I have lived with and raised my son on my own for the majority of the last 8 of the 11 years of his life and have been learning that the responsibility of being a parent is not what I first thought it was.
My Son and I and Being a Parent
In the beginning, the relationship between my son and I was based on need. One of the reasons I became a mother was because I thought having a child would ease the constant loneliness I felt as a human being. Therefore, with the birth of my son, I proceeded to construct a life between us that protected what was my ‘ideal of love’.
For me being loved meant being understood; therefore whenever I felt I was not understood, I would use this as an excuse to isolate from the world and focus entirely on making the relationship with my son to be everything that I needed.
Instead of taking up the responsibilities of being a parent, I would make sure no conflicts existed between us; I would pander to all my son’s demands and more often than not, fulfill them. Indeed the relationship between my son and I seemed harmonious on the surface because he would always get what he wanted.
For example, I would let him have his dinner while watching TV, so there was no true communication every time we ate, or I allowed him to indulge in excessive video game playing because I had to work, even though this made him aggressive and bad tempered. I would go all out in all ways to appease any potential conflict.
Even though I knew that a lot of the choices he made did not support his true well-being, I still allowed them because then I did not have to deal with his explosive emotions of not getting what he wanted. This created a very destructive cycle of behaviour between us.
There was no true harmony within our relationship or in being a parent, as I needed my son to fit into my way of life and offer me company. Very soon he knew he could ask me for anything because of what my needs were. I started to realise that the relationship between my son and I was no different from any close relationship I have had with others, especially with men.
However, eventually the grief of filling another’s demands at the expense of myself could no longer be ignored. The pain of ignoring how I truly felt in many everyday situations and not expressing my truth got too immense. Every single day I was living with a deep sadness that would explode into crying episodes once in a while. I was never completely free from this grief, no matter what I tried.
Taking Self Responsibility: Building a True Relationship with my Son
The blinding force of my ‘ideal of love’ slowly dropped away through a very deep level of honesty and self-responsibility that was re-introduced into my life. With the support of Universal Medicine, taking self-responsibility became the turning point in my life, in my patterns of behaviour and in the way I parented. Subsequently I have started to live (rather than escaping from) what I always felt deep inside of me and what my heart has always known. That is:
The heart simply knows that true love is not from need, and without true love, there can be no true relationship.
It was very exposing and painful to admit initially that I had never lived a truly loving relationship with myself. This in turn affected my relationship with not only my son and the way I parented him, but with everyone.
The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.
The committing to self-responsibility and true love has changed many of the momentums and patterns of behaviour that were controlling my life. After eleven years of being a mother I have finally become a truly responsible parent, without perfection. There is a freedom with this that I had never experienced before; less rules, less control, rarely raising of my voice or hardening of my body when speaking, but also no holding back in expressing lovingly what is truly felt.
For example, even when I feel I sometimes react to my son blaming me for something that he feels I’m responsible for, I can now stop myself and not take it personally or judge him or myself for this. Remembering how much I love him allows me to go to a deeper understanding of him and his situation. With that I hold him in true love. He in turn feels that acceptance and understanding and often surprises me by letting go and returning to being his true loving self.
I have found that the true responsibility of being a parent eventually comes back to our relationship with ourselves first and then with others. How truly honest, open and loving a relationship is between parents and children will influence how our children are in their relationships as adults throughout their lives.
My son used to always say when he was younger: “Mommy I love you more than you can ever imagine.” Now I realise the truth of this sentence and what a true relationship is. What I also realise is, when true love is our commitment – and remembering that our patterns of behaviour are not who we are – then not only how I love my son, but how I am in relationship with all others is more than I could have ever imagined.
Inspired by Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine for forever opening and deepening my knowing and living of the true love that I am.
By Adele Leung, Fashion stylist/Art director, Hong Kong
Related Reading, Building True Relationships and Responsible Parenting
This raises the massive question of why do we have children? Is it to fulfil a need of our own, because if it is then there is always going to be that bias as we bring them up… we will carry a picture of what we want to happen which will cloud our judgement and impose something onto them. Far better to release them (and us) from that prison and learn to appreciate them for the amazing being that has been re-introduced to the world, ready to express something unique that only they can bring.
Brilliant article Adele. I love how you describe the following: ‘For me being loved meant being understood; therefore whenever I felt I was not understood, I would use this as an excuse to isolate from the world and focus entirely on making the relationship with my son to be everything that I needed.’ The key word in this sentence for me is ‘use’. Whenever we ‘use’ anyone for anything then there is no longer true, loving relationship. certainly we can help each other, but never ‘use’. It is only one step away from out and out abuse i.e. ‘ab-use’.
What a beautiful sharing Adele. The commitment and love you have for your son is a true reflection of the love and commitment you have for yourself; I deeply appreciate and am inspired by this.
“I have found that the true responsibility of being a parent eventually comes back to our relationship with ourselves first and then with others.”
