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Reality 101: Dysfunctional Families

Remember watching reruns of shows like ‘The Brady Bunch’ when you were little and thinking that’s how all families were supposed to be– all happy and close together? When I was younger, I thought my entire family was supposed to live in this huge house, eat dinner together, play games, watch movies, and other things. Well, in reality, it’s the complete opposite. Don’t get me wrong, there are families who still do those things, but they’re becoming more rare. A lot of families are dysfunctional. They can’t even get together for a BBQ without arguing and fighting about something that happened in the past.

There are many different ways to describe what exactly a dysfunctional family is. In my opinion, it depends on what you’ve been through or what you’ve witness between your own family or another family. My definition of a dysfunctional family is one that is toxic and abusive towards each other. I’m basing this definition off of personal experience as well as what I’ve witnessed.

Some families don’t even greet each other. They treat each other like outsiders, jealous of other family members who make more money than them, pressure other family members about their love life, they even verbally abuse each other. Rather than talking out their problems, they don’t acknowledge the situation, they’ll stop talking to you for months to years, never apologize, and even turn to physical violence– fighting.

So, what are some ways to help a member of a dysfunctional family? They are the following:

  1. See a therapist. It’s very hard to deal with the emotional toll of a dysfunctional family alone. …
  2. Allow yourself to feel angry. Many people feel they must forgive or let go of bad behavior. …
  3. Work on expressing your emotions. …
  4. Learn to trust others. …
  5. Take good care of yourself.

Our families are our first interactions with people. We learn how to communicate with others through family. So let’s try to get functional families back. It’s the summer, go out and have fun with your family.



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