Love that smothers

by Chandrika R Krishnan

A acquaintance is the youngest of many children. Like Peter Pan, she was a girl who never grew up. Sandwiched between her well-meaning older sibling and her versatile yet misdirected husband, she never ventured beyond her comfort zone.

Recently, a mother who came to ‘cook’ and ‘take care’ of her 37 year old son suffered a fatal heart attack and the son was left floundering. While the death is an unfortunate one, what was not was the inability of a grown up person, to fend for himself.

We as a race, pride in ‘doing our best’ for our loved ones to the point of cloistering them. In our quest to ‘be there for them’, we end up doing a disservice to them, thus, affecting their quality of life. Our misplaced ‘love’ proves to be our undoing.

Sapna Anup, a trained counsellor and a mother of two expresses it beautifully when she says, “Anything in excess is poison. Any relationships, be it with your parents, spouse, children or friends all require your love and attention but an overdose can stifle it!” She signs off by drawing an allegory,

Nothing grows under a banyan tree, in the same way our all-consuming love should not hinder the growth of our loved ones.

Unfortunately, we desist from giving chores to our children fearing that it would eat into their academics. We fear telling our loved ones about finances fearing that it would be inappropriate. We are afraid to let our parents live an independent life for fear of ‘what others may say.’ Above all, most of us particularly women feel important and valued when we are the ‘fulcrum’ around which the household runs.

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Photo by judith girard-marczak on Unsplash


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