Adele, what you are sharing here feels really important, ‘I sometimes react to my son blaming me for something that he feels I’m responsible for, I can now stop myself and not take it personally or judge him or myself for this. Remembering how much I love him allows me to go to a deeper understanding of him and his situation.’ This is a beautiful way to parent, to have this understanding and still hold your son in love is very beautiful, I can feel how I can go into judgment and criticism with my son and how unsupportive this is for both of us, thank you for sharing this.
One of the hardest parts I find about parenting, is in watching your child make their own choices, even when you know that they know exactly what to do that will honour and support them, and yet they still continue to choose dullness, complacency, neglect, numbness, and to give up on themselves. I am learning that as painful as this is to watch, there is little you can do except to be the love that you are and never compromise on that. This does not mean to be all soft and enabling, but rather to align your body with the vibrational energy of God and let this hold the light in the house. Therefore at the very least, all your children have the opportunity to feel in themselves the true light of God, and whether this is a choice taken or not, the opportunity was there.
I can very much relate to this Shami. Eventually I realised the deeper I accept of my own love to me, that I am human and accept more of the human experience, I am able to accept my son much more as a person. I am interested in him as a person, I care deeply of him as a person, and therefore I do not have to be affected by the behaviors and choices that he makes which are not him. No matter what he chooses, I go back to being interested in him.
In watching the relationship that I have with my son, I can see how there are times when my own need for him to be a certain way, to enable me feel like I am succeeding as a parent, is an immense pressure and a crushing force on to him and does not allow him to be the young man that he naturally is. I am learning however, that when this happens I can look within myself and find what disruption there is to our relationship, without having to blame him, I can take responsibility and bring everything back to our normal harmony. As Adele Leung says, it all starts with honesty.
What you share her Adele about true responsibility and parenting is beautifully honest and inspiring to read. When I first had my daughter I parented in a way that was inconsistent and often lead me to pander to her to avoid tantrums etc. Attending Universal Medicine events have been key to learning tools to deepen the relationship with myself that has supported all of my relationships to become more true and loving.
‘It was very exposing and painful to admit initially that I had never lived a truly loving relationship with myself’. Adele I totally relate to this realisation. Allowing myself to express from and be the real me is something I am working on daily by making loving and caring choices that support me.
Parenting is no easy task but it sounds like you have really turned things around. I struggle at times being a parent and having to enforce rules that often lead to explosive tantrums and then my daughter may react as well.
Adele this is pure wisdom for me: “The heart simply knows that true love is not from need, and without true love, there can be no true relationship.”
Relationships are entrenched in many corrupted pictures which are idealistic but not true, and if these are followed and attempted to be achieved, we have further ingrained the foundation we have with everything, absolutely everything, to be a lie.
When there is a relationship with God, with Soul, with our body, it would be a lie to hold this back with people. And if we do not have a relationship with man, what has to be looked at is how is our relationship with God, with Soul and with ourselves?
There are no good or bad relationships, there is only relationship or no relationship.
Our first relationship is the relationship with God, this is Divine Will. This relationship when in form becomes all the relationships we have with people. Relationships are really not what we think they are, such as to fulfill each other’s needs etc., but they are constant opportunities to reflect and evolve. There is actually zero comfort in true relationships, we are always going deeper.
Raising children with this level of responsibility has to be key in breaking the cycles of the past, where children and parents spend years not understanding eachother.
A very beautiful sharing Adele thank you. I love the way in which you took responsibility to develop a true relationship with your son; what a divine blessing for you both.
“The heart simply knows that true love is not from need, and without true love, there can be no true relationship”.
This blog acts as a relationship reset for anyone who reads it. I love the truth you bring to the fact that it’s too easy to enter into a relationship of any sort, not just with our kids, to get our own needs met and how irresponsible for both parties that is. True responsibility is to start with the relationship with ourselves first. Everything else flows from the quality of that.
There is also a trap for women to focus too much on our children and forget how important and needed we are in other aspects of life. This is something I am deeply pondering at the moment.
A woman has to be true to herself to bring truth to any relationship. And a true woman will not consider herself less than any of the relationships she has in life.
I have found that by bringing my absoluteness to parenting has been one of the most profound changes I have made. To simply do what I feel is true without compromise and then my daughter knows what is what. No longer do I get the nagging for more and more and she is then able to settle, without the craving to satiate a need that isn’t real anyway.
Absoluteness is an honoring first to ourselves, to our relationship with God. What a blessing to bring this to any relationship.
“Remembering how much I love him allows me to go to a deeper understanding of him and his situation. With that I hold him in true love. He in turn feels that acceptance and understanding and often surprises me by letting go and returning to being his true loving self.”
This is very useful. In those moments that can potentially become tense, to stop and hold my understanding of her, of another, is what allows them to feel acceptance and the space to choose again.
I can certainly relate to pandering to the needs of my daughter, whom I have parented solo much of the time, in order to avoid conflict and an attempt to maintain closeness. And the flipside of this is hardening in my body and voice to hold a boundary. Neither are true expressions of love in parenting. The more presence and tenderness I offer to myself, the more I am able to express from this place. It is a refining and development of the expression of my love.
