My friend once told me how her mother would not hold her hand as a teenager when she crossed the street.
Although my friend admitted that her parents intended to help her mature into an independent adult, she felt like her parental affection was being lost.
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Bangladeshi parents are inexpressive about their feelings, and they often show little affection to their children. My mother values physical gestures, such as head pats or embraces. Although I never felt unloved, neither my parents nor I ever professed our parental pride or love loudly, I have never felt that way.
The affection of our parents simmers below the surface but never reaches its full potential. Their love language is passive gestures and acts of care.
Before you can hear them say “I love you” and “I’m proud to you”, you might smell the aroma of your favorite food or get a gift. Although they may experience anxiety if you don’t answer the phone, they will never give in to your hug request.
Apart from the simple act, affection runs deep in everything they do for me.
Our parents were raised in a period when hierarchy and filial piety were the norms. They had to maintain a respectful tone with their elders, so they never allowed for their difficulties. They didn’t always have the opportunity to express their emotions openly with their parents. So they show affection in their unique ways.
Because of their upbringing, some parents believe that etiquette is synonymous with affection. They believe that teaching your child to overcome life’s challenges is the best way to love them.
Psychologists refer to this as “Tiger parenting”.
Infamation is the strongest motivator during a child’s formative years. Children and teenagers younger than 15 years old don’t have the cognitive capacity to grasp hidden affections. They only see the world in its literal sense. Children may be discouraged by parents who do not use affectionate words. This could lead to them misunderstanding their parents’ reactions to their feelings.
Young boys in a gender-biased home are misled into believing that it is “unmanly” for them to show affection, while girls are denied equal affection because of gender stereotypes. Once we reach adulthood, physical affection begins to decline as cultural and religious norms start to rule our lives.
Because it has a stronger effect on children, parents tend to make negative assumptions about parenthood. This can lead to children feeling unheard or unloved. Parents expect their children will feel loved and supported by their parents.
We have been able to go so long without hearing the sweetest words of affection from our parents that we feel like we’re on our way. It feels strange to think of saying “I love you” or similar sentences to our parents.
It is a vicious cycle that needs to be broken.
Nuzha is a good-natured person who can pronounce her name incorrectly. She also enjoys reading and anxiety. You can suggest her fiction here [email protected]
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