I find it incredibly interesting to behold, probably becuase so many of my friends now have children… Children who are told that they are clever and intelligent tend to excel at school… Children who are told they are brilliant students also do tend to do well and excel at school… Often, subsequent studies that you can discover indicate that they are more likely to be considered successful in life…
of course, that last bit is open to conjecture and opinion and so on, though I think you know what I mean here.
Of course then, on the flipside… Children that are told they are not very clever or intelligent, do tend to cleverly live up to those expectations as well… How many children have been told they are not as clever, intelligent, taltented, gifted (etc) as their sibling?
I really have something to get off my chest today… I have been rather well tempered on the blog for the last week or so… Let me explain…
I am thinking about the lives of the younger adults and children at the Westboro Baptist Church… What were they told as children… How were they told it?
Did you see those guys with their anti-gay protest at the Oscars?
The brilliant Sean Penn in his pseech, ever so eloquently expressed himself about the anti-gay protestors at this years Oscars… A reporter asked Penn what he would say if he had a chance to talk to those protesters, here is what he said:
“I’d tell them to turn in their hate card and find their better self, you know. I think that these are largely taught limitations and ignorances,” and he went on to say… “It’s very sad in a way, because it’s a demonstration of such emotional cowardice to be so afraid to be extending the same rights to a fellow man as you would want for yourself.”
I agree with Penn about the sadness of people who allow their worst selves to keep them trapped in a pit of hatred… When we look at the self-fulfilling impact of our parents teachings and beliefs about who we are, then it is a sad day for how those children and young adults from the Westboro church are destined to experience life.
I also think Sean Penn was right about the inherent emotional cowardice, because if only these people could summon up some courage and bravery, perhaps the act of such elevation would bring them great joy and maybe even allow them to celebrate the rights of all human beings, no?
The resentment these protestors seem to carry around with them is toxic… So much of my therapeutic work is spending time helping people let go of resentments that are eating them up… So that they can have move forward to experience nourishing and satisfying human relationships.
In therapy, people sometimes need to stop dredging up perceived failings of our parents, be free of our spouse’s painful distance, forgive our children for the inevitable mistakes they have made as they’ve grown up… Is that not really the only way to repair a relationship and to experience the pleasure of loving and living?
What life have those children got in store for them? One filled with hate, war and fighting… Which surely is not something that should be commonplace…
Which raises some interesting questions for us all to ask ourselves, in my opinion… What dominated the words you were told when you were growing up? How do you think that affected you?
I suppose that naturally leads to you having to look at and ask yourself… When you look at those influential in your life today… What are you being told today? In all forms of communication… Who is telling you? The of course, what are you going to do about it?
Ok… Tomorrow, I am jumping in to rescue someone that everyone in the UK seems to dislike right now… I am championing a person that most seem to dislike… Hmmm… My balls are going on the line somewhat…