So true Doug. The parenting I see happening around me in everyday life is usually based on a parent’s needs. Stopping and coming at parenting from a perspective of a loving relationship with themselves first is not even on most parent’s radars. As you say, society conditions us to believe that children are blank slates for us to mould to fit the image of what we perceive is a ‘good’ person and yet our children are born with loads of wisdom and have plenty to teach us if we are prepared to listen and observe and learn.
Our greatest responsibility is love, first with ourselves and then with all others. By deepening our love and connection to ourselves, we naturally infuse the relationships we have with others with the quality of our love.
When we connect to the energy from heaven there is only love. In taking responsibility for the choices we make we are in turn truly caring and loving others equally so.
“The heart simply knows that true love is not from need, and without true love, there can be no true relationship.”
..and in this gem of a line, the truth is revealed – the relationships we have with others are often far less than the deep connection we are truly capable of.
Being the same true inside and out, there is no room for any ideal to creep in.
I am learning that parenting is not a chore, but a great responsibility and joy once we are able to surrender the false images we have been fed of how it should look. Thankyou Adele for this honest look at some of the traps we can fall into when parenting. Our job here is to guide our children back to the full expression of the love that they are and not to teach/instruct them in a way that assumes we ‘know’ more than them. We are all forever learning and remembering together how to express the Soul’s light here on Earth once more.
I am learning too that there is no picture of when and how fast this return will be.
Thank you Adele for sharing – checking our sense of responsibility and uncovering where it is coming from e.g. old patterns, past experiences, beliefs, needs or ideals, frees us up to be all we truly are – in loving ourselves first and then loving another. I have always felt that children are one of our greatest teachers and I can feel this in your blog.
I have been discovering lately more about the responsibility of parenting, and how it is not about being in control of another person, but in fact parenting is a lot about reflection. As parents we reflect back to our children the consequences of their choices, but we also reflect the consequences of our own choices. This can be though lovingly taking care of our bodies and feeling great for it, or of living in disregard of our bodies and feeling dreadful. Either way we all live with our own consequences and as a parent the responsibility we have is perhaps to be open and honest about what we are learning along the way.
‘I have found that the true responsibility of being a parent eventually comes back to our relationship with ourselves first and then with others.’ Beautifully expressed Adele and wise words for any parent to accept as true.
I have always found that my children are also my healing practitioners as they offer me the opportunity to heal myself in ways that no other person can. This happens if we allow them to express from their truth.
I call my son my evolution coach.
Parenting is both challenging and inspirational. IT turns every rock to reveal every area of your life that may need to expand and evolve. It asks us to be more loving towards ourselves and others, more consistent, less judgemental and more responsible.
Parenting reminds us that the children we raise are not ours and that we have an opportunity to guide them and support them to be held in the fullness of their soul that is already there.
Children teach us to surrender and unravel the beliefs we may have attached to over the years. They remind us that we are forever returning and that life is a cycle. They invite us to parent ourselves. What a blessing 🙂 🙂 🙂
I love the idea that parents become aware and parent themselves first, as well as along side parenting their children, this all became possible with having our children, so parents and children have said yes to this great brotherhood learning to return to the responsibility of true parenting. We are not here to own or children, our children are not here to obey the parents, we are here to return to true love and to evolve.
Adele your words “I have found that the true responsibility of being a parent eventually comes back to our relationship with ourselves first and then with others.” When we build our own relationship within ourselves, we learn the importance of honesty, truth and love, and from there we are able to bring those into our relationships with others.
“How truly honest, open and loving a relationship is between parents and children will influence how our children are in their relationships as adults throughout their lives.” This is hugh as so many adults struggle to have relationship throughout their lives due to the lack of relationships they have had with their parents, often adults struggle in relationships as their reflection of relationships was not as open, loving and honest as they where growing up
I found this blog very powerful to read Adele. It is an example of true parenting. A form of truly being a role model and an inspiration for our children which I am learning is far more enriching and far more enjoyable for them to grow up with. All simply by just embracing you and all of who you truly are!
What is very powerful Joshua is there is no destination in love and in relationship, when we go deeper in our connection with ourselves, we deepen the relationship with all others, there is so much to appreciate in having the responsibilities of a parent, as it is a relationship which nudges us every moment to choose the responsibility of love and the commitment to life.
Thank you Adele for sharing your experiences, as a parent I wanted children for something to love, and being a mother gave me a role and purpose. It really is a jolt to realise, that if I did not love myself how could I have loved my children, let alone others. Since learning what true love is, returning to the love I truly come from, I am able to love my children without demands of expectations, to accept them where they are on their path of life, we have so much more joy and freedom in our relationships now.
‘One of the reasons I became a mother was because I thought having a child would ease the constant loneliness I felt as a human being’. I so know this. For me it was unconsciousness in that I didn’t to out to be a mother to full fill this loneliness I was feeling, but when I fell pregnant it was like, wow, here it is, this will fix everything. Its crazy that we do this, but I feel perhaps all too common.
