I began this series with a brief description of the primary eight invisible stains of the soul. I will continue Part II and here I will focus with the first stain. You Are an Illegitimate Child.
Society will have you believe that being an illegitimate child is not important anymore. Society will have you believe that every child is considered important and has the same opportunities in life. While yes, in an Utopian Society this would certainly work and ideally this should, indeed, be the way we think and treat our children, I will argue that this is not so.
From my simple observations of life, I will state that the world is in a state of hurt and there is no such thing as a normal family. I will acknowledge that we are all dysfunctional in one way or another. If we perceive ourselves as perfect and perceive that we have the perfect family, again I state that we live under a huge misconception, as we all have our own individual shortcomings.
In my vision of a perfect life, a young couple falls in love, gets married, has children, and lives happily ever after. Back in the 1940's and 1950's families stayed together; however, sometimes through unbearable unhappiness, suffering and abuse. The children suffered in their own way, as child abuse was not addressed and children were not protected. That is the bad side. The good side is that these were your children, both his and hers and each child was loved equally by mother and father.
In today's world, and since the 1960's, we have sought to improve the quality of our lives. We reasoned that a child was happy if the parents were happy and, therefore, parents were encouraged to leave an unhappy marriage. While all this is well and good, studies have found that divorce affects children adversely and children tend to blame themselves for the breakup of their parents. Children are then shared in the new joint custody rite, spending a certain amount with mom and then spending a fair amount with dad.
Life changed, traditions were disregarded, and before you knew it, life had drastically changed. No more do we ostracize a young girl who finds herself pregnant, and rightfully so. But do we truly give her all the emotional tools and support needed for her to bring up that baby?
Single women who find their biological clock ticking toward its end, now have the choice without any societal repurcussions to have a child and bring it up as a single parent. This type of child is what once was called an illegitimate child and looked down upon, many times to be ostracized. I will point out that in many countries this is still considered taboo; in fact, A good portion of the world does not find this acceptable.
Now, we humans share one very common trait, the need for love and acceptance. Most likely, because of this very basic need, at one point or another, the single parent will find themselves married or they will at least be involved in a relationship.
It is extremely unusual to find a person that will totally accept another's child as their own, love it as their own, and be fair with that child, as they would normally be if it were their biological child. In nine out of ten cases, the illegitimate child and also the stepchild, as in this case there is very little or no difference, will not be treated fairly. I refer to this as The Cinderella Syndrome.
These children receive a huge invisible stain on their soul, as they are not fully accepted. Acceptance is crucial to emotional wellbeing. A child does not have the defense mechanisms that we adults develop. They are totally dependent on us for care, love, support, and guidance. Just as we adults, children are not perfect. However, instead of being understanding and offering guidance, because of our hurried pace in life, we tend to react with anger and impatience. The child becomes the intruder, the one responsible for separating the couple and is blamed for all the friction and unhappiness in the family. I maintain that this child, just as any other child, needs love, nurturing and guidance and that we, as adults, are the ones that have failed or are failing, in the proper care of that child.
I look around and I see our children in America in a most terrible state. They are belligerent, out of control, insist on living their own lives, and even run away when necessary. They are merely expressing their need for love and acceptance. If you cannot get it at home or you perceive that you are not loved at home, you will go elsewhere to find it. Therefore, there will be more babies born to young girls, only perpetuating the illegitimate child cycle, The Cinderella Syndrome.
The effects of The Cinderella Syndrome needs to be acted out. It is impossible to keep those feelings bottled up within you. Let's look at the modern diseases that have surfaced because the need for love and acceptance was never fulfilled. Anorexia, Bulimia, Cutting, Agoraphobia, just to name a very few. These are all emotional conditions. People suffering from these conditions, and many more that I have not mentioned, are simply starved for love. These are just a few of the ways that love starvation is manifested.
We, who are all really children, whether 1 or 100, have the ability to break this cycle. We need not live suffering in this way anymore. We need not bring another child into the world that will just take up where we have left off. Love and acceptance begins with each one of us individually. We must love and accept ourselves. Looking for love outside of ourselves never works. The answer to our happiness, fulfillment, and emotional wellbeing lies as close as just looking in the mirror. It lies within us. As you read this you may think it is impossible, but it is not. Yes, it takes work, it takes developing new habits, new ways of thinking, it is a new learning experience, but once you start to catch on, you will see that life is new and exciting. The relationships that you attract will not be because of your need to be loved, they will merely enhance who you are, as you will enhance who they are.