«A son is not responsible for your being happy, that is a backpack too big for him»


Laura Peraita



Many couples believe that to feel happy as people and achieve solidity in their relationship they must have a child, but it is important not to kid yourself about it. At least that is what Silvia Álava Sordo points out, Doctor of Psychology and author of ‘Why am I not happy?’. “You need to be well before having a child,” he says. He explains that many people who do not finish feeling completely happy or they perceive that their relationship does not work 100% they believe that the solution is to have a child to unite more as a couple, “but that is not the case at all: that child is not going to help you feel better about yourself or in your relationship. You can not burden a child with the responsibility of achieving your own happiness, “qualifies this expert.

In his opinion, first “you have to work on yourself, individually and, later, when you are well, it is time to consider being a father or mother. What you can’t think of is that a child is going to come into this world to report your happiness. By becoming a parent, it’s no longer just about your life, it’s also about taking care of your child’s. That is, he insists, you cannot introduce a third element to the relation, as it is a child, if we are not well. A baby is an inexhaustible source of joy, but also of responsibility, attention, care and fatigue. When you feel strong you can take care of yourself correctly physically and emotionally. But, what is clear is that a son is not responsible for your being happy, that is too big a backpack for him.

“There are parents who emotionally anesthetize their children. From a very young age they give them a pacifier, a mobile…, whatever it takes to not upset them or see them unhappy»

Therefore, he advises working on oneself first, individually to achieve the desired happiness, and then launching oneself into being a father or mother. «A child does not come to save your life or that of a relationship. Becoming parents also means being strong to serve him well. Life is full of unpleasant situations and adults have tools to regulate and manage these emotions. The family is the best positioned agent to develop emotional intelligence. A child, however, does not have these strategies, he will learn them from his parents. If parents don’t have them, they won’t be able to teach them. I always give the example of the cake. If an adult does not know the recipe, it will be difficult for him to teach his child how to make this sweet.

Nobody has taught us

The problem, according to Silvia Álava Sordo, is that many parents do not know how to manage emotions because they have not been taught to them either, «and they wonder how am I going to be okay if they have not taught me? Necessary learn what they are, know the characteristics of each emotion, dive into the information that it provides us because if we do not attend to them there are times, even, when they stand out as a somatic disease. That’s when we do give them importance. We only attend to them when they involve a physical or mental illness. It is about not reaching that and preventing diseases. That is why it is so important to know how to recognize emotions, identify them and know how to manage them”.

This Doctor of Psychology recognizes that there are many parents who They try to give absolute happiness to their children and they do everything possible and impossible so that they do not feel what sadness, frustration, anger implies… «They anesthetize them emotionally. From a very young age they give them the pacifier, the mobile…, whatever it takes as long as they don’t upset them or see them unhappy».

To the parents who act like this, the author of ‘Why am I not happy?’ suggests that they take into account that it is not positive to transmit to children that feeling an emotion is bad, «the best thing is to teach him why he feels it and help him manage it because, otherwise, they will find an adolescent and an adult who will panic to feel bad, sad, angry, nervous… They will feel that they are a failure when, in fact, they are not, since they are emotions that are felt every day. We all have a bad day.”

He explains that the way we relate to ourselves, our feelings and the environment will have a lot to do with how our parents have related to us. Therefore, he recommends helping children to understand these emotions so that they understand what is happening to them. and not take a victim attitude. “If you are not well you will not be able to help your children to be happy and to understand that nothing happens if one day you are sad or angry,” he insists.

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