Love for your child: Affected by love for child's other parent?

Yes, I agree that because of the intensity of the emotions that most parents have towards their children then it seems impossible for all parents to not have that exactly.

Yet, having grown up in a very abusive home then unfortunately I had firsthand experience when it wasn’t the case.

In fact, I simply had no idea that there were homes where parents loved their kids unconditionally.

I can’t speak for all causes, but one book on trauma went through the steps which occur when a parent with mental illness or an emotional disorder can’t connect with their children and how it can lead to abuse. I would have to reread it to remember the specific mechanisms involved.

I think that’s what happened in our household. My father was simply too scarred from his shitty upbringing that he never developed any sort of empathy or understanding that others were actually humans in their own right, and not just extensions oh him. He just wasn’t capable of love. For anyone or anything, including himself.

Sadly, you are right :frowning:

Right, I don’t know the answer, but it’s a totally depressing thought :frowning:

Yeah, I hear ya :frowning:

I was never in love with the father of my daughter and he was never in love with me. I don’t hate him. I don’t anything him. I adore her, hopelessly. But it feels weird sometimes when she has a moment of stronger than usual resemblance to him - when the person I love is looking just like the person I would barely recall by now in other circumstances.

A lot of the subsaharian undocumented inmigrants who reach Europe pregnant or with a baby were raped; they may not even be quite sure which of their rapists was the biodad since there were repeated instances of rape over a few days.

And yet, the immense majority love that kid like plants love April rains.

Two friends who were previously married and had children from the first marriage, married and had a son. She stayed with him during some really tough financial times and after twelve years she said she wanted to take her children to see their Dad (whom they hadn’t see since the divorce) in the mainland U.S. The first calls were that her kids wanted to stay with their Dad and after a few weeks, the last call was that she called my friend and said she never loved him and only ever loved her first husband. She never came back, abandoning him and their son. We never knew if she planned the ‘escape’ or not.

I think there are several components to parental love: obligation to care for them/shape them, protectiveness, possessiveness, pride, and affection all come to mind. I feel all of those toward my son, but I didn’t feel them all at the same time: for me protectiveness and obligation were strong from the onset, but affection and pride both came much later. I wonder if some people only ever feel some of them, and some never feel any.

Just remembered, the story about my friend’s wife leaving him and their son gets worse (this happened over 25 years ago and it’s not something I like to think about). Their son wrote her (she never called again) and wanted to move to be with her and his half-brother and half-sister who were of course there all his life. She wrote back and refused.

She also had a granddaughter that went with them who was essentially raised by her and my friend as her daughter was 14 when she got pregnant, 15 when she got married and 16 or 17 when she got divorced. The granddaughter never got to see Papa-daddy again.