Having the expectation that a child would fix our own emptiness is an imposition many parents (myself included) have lived, then would it be so surprising that when our children are born and grow up they too have learned to manipulate? Most of us did not know better. Most of the world does not know what true love is, and that is the core issue of all the suffering we are perpetuating generations after generations. If we do not look into changing the energy of the core problem, nothing will ever change. Love is the only true normal.
Well said Adele. ‘Love is the only true normal.’
Thank you Adele for sharing your experience and how expecting children to fill our emptiness of loneliness does not lead to an harmonious relationship but can, in fact, deepen the loneliness. We have to build a true loving relationship with ourselves and then we can teach our children to develop a relationship of true love with themselves and us as equals and grow together.
The deepest loneliness we feel is the separation with Soul and with Brotherhood, and the only way to back to one unified love is by choosing to live true love and letting go of emotional love and attachment.
Adele, your writing has inspired me beyond measure this morning. I have recently discovered all of what you describe here going on in my own parenting. That there is still need and little true harmony ..but rather a picture defining how we live together as a family. It was great to be able to read this blog and to feel the support in knowing that I am not alone in this, that others have been here also, and that with commitment, there is a way through, and more love to be had with myself and shared with my children. There is work ahead I can feel it, but I have been blessed with 3 gorgeous children in my life whom I love and care for dearly, and this love can also serve in my commitment to being a more responsible parent.
‘The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.’ – I absolutely agree Adele, beautifully said. Our responsibility is, the quality we choose to be with when we connect with another. When we are connected to the truth of our love, we then have no need for a relationship as it is simply then an opportunity to share, express and deepen the love that we already are. This then paves a foundation of true love on which we can walk forever deepening the quality of connection to the love that we are and share with each other.
When there is no need, every encounter is a forever deepening relationship, and it is called true love.
Adele a very lovely honest and open sharing for us all. Taking responsibility for our choices, allows us to change. “The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.”
Adele, I have experienced some major shifts in behaviour with my children and even a few times with family and friends, when I have chosen not to take on another persons behaviour or melt down as a personal attack.
It was great to hear you describe this with such detail in your blog and it just confirms to me that when we drop our ideals and beliefs about how another person should or shouldn’t behave we release them from our judgement and are then more able to hold that person in love. I have found this possible when the ideals and beliefs that fuel the expectation and result in disappointment have been identified and are no longer freely running the show. By having this deeper awareness and staying connected to my heart I have at times experienced the anger or challenging behaviour melt away and in its place is someone who has felt loved, because deep down they know themselves they are not this behaviour and you have just given them an opportunity to feel that.
The most challenging situations are the greatest opportunities to let the deep love that we are all out, for we are truly this enormous love that we are.
Adele this was beautiful to read. Thank you.
I love what you shared about not taking your sons behaviour personally or judging him, but rather choosing to go deeper by remembering the depth of true love for him. Holding another in love regardless of there actions is very healing. Thanks for the reminder
This is an amazing article that should be in parenting magazines worldwide. I love your honesty, and the self-responsibility you are now bringing to your parenting is amazing. We are forever influencing our children and the way they will be with others, so the foundation you are now offering, showing him how to be with himself and others in his life, is priceless.
Thank you for this very personal sharing of your parenting Adele. The stand out message for me was that you cannot truly love someone else if you do not learn to love yourself first. The quality of love that you live with is the strength you need to allow nothing but love in your relationships. It starts with self- honesty, and then it is easy to be honest with the rest of humanity.
I love your blogs Adele, How to change a relationship based on need to one based on love.
The foundation of relationships begins by living who we are, rather than living how we think we ‘should be’.
The true responsibility of being a parent is about our relationship with ourselves then with others. How honest and loving a relationship is will influence how our children are in their relationships as adults throughout their lives
My son used to say: “Mommy I love you more than you can ever imagine.” Now I see the truth of this and what a true relationship is. What I also see is when true love is our commitment – remembering that our behaviour is not who we are – “then not only how I love my son, but how I am in relationship with all others is more than I could have ever imagined” Beautiful.
It is inspiring to wake up every morning Nicholas, to know how every relationship is an opportunity to live true love, even relationships which are not truly relationships but arrangements, there is still the opportunity for us to live what we know is love in its truth. Not that it is easy, but it is deeply inspiring so, as such opportunities are smiling in our faces with eyes beaming “evolution”.
Your blog and your livingness is very inspirational Adele – your journey from playing the role “mother” to become a truly caring woman, who takes responsibility for herself and for her son.
Even though i do not have children myself personally i can still feel that lovely connection you shared in yourself and then towards your son, it shows me that a true relationship with self opens true relationships with everyone wether it be family, friends or someone you meet for the first time.
thank you for sharing.
Thank you Adele, there is so much wisdom that has been shared in the article, I love the honesty and your commitment to strengthen the relationship with yourself and your son, this is a must read for anyone searching for deeper relationships in their lives.
Thanks Adele. Relationships do start with ourselves, a beautiful reflection for all.
