Part of parenting means managing complicated relationships with your family. From lowering stress and accepting responsibility, to working with a therapist and being patient enough to hear your family members out, your parenting isn’t limited to keeping everyone happy. If your relationships with family members are less than ideal, approach the relationships by following these five steps.
Talk Out Problems Immediately
After an intense argument or period of silence, the temptation you might have is to let everything go and not discuss problems openly. This would be a mistake, as part of parenting means reducing tension in the household and making sure relatives and children aren’t burdened by conflict. Half of Americans are married, so it’s your responsibility to make sure your children feel the household is secure, that emotional burdens are talked about for improved wellbeing, and whatever issues are bothering people now, they can be resolved before too long. Keep the tension down in your household by double-checking to make sure everyone is okay, and offering to spend a little time with any family member can make everyone in the household feel a little less uncomfortable.
Work With a Therapist
Sometimes, your family’s mental health might be at risk, and for that reason, you may want to talk to a therapist. Families can benefit from therapists in many ways, whether that means working through marriage counseling, or family therapy with everyone involved. The idea is to employ a professional who has resources and training in dealing with mental health, stress management, and mediation opportunities. If you’re uncertain, realize that while your parenting skills may be in tip-top shape, sometimes, only a professional has the skills and experience to diagnose medical issues and help families improve their relationships at the same time.
Take Responsibility When You’re Wrong
Accepting responsibility when you make a mistake can go a long way toward eliminating resentment in the household. Ask yourself, are you parenting with the belief that everything you do is perfect, and every other family member is wrong? If so, you’re bound to feel a lot worse about yourself while increasing the strain within your relationships. Remember, domestic violence is an assault between 2 people who have a domestic relationship. Abuse and hurtful comments will either be a sign for you to move on or an opportunity for you to challenge them face-to-face with evidence of their immaturity. At the same time, you have to take the initiative and admit you’re wrong. Otherwise, you’re perpetuating tension in your own home.
Understand that you have to take the time to understand where your family members are coming from while learning to appreciate their experiences at the same time. One of the more notable findings by TRAC Immigration involves deportation cases of women and children. TRAC finds that only 1.5 percent of cases involving women and children who have established “credible fear” of returning to a country of origin are successful. This fact proves that you never know what someone is dealing with, even if that person is a member of your own family. While your family members might not be illegal immigrants, the point is that while all of your relatives may be living similar experiences, you can never know what your family is going through unless you’re willing to look at problems they’re having from their perspective. Improve your parenting skills today by learning to embrace problems that you can’t seem to understand, even if they don’t seem like a big deal.
You might have trouble resisting the urge to jump to conclusions, demand results, or get a response from your family members as soon as you want it. Understand that part of managing conflicts is learning to be patient with your family members. Did they make a mistake or forget to do something that really matters to you? Give them some time, and maybe you’ll see that you’re straining your relationships by pushing your family too hard. Do your children seem to be struggling with a problem but don’t appear to want to open up? Give them time and let them know you’re there for them, rather than rushing them to do what you want. As long as you’re patient with your family members, you’ll see that they express appreciation for you doing so, thus reducing the complications between family relationships.
You knew that parenting wouldn’t be easy, but you may not have thought about your relationships with your family members and realized they’re not as strong as you think. Instead of getting upset too quickly and deepening the divide between your family, learn to be patient and accept responsibility when it’s appropriate to do so. As long as you’re managing complicated family relationships, you can rest assured that your bond with your family will live on forever.