September 1, 2001
Families are not what they use to be since the ’70’s! Single people are in the ten’s of millions through all ages. People seem to have trouble connecting with others who are not a ‘mess of problems’ – which often they don’t find out until the deal is sealed. Ironically, those complaining, got the same and different problems! The older one gets while looking for a mate, the more chance of ending up with a ‘trunk of unresolved issues’ and, most that have become more deeply in-bedded. So …. replacements are found beyond medications (drugs, alcohol, gambling, couching, etc.).
The ‘replacements’ are ‘pets’. Pets are wonderful but, somewhat odd when they occur in millions of individual situations and, finding (although denied), that these pets really are replacements for human contact. In some cases, it may well be needed for reasons that make it difficult for the individual to ‘hook up’. Certainly, it has been found with the sick and elderly, to be an amazing and comforting relationship (even dogs in some prisons).
However, there is a difference between enjoying the playful, healthy dogs and cats and, being covertly obsessed to the point of sleeping with them regularly. Forget hygiene and dog or cat flu (some people sleep with pigs…..swine flu?), but it’s just not indicative of good emotional/mental health! I know of one person who has their 8 year old sleep next to them every night! So, it’s not just cats and dogs!
Unresolved issues that are not accepted and then, not moving forward with the intent of detaching from them or coming to an understanding of why the issues occurred, is at the bedrock of the aberration. Healthy behavior seeks healthy connections with other humans and certainly for ‘love and comfort’! Cuddling with pets for a few moments here and there is always meaningful, but replacing human love with sleeping nightly with an animal might just be indicative that the whole ‘individualization movement’ has gone too far. Even one woman I remember, went everywhere with her stuffed teddy bear is….well, strange. Staying in high consciousness on the high roads of life brings healthy love and experiences. (Many men ARE dogs and, should be avoided sleeping with too!)