As a single parent with a son I can relate very much to what you share here Adele, and he to “..often surprises me by letting go and returning to being his true loving self” when I stay steady with love. It is simple and effortless, no big arguments, no control – that loving energy is felt, and the reaction or issue (whatever it may be) falls away in his choice to accept the love. How we are as parents, and what we reflect to our children, is a way of living they will take with them into all their relationships in life.
I love your commitment Adele to having a truly loving relationship with your son and showing him how different it is to emotional love. I’m sure he’ll appreciate it a great deal as well when he’s older.
What a gorgeous photo of you and your son Adele. Thank you for this sharing, we sure can learn a lot from our children and the reflections they present to us. “I have found that the true responsibility of being a parent eventually comes back to our relationship with ourselves first and then with others.” Your words are so true and taking that responsibility will lead to so much more joyful and meaningful interactions with others.
When a child says something to a parent like “Mommy I love you more than you can ever imagine.”, it feels to me as what is being stated is that they feel how we separate from that enormous love that we are and it is a call for us to come back. It is a testament to the truth that children feel and read everything and that true relationship with them as a parent is an amazing thing to commit to.
It is true that we all know how devastating it is to be separated from the enormous love that we are. Children in their honesty express this in our faces constantly, with their words, behavior, actions, reactions, everything. I am deep in appreciation every single day to be reminded of this. The responsibility of a parent is completely redefined.
I feel one of the main misconceptions parents have when it comes to loving their children, is that it means letting them be free so as not to tell them what to do. This leaves discipline out in the cold. For me there is no love if there is no discipline. My Dad once said to me that human beings are the only species that are reliant on their elders for so long and there is good reason for this. Children need to hear the word no and have clear boundaries set.
The awesome thing is our children would never allow us to not take responsibility as a parent if we truly listen and feel them. But that is up to us the parents to truly see or not, to choose to learn this precious lesson or not.
Absolutely Adele, we can not know the depth of a truly loving relationship without first making that commitment to ourself.
What a truly gem of a blog, Adele, I SO enjoyed reading it. I sat nodding all the way through, agreeing with your reflections on parenting.
This is true, without a shadow of a doubt: “The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.” AND rather than living from one reaction to another. Or rather than living with the past influencing the present. Cute kid, your son, and lucky too. With love.
This is a work in progress at the moment “Remembering how much I love him allows me to go to a deeper understanding of him and his situation. With that I hold him in true love.” I find I tend to react when I have left something go for way too long….and in the end I realise it was for my own benefit or because I’m too busy. Once I stop and see what is really going on for myself I can see more clearly what my boys need or not.
Parents do not always know best, although as adults, if we have a deeper awareness in life (this is not always the case), we carry a greater responsibility in expressing truth. But equally, children can reflect back to us what we may have missed or not want to feel/see. A relationship is only true when it is open, when we allow ourselves to humbly learn without the limiations or ideals regarding the roles in life. This takes the pressure off of having to live up to the ideal persona of a parent, that a parent has all the answers and has to be perfect, therefore, also by default, is not real, as there is no perfection in life. There will never be any true connection when we are not real—how can a living person connect to a perfect looking but in essence card board cut -out person? Being real brings us back to the possibility of connection, an awesome place to start.
Amazingly wise reflections, Adele, which I enjoy reading. You’re well on your way to writing “Parenting 101” which is all about the relationship to ourselves first.
I have found that as a parent what allowed me the consistency of being love to my child, is first the consistency of being truly loving to myself. Building a firm and solid foundation of what supports me in my well-being in life is first and foremost crucial, without compromise. This not only is a responsibility I can no longer be slack with in truly loving myself, because by first taking this responsibiity with myself, it naturally gives my child the same responsibility for himself—which he can choose to take or resist, with consequences. Any moment when I catch myself going back to attachment, it is an awareness that I have not been true to myself—and why is that? Why do I not live the true love to myself that I deserve? Where has this thought of not deserving come in? And how am I impacting the future generations and the whole world with a moment of not being true to me? There is no perfection in all of this, but a lot is there to feel, reflect and ponder when we build our foundation back towards true love.
When we start building a relationship with ourselves, the connection felt with ourselves is something that we may never have experienced with another, given the lack of reflections on a day to day basis in most parts of the world. And therefore, the reflections so beautifully offered by Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine are a true gift to humanity, as it offers us the opportunity to be the same reflection. This relationship that we feel with ourselves then becomes a true foundation in our lives. It is never too late to begin this relationship, a relationship which we have been looking for, for all our lives, a relationship which is true. The truth is, we all know nothing else is enough but a foundation of true love, we just do not know what that means without having experienced it. Feeling it, first with ourselves, we can then reflect this to another—which could be shocking for many as most of us have not felt what true love feels like. We can resist it or we can accept it, the choice is always ours. A resistance is not a resistance to the person who reflects true love to us per se, but a resistance to the love which is within us, but we have not chosen to nurture.
