Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Growing Up With Chaos – Keep It Your History Not Your Fate

Daughters – John Mayer
I know a girl
She puts the color inside of my world
But she's just like a maze
Where all of the walls all continually change
And I've done all I can
To stand on her steps with my heart in my hands
Now I'm starting to see
Maybe it's got nothing to do with me

Fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too

Oh, you see that skin?
It's the same she's been standing in
Since the day she saw him walking away
Now she's left
Cleaning up the mess he made

So fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too

Boys, you can break
You'll find out how much they can take
Boys will be strong
And boys soldier on
But boys would be gone without the warmth from
A womans good, good heart

On behalf of every man
Looking out for every girl
You are the god and the weight of her world

So fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
a daughter's relationship with her father is usually her first male-female relationship. from dad, little girls gain their first reflection of themselves as a female. they develop a sense of acceptance or non-acceptance; they feel valued or discounted. self-respect is initially based upon respect received from others. their self-concept as a female person is largely shaped by this early relationship. in short, children regard themselves as they think others regard them... and dad is an important person in her life.

part of a girl’s psyche is created by what her father reflect back to her. a girl needs to know that a man loves her, values her, will protect her, and will be dependable for her. she needs to be able to relax, be affectionate, and know that she is safe with certain males. she needs to be regarded as a person, not as a sexual object. when a little girl develops modesty and learns that she has a right to privacy, she develops a healthy sense of boundaries. she learns how to say "no", which will be an essential interpersonal skill as she becomes more social. father-daughter relationships are, also, an important place to learn how to negotiate fairly and compromise appropriately. if father is fair and listens to his daughter's thoughts, she will gain self-confidence and pride in her own opinion. when a daughter learns to communicate with her father, and trust that her opinion will count, she can develop self-assuredness which will allow her to be assertive and stand up for herself. this is very different from aggressive reactions which stem from a sense of powerlessness and combativeness. it takes years for this influence to sink in and develop inside a girl. and this can’t happen if dad’s not there much.

when a girl doesn’t have her father in her daily life, she really misses something. when divorce or separation happens, sometime things really turn out ok and sometimes they don’t. in any case, this kind of disruption can keep a child frozen in a certain emotional age.

girls commonly interpret divorce as personal rejection from her father. she will, also, naively believe that if her father isn’t around, it is because she isn’t engaging, smart, pretty, or valuable enough. without this clear daily influence from her father, she will look for other males to fill in the emptiness. she will seek the love, strength, sense of value, and protection from a sexual relationship to fill the hole left by her father and his missing influence. she will emotional cling to her boyfriend and avoid breaking off , emotionally unavailable and/or abusive relationships for fear of losing a man all over again. unfortunately, many (girls and) young women seek sexual relationships out of emptiness. they can go on this fruitless search for male approval many years before they understand what they’ve been doing…

…until they wised up to know: No matter how hard the past, you can always begin again

“the willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life is the source from which self-respect springs.” (Joan Didion) it is true that the family is a training ground for all future relationships. many things are learned and many things are taught. however, as adults, one must take personal responsibility. it is time to grow up and to admit: i alone am responsible for making my life happy. stop avoiding. stop telling that story over and over “mommy never loved me much, daddy never keeps in touch…” stop the blame game. stop holding grudges. stop the self-destruction. stop. stop. stop. start reaching in. start reaching out. start forgiving. start the healing process.

“the day the child realizes that all adults are imperfect, he becomes an adolescent; the day he forgives them, he becomes an adult; the day he forgives himself, he becomes wise” (Alden Nowlan)

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