replicate child-like behaviors in order to obtain love. Demanding attention and praise, over-pleasing, requesting acknowledgement for material achievement are just a few behaviors that confuse partners, escalate criticism and blame and reinforce ”not enough” feelings.

As a parent, you can still make a difference. As an adult, the solution is to stop searching outside of you. The key lies within you and comes with self-esteem and self-love.

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Camelia Krupp

Master Certified Coach & Therapist

Building future globally! I am fascinated by human beings and their psychology and dedicate my life to bettering their capabilities and those of the organizations they are in. The first step starts with you and if I can support and empower you to take one step further in your growth, then my mission as a coach is fulfilled. Building self every day is the single meaning of life!

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