The Effects of Dysfunctional Families
Self-destruction of the Mind Many children grow up in dysfunctional families and in order to know what a dysfunctional family is, we have to understand how it operates. No family is perfect and disagreements, bickering and yelling are normal. But the word we are looking for here is “balance”. This is exactly what dysfunctional families’ lack, whether parents are controlling, deficient, alcoholic or abusive, they have an adverse, long term effect on the children even long after they have grown up and left home. Many of these adults from dysfunctional families often feel inadequate and incomplete.
They have difficulty with intimate relationships and often develop compulsive behaviors and addictions, being self-destructive in their own mind. Let us consider a family that is too controlling, where parents are over dominating and do not allow their children simple fun and deny them of their independence. These parents continue to make decisions and control their children even at an age where it is unnecessary. So growing up and learning to be independent can be difficult, a feeling of anger and resentment may present itself.
Transition into adulthood poses some struggle to these adults who often feel unsure of themselves and guilty because they feel as though they are disobeying their parents by making their own decisions. Let us take a look at the other extreme where parents are deficient in their roles and are not present in the rearing of their children. These parents leave their children to often fend for themselves which forces them to grow up too fast. Taking on adult responsibilities to make up for the parental inadequacy, these kids ignore their feelings and often grow up not knowing how to show emotion.
They find it difficult to form and maintain intimate relationships, they fear getting close to others for fear of abandonment. They often develop a sense of helplessness and blame themselves for the absence of their parents. Whether there is too much parental discipline or a lack of guidance, children growing up without this balance often fear badly. And when alcohol, drug abuse and abusive behavior on the parents part is thrown in, this can be very damaging to these children all through their life. This kind of environment strikes terror in these children, they feel afraid to make mistakes and often live on the edge of fear.
Abused children feel anger, frustration and are usually insecure. They do not feel comfortable at home and never voice their opinions. They do not trust easily and find it hard to maintain relationships. Adults grown up from alcoholic and abusive families develop all these negative character traits and often never grow out of them. Children of alcoholics and drug abusers are at much higher risk for developing substance abuse than are children in healthy families. Therefore, unfortunately many of these adults create their own pattern of compulsive behavior and addictions.
The effects of dysfunctional families are long term and most times these children are robbed of their childhood. Whether families are over functioning by not allowing children breathing room to think for themselves or under functioning by neglecting the needs of their kids, these families are inconsistent and lack the proper balance of discipline and freedom. As a result these children grow up with trouble maintaining positive self-esteem, they often blame themselves for the dysfunctions in the family and this feeling of helplessness and unworthiness carries on throughout their adulthood.
They struggle with trust and intimate relationships and sadly some fall into the pit of alcoholism and drug abuse. These children are victims and these negative self-images they have of themselves causes them to become self-destructive in their own mind. With positive thinking and the correct mindset and with the right help they can overcome these difficulties. References Bentont, S. (1993). www. k-state. edu. Retrieved from http://www. k-state. edu/counseling/topics/relationships/dysfunc. html Bohli, E. (2012). Symptoms of adults from dysfunctional families. Retrieved from http://www. erikbohlin. net/Handouts/Coming_from_dysfunction. pdf