Existential Psychology

Overprotective Love

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When I think of overprotective love an image that pops up is the collector who cherishes action figures that have never been taken out of their boxes. The mission is to keep them safe, in pristine condition, and this mission has been accomplished, but at the expense both of the action figures who never get the chance to do what they were created for and of the kids who never got the chance to play with them.

Rationalizations for oveprotectiveness work because the world is a dangerous place for fragile human beings and tragedies occur every day. But the underlying psychology is often one of control and possessiveness, representing the unrealistic hope of immortality through generative biological means, banking on keeping progeny safe and sound, in mint condition, in order to try to guarantee this personal immortality.

Authentic love always includes faith in your loved ones, and this means taking sound precautions to keep them safe but also realizing at some point that you’ve got to cede the control and allow the people you love to do what they were meant to do, to go out there and derive meaning through their relationships with others and the world, which means letting them out of their boxes.