Family Dysfunction Can Lead to Alienation
Every day, hundreds of family ties are severed, mostly due to a lack of understanding or communication. How do we come to grips with such a sad outcome and live a happy and peaceful life with animosity and unsettled emotions hanging over our heads?
If you’re a parent, think about the long-term consequences before allowing anger, judgment, or a grudge against your adult child (or any relative) to ruin your relationship forever. Think about the effects of these negative actions and how the behaviors of today will impact other family members and future generations for years to come. Is this the legacy you want to leave behind for others to remember you? My hope is the answer is “no.”
Adverse reactions can have a harrowing and lifelong effect on your child, and others within the family as people generally feel forced to choose sides. What is the point of such reactions and behaviors? Is the sake of being right, controlling, or wishing to guilt your adult child worth the long-term agony it causes?
Instead, try taking the high road and let go of your inner narcissist. Instead, offer a listening ear and allow your adult child to make his or her own decisions. Then, do your best to support whatever those decisions are, even if you disagree. It takes a strong will, a conscious effort, and dedication to your child not to make knee-jerk reactions you may forever regret. Being a supportive parent is the best gift you can give your child.