From the age of five I can remember seeking my parents’ approval.
I don’t know where the drive for wanting their affirmation stemmed from. My only guess is it all started when they used to clap if I hadn’t wet the bed or when I washed my hands (with soap) after taking a poo.
Flash forward 20 years and this is still the case. Although for the avoidance of any doubt, I now wash my hands with no reinforcements AND I have never wet the bed. (For those who know me, please ignore that night when I drunk half a bottle of gin…)
The issue that still remains, is I still have major daddy issues. I desperately want my parents to be pleased with me and whatever it is, I do.
It may seem silly that as an adult. A full-functioning adult. Who pays bills, has brunch every Saturday, and who goes to bed when they don’t want to and wakes up when they don’t want to – would still seek approval from their parents.
At 18, I left thr nest and went about adulting. I didn’t have a clue on how to do many things.
“Dad, what’s council tax?”
“Mum, how do you poach an egg?”
Every day I would ask my dad for financial advice and my mum for cooking/bodily fluids-‘is this normal?’- kind of stuff. On top of that, I would ask for life advice as if they knew the answer to everything. It was only until I was 24 that I realised my parents were winging life just as much as I was.
I had been a fool for using my parents as a platform for validation. Sure, they could give me advice but they couldn’t help me live my life. I had to make errors and learn for myself – I had to create my own experiences by learning to fly. And just like a bird; no one can teach it to fly, it just happens. Naturally and with a bit of practice.
Seeking parental approval when you’re an adult, is a recipe for disaster. Your parents are different and on separate journeys to you. Let them live their lives and you crack on with yours. As long as you’re happy with your life, why would you need anyone’s approval?