Tuesday, September 4, 2007

New Issues

Friday night, DTTF and I went to see the Rob Zombie version of the movie Halloween that just came out in theaters. We both love horror flicks and used to see a lot of them in the theater in order to get the full experience. We've seen considerably fewer movies in the theater in the past 2 years.

The movie was pretty good overall. It was classic Rob Zombie - verbally foul, over-the-top family dysfunction, and some scenes were too drawn out. He did a really good job re-telling the story in a way that made the viewer sympathize with Michael Myers, or at least this viewer did.

While watching the first 30 minutes or so of the movie, I discovered I have new issues. I want the world to be happy and sparkly for my child, and my heart breaks with the knowledge that it's not. It caused such anxiety in me that apparently I whimpered. DTTF actually thought we'd have to leave because of the way I reacted to the beginning of the movie.

I won't give away any spoilers, just in case any of you out there in bloggerland like horror movies, but I feel the need to elaborate on certain points. I feel like I really need to work this out so that I don't completely box ourselves into a happy, sparkly world of my creation and end up not preparing my daughter for the real world.

Verbal abuse - I cannot stand verbal and emotional abuse. To me it can be worse than physical abuse, though I know that physical abuse is most often coupled with verbal and emotional abuse. Physical wounds heal a lot better and a lot quicker than emotional wounds. Emotional wounds can fester without being seen and become so infected that there's no turning back. I've never been what I consider physically abused, but I have been emotionally abused. An ex of mine saw that vulnerability and the old emotional scars and used that to his advantage. More than 6 years later, I'm still discovering wounds that haven't completely healed. I don't want this for my daughter. I don't want my daughter to ever be subjected to that kind of pain. I want her to be headstrong and secure within herself. She's already proving to be headstrong in a lot of ways. I'm just hoping I can help her become secure within herself, an ability I STILL have not mastered.

Neglect - Neglect can come in many different forms - not commending a child on a job well done, not listening to or even asking about a child's day, even not teaching a child discipline. While yes, my daughter is only 8 months old (almost), I have theories and views based on my own upbringing and based on the experiences of those around me. I plan to raise my child on the basis of these theories and views. If not enough attention and guidance is shown during the early years, how can one expect to be any guidance during the teen years, one of the most crucial times in a person's life. I've heard so many parents say about their teen, "I don't know what happened! They just won't listen to me no matter what I do!" I'm hoping to avoid that as much as possible. I know some of that is simply part of having a teen, but I also have high hopes that it doesn't have to be a disastrously stressful situation.

I know I'm just a baby-mom when it comes to raising a child because I haven't had to experience the fullness yet, but I have a game-plan. I had part of the game-plan before we planned to have Tree Faerie. Since she was born, however, much more of the game-plan has been formed because of the emotional changes I've been through. It's a flexible game-plan because I had to leave room for Tree Faerie to develop her own personality, her own strengths and weaknesses. Some of the plays have already been executed, some I have to wait and see if they're going to work for us. Tree Faerie makes me want to be a better person, especially since I'm responsible for guiding her into adulthood.

I also accept that she is going to be herself no matter what I do, and because she has free will and must make her own choices, I also have to accept that she may not turn out the way I want her to. I'll still love her, though.

1 comment:

Monnik said...

I used to worry a lot about that kind of thing. I wondered how I would build the self esteem and thick skins into my children to protect them from hurt feelings, verbal abuse, etc.

Then they got older and became who they are now. I still worry about it - but not as often, because, like you said, they do grow into their own personalities.

I think the main thing to do is to reinforce the idea that verbal (or physical) abuse is never ok, and that there is a way out of situations where abuse is present. Let your kids know that it's not something they ever have to put up with, and hope for the best. It's about all we can do...