Me and Oliver

Letting Go, Balance and LOVE by Matthew Carlson

Hello fellow writers and readers,

This is a follow up of a blog post a few days ago on my blog site on ‘Good by’s and Maintaining Balance’…

I mentioned in this particular post that I didn’t believe LOVE was an essential aspect of having and/or maintaining balance, and today I would like to clarify that. I don’t think that one needs to be IN LOVE to be balanced in their daily life; however love is an essential ingredient in our lives.

We need  love to develop as a person, the most important time being during our childhood years. A child needs love as much as anything else, like: water, food, touch, feeling safe and warm, love has to be there and constantly for healthy emotional development. Without it, his develoment will be stilted, his visoin of life confused. And the need for it doesn’t stop at childhood either, it is a necessary element thoughtout our lives.

Without Love, a child will not be able to construct a healthy life for himself later on, as he or she will always be suspicious of others. An unloved child will became hateful towards those that hurt him, will not understand those that try to show him or her love. That unloved child will become a manipulator, ‘body language wise’  will perhaps (if able)  imitate appropriate body language, but it will only be an imitation because the development never happened.

Observational and psychological studies have been done recently at the University of Southern California: two groups of children with their mother’s were observed. One group had mother’s that were psychologically healthy and the other group had  mother’s suffering from BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder). The results were conclusive without any shadow of a doubt: the mother’s with BPD actually passed on their pathology to their children.

An example: within 12 months (birth to one year of age) in the study group where the mother’s were healthy, at each opportunity to spend time with one another, either the mother towards her enfant or the enfant towards its’ mother, the results were the same – both sides WANTED to be with the other and constantly seized opportunities to be together, to laugh, hug and so on. The other study group with BPD mother’s was exactly the opposite: the children and the mother’s avoided each other and DID NOT seize opportunities to be together.

From what I have read or studied, mother’s with BPD have not developed themselves emotionally so their starting point is off base, meaning there is no platform from which to work from – all murky waters there! They do not recognize body language and facial expressions or detect the thousands of emotional clues as well as being unable to respond appropriately even if they did. Their emotions were never validated, these lifetime seekers of validation, unable to use emotional tools, they develop only a narrow intellectual view or method of understanding their world….and by intellectual, I don’t mean that they are more intelligent, but only that they use an intellectual process to analyse, emotions being too strong are relegated to the back seat (so to speak)  – something to be avoided as such slippery ground to slide upon.

It has been demonstrated also that men & women with BPD have functional differences in identifiable brain regions and here, in the prefontal cortex, which is in fact responsable for impulse control and decision making. You and I use it to equalize our emotional urges,  for example “That man has a gun, oh, he’s duck hunting” whereas maybe with BPD “He wants to kill me! Shoot him first!” (L O L- a slight exaggeration…or maybe not!)…Women with BPD tend to be more introverted and depressed, whereas BPD men tend towards physical aggression and substance abuse. Today over 6 million women alone in the United States suffer from BPD, two thirds higher than for me, however the thinking is that men have not been properly diagnosed for their BPD, that the numbers are probably much higher.

So now that I’ve gone on this tangent of BPD (sorry about that,  because we don’t all have BPD!), I would like to return to the subject of balance in our lives, with or without BPD. I am certain that I was very fortunate (at least on one level in this life that I lead, where it is so easy to get lost) that the love that my Mother gave to me and my brothers, well it made up for so much of what was missing. Even my Dad who was a heavy drinker for 3/4th’s of his life, told us all the time that he loved us. I know he loved me; though he was a tortured soul. Though our lives were far from ideal what with the drinking and the divorces, and all that moving around – not alot of stability- we knew we were loved. That gave us a base from which to work on, to grow, to develop. If one person can love you, then maybe others’ too; that you are finally LOVEABLE!

If you’ve had the chance to have someone who loved you and took care of you, then you too are fortunate. That love gave you something that no one else can give you. It’s the water than nourishes the seed of “you” and we all need it to grow. Many people did not or ARE NOT being loved now, and that is a terrible thing. Reach out to those people when you realize you are in contact with them – it could make an enormous difference in their lives. Maybe in our lives too. No hypocrisy…

To finish off this post cause I think my thoughts are beginning to meander, I read a great African Proverb yesterday and I will try to rewrite it here for you now (i’m translating!)

‘Do the things that makes you happy , spend  your time with those that make you smile, laugh as often as you breath, and love as long & as much as you can, while you are alive.’

Isn’t that terrific? If you follow that, your life WILL BE BALANCED!!!

Have a terrific year, but not only for this year, for a lifetime… 😉


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