I grew up in a very dysfunctional family, and have been untangling the threads of my family's belief systems and behaviors for years in search of my own truths.
One of the hallmarks of dysfunctional families is secrecy, and I hope that by sharing my insights through this blog and my memoir, The Box of Daughter, I can help people learn how to cope with dysfunctional families, and offer insight and validation for others who may be involved in dysfunctional relationships.
We can only figure out what the problem is and how to change things when we shine the light of clarity and truth on the situation.
Blog Posts:Getting to the Heart of the Anger
The anger in our culture spills over into every aspect of our lives: road rage, bullying, domestic violence, warfare, corporate competition. Were not supposed to notice, let alone express our anger. But when it hides under the surface, it distorts and deforms our relationships, our careers, and our sense of who we are. It holds us back from getting what we want out of life.
For many years, I have carried a huge burden of anger. Emotionally abused by my parents, criticized and belittled until they passed away when I was 50, I spent years in therapy sorting through the negative messages Id received, and unearthing the foundation of my authentic self.
As I focused on the process of releasing my anger, over time I learned that anger is simply thwarted intention: when a child wants love, or needs to self-express, to have those intentions frequently blocked even by well-meaning parents creates a pile of frustration and anger in the bodymind which grows ever larger over time if its not expressed.
Children who are thwarted in their attempts to self-express often end up with depleted self-esteem, minimal motivation, and feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. In short, they grow up not knowing how to apply themselves with intention to create what they want in life. I sure know how that feels, and I imagine a lot of other people do, too.
When we begin to acknowledge and express our anger, the pile-up of negative feelings about self and the world starts to diminish, allowing new perspectives and possibilities which can generate positive changes in behavior. This is the way out of helplessness and hopelessness.
By following the thread of the anger back to its original source, and allowing the anger to express freely in a healthy manner, a seeker begins to understand why life appears to be the way it is (hint: we learn our worldview by mimicking someone elses, or we believe what they taught us about our selves and the world without investigating for ourselves whether its true or not).
When the source of the anger is understood and enough of the old feelings are released, the natural force behind the anger can be transmuted into intention. When the anger is fully expressed over time, the powerful energy that was used first to deny that it existed, then to facilitate its expression, still remains. This energy can be transformed into strength of purpose, power of intention to shape life the way we want it to be.
So, get angry! Punch that punching bag! Pound an old pillow! Find a healthy way to release your anger, and allow its energy to transform into intention, passion for what you believe in, enthusiasm for the adventure of seeking what you want. If you trust your body to release the stored-up energy in a natural way, then you can use it for a natural purpose creating a life that you love.
Read more about my experience in this Free Kindle book or my memoir, .What to Do When You Feel Stuck
Do you ever have the feeling that youre just mired in your life, slogging through one day at a time without getting anywhere, unable to move forward or make changes?
I can relate. Growing up in a very inflexible family system, I felt stuck for most of my adult lifea prisoner in the box of daughter, unable to change my circumstances or achieve what I most wanted.
Now I know the problem was that I didnt know how to contact the creative energy of the Universe. For many years, Id written and published books, played music, created art (even though its not my strong point), and worked with affirmations to create more of what I wanted in my life. So its not that I wasnt a creative person. The problem was that I didnt know how to use the energy around me when I was creating.
When we feel stuck, whats basically happened is that weve stopped creating. Weve just settled in one place, forgetting that we are really here to createthat its part of the purpose of life to create. So when we feel stuck, we need to reconnect with the energy of creatingmove into the belief that we can make changes, and focus on creating them.
Solutions for Dysfunctional Family Relationships: Couples Counseling, Marriage Therapy, Crosscultural Psychology, Relationship Advice for lovers, ... Unions and the Suicidal Family. (Volume 1)
Book (ANU Publishing)
Toxic Family: Learning to Cope, Setting Boundaries, and, Reclaiming Happines Amidst A Toxic Family (dysfunctional family, toxtoxic family, toxic parents, ... dysfunction, family relationships, family)
Adult Children and Disappointing Parents: Improving your Relationships, Setting Boundaries, Healing your Broken Heart (grown kids, dysfunctional families, ... boundaries, coping with mental illness)