Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Home for the holidays

When the clan gathers for any occasions, you can be sure it is not going to be a peaceful affair. Learn the dynamics of navigating the family minefield and come out the better for it.

Reunions are a time when the individual identities of family members become secondary to the identity of the entire clan.

An extended family’s psychological health can be gauged by how happy its reunions are. Consider different situations.

There is an acceptance of differing stages of development and less comparison among peers.

Diversity in careers is encouraged. Many parents want their children to have a good, traditional, shirt and tie jobs in reputable companies. Hence, during reunions, some family members are bound to feel pressure when their jobs are socially unacceptable to the clan elders. This may happen to young people who have creative jobs, are in the arts, or nongovernment organizations, or are otherwise treading paths less travelled.

There are fewer expectations and less pressure on the younger generation.

Sometimes becoming upset during reunions may just signal that you are growing up to be a unique individual, different from the clan’s identity. Seeing the same people year in year out gives us the opportunity to master our personal wounds and move on.


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