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You really can tell an enormous amount about a man from his early childhood days. “Give me the boy until he is seven and I will show you the man,” say the Jesuits. Perhaps you have just met a gorgeous new man or you have been with your boyfriend for a few years and STILL you are not sure if he is “The One.” We discovered that simple questions about his life as a seven or eight year old can provide the crucial extra data that you need to help you make your mind up. So why seven or eight- because it is the earliest time he can remember….
The way his parents raised him up is the core for his adult relationship. Research has shown that the way he was cared for early on his life actually sets the basics of the brain chemistry with which he relates to you today. For example, if his mother was the depressive type then he is prone to be the depressive type or even aggressive. He is liable to expect lovers to treat him the same way his parents did towards him, and he may treat his lover the same way he used to treat his parents.
Don’t shake your head yet and put your hands on your cheek in desperation! The good news is that his behavior is not set in stone. You can gently make him aware of how his childhood is influencing his behavior, there is a possibility he will change to the better. And, by understanding what is driving him, you’re much less likely to take things personally, avoid destructive rows, and will generally be much happier together.
We have made the four crucial questions to ask your man in order to learn more about his behavior…
Crucial Question number ONE: At primary school were you one of those leader –of –the-gang bully types, or one of the quieter ones who always got picked on?
If he was neither a bully nor he was bullied then the odds are that he is pretty secure and stable in his relationships. If he was one of the others read more to know how to handle him and how to make him a happier person…
Was he the avoidant seven year old?
What it means if he said that he was a bit of a bully: He is allergic to intense involvement with others, wanting self sufficiency. He assumes people will be hostile and rejecting. Anticipating this, he gets in retaliation by being spiky, then if forced to become involved he will employ a domineering, intrusive style.
Studies of bullies in school show that bullies’ mothers were controlling, intrusive and rejecting. You can expect him to repeatedly confuse you with his mum, forever claiming you are rejecting him regardless of what you actually do! At the same way he is liable to treat you in the same way he treats his mother- by feeling rejected.
The solution: Try to make him understand that you are not the person he thinks you are. Show him that you are a different person from his mother and you are accepting and welcoming.
Or was he a victim of bullying at school?
He wants to be completely and emotionally intimate, but no one is ever close as he would like. He feels uncomfortable and lonesome without deep involvement. His mother may have given him inconsistent love and care before the age of 3. It would mean that she did pick him up, hugged him and kissed him as she was going through the motions but without loving words and with little warmth. This kind of relationship would result in him fearing abandonment.
The victim of bullying is more likely to treat you in confusing ways. Equally he is expecting you to treat him the way his mother treated him. He will fear that one day you will abandon him emotionally and literally despite the evidence.
The solution: The next time he behaves in such a way, then try to get him to examine why he really believes that you might abandon him. Then chat to him about his childhood years and show him that it is not really you who will abandon him!
Crucial Question Two: How did his parents punish him as a small child? When he was being naughty, were they consistently strict or were their reactions very confusing- often rewarding behavior that had been previously punished?
If neither those two were true, then he has a benign conscience, making him fun seeking, tolerant and less likely to be neurotic. But of either is true then it is a predictor of trouble:
Overly strict parents: does he have a penalizing character?
Even if he was not smacked at, his parents used frowns, angry shouts, or humiliation to force their son to curb natural urges, such as playing more than usual, play station for long hours, or even out with friends for a long time. This may make him neurotic and prone to guilty depressions. He is obsessively tidy or clean or worried about his lateness. He find is difficult to be spontaneous. His inhibitions could drive you crazy and he may be a stern father.
The solution: Talk to him about his childhood- he is not a child anymore and there are no stern, penalizing parents standing behind him.
He has a weak conscience. When his parents punished him it was to express their emotions rather than teaching him what is right from wrong. They might smile knowingly when he steals a candy, and berate him on another occasion.
This is likely to make him flamboyant and untidy. He is a bad timekeeper. He does not take responsibility when he is wrong – nothing is ever his fault.
The solution: If you can catch him at a time when he is feeling down and despairing , you might be able to commit himself to behaving more stable. Though, it is very tough for this man to change.
Crucial question number Three: What was his ‘role’ with his family? Was he the clever one, the angry one, the sad one, the lazy…?
The roles scripted by our parents and siblings are very enduring. For instance, if he accuses you of implying he is stupid or unhelpful in the house, then it is likely this was how his family scripted him.
Crucial will be where he came in the family. For example if he is the only boy and has three or four sisters, he is more likely to be more confident of his masculinity and his sexual identity. If he was the eldest, he is more likely to be on the side of authority. If he is the youngest, then it is more likely he is more of a rebel.
The solution: Once you are both aware of the role he had and where he came in his family, it is more likely that he will change.
Crucial Question Four:
What was his mother like and what sort of person was she when he was young?
In choosing partners we are usually attributed to your opposite sexed parent. Your man usually chose you because you resemble his mother in some way, mainly in her character. Knowing this, you are a better position to work out whether his criticisms of you are valid or not.
The solution: You can wean him gradually that all women are different from his mother. In any case, eventually reality seeps into the subconscious and sooner or later he will gradually realise that you are different from his mother.