There are no parents who do not love their children. But most parents have not been truly loved as children. Therefore the love they have been given is the only love they know how to give to their children. This which most of us call love is an emotional love which is based on needs and wants, it is an exchange and an arrangement. This which is not truly love is hurtful and harming. Although there may be moments of comfort and happiness, when being honest, those involved find themselves exhausted and without a true feeling of connection. Emotional attachment leaves us standing on very uncertain grounds, there is no true security. Imagine how how it is for a child—coming into the world feeling such a volatile foundation, wouldn’t the child then find all ways possible to secure a sense of stability for him/herself to not feel this horror? Imagine how it is for a parent—suddenly finding out that one day when the pandering to their children does not work anymore, and how many of us then judge love with our children simply ends when they grow up? How many of us then make the conclusion that the love within families simply do not exist and love in general just cannot be trusted to last? None of that is true, because we have not begun the relationship from a foundation of true love. Of course, then our relationships do not feel loving and they prove themselves to not reflect love—we are actually spot on on that, as these relationships are attachments, and they are not and have never been true love.
What a wisdom in these words “The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.” Your blog inspires me deeply to commit more to what I feel is truth and express that lovingly.
Emotional attachment is regarded as normal within families. But attachment can never truly bring us to true love, and without true love we can never truly be together. What hurts us deeply in emotional love is, it is only a watered down version, a temporary relief or security, but we can never truly be together as one.
This is the foundation to be lovingly firm and steady in parenting without reverting back to pandering–I am in!
The learning to nurture myself has opened the way for my child to nurture himself–which can be a totally different way from that which supports me. This constant respect and celebration of both of our rhythms, which at times can be very different, calls for a lot of deep nurturing with myself. Learning this on a microcosmic level within our family opens up on a macrocosmic level how to honor and nurture ourselves in a city, community or even the whole world when our rhythms are different. Relationships are everywhere in our lives, taking the responsibility towards one relationship opens and deepens all our relationships.
Recently the learning to nurture myself deeper and that the deepest nurturing I could give to myself presently is that of truly expressing myself with me, my child as well as with others. Instead of having the need or expectation that every day has to be perfect, which is a great stress on the body, I can learn more on how to simply express when tension is felt within the body without holding back.
Very True Adele, Eduardo, and Carmin it is definitely first about how we are with ourselves that sets the scene with parenting . Allowing the child to be themselves free of the imposition of ideals,beliefs and needs of what we the parents are needing to fill our own emptiness .Otherwise we only create the same vicious circle .
Construct a relationship based on your needs with a kid and more sooner than later, the child responds in kind. Needs call for needs. Stepping up in commitment to oneself first and the others second is a great place to start connecting to what is true and giving an opportunity for love to grow.
Yes Eduardo, a child will respond the same especially if they are trying to please the parent…. but as I’ve experienced it leads to resentment and rejection, and always looking to please others later in life.
All relationships start with how we how are with ourselves – our relationship with self first – otherwise we approach them with needs and expectations which undermine true connection. This is an amazing blog, thank you Adele.
Sometimes life gives us the opportunities to truly live what it means to let go of ideals and beliefs in parenting, by being in situations where we simply can’t rely on ideals and beliefs anymore. We simply have to connect with ourselves and there is nothing else we could do further, but to remain in this steady, firm and loving connection with ourselves. And the beauty about these so-felt confronting situations are–our stillness is reflected in our children, without any parenting ideals or ways used or tried. Sometimes what comes from this connection with ourselves is something totally unconventional but it proves to be awesome, and we know this only from how our children respond.
“For me being loved meant being understood” Just last night I found myself wanting to be understood by someone and soon realised how this was completely negating any connection between us. Later without any need I shared a feeling and related it to his own experience and he understood – but this had come naturally in our flow of communicating, not from my trying or wanting him to get it. Such a beautiful feeling and a confirmation that everything comes in its own time.
This is a beautiful blog that is not only relevant to parenting but all of our relationships. How often do we allow people to get away with…well not exactly murder..but outrageous behaviours just so that we do not feel lonely or abandoned.
This came home in your son’s comment about just how much he loves you. That love is innate in him, so very natural, yet it can be swamped by behaviours that are anything but love. And we allow this from our children, partners, parents, friends and work associates.
Why? Why do we do this?
Love, I am re-learning, is firm and it is neither nice nor compliant. It never demands, but it does ask people to be responsible for themselves. And if we are going to ask others to be responsible, then it makes absolute sense that we ask the same of ourselves first.
Great, gorgeous and love “provoking” blog Adele for parents, lovers, friends, children and colleagues.
Just reading this Rachel, I can feel how loving it would be to be pulled up by you in this way -“Love, I am re-learning, is firm and it is neither nice nor compliant. It never demands, but it does ask people to be responsible for themselves. And if we are going to ask others to be responsible, then it makes absolute sense that we ask the same of ourselves first.”
Rachel, this is awesome sharing, loved every word ! and I agree that anyone would benefit greatly from this great blog.
What you share here has relevance and application for how we are in all our relationships. I was particularly struck by this: ‘The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’. All those ideals and beliefs about true love, parental love, familial love – when all that’s really asked for is to be naturally us, ‘back to our relationship with ourselves first and then with others’ as you say. Thanks, Adele.
I know many people with young children and babies. I love hanging out with them and feel the responsibility in living a truthful relationship with myself so that I can be a role model for them.
