God put a design in place when He created families.
He planned that children would NEED nurturing and input from their parents to grow into healthy adults, who would in turn be able to give that healthy nurturing and input to their children. This is as much for the health of the adult provider as it is for the survival and thriving of the next generation.
There is still a lot of research happening in this field, but there is already ample results to show that children NEED this.
Children NEED healthy physical touch.
Children NEED healthy boundaries.
Children NEED modeling of healthy interactions.
Children NEED modeling of healthy relationships.
Children NEED all of these as much as they need food and shelter and protection.
It is how God designed it to work.
So what happens when this breaks down?
What happens when the parent is not able or willing to provide what the child needs?
Those needs often go unmet.
Children whose needs for these are not being met act out in an attempt to have their needs met.
They "misbehave" in school.
They show that they are not getting positive attention at home, or that they don't know how to develop relationships, or how to maintain relationships, or that they don't understand boundaries.
They have a longing for something they cannot put into words because it is not something they have ever experienced, but innately they know that there is something missing.
And when those children grow up, what happens then?
Unhealthy physical touch.
Unhealthy coping mechanisms - drugs, alcohol, serial relationships, workaholism, adrenalin junkies, overeating, shopping addictions, etc.
The longing for having this modeling doesn't go away, though there is an expectation that they act as if they have it together, because, after all they are adults.
Some of us DO learn ways of coping.
Some of us are better at picking up on behavioral expectations than others...just because we may *look* like we have it together does not mean we were ever EVER taught any of it.
Lesson: Do not assume that an adult who looks "put together" doesn't still have a need for nurturing and/or discipleship.