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Patriarchal Parenthood And Developing Middle-Child Crisis

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Human instinctively builds acquaintance, develops relationship and forms families in general but, how far does human plan on building families before coming into a relationship? The world of the 21st century is quite different; surprisingly, if seen from the perspective of any third world country like Pakistan where multitude of issues in basic living-standards preoccupy inhabitants’ socio-psychological conducts. Highlighting dilemma of overpopulation and the lacking realization for recognizing the significance of family-planning, i.e. child-rearing in appropriate living conditions, bring-in inevitable misfortunes and add furry to the fire of miseries for any society be it Pakistan, or worldwide.

Although giving birth and bringing up children does require tiring effort for both the parents, making each child of the family competitively eligible for personal and societal welfare is far more herculean to execute.

In addition to this, research-literature identifies the factor of patriarchal-distress having a significant agitated influence on normal people’s interpersonal and intra-personal behaviour towards other beings, when observed living in depressive conditions in comparison to living in resourceful circumstances. Wherein people including different age-groups were sampled. The negative influence of the mentioned factor was proved evidently dysfunctional for the normal human-efficiency. How come we expect tiny-little children, born with comparatively biased patriarchal parental inclinations in terms of affection, attention, resources, and time among their children, to cope up their normal-living in all abnormal conditions? Why are the psycho-socially deprived individuals i.e. the middle-children of the family, expected to behave in a so-called adaptable way, when their ancestors, fathers, and forefathers spent lives of absolute failures. They could not habituate to the existence of middle children’s needs lacking priority? When none of the resources is specifically dedicated to them in childhood, how could their success in any walk of life even be imagined in a long run?

According to the founding father of Psychodynamics, a great philosopher and a neurologist – Sigmund Freud, the early experiences of children are extensive determinants of adult personality and are responsible to dictate individuals’ behaviours through out the course of life. He presented theory of psychosexual development, in which by identifying the five stages of seeking childhood pleasure i.e. oral, anal, phallic, latent and genital, he emphasized the importance of completion of each stage in appropriate age-group time period otherwise, if not gratified it might lead to numerous psychological abnormalities among children. The recent research statistics depict, middle-children being more prone of falling prey to socio-behavioural issues merely because of parental mistreatments during childhood. Furthermore, these abnormalities create hurdles at different stages in their academic, professional and of course family lives. Freud focused on the development of Id, ego and super-ego concepts, which again get sorted in the same age. If children are neglected by their care-givers, it lead them falling astray to numerous psycho-social existential crises for long journeys of life. Eric Erikson, one of the neo-freudians presented theory of psychosocial development which signified first five years of child’s life responsible to set personality patterns thus dictating their behavious for the whole life. Whereas middle child is never a priority of parents, not in a single aspect of mere attention. They are disregarded in resources, time, affection and acceptance which eventually becomes reason for their life-long social rejections, low self-esteems, unresolved complexes on self and identity crises at many instances on different stages in life.

Patriarchal, collectivist cultures, for example as in Pakistan, never plan to pay the required heed to cognitive, social, psychological, and physical need-fulfillment; primarily, for any newly born while the scenario gets even worse reaching up to the turn of 3rd or 4th child born in the family. And when it is a girl child, one must have a sensitive heart and open mind to realize the level of unbearable pressure of being a girl-child – a social obscure powerless being in an underprivileged society with comprising 89% of psychologically-compromised humans, roaming in and around her innocent world. Even parents usually fail to build adequate communication with her, for any general reason within the comparative hierarchal-linage of their children. One must have to practice understanding for realizing the level of traumatic-sacrifice and pain, middle-child specifically baby-girls of a patriarchal socities as Pakistan’s, experience during the early development phases. It could ultimately build psychological, social and physical pathologies through out the discources of their lives. Child, born in any number of order is a child in any case who simply has rights to live a happy healthy life with his or her parents with absolutly no tragedy.

Middle children being less close to parents, depict less time being babied. Studies identify middle children at the verge of catching 30% more psychological issues than the first and the last child of patriachal families. Falling in the lethal menace of psychological issues including identity crisis, middle-child syndrome, depression, anxiety, psychosocial crisis, separation disorder, panic disorder, etc., the middle children are comparatively more exposed to ruining their lives. They get involved in illegal and Immoral activities including state crimes, and drug abuse activities due to immature and under developed libido and Id part of their unconscious minds. The middle-children do experience less parental responsiveness. They are less valued, and have to put in extra effort to seek parental attention which, being a hardest of reality; at many instances, disappoints parents. Parents not only fail to recognize but even realize the child’s cry for bridging connection.

Parents of 21st century need to follow some handy strategies to ensure a healthy family life without unfair social stratums being followed, and psychopathological influences in treating infants with varying birth orders. Building good reliable relationship with their middle child, and developing feeling of familial belongingness, parents must inculcate the feeling of self-worthiness in them. Moreover, motivating middle child to achieve her passions in professional as well as personal grounds would make the quality of her life much better, adding diversity to negatively accustomed monotony in life. Parents need to empathize with them whenever they are complaining, and should address to all the needs of middle-children in their family, in order to save them from destroying their precious lives.

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Naya Daur