This raises the exposing question what is the foundation of the relationship with myself and others? Is it based on getting my needs met or meeting others needs to feel loved. What you describe Adele is relationship based on the foundation of true love where need has no place, but there is infinite space for joy, sharing and support.
Adele I didn’t have your wisdom when I was raising my son. Now he has a son of his own. Learning that establishing a loving relationship with myself first, as my foundation, means that present relationships can and do change, as well as new ones now begin on loving foundations, with no room for neediness.
It’s beautiful Bernadette, how relationships are always living, there is no homeostasis, every moment lived becomes our next moment in this living, breathing connection with everyone and everything.
Reading this amazing blog and comments I realised that as my sons were growing up I presumed my relationship with them was ever changing and evolving – the simple fact that they were growing into older boys, then teenagers, then young men gave me the feeling that this must be the case. However looking more closely at it I can see that because I too was parenting from a need, nothing deep down was really changing. They were certainly getting bigger and older but because I was not living a truly loving relationship with myself there was no commitment to bring true love to my relationship with them. This was a painful realisation and a great point of change for me. It is still very much a work in progress but I absolutely love that there is a constant and instant reflection given by my sons in response to my level of honesty and self love.
“The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.” I love this Adele ‘should be’s’ are always so exhausting!
Learning to say No is often the most loving thing one can say in a relationship. Thank you for writing this Adele. I am sure many parents and non-parents can relate to what you have gone through.
Very true Jinya. When we say no to what is not love, we are saying yes to love.
When my first son was born I remember feeling that all the pieces of life had fallen into place. I knew exactly what needed to be done and I was deeply in love with him. In the years to come our relationship would see many difficult times, but that original bond has never left us, and the more I respect him and take responsibility for my own issues, the more he is free to express himself and be his own person.
That connection you speak of and know Shami is also what I know with my son. And with a deeper connection now with ourselves, this connection is being called to be deepened with our children as well, and vice versa. Opportunities to evolve every day.
Whenever I open up this blog, it’s the photo of you two that catches my eye and makes me giggle – there is such fun to be had and yet we make life serious – this photo reminds me to be more playful in my day, thank you!
Adele your commitment to resurrect your relationship with yourself and how that has rippled out to all your relationships is amazing. Parenting is such a huge enormously precious responsibility that so many people do not truly give their all to – it’s great to hear of people changing the current norm.
The realization I have with children is how great a blessing they are in our lives, for they consistently ask us to be more of ourselves in true love. Raising our voices with children for example, therefore, basically becomes impossible–because we are not love when we do so, and children will tell us in their ways (from reaction to full blown rebellion) that we are not coming from Love! Not being calm with our children, the consequence of this choice is a greater tendency of aggression or even violence from them directed back at us. Not meeting our children with presence and with true love, they reflect back to us an aloofness and a reluctance to communicate, connect and express. Children truly love us more than we can imagine, the relationship I have with my son constantly asks me to go deeper and higher.
I love your consistant evolving comments Adele and all they share and the evolving evolution to love, truth and communication to ourselves our family and all humanity you are presenting. The responsibility of being a parent in this is so important and a beautiful inspiration for us all.
Adele, it is never too late for us to learn about ourselves and parenting – its wonderful.
So true Francene and Judy, it is never too late to re-imprint and once love becomes our choice in relationships, re-imprinting can be instant, as what is not of love stands out as tension. This is something very beautiful for me as it breaks down the temporally defined roles between parents and children, that the parents are always right or parents carry the pride that will not admit their mistakes. Ultimately, it is all and only about love and evolution.
I totally take off my sombrero to anyone who brings up a child on their own as even having a partner and bringing up a child can be very demanding at times.
Kevin, I used to feel being a single mom was very hard, and the single mom card was used to take me away from responsibility. I choose to now see why my soul has constellated the choice of me being a single mother, and to know that I have all the support ever needed in this constellation for more stepping up and evolution with myself and humanity. To be empowered or to disempower, eventually it comes back to a choice I make.
Beautifully said Adele. The support is always there, and it is so touching sometimes when one looks back and tracks the people and and things that stepped in to offer that support. Deeply holding.
And aren’t relationships amazing, as they consistently remind us that relationships are not about us. How we are with our children is not about us. Therefore, any hurts we feel when taken personally, we will lose the big picture that a relationship is about love. It is about returning to a momentum that is about love and evolution.
I love how life always open us to more opportunities to go deeper when we have said yes to evolving and that relationships are never static and a done deal. The relationship with my son is always opening for me to see where I am still not living truth, and that when the opportunity comes again, it is my choice to choose love or not. And whether I choose love even though it feels challenging or confronting or choose what I know is not truth but feels familiar, depends on how I have lived in between the time of the choices. This is super important as I have realized, to change deep patterns and momentums, the key is to live as much as we are aware of the amazingness that we are, no different if it’s after an episode which is particularly challenging with our children, so that it builds a new momentum before the next opportunity comes. Then what feels familiar from the past which is not truly loving, will start to not feel so good at all. This has been my learning to say no, and to drop old harming patterns in relationships, it only became possible when now what has been familiar becomes tension, and my amazingness has become the new momentum. The next step is consistency.
