Sunday, 2 June 2013

Day 167: Grown ups are unstable and unpredictable monsters to children

When I was little, my mother and father tried to get me to say "thank you" to the nice lady that sold ice cream. I didn't want to do it, so they first yelled at me, and then punished me by throwing away the ice cream they had just bought for me. They didn't bother investigating, why it was that I didn't want to communicate with that lady. They simply saw me as stubborn and impolite.

The truth is that I didn't want to interact with grown ups, because I was horribly afraid of them, starting with my own parents. In one moment they would be nice and ok, and then all of the sudden they'd demand something from me, and if I failed to comply for whatever reason, be it not wanting to do it or not knowing how to do it, they'd turn into yelling monsters. The fear of them diminished as I grew up and learned more about the behavioural patterns that are accepted in this world, but before I did, I was absolutely terrified of them, because there was simply no stability and no way of predicting how they would react in new and unknown situations I constantly found myself in as a growing up child, a tabula rasa.

So if my own parents, whom I knew best and were closest to me of all grown ups, were like that, then what could I expect from grown ups whom I didn't even remotely know? They could jump at me any minute for something that I did, or failed to do, therefore I was absolutely terrified of them and didn't enjoy their company one bit.

Every child goes through this. I realised how monstrous and impossible the world of grown ups is, when I saw myself becoming angry with a 2 yr old girl I was babysitting . I stopped myself immediately, because I was already doing process back then, but most grown ups around children are not, and the consequences of that are horrifying. The situation was as follows: the little girl threw some food on the floor, and I felt anger coming up, because I had to get up and clean the floor. To a grown up that would seem as a perfectly normal reaction. But from the child's perspective, who has no concept of "dirt", "germs", "tidiness" and "cleanliness", let alone "work", "tiredness" and "duty", a grown up screaming at them for dropping food on the floor is an absolutely horrifying experience. There's the child, completely oblivious to those concepts, simply doing the physical act of throwing a piece of food on the floor and watching it land, just as it does with toys. It's interesting to the child to see how it lands, because children learn about their surroundings by testing out the physical effects of their body on stuff around them. So they drop something, just like numerous times before that, when the grown up didn't react, only this time, in this case with food, they get yelled at by a grown up, which absolutely horrifies them. So they become "educated" by remembering that throwing toys on the floor is ok, but throwing food will cause the big human to scream and yell and become completely different from what they were a moment ago. Only much much later in life will they find out why food on the floor is a no-no. Until then, they'll simply act within a reference frame of fear of  the big human, and will therefore many times not dare do something that would expand their horizons and understanding of this physical existence.

Grown ups are unpredictable monsters to children, and the fact that children eventually do learn why grown ups behave the way they do, is of little solace, because by then they adopt those same ways of behaviour, rendering themselves into the same sub- and unconscious fear driven biological robots as their parents are. This is a vicious cycle of human existence, and it should really stop.

If you're a parent, I warmly suggest walking the Desteni I Process in order to stabilize oneself and be able to bring up a child that can trust you and not be afraid of you, thus empowering their critical thinking and investigation, and not just turning them into another societal sheep that is conditioned by fear.

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