Your First Love Experience

As a mom of four sons, it’s tough to find words to describe how I felt when I held each of them in my arms for the first time…especially with my first son, who was pretty beat up trying to make his way into this world.

Looking at his teeny little [very] bruised, [very] scratched face, his [very] wrinkled, pug-like forehead, and his [very elongated] cone head his daddy was sure would never get better, I looked at my baby and said, “You poor, pitiful little thing. Mamma’s gonna love you. Mamma’s gonna keep you safe.”

Oh, I loved each of my babies, no question about that. But it wasn’t a love I had ever before experienced. It was warm and tender and caring, yes. Yet there was something different about this love. Something very different.

My love for my new babies was protective. I was protective. Like never before, I felt this surge of she-bearness. This overwhelming desire to keep my babies from harm. This drive-push-urge to keep them safe. To shield them from whatever the world threw at them.

I nurtured my babies. I kept them safe. I protected them.

But my babies didn’t experience me as nurturing. As keeping them safe. As protecting them. They experienced me as love.

Little did I know, I was shaping their abilities to someday fall in love and to become parents. They love today because we first loved them 20+ years ago.

You see, for most of us, the first love relationship we experience is the parent-child relationship. Born helpless with nothing more than survival reflexes, we are fully reliant upon our parents for every need.

It is this very dependency on others that propels us to form emotional bonds in which we give and receive love. And it is from the experiences of the earliest of all love relationships that our later-in-life love relationships take place. Researchers refer to this close, emotional tie in the early days/months/years as attachment.

Photo Credit: London looks (flickr.com)

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Attachment is a developmental phase that we never outgrow. [...]

  2. [...] “The way we raise our children today in this country is increasingly depriving them of the practices that lead to well-being and a moral sense,” says Narvaez.  She provides parents with six childrearing practices in the child’s first 0 to 6 years that lead to healthy attachment: [...]

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