KNOW HOW TO CUT THE UMBILICAL CORD IN TIME.
Thick, resistant, long and invisible is the enduring and enslaving tie between mother and/or father and child.
I would, however, like to give a vote of confidence in favour of the family. Not the one that we know, but rather the one that can emerge from a different model. I am currently sharing a holiday with 5 of my 6 children, my 3 grandchildren and my partner Paula. Inspired by magical moments, I have decided to start a series of publications around family reconciliation.
I was a mere 6 or 7 years old when I broke away from my mother. I remember it perfectly as if it were yesterday. It was in response to an event that hurt me where I considered that she had been unfair. So I decided to eliminate her from me and to start to create myself without her emotional influence and the trappings of her affection. I had been the perfect mummy’s boy who was unable to do anything without her by my side and this act marked a milestone in my life.
I detached myself from my creator, I liberated myself from my owner, I became independent. Forever. This therefore allowed me, from a very early age, to choose my path and to have the experiences of many lifetimes in one. She could do nothing to hold me back, partly because she was so innocent.
I should, however, acknowledge that I was also aware at 4 or 5 years of age, that I carried something with me from birth which would make me suffer, yet something that would also make me joyful. I am referring to the presence of a rebelliousness, a strong urge for freedom and an independence that I could feel in my cells, that has guided each and every one of my decisions.
My father would say time and time again: ‘when my son was born they must have gotten the babies mixed up; this can not be my son, they must have made a mistake’. I listened with pleasure because I comprehended that he would never comprehend that I could be so different to him. In any case, I was open to everything he wanted to teach me because he accepted that he should inspire me in ways quite different to those that he had chosen for himself.
He trusted that I should be propelled towards freedom and I surrendered to his guidance until the age of 16 or 17 when one day I asked him if we could go to court so that I could be authorized to open a business and my own bank account (both of which were not permitted in Argentina until the age of 18). I no longer wanted to depend on him and I wanted to follow my own path as a man. I carried on the path of entrepreneurship, which took me far, until I turned 32 when my father died in an accident. After that another kind of path opened up which I will recount later.
You may be wondering why I am telling you all this. The reason is that I want to go into a theme which is going to give a lot of food for thought in this blog; about the conscious or unconscious influence of emotional and material manipulation that parents enact over their children. And around how children become stuck and trapped in a range of infantilisms, unable to mature, having negative repercussions on them for the rest of their lives.
Today, 50 years after breaking away from my mother and 40 years from my father, after having lived so much, I can have a reflective perspective of how important it has been for my life to be autonomous from my parents. Something which did not actually distance me from from them, as I always stayed in touch and shared countless wonderful moments with them; but from a place of freedom and not obligation, from a place of love, and not from resentment.
The act of breaking away from my parents for different reasons at different moments aligns with an attitude that I assumed towards them. Most of the things that have happened to me in my life have depended on that attitude. Based on everything that I have experienced, I can be certain that this is the attitude that everyone should take. I also recognise that most of the work I have done on my inner self has been related to my reconciliation with my mother and father, something which has given me even more freedom. I would also like to share that it was obvious that a life with so much freedom would need to traverse a number of prisons, because part of the game of my life was to learn to escape these. Sometimes these came in the form of situations, other times jobs, relationships, and other times women.
This is my story, made up of three very specific points:
- My attitude about my mother
- My attitude about my father
- My awareness of what I brought with me at birth.
These three elements are essential. I am not referring to external influences that may have conditioned me, but rather deep predispositions and internal decisions that have helped me to preserve the memory of what I am and to come out of family conditioning, something which has propelled me into being the purest manifestation of what I am.
It saddens me to say to you readers, that my model of relating with and my attitudes towards my parents are of no use to you, because they are mine. And what is yours is yours. Each person needs to find their own way of freeing themselves, finding reconciliation and healing. But what is true is that many of the discoveries that I have made have allowed me to create integration tools around the limits that we have, along with our unrealised potential. Integrating these opposing extremes is for me the start of a transformative revolution in life.
Some years ago I designed a model of understanding around what happens to us with our parents that I called ‘THE MOLECULE OF CONDITIONING’ in which I explain that we humans are our parents and the way in which they have related to one another. Our programming comes from what they have given to us and what they have not given to us, and what they have given each other and what they have not given to each other. Ways of relating are essentially exchanges of energies, gestures, words, thoughts and feelings. This is what conditions us and we take it on as a model to follow and repeat.
Right now, in all the Inner Evolution retreats we are carrying out all over the world, I am introducing systemic activities that shed light on thousands of people who want to understand the origins of their lack of well being, illnesses, unhappiness and current problems. Since the year 2000, I have been researching what that these family therapies offer and using these therapies for myself.
I wanted to start by talking about myself because I have been the first to benefit from the method itself, the approach that I have created. To have understood so many things about my family, of what I bring to and what I have to give in this life, is what has driven me to do everything that I do. Independently of whether the results have been better or worse, whether it has attracted more or less friends or foes, what is certain is that this is the life that I wanted for myself. At my 56 years of age, a true indicator that confirms this are these precious days where I am sharing so much with 5 of my 6 children, 3 grandchildren and my partner Paula.
What sense does it make to tell you things about myself? It is likely that the way I see it is different to the way you do, but at the end of the day, I feel that it is going to inspire us all to heal and to transcend lots of things that prevent us from developing our potential, which is what definitively gives us a sense of happiness and realization.
Alberto José Varela
I will continue with many posts on these personal and family themes. I will publish testimonials from people who have resolved problems relating to their parents. If you have any questions, or situations to resolve, I invite you to participate in the Systemic Therapy workshops that we organise in different countries in America and Europe led by therapeutic experts on this issue.