MUSINGS OF A SINGLE CHILD

Lonely child

As I recall upon the insensitivity that I was put through as a child, I remember this one particular incidence that took place during my fifth grade like an elephant remembering its last tragic experience. I was having my usual friendly banter with my parents when they coldly declared that they had intended to get me aborted and had no intention to have a child at the time my mother conceived me.

“We went to the gynecologist who asked us to have you”, my dad said, “and she said this would be an intelligent child for sure! “ A sentence that imprisoned me into living a childhood that was not mine but one of their expectations of me by acting as old as 100, being a wise adult, score top marks and pass out magna cum laude from my university. Not only that, as I heard several times from my father, while I was feeling upset as a teenager who was coming to terms with her hormones these piercing words – “Don’t be emotional”. “What should I feel like, a Robot?” –  I would ask myself in my head. It’s not a sentence that deserted me post my childhood but rather followed me into my early and late adulthood as well! I was later on diagnosed with issues of codependency which I intend to talk about in detail later on.

Having a child is any parents’ choice; it is not the child that decides to be born one fine day and impregnates itself into the mother’s womb if you understand what I mean. It is something that we choose to do and have as parents and should we do it, then it only makes sense that it is done with a certain level of maturity. We all have baggages from our past or childhood. What we have surely learnt from all of it certainly, is to forgive any misgivings we have with our parents and understand that they were doing the best they could for us. However, that doesn’t entitle us to re-create that chain of suffering and pass it on to our children in the name of parenting.

As a young child and the only child of my workaholic and emotionally unavailable parents, I would say I was left feeling extremely lonely, hurting and wanting normalcy that other children experienced around me. It was like a big elephant in the room, big enough for everyone to see but not big enough for anyone to acknowledge it and talk to my parents about it. Childhood is a gift that we as parents need to give our children, although it is a phase that prepares them for adulthood, it is every parent’s duty to do so gently while providing a certain sense of acceptance and comfort to the child when it is learning.

Parents and later on one’s family becomes the first line of defense for oneself in times of trouble and darkness. It is with this understanding that parents need to raise their children. Your children are not here to fill your voids, meet with your expectations or even carry the heavy burden of fulfilling your unachieved dreams. They are human beings who have their own talents, their own journey, dignity and definitely a personality that is shaped as a result of their experiences and not necessarily yours. Over the next series of blogs I would open up about my ideas about parenting and how I saw so many of my peers experience a childhood that I would have expected upon me.

Until then – Happy parenting, it is a gift that very few have the privilege of truly experiencing.

Author Bio:

Saumya Sunder is a specialist with the world’s top online retailing company and loves to write, travel and watch documentaries in her free time. She spends a considerable amount of time promoting budding entrepreneurs, and guiding them on matters pertaining to their marketing and strategy. To know more about Saumya, visit her Linkedin profile.

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