Your Say: Do we feel nurtured? 5



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Even as an over 60 I wonder about this, not that it is probably any use. Perhaps I can relegate it to the intellectual zone rather than the personal!

If we look back at our own childhoods, would ‘nurtured’ be how we would describe ourselves?

If we were nurtured, do we feel we have benefited? If we look at the converse, do we feel we have been damaged by not being nurtured?

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Many of us are children of the flower power generation, influenced by ‘earth mother’ theories, and driven to give our children more nurturing than we ourselves received.  We are remiss if we had problems breast feeding, we responded to our children’s crying without reference to a Spockonian timetable, and suffered acres of guilt if we felt we had caused any stress or distress to our infants.

I came from a tradition of non nurturing. If I felt a pain, a dis-ease, an injustice, I was told that I should ignore it. In fact, ‘ignore minor ailments’ was my mother’s mantra.  I am still tempted to inscribe on her tombstone that she ‘ignored minor ailments’! It is not unlike the Spike Milligan phrase…’I told you I was ill”!

Possibly as a result of this, I suspect I over-nurtured my own children, feeling that they needed this overwhelming sense of being loved more than they needed anything else.

Let’s discuss….

Gillian Francis

Gillian Frances is sixty, single and has four kids. She has had a long career as a nurse and spent many years playing the fiddle, bringing her children and moving around quite a bit. She is housesitting at the moment and has great plans to travel in Asia later this year, including volunteering in a school in Siem Reap. As for next year... Gillian has no plans yet!

  1. I am the oldest of 7. As soon as another baby came along , the others were left up to me to feed, wash, play with. No nurturing for us. I think I feel the pain of it more now, because my mother now expects me to look after her. Never any hugs, or thank you. The little girl in me always missed that. Silly yes? My own three sons are very loving to me. Always hug, kiss my husband & me. We tried to instill in them that is very important to show your family that you care.

    1 REPLY
    • you came out of it well Sophia, I wish I had…
      but I do have good relationships with my kids now they are grown up 🙂

  2. our house wasn’t a hugging kissing house, we went out to play and apart from – “don’t talk to strangers” not many other rules.
    bedtime was when the Archers came on the radio lol – 6.45pm – more so Mum could listen in peace I think
    subsequently, I wasn’t a l wasn’t a ‘lovie dovie’ mother either, in fact I had great difficulty in relationship, difficulty in expressing emotions etc – could have had something to do with childhood – never thought about it!
    having said that – my sister was the opposite… but she was 7yrs younger and the ‘favourite’

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    • I had a mother and father who loved us, and cared well for us, but the ‘be strong don’t complain’ was also a normal background, hugging and kissing not a part of it. I remember in my forties I bewgan to show my parents more affection, am sure they felt it hard to accept at first then hugging became normal and I was glad I did. Our children hug us , but I regret I wasn’t more demonstrative, as each generation seems to become more tactile…Suppose being a war baby might have made life tougher? made parents more scared to show love? and also it was a class thing.

      1 REPLY
      • yeah Jacqui – I can relate to that, sadly my mum and dad didn’t live much beyond 50, but they were good with grandchildren, quite loving – strange – so yes maybe it was the war…

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