The Student News Site of Middle College High School @ Santa Ana College

The Spellbinder

The Student News Site of Middle College High School @ Santa Ana College

The Spellbinder

The Student News Site of Middle College High School @ Santa Ana College

The Spellbinder

A Child’s Development Needs a Mother and Father

Kaitlyn Figueroa (created with Canva)
Those who grew up without a mother or father are more likely to develop negative habits.

One’s childhood can forecast their entire psyche. The way they make and keep relationships, their mentality, coping mechanisms, and how they see the world are all components of the human psyche. The experiences that people go through and the environment surrounding them as children influences their development; the future is the dependent factor. 

One of the biggest influences in everyone’s development are their parents; their presence alone impacts their child in various ways. The role of a father and a mother holds an extensive amount of responsibility, and each role affects the child differently. So when one or both of these parental figures are absent, the child can suffer.

In the United States, around “…a quarter of U.S. children under the age of 18 live with one parent and no other adults,” according to a research article conducted by Pew Research Center. When parents are not present, the child’s mental state slowly deteriorates, even if it doesn’t seem like it. 

The Department of Education has a document that goes in depth about the impact a mother and father have on their child as far as their development. A mother provides their child with the development of emotional security, psychological protection; mothers provide nurture and a special kind of love and bond. While a father provides the child with physical security, the acknowledgement of boundaries, confidence, sociability, and self-control. Parents or caregivers influence the development of numerous characteristics that would be beneficial for their child’s future. 

When that parental figure is absent, as this child grows, the impacts of their absence are still with them. In some situations, trauma can be created and that trauma can stick with a person even if they don’t realize it.

Nathaly Lopez Munoz, a junior at Santa Ana High School, expresses how she felt in the moment of her father separating from her and her family.

“My mind couldn’t process what was going on at the moment. I remember asking myself, ‘what am I going to do without my dad,’” Lopez said.

She remembers feeling like she couldn’t do anything to help; she felt the responsibility to solve this issue between the adults as a 7-year-old. The effects of her father leaving the household had her feeling alone most of the time; her emotions would switch between anger and sadness towards her father. 

Now, looking back she was able to grow from her experience and switch it to a more positive outcome.

“That whole situation really [made] me who I am today…I gained survival skills and it made me stronger mentally and emotionally,” Lopez said.

However, even though others can also see the good in their situation and grow from it, the negative side of it can still haunt them from time to time no matter how long ago it was. The absence of an individual’s parent has a long term hold on them.

“I would’ve wanted a father daughter dance if I had a quince. Yes, I would’ve loved for my dad to be at my wedding. I get sad thinking about that,” Lopez said.

The absence of her father impacted her development in many different ways. One of those ways being how lonely the experience made her feel. Her social abilities and personality were contained, not allowing her to feel connected with people like she did before.

Her ability to acknowledge boundaries was heavily affected by the absence of her father; she would overstep someone’s physical boundaries without realizing. 

“Sometimes with someone I’m comfortable with I tend to be hugging them and being comfortable but [after a while] they can be like ‘OK that’s enough touch,’” said Lopez.

These moments don’t allow her to feel confident when it comes to expressing herself, specifically her love for the people around her. She feels that she has to hold back and suppress how she expresses her love and comfort.

Lopez remembers that her mental state at the time was not the best, she was feeling very negative and depressed about what was going on. Fortunately, she was able to turn all this around and use her experience to better herself, now she is grateful that her father isn’t in the picture and that her mom is the way she is.

Without the proper coping methods and help, one’s mental development can worsen. Someone who lacks these certain characteristics and skills due to the absence of a parent is not a bad person. Even if it feels like there is nothing that can be done to better the situation, putting in the effort to grow from it is always enough.

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About the Contributor
Kaitlyn Figueroa, Co-Editor-in-Chief
I love reading cute poetry and listening to music a lot. I enjoy hanging out with my friends and love sushi.