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How do you treat your family?
By anon16
4/4/2012 11:56:15 AM
I've been pondering a lot about my family. We have the spirit of contention a lot. I
Am trying to understand better what I can do, so that it isn't there. Is it normal for a father to get upset, or do a lot of men just hold it in? And is it generally the wife that gets upset easily?

I'm trying to understand. What's normal. What isn't, so I can be as good as possible. I want to be a good mom, and part of it is understanding what I need to change now.

Comments:

Anger    
"In the midst of my addiction, I was angry a lot. I didn't really understand why until I started to experience sobriety. Most addicts don't love themselves, so they can't love anyone else. Nobody measures up."
posted at 13:28:33 on April 4, 2012 by chefdalet
Well I would hardly call my family normal...    
"Haha I think my family is super weird but I love them. And if you asked me right now who my best friends are, I'd say my family. It wasn't always like this. I was an angry addict. I did everything I could to be away from home. I thought my dad was a tyrant and my mom was just some angry lady who cried all the time. All of my siblings were angry at each other and trying to get out of the house. Except for my little angel of a sister who would just hide in her room and cry about how she wanted everyone to get along. We were all nice to her. She was innocent. Everyone else was guilty in our eyes. We would point out each others faults.

The funny thing is, nobody outside of our family knew there was even contention. But anyways, that all changed. My oldest brother began have better relationships with each of us. The main thing I remember him doing was he would stop arguing. He just didn't argue. Now the rest of us argued. A lot. And I don't remember me having good relationships until I changed.

So often we focus on the disappointed spouse or the angry father. But we can only change the things that we can change. It's the serenity prayer thing. Wisdom to know the difference between what you can and can't change.

I couldn't change that my dad argued or that my mom was clinically bipolar. I couldn't change that my little brother said hurtful things. I couldn't change them. All I could change was me.

I could be a better daughter. I could not argue with my parents, even when I felt cheated. I could do my chores without them asking. In fact, I could ask what more chores they needed me to do. I could be a better sister. I could go to my brother's sporting events to cheer him on, even if he was rude to me. I could play dolls with my little sister on a Friday night, even when my friends wanted to hang out. I could improve my relationships.

So to answer your 2 questions, my dad gets upset and I consider that normal. Not healthy, but normal. And my mom gets upset easily. Not healthy but normal.

But the question I have for you is not how can you change them. It's how can you be a better daughter? I'm not saying you are a bad daughter. But how can you be better? They might be angry or upset, but how are you going to react to that? Is your reaction going to be respect and honor, like Christ commanded? Is your reaction going to be love?

In my opinions, the best moms are made out of the best daughters. Because they have understanding. Because they realize that parents and children aren't perfect. Because they react with love and respect. If you can react with love and respect to your parents when they act with anger, you will be prepared for the years of motherhood when your children are constantly angry at you. Because let's be real, most of us kids go through that phase. haha.

Ok, that's my rambling."
posted at 15:07:22 on April 4, 2012 by iamstrong
What is normal?    
"I dont think the normal family is actually very healthy. You may be asking 2 different questions.

In my current family -When I was in full on addict mode, I "thought" I didnt have a temper but my family saw it differently. I would snap into a rage at inanimate objects and break things. I would lose patience with kids ocassionally but it would be really rough when I did. I rarely ever yelled at my wife though -for some reason I have a big core belief to never raise voice at her. Wierd.

I also notice that we arent very good at sharing feelings, or talking very much about regular stuff. Our dinner table is quiet. We tend to blame each other. I noticed that my kids also struggle with blaming and require retribution for everything.

As an addict I never felt worthy enough to fix the problems because I would feel like a hypocrit. Im trying to change that now.

Growing up, my mother would verbally abuse me every day. I knew she loved us but she really took it to us with verbal abuse - I was an idiot, good for nothing, lazy, just like my father, worthless, stupid, over and over and over and over. I never did anything right while my mother was a perfectionist. She would compare us siblings to each other -- dont be stupid like he is. I was craving positive reinforcements from her and never got much of it. Yet my mother now tels everyone how great I am. go figure. A tiger mom?

She was also phyically abusive too until I got bigger than her and could take away her beating stick.

All of that and my father was the bishop and we had a "normal" LDS family. "
posted at 16:29:14 on April 4, 2012 by Hurtallover
Insanity    
"What’s normal? Most addicts are pretty screwed up and most of us got that way in the homes we came from. I tried to make improvements, but I was still pretty messed up. I told myself that I would never hit my kids WITH something. I felt that at least if I spanked them with my hand I would know how hard I was hitting them. I even thought I was following D&C 121:43 “Reproving betimes with sharpness; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love…” It wasn’t until after I started getting my head screwed on straight that I ever realized it actually says, “Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost…” I so often “disciplined” in a fit of rage. I have punched holes in just about every home I have lived in since I got married. I am really trying to let my Savior develop a “new normal” in me as far as family relationships. He is the ultimate guide in how to treat each other. Unfortunately we usually treat our immediate family worse than anyone else. It should be the opposite. I saw two girls who look like friends walking down the street one day and one ( the tallest) of them was verbally abusing the other. I couldn’t believe that someone would treat their friend like that, and then I thought, “Maybe they are sisters. “ Then it seemed OK! My hope is that someday I will treat my family as good as I do the strangers who walk into a 12 Step meeting I’m attending."
posted at 16:50:26 on April 5, 2012 by justjohn


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"As Latter-day Saints, we need not look like the world. We need not entertain like the world. Our personal habits should be different. Our recreation should be different. Our concern for family will be different. As we establish this distinctiveness firmly in our life’s pattern, the blessings of heaven await to assist us."

— Robert D. Hales

"Gifts of the Spirit" Ensign, Feb. 2002