Children are born with boundaries. They know their limits and have no problem expressing them. Hang out with a toddler long enough and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
Over time we strip them of their boundaries. We edit them down and bend and mold them so that we are content with their behavior and so that they don’t make a scene. We want them to be “respectful” at all costs, even if it means they must lose themselves. Slowly, they do. They begin to distrust that voice inside that whispers “no” because the people who they trust the most, don’t advocate for them and their limits. They don’t question the system; the inheritance of this people pleasing or neglect or perfectionism— oh no, they question THEMSELVES. Instead of learning that the way they’re being treated is wrong, they begin to internalize that THEY ARE WRONG.
It’s not hard to advocate for a child. It is uncomfortable but we are the adults and we can carry that discomfort. Our babies are worth it.