The true character of a society is revealed in how it treats its children. — Nelson Mandela
Still Face Experiment
There's an experiment called "Still Face Experiment" by Dr. Edward Tronick.
During the experiment, the baby and the mother started playing. The baby was happy and so was the mother.
For the experiment, however, the mother stopped moving and her face became still, ignoring the baby, neglecting the baby's eagerness for interaction.
Firstly, the baby looked confused and then started to initiate a response from her mother. When all her attempts failed to get a response (from the mother), she begins crying. She then bit her own hand seemingly in an attempt at self-comfort. At some point, she became withdrawn and hopeless. She no longer attempted to get her mother's attention.
Fortunately for the baby though, her mother was doing an experiment. Her mother would give all her love and attention to her again, soon enough.
Early Childhood Trauma: "Still Face" Over A Long Period
However, there are other babies around the world that have been neglected for real. Not just in orphanages but also in homes that have parents. Such neglected babies would carry the early childhood trauma into adulthood.
In adulthood, they may struggle to show their emotion to their own babies: this may result in a generational trauma, perpetuating the cycle of neglect and still face.
The baby from the Still Face Experiment cried and released her natural feelings in a healthy way. However, other psychologically damaged children withdraw such emotional responses from their parents knowing that their parents are too wrapped up in their own neurosis problems (to be able to respond to the children's agonies).
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