Today I thought, as it is nearing Mother’s day on our little island, that I would write a bit about families. As you know there are a number of different families; immediate, distant, mixed, separated etc. but ultimately we nearly all have family whether we are close to them or never speak, they are always there.
From talking to my friends this weekend I have come to realise the emotional importance some people place on family relationships, even as adults many of us still crave the approval of parents or family elders. We want to know they are there to rely on, even though we are financially and emotionally independent, many of us with our own families. When this reassurance is not forthcoming we either decide to get on with our lives with out them or we try even harder to achieve their approval. This is not a bad thing, it’s what our society is built upon. I do feel that for some people out there, people who may never read this, may be trying too hard, accept the family you have for all of their traits and commonalities and then you can move on to be even more independent. That does not mean moving away from family emotionally, but accepting that they may never give the approval you crave, so find it some where else; your own children or your friends.
Alternatively there are the families that are so close, approval is not sought as it is given unconditionally, families where you know you can rely on them to get you through the day when things get tough, or you just need someone to shout at, and of course those families who accept everything that you are and don’t try to cover it up or look for excuses. Again this is not wrong, just different to the approach of families described previously.
My daughter asked me a few years ago why we don’t have a lot of people over for Christmas dinner. I explained that because of where we lived in comparison to her grandparents, aunt and uncle it wasn’t a realistic idea, I then asked her if she really wanted to spend Christmas day with her cousins. After some thought she decided that she liked Christmas the way it was, me her brother and herself. Although she still secretly wants a big family Christmas!
So what ever family you have, be grateful for what and who they are, it’s the easiest way of managing the stress that families can cause. For my family I consider it to be me, my partner, my kids, his daughter and a friend who visits regularly. For you it may be different but that’s OK
Keep smiling and remember Behaviour Matters
Thanks for reading