A non-traumatizing childhood is rare in modern societies, because most parents do a bunch of things wrong. This is not necessarily their ‘fault’, since they live in system that is child-unfriendly and they themselves were raised by parents who passed on their own shit.
To foster a non-traumatizing childhood several things have to happen and several things should not happen.
The most important point is that the child should be wanted by the parents. The parents should want the child, as it is, in their lives. This is something very different from parents who say they want children, but upon closer examination they actually want the child in order to prove something. They want children not to give life to a new being, but to complete their shopping list for life. Job, marriage, house, two cars, dog, child.
The ease with which parents dump their babies in nurseries is shocking. The system forces them to, because the modern consumer culture requires both parents to work. Neither wants to sacrifice their career over a baby. It would be better not to have that baby then. Having a baby is the time and energy equivalent of working two full time jobs.
Until the age of 3 a child should be with its mother and be around a father as well. It takes a village to raise a child so ideally the child should be around several healthy adults. The trouble is that people do not live in groups anymore and healthy adults are very hard to come by.
Children should be received as joy. The parents should be genuinely happy to meet their child, to get to know their child. This is something else than imposing their blueprint for how the child should be according to them. The child should be accepted as it is. If two sports hating parents notice their child is very much into sports they should not try to manipulate the child into thinking sports are dumb and uninteresting. This will always backfire.
Children should never be beaten. To exclude a child as a form of punishment is particularly harmful, since it teaches the child that he or she needs to hide its needs and emotions in order to be accepted. Our world is now full of phony people who also lie to themselves, chase things that don’t make them happy (quite the contrary) and are basically slaves who seem (from the observer’s point of view) to willingly choose their enslavement. An enslavement to soulless jobs, food, materialism, superficial entertainment, porn, sex, body enhancement (tattoos), etc.
You could say many people in our culture are addicted to forms of self-expression, but without actually knowing themselves. Many people are constantly screaming ‘here I am, this is me!’, but ironically they do not see themselves.
This is because their parents did not see them and their parents did not see themselves either. It’s the blind leading the blind.
Of course a child should never be sexually abused. If parents sexually abuse their children is one of the biggest and most alarming symptoms of a damaged parent who himself or herself has not been able to deal with inflicted traumata. As a general rule people should not be having children until they have fully accepted themselves and have worked through their own trauma.
This is a lot to ask, since many people seem fine, say they are fine, but aren’t and would require quite a lot of therapy to actually be fine.
Children should grow up in the relaxed (!!) presence of caring parents who let the child explore the world and only interfere when things are about to go wrong. Parents are now either not present or stalk their children. We have these two extremes in our culture.
If a child cries it should be picked up. Until the age of three a child should always receive loving attention when it’s angry or crying.
Very little is required to give a child a non-traumatizing childhood. It’s not expensive. No high tech toys are needed.
All that is required are loving parents who have lots of time for their child and accept it as it is, do not beat it, do not send it ‘into exile’ when it does something wrong, do not sexually stimulate it in any way, and do not smother it.
Imagine how sick our society is that these simple requirements are so damn hard to fulfill these days.