I often think about providing the POTENTIAL the FRAMEWORK for true life time happiness with both PP and AP. With both of them I work hard to allow every emotion to be expressed fully, and this gives my son future freedom from suppressed emotion – a HUGE source of chronic depression and anger later. I meet his needs, this gives him freedom from internal ’emptyness’ later in life (that I walk around with all the time. a source of endless suffering for me). I express to him total confidence in his ability to learn, communicate, express and grow. This encourages him to have freedom from limitation judgements from others (like future peer groups, MIL etc.) I express to him that his body is a perfect, beautiful, healthy, functional, amazing place to live, that all his bodily functions happen well, that his body is wise and lovely. This hopefully will give him freedom from body shame. I express to him that his emotional growth, his learning curve, his learning style are all JUST RIGHT FOR HIM. I express to him that being with him is joyful (even when he’s grumpy) and that loving him is easy and fufilling just because he is himself. This hopefully will give him freedom to seek out others who love him for himself later, rather than friendships/love relationships based on co-dependance/needyness etc. I express to him that his mission on this planet is already SO MEANINGFUL to me and others who love him, just because of WHO HE IS. That his very EXISTANCE enriches our lives (no matter his current behaviour). I hope this will give him freedom from a sense of worthless ness or meaninglessness that have paralyzed me for my whole life. I assure him frequently that he is NOT responsible for anyone elses’s feelings or happiness. It is not his job to fix me or make me happy, that I’m an adult and have the skills for that job – his job is to express himself to me. This will give him freedom from taking on the mistaken responsibility to ‘make others happy’.
My idea behind all these things is that he will be FREE to be what ever emotional self he is. He hopefully will be NATURALLY CONTENT because he won’t have such a huge bunch of baggage, OTOH, he may be bipolar like his father and have crippling depression, but it will be HIS FEELINGS – clear and unencumbered by suppressed previous experiences or mistaken information about his worth, his loveableness, his duty to make others feel a certian way etc. I think of it as NOT PUTTING HIM IN A CAGE of inappropriate needyness, suppression, mistaken ideas about his ‘duty’ and the rest. I think of it as ALLOWING his natural emotional tendancy to develop as free of baggage as possible, so that when he reaches adulthood/adolecence he’ll waste the least amount of time resolving childhood issues and will STILL KNOW HIMSELF for who he REALLY is because that will never have been suppressed, shamed, or dutified out of him. All this I learned from having to RECONSTRUCT it very very intellectually as an adult, never having gotten it as a child.
I work this ethic into all my parenting, my wording of things and I whisper in his ear while he is sleeping about specifics – his loveableness, his worthiness, his beauty, his inherent goodness, the perfection of his growth, the wonderful functioning of his body and mind, his job to BE HIMSELF and not to caretake adults in his life. Yesterday he was doing something cute, and I said, "Buddy, you are SO CUTE!" He said, "And wonderful! Why baby wonderful, momma?" and I said "Because you are YOU!" And he smiled and went back to playing.