Whole communities are broken because there is no community spirit. Whole families are broken because there is no family spirit. Whole marriages are broken because there is no marriage spirit. Whole friendships are broken because there is no friendship spirit.
However, there are situations when the breaking away from the larger community is healthy — not only for the individual, but for the community too. A renewal of the group is initiated by the one who left it, didn’t play by its rules, and grasped for something real – to her, or him.
A lot of kids growing up in toxic families turn to addictions, self-sabotage, behaviour that is out of control and that harms them, because there is no love in the home, only the appearance of caring, image consciousness, substitutes for respect, validation, support, or the severe denial that something needs to improve, or that there is an abuser in the home who needs to be stopped, reeducated, overcome. In such a case, splitting off is an act of self-love and of self-preservation, which can, and often will, activate other members of the family to claim their own minds, stand up for themselves too, loosen the obedience to the one who is dishing out the fear, the antisocial energy, and is calling the shots.
The appearance of dysfunction is not always dysfunction, but a genuine desire to grow beyond what one knows; and the appearance of functionality is not always well — it usually crumbles within a few generations too.
For this reason (and many others, like the disproportional birth rate of humans versus animals on our planet), people who love parenting children will find a way to rise to the task, while people who don’t should make the loving decision to not breed. Please don’t put a child through what you had to go through in order to gain approval from a crazy parent or an insensitive, tyrannical clan. That is not parenting, that is selfishness beyond comprehension. And nothing more but the continuation of the suffering you went through.
The most painful sin in our world are unloved children.
If you are an adult formerly unloved child, learning how to love yourself and make your life thrive is the most loving choice you can make.
There are also people who are meant to be fathers or mothers and are given the skill of parenting despite their not so good upbringing and who can set a tone in their chosen family that heals them and their children. Those people were almost never the most problematic teenager, they taught themselves to grow up emotionally, and to nurture.
Have the courage to be honest with yourself, and accept that harmlessness is indeed the most loving choice you will make.
You are not more or less, because you have children, a partner, some group in your back, or because you are living on your own, honouring yourself and giving back in the style you can give.
Love can be felt… And every person has their own journey to love — it is both our freedom and our fulfilment.
25 November 2018