Shame is an interesting feeling.
Sometimes it seems to be a state of being...I have worked with, and will continue to work with, so many that sit in this shame. Shame that has been placed there and carried for years. Sometimes it is self inflicted and other times it is placed there by others.
The other day I was out and I heard a mother say to her daughter, a toddler, “shame on you”! The little girl was being a typical little girl who had sat too long and was antsy. She was bouncing in a restaurant booth, and was acting perfectly normal. And...she was told to feel shame.
Another mother, when finding out her teenage son had normal curiosity about the female body, and finding some sites to look at the female body, was told that he was being normal and curious, but that his shame should keep him from doing it anymore. In essence, “I can normalize what you are doing, but it’s shameful, so stop”.
In both these instances we are telling normal kids to feel shame for their normal behaviors. I think that it is important that parents realize the power of words ~ there is no shame in acting normal.