Parenting psychologists generally assert that the first three years of a child’s life are foundational. How many fathers become absent in the early stages of infancy only to return bearing gifts and engaging in remedial parenting hoping to catch up on lost years over a series of fun weekends? Gabor Maté explains that children have an attachment need and in the absence of a nurturing adult to attach to, they tend to fill the void with a peer group.
In reality, the Fathers of our Nation are more often than not tragic hero figures consumed by hubris, drunk on power, and entrapped by personality flaws. The result is the persistent violence and brutalization of a nation of children who might dare to challenge their legitimacy.
The seeds of shame are planted in childhood. Children grow up with no capacity to deal with shame other than to sink into bouts of denial that follow them to adulthood.