It’s a funny thing about life, we are all just doing our best to make our way through it, enjoying the moments we can and trying to survive the ones that make us feel as though we can’t take anymore. Sometimes along the way, we interact, or find people that try to control who we will, or are meant to become, whether it be a parent, a spouse, or even a friend.
When I ponder this question, I often think of little league. Too many times I sit in the crowd and I watch the pressure that is put on the players, there is a child who is only 9 or 10 and he’s at bat. Dad yells from the stands “keep your eye on the ball son,” so the boy tries hard to concentrate, he strikes out. The dad shouts “get your head in the game son,” the boy tenses up and worries about the disapproval of his father, so he tries even harder to hit the ball, swinging and completely missing it. By this time the father is angry, screaming down to the boy “get your act together,” but now the game is no longer fun, the boy strikes out and cries his way back to the dug out, terrified of the moment the game is over, for he fears the wrath of his father.
All to often, these become the relationships of our lives. We allow other people to make us feel inadequate, or as though we are asking for more than we deserve. These are the people who are willingly, knowingly, trying to control the outcome of our lives. Whether they are doing so intentionally, or due to some past event that has them fearful of being out of control, or alone, makes no difference, because they still end up crippling the people in their lives.
What I find perplexing is why people do this to one another. One spouse dictates everything about the relationship, when they don’t’ get their way, they place guilt or blame. All in an effort to keep the person in check, requiring them to do this and that, or have their love withheld, or fear an argument. They stop allowing that person to be, who they are meant to be. The same goes with parents who want their children to have the life they think they should, require them to go to the right “school,” or get a degree in this or that, the pressure is insurmountable at times that you feel smothered, you feel as though you can’t move an inch and be who you need, or want to be.