A mother’s love is unparalleled. A mother’s love knows no boundaries.
We make efforts to celebrate our pillars of strength on a daily basis but more so during the month of May. The mother and child bond is a precious one and is one that plays a significant role in the child’s well-being. This relationship is the foundation of a child’s conception of love and plays a predictive role in the quality of their future relationships (Onayli, 2010).
As we sing praises for our primary care-givers this month, may we also use it as a point of reflection. Too often many of us are confronted with the unfortunate task of recovering from our childhoods. So in the absence of reflection, history is bound to repeat itself. Having a perfect mother-daugther/son relationship is indeed ideal but we must not overlook that not every child has been a recipient of that type of relationship. Rather, some have been at the receiving end of neglect, hurtful words, scarring fights, favouritism and the list continues.
As we become parents it is paramount to ensure that we heal from childhood wounds in order to care for and love our children optimally. Parenthood offers us an opportunity to grow and heal because when hurt parts are effectively reflected upon, they are informing and enable us to be better parents (Markham, 2017).
The ability to effectively introspect is important because our emotions and the way we feel about ourselves is subsequently, though often unconscious, extended to our children. And it is for this reason that we ought to parent consciously.
Parents often fall into the pit of self-doubt. Mothers, however, need to consciously commit to offer children emotional stability and support. And constantly be a source of strength for their children.
It is difficult to truly articulate the significance of the oasis of love we call “mom”. I believe the attachment theory in its essence conveys better the importance of the mother-child relationship. Therefore in the pursuit of becoming better parents it is important to highlight the importance of attachment. Attachment as stipulated by the attachment theory. We learn from the attachment theory that attachment styles we form during childhood, to our primary caregivers, predicts the quality of the child’s future relationships.
Breaking Down the Attachment Theory
A secure attachment style, which is the best attachment style to develop, emerges from giving your child reliable, consistent and a pleasurable pattern of comfort. Furthermore, to promote the secure attachment style, parents need to be sensitive to their children’s cues and needs. Through this, children develop trust and a sense of security which are characteristics that play a critical role in forming friendships and relationships as they venture into the world.
Children that develop a secure attachment style exhibit more self-control and an effective ability to self-regulate emotions throughout life. These children are also more comfortable with venturing out into the world and exploring it.
This is a child that develops a sense of security and protection. However, when a child does not receive optimal care and love they may form insecure attachment styles that may pose challenges to them as they grow up.
Being a parent is an opportunity to heal, love is healing, through being the source of selfless love to our children, parents become more patient, empathetic, and selfless. “Loving one’s own helps us to heal those unloved parts inside” (Markham, 2017)