Did you know there are people out there who really believe that loving a baby "too much" can lead to a personality defect called "manipulation"?
Oh yes....according to this lore, if you respond to a baby, particularly a female baby, who exhibits a lower lip pout in her sadness over...uh...anything at all...with affection, love and attention...you are creating a manipulator.
"You'll have to watch THAT if you don't want her to become manipulative."
I'll have to watch "THAT"???
As I care for this little sweet one month old baby girl, I can only shake my head in massive disappointment in my "elders". Suddenly, all the neglect and abusive techniques I experienced as a girl make sense. It was all in the name of not spoiling me. All in the name of making sure I didn't really think I was worth much...not worth listening to...not worth attending to...not worth caring for. My tears were laughed at. Photos even taken of my sobbing...as proof that I was a little "diva". A drama queen.
Or maybe I was hungry.
Perhaps even exhausted?
Or...maybe I was just....manipulative.
or would have become manipulative had anyone shown a glimmer of tenderness.
Thank GOD they saved me from myself.
Now...excuse me while I barf a little in my hand.
This isn't what you get when you respond to a baby's distress---even if she happens to have a vagina and is prone to become "a manipulator".
This isn't an innate quality in a baby who is nurtured, attended to, even adored.
This isn't something that develops from being treasured. Loved. Honored.
No...I see something very clearly. People who withhold love from a baby in the fear based non reality which sees NEED as a personality flaw are severely mistaken. In fact, this false belief is really based on a desire to perpetrate the insult that was bestowed upon them so that they can continue the tradition of selfish neglect that allows the adult to manipulate the baby's very tender psyche. This, in my opinion, borders on insanity. "Don't let your baby turn into a manipulative little girl or you'll be sorry!" Hmmmmmmmm...... what I hear is "Don't let your baby think you actually care about her or she might grow into a human being who actually knows her worth, and then, she will be harder to control with manipulation." oops.
In the meantime...I am going to keep responding to my daughters very appropriate need, her tender cries for assistance, her emotional honesty, and her baby-ness with prompt sincerity and total abandon! I couldn't love her too much. I couldn't care for her too much. This abundance of love won't spoil her or taint her. She can have free access to my heart.
Anyone who worries that she will become manipulative as a result can go take their outdated dogma to a much much warmer climate and roast them over a pit fire.
So, please excuse me while I go, without any worries, to snuggle with the brightest light in the nighttime sky--My Venus girl--Ali V.