Children learn their most significant and lasting lessons about autonomy and independence before the age of five. As a child begins to test her legs in the world, most of her initial walking away is from her mother. With her newfound skills, the child feels elated. It is crucial that the mother share a child’s sense of accomplishment and elation and mirror it back to her. This helps to establish a bedrock sense of self-confidence. If a mother fails to do this, or doesn’t actively nudge her child away to enjoy her freedom, the daughter, depending upon her temperament, may end up finding it difficult to assert her independence and ability to go after what she wants in the world.
Christiane Northrup, Mother-Daughter Wisdom
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