Schemalagda känslor

Scheduled feelings

Don't scream, it wasn't that dangerous! It's nothing to be angry about. What is the matter now?! Most of what we've taught children about anger has been about getting it out. Push it away and preferably replace it with another (opposite) feeling. We know better now. There is talk in a lot of different places about accepting the feelings that come and being with them. Allow them. Of course that's great. But as in so many other things around children, there is also something here that contradicts the nice picture of acceptance. Because somehow we still want to push those feelings where we think they belong. Feel free, but not now, not here. Type. Anger still doesn't fit into our lives. Who has time to stand and gracefully accept a very angry five-year-old in the hall at seven in the morning? We talk about feeling but want to package the feelings in small packages to bring out at appropriate times. We want them, but preferably scheduled.

In the past, words like "kind" were often(re) used for newborns. "He sleeps so well - a kind baby". They probably actually meant more "docile" and "compliant" but applied a good quality to it - which also gave life to the fact that an opposite exists (although it may not have been said out loud). Kind of stupid. (And stupid is never desirable..)

Even the word good has been used a lot in a similar way. In situations where neither parent nor child has been able to influence the situation, people label children with a value-setting word that implies that there is an opposite - something bad.

This fits tight. Although we actually understand the importance of feeling all emotions, grasp that babies are not "nice" if they happen to sleep through the night and realize that "good" is a word that in many cases limits more than it lifts..we seem (in varying extent) continue in the same spirit as previous generations. We (perhaps) ourselves are brought up that way and it's convenient. It suits our lifestyle.

Such a confusing time we live in, it can feel like. I therefore end this week's text with a couple of questions: Can we live the busy lives many people live today and at the same time let the children explore all emotions? Is it asking too much of us - is it possible to have both worlds or does the modern lifestyle require that the children (to a certain extent) "fit in"?