I’ve written about disapproval. Is approval the offset, then?

Both the word and the concept are loaded and become interesting when in the hands of those we love.


  • blessing: the formal act of approving; “he gave the project his blessing”; “his decision merited the approval of any sensible person”
  • a feeling of liking something or someone good; “although she fussed at them, she secretly viewed all her children with approval”
  • acceptance as satisfactory; “he bought it on approval”
  • a message expressing a favorable opinion; “words of approval seldom passed his lips”

If I were to be asked about a person seeking approval or giving approval I would probably expound on the benefits of living to one’s own standards.  I might even throw in a sermonette on the joys of self-referral and the evils of looking to others for esteem.  After all, isn’t self-esteem what it’s all about?

But that would not honestly reflect my feelings.

I love it when I have your approval.  I bask in the sunshine of your words of approbation. And when I perceive that we agree, I wallow in it – although I can still be happy when we disagree.*

And I  get that you probably like my approval, too.  I have often said that I hope my children come to the place in life that they don’t seek my approval.  I think that is a realistic hope if you know that I love you no matter what you do.  That you have my overarching approval – always.

In many ways I know you as well as it is possible to know another human being.  I certainly know you better than you think I know you. And holding that knowledge I believe you to be a great person.  I admire you.  I love you.  I like you.  I approve of you.

Just don’t seek my approval.  Don’t change your mind for my acceptance.  Don’t change your actions looking for my love or affection.  You already have all of those things.

Live for your own soul.   I will do the same.

You have my blessing.


*Digression: Sometimes I love the fact that we disagree. I like the challenge of it and I love to think that maybe one (or both) of us is going to learn something.  Or perhaps we can reach that nirvana of “agreeing to disagree”.  Although, I secretly think that it takes “agreeing to disagree” with someone I already love in order for me to maintain approval of such an agreement.


Re – posted from August 19, 2016


  1. Having experienced disapproval and high expectations as a youngster and also having experienced approval and admiration for being an ugly duckling who finally becomes a swan, I can appreciate what you are conveying here.


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