There are millions of books about how bad parenting may damage children for life; psychologists work hard to help people overcome the traumatic childhood; some of you probably suffer from psychological issues related to lack of attention, abandoning parent, child abuse etc. But here’s a thing, which might surprise you.
Good parents also might have screwed us up.
Here are some examples for things that your parents might have done, willing to give you all the love and affection in the world and nevertheless, at a later stage, their actions might have been the cause of some toxic behaviors or personal issues.
The good parent believes that his/her child is perfect. This is completely normal. When you have a baby, it is so defenseless and fragile, it is beautiful and special and you see all the beauty of the universe in its big baby eyes. You will want to show it what a priceless creature it is all the time.
How could it cause a problem? Despite that the unconditional love is a primary quality of the good parent, it might fuel the child narcissism to an extend when it stops being healthy. The illusion for flawlessness that one might have earlier in life might cause problems with the self esteem due to the discrepancies between the reality and one’s expectations to be great at everything. In the unconscious mind of everyone there is a source of healthy narcissism related to the long lost period of our lives when each one of us used to be a God, but sometimes parents support theses illusions for too long.
This is the reason why sometimes instead of being active and DO something to make our life better, we just sit there, complain and suffer because the things are not the way “they are supposed to be”. Some of us only find flaws in the world around us but never in themselves. Some are egocentric or have too low self-esteem, all these issues are related to the idea of flawlessness established in the early and not that early childhood.
The good parents worry about their children but sooner or later their fears become their children’s fears. While children are growing up their parents always see them as immature and try to protect them (sometimes too much). This is a genuine care, but it could have some significant disadvantages. If the child grows up with parents who are constantly worried about its wellbeing, their fears will be soon interiorized and the same child will grow up as a constantly scared, anxious adult unable to take any risks.
In my opinion, it is practically impossible for a parent to maintain the perfect balance between giving unconditional love, establishing boundaries, taking constant care of the child and giving enough autonomy. This is why, even if we have had perfectly fit, loving parents some of us might have to overcome some unconscious childhood issues caused by receiving too much care when it was just not necessary. We just have to be wise enough to figure out what is holding us back and put all our efforts into learning how to be brave, confident and realistic; it will happen only by taking risks and learning from our own mistakes and, believe me, it is never too late.