When we become parents ourselves, most of us feel a deep connection to our own mums and dads. We feel a tremendous gratitude for all they did for us. We have a new-found appreciation for the patience, effort, and loving care it took to potty train us, help us with our maths homework, guide us through the awkward pre-teen years, and let us make our own stupid mistakes as young adults. But, for others, parenthood makes us realize that we missed out on something crucial during our childhoods – the profound emotional bond between mother and child.
Understanding the Pain of Abandonment
When children are raised with chronic loss, without the psychological or physical protection they need and certainly deserve, it is most natural for them to internalize incredible fear. Not receiving the necessary psychological or physical protection equals abandonment. And, living with repeated abandonment experiences creates toxic shame. Shame arises from the painful message implied in abandonment: “You are not important. You are not of value.” This is the pain from which people need to heal.