Imagination of the Parents


Think of the parent's choice for us, then imagine of unlived dreams of our parents. The dreams and imaginations shouldered on you, to carry them as inspiration and courage to hold on and move on. Childhood experiences negative or positive can influence children's later life.

"The greatest burden a child must bear is the unlived life of parents." - Carl Jung

Parental imagination
Playing and Flying in Parents' Dreams. Freedom under parental imagination and guidance.

Parents play a great role to stimulate and nurture dreams of their children. It's a  burden and a blessing to live up to the goals of the parents and develop one's imagination. 

Habits and beliefs influence how parents raise their children. Children, especially adolescents are likely to develop their imaginative ability if their parents allow them to exercise their choices in life based on their talents. 

As children, we see ourselves in the images of our parents as we grow and sometimes tend to forge new ways of seeing things and improve ourselves toward realizing our dreams by mimicking our parents.

We see our parents as the walls that shield us against all the odds. Parents are rocks painted with beautiful admirable colors of which everything is mirrored into the minds of the children. Taking each parent's wing can enable us to reach our full potential to succeed, more importantly, adding our imagination gives our lives a deeper meaning of our existence as children and adults.

Research shows that stable economic status and parenting behaviors do encourage social creativity in children. Miller, B. C., & Gerard, D. (1979).

Family influence on the creativity of children makes them feel personally secure and highly competent. Relationships between creative children and their parents tend to be neither overly close emotionally, nor hostile and detached, but marked by respect, independence, and freedom.

Parents can influence children's imagination in many ways.

  • Tales about the world's facts, joys, and demands can help them to organize experiences.
  • Setting imaginative life in an activity in which a child identifies with the hero or heroine. This helps a child to build a positive sense of inner self. Creatively building a long-lasting imagination signature.
  • Let children engage in pretend (or theatrical) play, this can help them learn how to take turns, and creative problem-solving skills, experimenting with social and emotional roles of life.
  • Encouraging them through creatively nurturing the child's necessity to feel competent, capable, and worthy. This can help a child to have boldness towards challenges and stressful situations knowing that they can be contained and solved without loss of individuality, harm, or embarrassment.

It's both a privilege and a burden to be there for your parents as they grow older.  In a certain period of a lifetime, children find themselves struggling to improve the economic conditions and health and well-being of their parents. Though challenging most of the time this comes with blessings.

Parents dream for their children as well as need their children to dream for them. To imagine a better tomorrow for them and their siblings. It's a common thing in many families to have someone a child or a sibling that sets an example.

The firstborn fight to raise and improve their young siblings, especially when the parents leave at early ages in their lives. When parents die they leave a gap of dreams and responsibilities to their children.

As lone children, nature forces us to act like adults. It's even sad some children do experience the same situation, although their parents are still alive and healthy.

Parents expect children to fulfill parents' expectations shouldered on them. Giving direction and imagining a better future for the family.

At a tender age, parents would try to inculcate a sort of norms and standards to follow as they try to create a long-lasting family bond. Also, it's a challenging and very demanding role for fathers and mothers to take care of the emotional, social, and economic well-being of the family. It requires a lot of sacrifices to ensure that the family grows and remains stable and strong.

Trying to fit in the shoes of the parents on the other hand is a daunting task. It requires both learning quickly and reaching maturity of the mind as well as patience very quickly so that you can fill the parental gap left behind. It's a traumatic experience when losing parents at a tender age.

Watching birds flying in a windy sky like fishes swimming in the troubled current. Mom would wake me up from my imagination saying, " You will have powerful wings someday son like those birds you will fly us through turbulent times."

Carrying your parent's dreams includes making sure that under your guidance as an elder brother or sister, your siblings are going to succeed. Being a good example, giving emotional support, and acting as a beacon of hope and encouragement are both important and overwhelmingly difficult.

"You are  gonna succeed and become somebody you imagine." Those were my father's words of encouragement. He said them to me whenever he felt my deep indulgence in imagination.

Every time I wake up from my dreams, I feel the imaginative presence of my parents around the family they left behind. I miss the warmth and protection of their mighty wings. I can see the reflection of their love in each of their pictures.

Although I am an adult now, the trauma and hope are still with me. I am that little boy who is struggling each day to reach the potential of this world's terrains full of ugly and beautiful thorns.


Miller, B. C., & Gerard, D. (1979). Family In? uences on the Development of Creativity in Children: An Integrative Review. Family Coordinator, 295-312.

Rabinowitz, A., & Engelberg, D. (1984). Parental influence on adolescents' imagination. Journal of adolescence, 7(3), 277–284.

Jacqueline Zeller Levine (2016) Inheriting the Shadow: Unlived Lives, Unshed Tears, Psychological Perspectives, 59:4, 431-435, DOI: 10.1080/00332925.2016.1202679

Darren Kelsey, Newcastle University Comment: Prince Harry saga: what advice would Carl Jung give?


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