Affection comes naturally but it has to be nurtured in the impressionable years of growth. If it is rebuffed in the earlier stages of childhood, it recedes to the remotest corners of our heart, difficult to reignite.
People who grow up to be reticent and unemotional have probably been denied this affection. They have never been told that it is natural to hug and speak in clear words about their emotions. When emotions are snubbed, we learn to disregard them.
My earliest recollections about affection are connected with my grandma but she didn’t live in our house and she died when I was quite young. Out of all my aunts, I felt drawn towards only one, probably because she was kind, soft-spoken and listened calmly.
Besides this I didn’t know what is affection till I became a mother…why it doesn’t come naturally to all mothers is the biggest mystery!
Affection is different from love, which can be selfish and demanding though understanding love is more challenging than understanding affection!
Affection is a much profound emotion, which is inexplicable but can be fathomed through our pores. It percolates down our skin slowly. It exposes us to some finer emotions. It can mold us into caring and understanding persons.
Though the synonyms of affection are: fondness, liking, feeling, love, care, desire, passion, warmth, attachment, goodwill, devotion, kindness, inclination, tenderness, propensity, friendliness, amity
But…Affection is not passion; it is not love albeit love may later develop due to this sublime emotion.
Affection is not transient; it grows even when it is not reciprocated.
Affection is not a desire; it cannot be commanded. It is earned.
Affection is not ‘liking’; it doesn’t change with seasons.
I had a colleague who was very affectionate. She could win many hearts with her way of approaching people and her words, even those, which carried an unsolicited advice could affect! I felt drawn toward her due to her kindness but I won’t say I loved her.
In the beginning; love is just a passing thought, a mirage that allures us.
Love grows if it is nurtured. It evolves itself but withers if it is not watered with affection, care, respect and kindness. Romantic love morphs into a loving and eternal relationship if we understand what is love.
We attach so many emotions and expectations to love that its real visage gets sidelined. It’s illusionary aspect carries us far into the world of unknown…obviously we wander and drift away!
While the perception of love changes with time and depends on culture and conditioning, affection is more reliable.
“Affection is responsible for nine-tenths of whatever solid and durable happiness there is in our natural lives.” – C. S. Lewis
Affection can be nurtured:
- Respond to your child’s demands with soft words
- Make bedtime a memorable and loving moment
- Read good stories with the right emotion and intonation
- Hug your child lovingly and speak endearing words calmly
- Be gentle and soft, as a child can understand the caresses more than a usual touch
- Be positive and honest in your dealings
- Avoid manipulations as a child can understand them quite well
- Be sensitive to the thoughts and fears of your child
- Never ever yell at or nag them for their imperfections
- Be emotionally present and empathize with their frustrations
- Always use positive words to encourage them.
The moment we indulge our affections, the earth is metamorphosed, there is no winter and no night; all tragedies, all ennui s, vanish, all duties even. – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
How do you show affection? Does it affect love?
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