Tuesday, July 12, 2011

When family isn’t supportive of your hopes and dreams… or just YOU.

Portrait by Sølve Sundsbø
via le coil

I consider myself to be really blessed. I have faith in a higher power; in God. And I have the imagination to come up with dreams and the determination to see them made real.

I count myself as blessed because of many things, but two of my greatest blessings are the love and support I receive from my Mother and Husband. Although I have quite a large family, I’d have to say I truly depend on those two; if I’m a dream weaver, they are my dream believers!

I won’t go into the unsupportive words and actions that can rear their ugly heads in familial relations, but I will take a moment to try and explore the root of being unsupportive…when dealing with someone of your blood.

I think being un-supportive comes from:

1. Fear- They fear that you’ll fail. They fear that you’ll succeed. They fear the unknown.

2. Jealousy- They’re jealous that they weren’t able to try, or go further with their own dreams. They’re jealous because they don’t even remember what it’s like to have dreams.

3. Ignorance- They think that their way, their ideas, their desires, are the only ones that truly count and they refuse to go beyond their own viewpoint

4. Obliviousness/Insensitivity- They don’t see or understand that their rude comments hurt your feelings. “Why should they hurt? If you weren’t so weird, then you’d agree me.”

5. Immaturity- They are unable to step back and look at the big picture, but instead fight to be right or to assert their own misbegotten righteousness.

6. Cruelty- They know they’re hurting you and they just don’t care

I had to deal with an insensitive relative today. It’s not that this person doesn’t love me, it’s just that they think that I should think exactly the way they do. And when I don’t think the way they prefer, they call me names and belittle my ideas.

Not a sign of maturity.  But I don’t think maturity is gained through years on Earth, but rather we become mature by…actively growing in mind, thought, and emotion.

I’ll tell you the truth, I was angry with this person.

But then I reflected on their life, on their stresses, their medical conditions, their general outlook on life, their refusal to reach for more, their inability to care for themselves but to stubbornly care for others, I became sad and also came to the conclusion that while we may not see eye to eye, I love this person and they love me. They ridicule me and they don’t understand me. They hurt my feelings.

But after reflection, I’ve decided not to take their actions personally. I just think this person has some more growing to do.

And maybe I can help them … and our relationship… by being mature and understanding and by trying to set a good example.

How do you handle un-supportive family and/or friends?

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