I have a group of female friends-- Nancy, Sheila, Lynn, Susan, Kaikay. I call them the "sisters," they are people with whom I connected immediately and permanently. In one corner of my heart I believe that they are the lost sisters from my past lives. I never feel a need to seek approval or support from these women; it's a given. Friendship does not need to be sought, or affirmed, or renewed, or nurtured. It simply is.
And yet, despite having these strong connections, I find myself investing my emotional energy in seeking approval and affirmation from people who are never going to give it. My boss, in fact, every boss I ever had except for Susan and Lynn (who are each one of the sisters). I have a positive knack for finding bosses who are stingy with approval, or insecure about accepting input from subordinates. Or perhaps it's not that I have a knack for this, but that the sorts of people who seek administrative positions are people who thrive on this sort of petty bullshit, or who need the affirmation of the title to feel a sense of worth.
Probably this stems from some emotional need not met in my childhood. I'm constantly seeking praise from a father or mother figure, or something like that. Which makes me wonder what neuroses, what bad decisions based on misunderstood emotional needs, my kids will suffer?