Thank you Adele for this lovely article. It brought back memories of how difficult I found it raising a son as a single parent and the blessing of now being able to reimprint our relationship. The more I grow and change, the more my relationship with my son, who is an adult and a parent himself now, grows and changes. We are discovering true love, respect and equality as adults and it is truly beautiful. Such a blessing.
Thank you Adele for sharing this article with everyone. The best thing we can share with our kids the true version of ourselves.
Beautiful Adele what you have shared here about you changing the relationship to yourself and as a consequence the relationship to your son – and obviously to humanity – as you write in your self-description that you are “enjoying intimacy with 7 million others” : ) – great! . This is the opening up to oneself – opening up to everyone else…
Thank you for your honest blog Adele, you raise such an important issue about parenting. How can we truly offer love and allow our children to be who they truly are if we lack love ourselves? The imposition of our needs onto others, and in this case our children is something we need to get very honest about, so we can allow them to grow up in the love and joy they naturally are.
So honestly beautiful Adele. By committing to love , we can open ourselves up to so much more. Thank you I love reading your blog.
What I have got very clearly from this blog is how important trust of myself is. This is what is shattered, or perhaps more accurately, slowly eroded away as a young child, with so many actions from significant people in one’s life, coming from the protection of not trusting themselves and therefore not trusting others. It is the usual way of life. Hence what Universal Medicine has offered is essential to building trust -that it starts with ourselves and that is comes through exploring inner connection and awareness, being open to the possible truth that there is a place inside us that is trust worthy, all the time, in all situations in life.
A truly inspirational blog Adele, and lots of ‘aha’ moments for me, relating to not dealing with children’s outbursts and not taking responsibility for my role in that choice of behavior with others. In the past I would go into giving up mode with my children when they were young and I used to bring in the, I’m a single mum card and use that against myself to not take responsibility, convince myself that I was being a loving mum. Now when I see that happening at work between families, I can feel the effect it has on both parties and there is no true love within all of that. Love doesn’t need game playing and bribes, it simply holds you and says, you know you’re amazing, so what’s the story here?
Your honesty is inspiring Adele. From meeting the needs of your son and pandering to him, making your life full of the grief of filling of his demands, the pain of ignoring how you truly felt, not expressing your truth and living with a deep sadness. To committing to self responsibility with all the rewards of being a mother, less rules, less control, rarely raising of my voice or hardening of my body when speaking, but also no holding back in expressing lovingly what is truly felt. Beautiful.
Brave topic Adele. I enjoyed this part “The foundation of any true relationship begins with the responsibility of living who we are, rather than living in a way we think we ‘should be’.” It is my experience as well as a parent and a person that self responsibility has been the corner stone of my relationships. In other words my relationships start with me first and then out from there.
There are many ways to parent but there is only one way to love. That ‘love’ can look many ways and isn’t always the same but the love needs to be built within first, self responsibility. As they have always said, children do what you do and not what you say. So to ‘lead the way’, to parent etc you must first live what you are saying, again self responsibility. I am a great parent but it has only partly to do with how I am with children, the larger part is how I am with myself first, yes again the self responsibility. Thanks Adele.
Yes Raymond, the bottom line is and always is self responsibility; being responsible for yourself brings the awareness of how responsible are we when around others in that, does our expression silently or verbally lift and expand others or does our expression make others less?
And as you pointed out; “children do what you do and not what you say”.
I love that Gemma, “Responsibility is the new black”–it would make another great tee shirt slogan 🙂
Adele what a completely raw and honest piece about your relationship with your son, and I found what you said here was startling obvious about being ‘harmonious’ : “Indeed the relationship between my son and I seemed harmonious on the surface because he would always get what he wanted”, and then the fact that you took this further to realise that the ‘harmonious relationship’ (only ever based on need) also mirrored what you had with male partners in your life. Your post has made me consider and reflect on the dynamics contained in relationships, and how we like to feed them, which ultimately stops the beauty of truth being in them, thank you Adele.
It’s it an amazing phenomenon that what we see and feel in our relationships – be it lack of true love – is the reflection of how we are being with ourselves – truly loving or not – I love the way you have shared this wisdom with your personal account here Adele- you make self-responsibility the new new black !
I agree Gemma, i have come to see that every time I feel a need towards another I am actually not truly connected and loving with myself.
Adele you have brought so many levels of awareness to building true relationships. I love your honesty in your sharing & for making it real as many of us have & are living through similar. You take away the need in a relationship & then what do you have but just pure love with which comes no need for pandering, controlling or fixing but only leaves space for allowing, understanding & loving. It also leaves us free from any burdens of expectations from need. It is true that it first starts with self-love & then you can truly & fully love another.
Thank you for such an amazing & inspirational blog.
Adele, you share so openly, you let us all in to your heart with your writing. And the joy and depth of love that can be felt between you and your son, and you with people is huge — thank you for sharing this with us all.