maria montessori
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The Shadow


”The feeling of power a parent experiences in the relation with his child is extremely inviting. It is so easy to tell a small person what to do, what to feel, what to think, what is good or bad, what to hide and what to pretend to be.

Because the child does not have the feeling of his own identity, it can be easily invented and forged by the adults around him. In my opinion, parents who cannot resist the temptation, forgetting how helpless the child is, and try to shape him according to their own (more or less conscious) expectations suffer from a power issue themselves. The will to control the feelings, the actions, and even the path the other chooses in life is attractive, but the promises are misleading.

When the child will grow up, he will revolt against the parents. Worst case scenario, he will hate and despise them, best case scenario, he will try to correct what he became, without even noticing it. Long-term therapy can help him understand the parents' unconscious motivations and to finally forgive them.

In the less fortunate scenario, someone who developed not according to his/her own needs, but according to the parents' needs, will always feel that something is missing, will feel unaccomplished or empty inside. What is it that he is missing? Well, he is missing from his own life.

Certain financial or social benefits (of esteem and statute) might compensate for a while for the inner gap of a life led according to other people's needs and values. In am not saying that these needs, norms, or value are not valid. They are valid for the people they belong to.

The value of passiveness is legitimate for a mother with a low level of vitality, which perfectly functions in the context of the minimum resistance, but does not apply to the daughter who is full of energy and desires to act, to try, to struggle, and even dominate.

The compensating effect of exterior benefits is always limited in time. Even if the needs of authentic nature are inaudible, the anxiety, tension, lack of horizon, confusion or lack of direction are its ambassadors in the consciousness world. According to a habit patented by our ancestors, ambassadors are punished or killed for the message they bring. Some are drowned in alcohol or drugs, others are benumbed by sexual adventures or loud music.

Parents who can find balance on the power axis, sufficiently aware of their weaknesses so as not to project them on others support their children on their route towards independence. They provide them with the safety of a solid foundation, and build in them the trust that they will one day leave it to live in their own way, wherever they desire.
Parents who do not give in to the temptation of raising their children according to the own models actually support them in the growing up process, which has as an ultimate purpose the access to the highest level of freedom.

If you had such parents, kneel now and thank the good Lord for the chance. If you did not, be grateful for the chance you have now, to take your evolution into your own hands and stop living according to a standard that is not probably bad as such, but it simply does not fit you.

Unrealistic standards parents raise and inadequate expectations as to how the child should be shadow personality features and inner forces that deprive him from an authentic feeling of self-trust. 
Of course, the parents' behaviour is not the only factor that influences the child's psychological evolution. 
An elementary school teacher, a grandparent, a teacher, or even an elder sister sometimes significantly interfere in the process.

My purpose is not to identify the guilty parties, but to prevent mistakes. If mistakes were already committed, the first thing is not to find who did them and why (though this is important, too), but to act so as to mend what can be mended, and get closer to what it is that you want to become.

To tell you the whole truth (though it is hard to accept), my belief is that the decisive factor in a child's development is not the environment he grows up in (parents, grandparents, children), but his predisposition to react to the messages received from the outside.

In other words, the environment facilitates, supports, accelerates or, quite on the contrary, blocks, interrupts, frustrates a person's psychological evolution, but what finally matters is his specific potential, the deeper will to experiment a certain type of life. This line of thinking is not easy to accept. It relies on the idea that the reality of our lives is connected to our inner choices, and that is from the very second we were born, or, for more daring thinkers, way before this birth.”

”The Shadow” – Adrian Nuta, psychologist