Not everyone is lucky enough to grow up in a loving and supportive family. When something goes wrong, and the family is not a healthy and supportive learning environment for the child, then it can be considered dysfunctional. A dysfunctional family can take many shapes and forms, ranging from relatively benign neglect to emotional and physical violence. The results of a dysfunctional family can range from children being stronger and better off to outright destroying a child’s potential and adulthood.
If you identify as a person who is either in currently or has come from a dysfunctional family, then you may be wondering if you will ever be normal. Lets take a look at this question, and review some tried and true methods for coping with a dysfunctional family.
While You Are A Kid
If you are currently underage in a dysfunctional family, then you have only one goal, survive. Depending on the nature of your family, you should probably leave home once you finish high school. Get out of the situation as soon as you can and help take care of any siblings you may have who are in the same situation as you. This may mean having to be an adult when you are still a kid.
When You Are An Adult
Many children who come from dysfunctional families feel rushed when they are on their own. The best coping you can do is to give yourself time. Give yourself years to work through your experience, and allow yourself to feel what happened. Only be re-experiencing and settling these emotions and feelings will you be able to move on as a fully integrated and healthy adult. To that extent, stop being judgmental of yourself and immediately stop blaming yourself for what happened in your dysfunctional family.
Work Through Old Behaviors And Thoughts
Destructive thinking, self-loathing, fear, anxiety, and much more are the hallmarks of a dysfunctional family. Many of these things will stay with us for the rest of our lives. These thought tendencies have to be addressed by you. Take the time to understand them, see how they are influencing your life, and work beyond them.
Remember Who You Are When You Go Back
We all become kids again when around our parents. The same is true for people coming from dysfunctional families. It is very easy to re-enter the mindset you were in when growing up. By taking the time to better understand yourself and work on coping mechanisms, you can separate yourself from the dysfunction and learn more about your own pain when you go back. With this in mind, past dysfunction can become an incredible learning tool for overcoming, coping, and succeeding in life.