Daughter covers ears while parents fight

How To Deal With Dysfunctional Family Members

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive compensation (at no additional cost to you) if you make a purchase using a link.Read my full disclosure.

 

What is a Dysfunctional Family

A dysfunctional family is a family in which conflict, misbehavior is normal. And often child neglect or abuse on the part of parents occur regularly. leading other members to accommodate such actions. Children sometimes grow up in such families with the understanding that such an arrangement is normal.
 

Managing Dysfunction

Dealing with a dysfunctional family is never an easy task. And takes a toll on your health, both physically and mentally. Dysfunctional family members often build up to unhealthy emotional turmoil and stress.
A get together with dysfunctional family members can be an unfavorable experience. Managing conflicts amongst the members become a pretty difficult task. Individuals who are victims need to know that all families are not perfect. They are not there to offer support. If you are a part of one such dysfunctional family, stand strong and learn to deal with the situation. Before we can understand the various ways to deal with the situation. Let us have a look at the various types of dysfunctional families.

Types of dysfunctional families

Some of the examples of dysfunctional families include the following:
  • Addiction. Either one parent or both have strong addictions towards drugs, alcohol, or gambling. which strongly influences the family well being.
  • Possession. One or both the parents consider their children to be their possessions. They feel that they can exploit physically, emotionally and also financially.
  • Ideology. Parents have a strong hold over children. the belief that guides an individual, social movement, institution, class, or large group.
  • Violence. One or both the parents show physical or mental violence. When children witness all types of drama right from a tender age they continue to live in fear of physical and mental violence into adult age.
  • Pacification. When one or both parents reward bad behavior in one child. And punish another child’s good behavior to maintain peace and avoid conflict.
The above types of families are just a few examples of dysfunctional families. There may be individual variations within the families. And also the degree of dysfunction may also differ to a great extent.

Simple tips to deal with dysfunctional family members

Learning to live with dysfunctional family members and yet lead a healthy life is not easy. But, you can certainly master the art. Here are certain simple steps to help you deal with dysfunctional family members.
  • Don’t expect a positive response.  

    This is the rule of thumb to help you effectively deal with dysfunctional family members. You need to give up all types of positive expectations. This is actually the basic nature of any type of dysfunctional family. No matter what you do, you will get the blame and accused of your efforts and actions. Therefore, do not expect anything positive from your dysfunctional family or loved ones.

  • Keep calm.  

    It is necessary to keep calm when you are in a conversation with your family member or someone close to you. However, this is easier said than done. It is not always possible to keep calm if your history with your loved one is that of a negative nature. Furthermore, it is necessary that you practice some relaxation techniques to keep calm. Taking deep breaths before engaging in a conversation is also helpful.

  • You cannot change your family.  

    You need to realize the universal truth that it is not possible for you to change your family members. Their thoughts, views, thinking, their way of communicating, will not change. Once you realize this, you will be in a better position to deal with your dysfunctional family member.

  • Think before you speak.  

    Many a normal family discussions may take a sudden unfavorable turn. Family members may start yelling and the environment may suddenly become unfriendly. To avoid this, don’t participate in the discussion at all and avoid accusing other people. Yet, it does not mean that you cannot voice your opinions and become a part of constructive criticism. But you have to realize that your opinions and criticism may not always be taken on a positive note.

  • Keep things civil as far as possible.  

    You have to understand that conversations cannot always be friendly. Be an active participant in an unhealthy conversation can ask for more problems. Always maintain your cool. And make conscious efforts to take the conversation in a positive direction. As much as possible, try your best to be civil and keep your tone soft.

Additional tips

  • Walk away when things get out of control.  

    It may so happen that even after trying hard, things may not turn for the better. Discussions may turn into accusations and yelling starts. You may try to direct the discussions to more constructive and positive one. But unfortunately, dysfunctional family members simply do not want this to happen. Therefore, when things don’t seem to work for you, feel free to walk away.

  • You cannot please everyone.  

    It is almost impossible to keep everyone happy. Trying to achieve this, will only be a cause of more and more stress.

  • Set boundaries.  

    You need to tell yourself the difference between what you want and what others want from you. Do you wish to obey each and every command of your family member, even if it means putting your needs last?  Once you can answer this question. You will be able to avoid getting exploited. In addition, you also need to understand the difference between what you want to do and what others want you to do. Once you get this clarity, it will be easier for you to draw a boundary wall around yourself. In order that you don’t fall easy prey to the demands of your dysfunctional family members.

  • Do not feel guilty.  

    Not every situation is in your control. You are not the only person responsible for clearing up all the problems. You cannot always be there to rescue them and fix their problems every time.

  • Accept help.  

    You are not a superhero and you do not have a solution to all the problems. It is better to ask help from people or other members of the family, whom you consider to be functional enough. Talk to them and ask for their help and support.

 

Dysfunctional family members can create problems from even the smallest of things. It is not that they cannot change; they can, but it is they who have to decide that they want to change.  With the above tips, you will be in a better position to deal with dysfunctional family members.
Daughter covers ears while parents fight|How To Deal With Dysfunctional Family Members

1 thought on “How To Deal With Dysfunctional Family Members

  1. It’s really a nice and helpful piece of info. I’m glad that you shared this useful information with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

Leave a Comment