INSECURITY: Where does it come from?

Posted: May 10, 2018 in World On The Edge

A short time before my mother died, she asked me a question most aging parents would like to know the answer to. She asked about my childhood, wondering what I felt about it. I replied that I’d had a wonderful childhood, thanks to my parents and grandparents. And that was true. But my mother looked at me as she always did when she had something more emphatic in mind. She was good at summing things up, so she zeroed in on what she’d really hoped to hear. “Well, Kaye,” she said. “That’s because you always knew you were loved.”

My mother often spoke in titles. By that, I mean she expressed what was truly important. In this case it was the security found in being loved.

Love is the thing we all want. And it is the basis for feeling secure. In a family, love between the parents produces love in the children. If it is not there, insecurity is the result and is readily seen today in too many children whose home life is askew.  If a child’s foundation is trembling beneath him, the child cannot keep balance and is in danger of a fall into who knows what.  So, what can be done?

My father frequently quoted this: “The best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.” I believe this sincerely. So, how does a man genuinely love his wife? Respect, honesty, loyalty, trust, all have a lot to do with love. Aside from God, a husband should treat his wife as the most important person in his life. And of course, the same goes for a wife. Her husband is the most important person in her life as well.  Children who see this kind of love in their parents feel naturally secure, are blessed by it, and better for it no matter the trials they may later face. 

Love is, of course, a verb. An action word, with its fence built around all other virtues. And there are seven virtues. In Catholicism, the first three are the theological virtues of Faith, Hope, and Love–Love being the virtue that gives the others traction.

The four cardinal virtues are Prudence, Justice, Fortitude and Temperance. Prudence heads the list for parents, warding away betrayal, anger, self-centeredness, and a lack of forgiveness. Prudence gives all people, especially parents, the ability to use their powers of reason to see what is good and what is evil, and the courage to keep our children safe from bad influences–in our family, in the outside world, and sometimes even from the child himself. Our children need to be shown that they are always loved, by actions that may be difficult for us yet necessary for them. This is security for a child.

When a child (or an adult for that matter) lacks safety/security in some area, he/she often goes astray. But a strong foundation of self-less parental love, like the example of God’s love for us, can bring him home. And as the mother of five, I know for a fact that it can happen just that way.


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