“Naturally, your children were hurt by this early inattentiveness to their real needs. Very much like Snow White’s stepmother, in your children’s story of the same name (which is so full of Unapproved and Hidden wisdom, by the way), your infants are hidden behind a mirror reflecting only the caregiver’s countenance — her needs — to herself. Your babies are not often really seen by you; their needs are dimly ascertained, mixed and diluted thoroughly with your own.
““Who is the fairest one of all?” expresses that you are threatened by your babies, and jealous of them. For how dare they come into the world, being beautiful and delightful and having needs of their own, when you, in your beauty and charm, still have not managed to get all you needed back then (or now)? The stepmother wants to hang on to being the desired one, the noticed one, the wanted one … in this fairy tale. In the same way, in real life, mothers and fathers, caregivers and adults of all kind, are ever and too caught up in their own struggles to be noticed, attended to, appreciated, and wanted, to really see another, let alone a struggling, needy, and crudely assertive other, a child. Children are new to the attention and Ego games of adults, unpolished in their communications to express their needs, and riddled with mixed messages about whether they should even express them. So how can they compete with adults with decades of experience and thousands of hours of practice in the confused and complicated requirements of these games?
“Guaranteed, children will be, to inhabit the bottoms of all totem poles and be the last on all lists of concern. But gifted with hereditary traits of charm and appeal, and extra abilities of cunning and excess mentation to devise new schemas of attracting needs attention, they have a fighting chance. And struggle they must, be clever they must, for all parenting is suffused with the emotional deprivation and resulting twisted consciousness of your fully growns. Pure and guileless babies, white as snow in intention and closest to divinity, are offered the apple of nurture and need satisfaction, but it is poisoned. They are attended to by fully growns, but that attention to their bodily needs — like the comb is for Snow White when evil stepmother attends to her hair — is poisoned with the tainted intentions and self-centeredness of the caregiver. And parents outfit children with a way of being — a skill and personality set like their own — with which to interact with and to allow them to go out into the world, but, like the bodice given Snow White, it does not fit. It is too tight; it is laced in a way to be too constricting. And how can it not be? For it is not crafted to fit the child, it is made to suit the adult: These are ego, personality, and skill sets that the caregiver would impress upon the child to mold them into something which is desired by the adult and rarely wanted or helpful to the child him- or herself.
“In all these ways, as expressed in the fairy tale, is shown the hidden desire to get rid of the child, expressed, historically, by infanticide and abandonment. Additionally, in all times and currently, the stepmother’s intentions are demonstrated by child abuse, child neglect, and poor parenting. If not in blatant ways, this ambivalence toward the child, containing the annoyance and irritation, as well as the even more secret jealousy and hatred, shows itself in the simple reluctance to attend to the needs of the child by having the baby “cry it out.” It is seen in the decision to not breast feed the child at all, and if it is done, by pushing the weaning process. It manifests in the insistence on toilet training (not necessary in Nature or even among many of your hunter-gatherer societies), and even early toilet training. (Babies must poop properly!) It is evident in circumcision and female genital mutilation and in all the many, many ways children are beaten into shape by humans to mold them into something not conducive to their thriving or happiness but simply to make them, for adults, less burdensome, less intrusive, more appealing, and … finally, even this — more useful.
“More about that last, in just a bit.
“But for now consider the blasphemous quality of what we are telling you. In human circles, you simply cannot say out loud what we just conveyed to you. You cannot say parents are really like this … like Snow White’s stepmother. This is an example of how the Unapproved and Hidden manifests all about you, for example, here, in a fairy tale; but nowhere and at no time is anyone allowed to notice what these stories are saying. No one ever thinks, and certainly never expresses, what this fairy tale is really saying about you: That in your treatment of your young, it is you, not “animals,” not planetmates, who, being conflicted, are often cruel….”
[More coming…. ]
[Pt 1 of 24rd prasad — Family “Investment”
— excerpted from *Planetmates: The Great Reveal* by Michael Adzema … now available in print and e-book formats at Amazon
ABOUT THE AUTHOR, Michael Adzema. Video below … interviewed by Michael Harrell
— Related: See also other published versions of these ideas….
*Dance of the Seven Veils I* (2017).
At Amazon at
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