>familia

6:27 PM

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I realized today that there seems to be an undeniable link between the success of my relationships and the families of the men I have dated. The worst relationships I ever had always had the most dysfunctional families. What’s funny about it is thinking even further I’ve come to realize that those relationships failed because we took on the personas of those who raised us.

I come from a family that is proud, stubborn, resourceful, strong, and silent. As a family of artists we have our disagreements but they are handled in a smooth, calm manner. If one person gets worked up the other patiently waits for them to calm down before continuing, giving no second thoughts to anything said in the heat of the moment. We are close to each other, we trust one another, we help each other where and when ever we can.

I remember a time when I felt that my family was very dysfunctional, but over the years I have come to learn and appreciate that I got lucky enough to have a family that cares. I grew up being told I was loved, getting hugs, getting kisses, getting “just because” presents. I was allowed to express my feelings and I was listened to. In many ways I was “spoiled” – not to say that what they did was wrong, but that what they did was so unusual that it caused me problems later in life learning to adjust to the outside world which wasn’t nearly as loving or forgiving.

My family also is not blind to my personality and behavior. They will let me know when I’m wrong and let me know when I’m right. They carry no facades about who I am or what I am capable of doing. They can always tell when I’m lying. They always speak up.

I remember one relationship was with a guy that had what many people would call a dysfunctional family. This guy grew up with a cold, overbearing mother and an abusive father. In turn I found myself in a relationship with a cold, overbearing, and abusive guy. Another was with a guy that had a doting mother and absentee father – which in turn led to me finding myself in a relationship with a demanding and controlling guy. I remember one guy I dated had a mother that was so doting and controlling that he expected me to take her place by doting over and controlling him.

And now I find myself faced by someone that had much the same upbringing I did. Our relationship doesn’t suffer the stormy seas of conflicting interests, and I seriously believe this has something to do with the way we were raised. We were raised to be happy – and so we’re happy now. That’s not to say there’s never any conflict but when there is we know how to actually handle it in a non-destructive way. That’s not to say things never get heated but when they do we know to stop, cool down, and try again. Most importantly though we know how to love, trust, and believe in each other. Those are skills, not natural born traits or mystical occurrences. They are skills I believe are primarily taught to us by our families.

If I’m right and that is the case, then Brennan has a good head start on being in a happy relationship in the future. :)

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