The ideal son exists? The danger of great expectations

A newborn child appears as a promise in the midst of a family. When we look into his cradle, we see in that child a broad horizon of possibilities. In reality, that child can become anything: an intellectual, an artist, an inventor, a great businessman ... Consciously or unconsciously, we forge many illusions and we would like our son to be the ideal boy or girl and that the successes would happen in his path. But can we really do so many illusions?

Sometimes, parents can be tempted to put too many expectations in our children. We make our own pink novels, and sometimes that pressure can be counterproductive to your personality. Also, the ideal boy or girl ... does it exist? Our ideal son will be he who becomes himself; no more no less.


In any case, a child needs, in a certain way, to become an "object" of his parents' illusions: that gives him security and self-confidence; he knows he is loved and that stimulates him; he knows himself urged and that helps him to demand. But, at the same time, as parents it should be very clear to us that their lives are to be lived by them and that excessive illusions can degenerate into two dangers, different, but equally pernicious: disappointment and pressure.

The fearsome disappointment of the parents: the law of the funnel

There is a so-called law of the funnel. Those dreams that we make with a child from small make up the wide mouth of that funnel, which narrows as our son or daughter grows. Everything begins when we observe small details that do not fit our idea.


Sometimes it is not about more or less bright qualities, but about an aggressive, unloving character, etc. that burns or irritates those around him. And, without formulating it mentally, without saying it in words, we intuit that our son is not as smart, as nice, as nice or as strong as we had dreamed. We fall into the fearsome embrace of disappointment and disappointment.

Law of disillusionment: the danger of great expectations

That law of the funnel can mean the law of disillusionment. And the greatest tragedy for a child is to be an outcast of the illusion. There is a kind of "right of the child" to have an illusion for him, even if he does not show relevant qualities or a very balanced character. We have the duty and the authority to communicate illusion. This helps the children to grow more than to go mentally deciding or dreaming what those children are going to be.

In short, the problem does not lie in making illusions, but that these are excessive, false, or have their origin in different reasons than the good of our child.


What we have not been: frustration

Sometimes, we can maintain a secret and internal dialogue with ourselves by turning to "our" projects about the children. And many times they sound like compensatory projects. May they be the avengers of our historical frustrations, "that they reach where I did not arrive", "that they do what we could not do", "that they do not interrupt the family tradition". Wanting the best for children usually means in practice, in these cases, wanting prestige, power and success. We feel sad or upset that they are not able to continue the family socioeconomic level.

On one occasion, a father confessed in a moment of family intimacy: "You can not imagine the deep irritation I felt when I heard someone say that their son or daughter had brilliant grades in a superior technical career." It was like a stab in my heart. I have not managed to have a brilliant son. " And it can become a problem if it leads us to put pressure on the children in a certain direction.

Show off as children

The influence of current culture (competitiveness, prestige, power ...) comes to believe that a child can not be happy if it does not achieve certain academic or professional goals; or leads to brag in public of smart children, as external signs of one's family happiness; or leads to being ashamed of them when they fail or do not have great qualities ...

All this can lead to false illusions, which if not seen cause irritation or disgust. We begin to get nervous, secretly formulate diagnoses (not worth, this guy is useless); then we want to take the things for the tremendous, with what, in addition, we break the dialogue and the confidence; and in the end, disappointment ensues.

Marisol Nuevo Espín

Video: Bo Burnham - Lower Your Expectations/If You Want Love


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