In this blog post, I would like to talk about the importance of the parent-child relationship, and I want to study this concept by analyzing the creation of Adam and Eve.
When God created Adam and Eve, His intention was that they should live in intimacy with Him and with each other. In fact, when the unborn baby is inside his/her mother’s womb, the baby begins to develop a bond or connection with her, a bond that prepares him/her for the parent–child attachment later in life. This relationship can be represented as an affiliation and interaction of the parent with the unborn baby, and the parents’ desire to welcome him/her.
After pregnancy, the baby moves from his/her mother’s womb, where all his/her needs are met automatically, to a world where the newborn has to depend on fallible humans to survive. At this moment, the child begins to form an attachment behavioral system that will guide him/her when relating to others and surviving in a sinful world.
In order for the infant to learn how to interact with the new environment, he or she needs to develop biologically and cognitively. Whereas many mammals are physically able to defend themselves or run away from a threat right after being born, God created humans in a way that requires them to be dependent for years before they develop the capacity to adapt to the world and live in it. Infants need to depend on a caregiver to defend them in the face of many threats. This fact shows the importance of intimacy with God. The Creator intentionally created human beings to live in a community as reciprocating selves. A reciprocating self is one that exemplifies an I-Thou relationship based on the Christian concept of the Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Just as God lives in community with the other members of the Godhead, human beings are supposed to relate with other selves. Adam and Eve were created to represent the relational image of God. It was a relationship of intimacy, but at the same time, one of differentiation.
Analyzing the process that human beings follow in order to establish relationships, it seems that first of all, the child needs to develop an attachment behavioral system with his/her parents, which will teach him/her how to reciprocate love with another self. Later, as an adult, he or she may form a romantic relationship that may lead to matrimony. The profound message of this concept is that before the child can be an “I,” he or she needs to be a “we.” He or she needs to form an I-Thou relationship with another human self before being an “I.” The importance of this process of attachment formation should not be underestimated.
Bowlby argued that the attachment of a child to his/her parents is very influential in determining the quality of the child‘s future relationships. For this reason, parents need to value the importance of their influence and develop a healthier relationship with their children. The future of our communities lies in the type of relationship we build with our little ones. These little ones will live tomorrow through the same emotional dynamics they have experienced in their family during childhood. I think we could do better in this area. What is your opinion? Share it with us in the comments section. God bless you.