Problems with families

I personally don’t believe there is such a thing as a perfect family. If there was, we’d all be the first in the queue to be a part of one.

As hard as we try we don’t always get the family thing right. We know when there is a fundamental breakdown of relationships because of the lack of support. In any event, the buck stops with us.

We can’t change others, we can only change the way we perceive others so that we learn to communicate with them in a way that benefits us. We know if we’re growing up in a family with the right positive support.

We see enough in our childhood to know the difference between a loving and caring family and a family that is less than. Unfortunately, the odds are that we will have picked up traits subconsciously along the way from our family. That’s a given.

How do we cope in a dysfunctional family?

Our first job is to recognise those signs so that we take away the dysfunctional traits we’ve picked up along the way. We need to work out what we can do to improve things. By getting rid of some of the emotions, tendencies or bad behaviour that we have inherited, should make us better people.

I don’t believe we need to continue to live like other family members if we choose not to. The choice is always ours. We also need to accept that whilst we make those changes, it doesn’t guarantee our family will make those changes too. In an ideal world, it would be great if certain family members would change too.

It would certainly make our lives easier. That they would want to change, but we cannot make them change if they don’t want to. They would have to decide for themselves. Dysfunctional families are as the word says, dysfunctional.

They’re real and they exist, but individually we must always try to do better.

To be cont.d/2

15 Feb, 2011

6 thoughts on “Problems with families

  1. We learn unfortunately some times from our parents. My father learned a lot of his behavior from his father who was not the best role model.

    I luckily took most of my lessons from my dear mother who was kind and caring. She taught me how to treat people and I thank God every day for her wise ways.

    She was so smart, but then again she learned those lessons from her own parents who were wonderful, kind, caring and loving people.

    1. Some of our parents’ dysfunctional ways, are often what we take away with us from our childhoods.

      It is lovely that you had at least one positive influence in your life, coming from your mother. I am sure you will have lots of cherished memories there.

  2. I believe any ‘family unit’ is inherently predisposed to problems as we all bring our baggage with us.

    Recognising the baggage is the first step to trying to sort out those issues, which of course is easier to say than to do.

  3. I agree with you. It’s a learned thing and inherent too. But we can change it just as you say. We just have to want to bad enough.

    I know my daughter lived in a dysfunctional family for the first 2 years of her life and to get her to change now is like pulling teeth. She has to want to change it herself and I can’t do anything, but try to be a positive influence on her.

    I really don’t think my family was dysfunctional, we just had difficulties because of my diabetes. I had a good childhood. My family did things together and It was fun, especially working the garden in the summertime. It was a family thing. I was blessed.

    I then married someone who came from a terribly dysfunctional family and I tried to change him but couldn’t because he didn’t want to change.

    I suffered some abuse and finally had enough and thought about my daughter growing up in it and took off and filed for divorce. But she was already hurt by the abuse on me.

    1. I think we all have dysfunctional traits Lisa. It’s the nature of families.

      Reading about the problems between your mother and daughter in my last journal, makes me think that you were not completely free of dysfunctional problems back then.

      I also believe we don’t always recognise the signs, so never see them for ourselves.

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