Of Neglect And The Neglected (IDIOMS AND PROVERBS)
There are multiple dimensions to this debacle. Let me start with relationships.
Someone who was neglected in a previous relationship would develop a defense mechanism. Most likely, that defense mechanism would also be neglect.
Next time they get into a relationship, they want to be the one doing the neglecting rather than being on the receiving end.
If they suffer this repeatedly, they devolve to finding it difficult, if not impossible, to attach to someone else.
When they do meet someone who cares, never neglects, or is always available, they end up believing the person is playing games with them.
They would be suspicious and believe the person is trying to overcompensate for something else they have done wrong. It would take a conscious unbundling of previously held beliefs to get rid of this mindset.
In parenting, an adult who was neglected is likely to want to make up for it with their own children. If they have spent time learning about parenting, then this going to end well.
A sad outcome which is unfortunately common is for such people to be unable to commit to their own children.
Because they never experienced love from their parents, they don’t know how to express it to their children too.
Another group will do everything except be there for their children. They will spend time in search of wealth, to shower their children with everything they had lacked, or gotten as kids.
But the one thing they truly lacked as kids is what they still won’t give their children. Time. Attention. Commitment.
The saving grace would be if their partner knows better. If their spouse knows the root of their attachment issue and also knows what a child really needs, then they can contribute their bit and help their partner bring out what they never knew they had.
I have heard of parents jealous of the way grandparents treat their own children. They see what their own parents give their children what they lacked as kids, often time and attention. And it sparks trauma in them.
Their parents may have evolved or learned to do better, but they were already grown and couldn’t get that level of love anymore.
This is one of the reasons mothers take extraordinary care of their daughters when they come to help with new children.
Most times, they have learned a new dimension to loving and caring.
They sense that there is no “damage” that can come from “spoiling” you, so they want to “spoil” you.
As citizens, the surest way to guarantee the vicious cycle of bad governance is through abandonment.
A neglected citizen would neglect the populace under them when they become political leaders too.
But then, only a tiny fraction of the population gets to be elected or appointed into government. So the effect shouldn’t be as bad.
Wrong! It is worse.
People get so neglected, they begin to neglect themselves and others like them.
They spend so much time looking upward at the ruling and wealthy class, that they have no time to look at themselves or others like them, around them.
When due to bad governance, the basics of food, clothing, and shelter are lacking, people spend so much time, effort, and resources struggling for that, so much that they have no time left to struggle for other rights.
They have no time to monitor the quality of education, roads, law enforcement, or other responsibilities of the government.
A man who is unsure of his next meal has more priorities than to bother about who becomes his next ruler. Or oppressor.
A woman struggling to eke a living has no time to sign up to join a political party at the grassroots level. Unless they promise her one meal she can take home to ensure her children survive for one more day.
Although that decision costs the same children ten years of their lives.
By leaving people impoverished, the ruling class never has to worry about a revolution. The masses are too hungry, tired, and destitute to gather. Or think.
This guarantees that the neglected would go on to neglect even themselves.