"Because You Loved Me"—Co-dependency Or Good Parenting?

"Because You Loved Me"—Co-dependency Or Good Parenting?

"Because You Loved Me"—Co-dependency Or Good Parenting?

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Is the classic Celine Dion hit a tribute to a Pygmalion lover or to a loving parent?

A few years ago I was waiting in a doctor's office and, having forgotten to bring the parenting book I was studying, was at the mercy of Muzak. One of the songs that came on was a Céline Dion hit written by Diane Warren, "Because You Loved Me." I listened to the words—yes, I was bored!—and was put off by what I heard as sappy co-dependency between lovers:

"For all those times you stood by me
For all the truth that you made me see
For all the joy you brought to my life
For all the wrong that you made right
For every dream you made come true
For all the love I found in you
I'll be forever thankful, baby
You're the one who held me up
Never let me fall
You're the one who saw me through through it all

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

 

You gave me wings and made me fly
You touched my hand I could touch the sky
I lost my faith, you gave it back to me
You said no star was out of reach
You stood by me and I stood tall
I had your love I had it all
I'm grateful for each day you gave me
Maybe I don't know that much
But I know this much is true
I was blessed because I was loved by you

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

You were always there for me
The tender wind that carried me
A light in the dark shining your love into my life
You've been my inspiration
Through the lies you were the truth
My world is a better place because of you

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

I'm everything I am
Because you loved me."

I kept listening and applied the words to a different scenario, that of a child speaking to a parent. The words fit, except for the "baby" in the first verse. The second scenario allowed me to enjoy the song as a description of the impact of a parent's love in a child's life.

Parenting is key

Every day I treat patients who didn't get the love they needed as children, or at least not in the way they needed it as children. Some parents meant well, but didn't understand their children's needs. Some parents were too depressed or preoccupied with tragic events in their own lives to meet their children's needs properly. Some parents were so self-involved they believed their children should accommodate them. Some of these patients have children of their own now and are coming to terms with the fact that they have unintentionally injured their children's self-esteem and shaped their personalities in the negative ways they experienced as children. Painful stuff!

Conscious parenting helps you heal and gives your child a great start!

But this insight and the things they learn as we work together in therapy can help them turn things around in their lives and for their children. For patients who begin therapy before becoming parents, parenthood becomes a chance to further heal psychologically by loving their children in healthier ways than their parents were able to do. Developing empathy and understanding, warming up emotionally to another person: These are true gifts to your child, and to yourself.

Therapy can help you turn around your parenting values and style!

If you find yourself saying things to your child that you swore you would never say to your child, therapy can help you learn to control your impulses and understand the thoughts and behaviors you want to change, so that you can actually become the parent you want to be.

 

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.