What to do about family?


I hope this is the right forum......... there's a lot of arguing going on in my family on an almost daily basis. How can I deal with it without having a nervous breakdown? :( are there any good ways to handle family problems in general? I try to pray, but I get upset, and really worried for my family... I don't know how common this is, but I don't know anyone with family problems like mine. I deal with a lot of anxiety. My parents don't want to live together, it seems, but they do for financial reasons. There's a lot of yelling, fighting, cursing, etc, They never talk normally to each other. Sometimes I don't know how much more I can take of it. I really wish things were different, and I really wish my family could find peace. I try to help, but I get really sad and upset, and then I get yelled at because I look sad all the time. I wish I could control it better. I guess I'm just looking for some encouragement and prayers..


Hi Angelwings, I am sorry for your despair. :mad: Is there perhaps an adult outside of your family that you can confide in? Maybe a priest or nun, or a guidance counselor or teacher or coach? Sometimes talking to someone not involved in the situation can be very helpful. . . Maybe you can also think about what things make YOU happy, and try to find ways to work them into life, more often. Being involved in activities might also help to keep you busy, distracted, etc. Keeping your eyes on the long term goal of building a healthy, happy you is always important. Prayers for you tonight!:angel1:


You get yelled at for looking sad? You wish you could "control it better"? Oh, dear one, you need some help, and from someone who can look into your eyes.

You cannot control your parents, let alone control them better than you do now. God gave us all free will, so the only real healthy control open to us is self-control. Although it may be possible that you are capable of manipulating your parents, that is such a mutually-damaging way to go that I would argue strongly against it, even if you could do it. There is no real peace in manipulating others.

I would suggest two things. First, and by far the most important: Find a trustworthy adult to help you, preferably two or three who will work together on your behalf, even if that is simply to listen to what you are going through. Remembering that there is a limit to how much anyone can change your struggle right now, if the first one you try is no help, then keep looking, through the next one and the next one after that and the next one after that, as long as it takes. You need the guidance of an adult who has self-control, a sense of peace within himself or herself, and a relationship with the Lord. I cannot emphasize this too much.

The second thing that you can do is to learn to skills it takes to navigate unhealthy family politics. This doesn't mean smooth sailing. You are in a storm, and there is nothing you can do about that directly. You can learn the means of getting through the storm without sinking or running up on the rocks. This takes more than bravery and soundness. It takes some skills, but these are skills that can be taught. They could be your key to the best actual relationship with your parents that you have open to you, for a lifetime. Just learning that the storm is not your doing, that there is only so much that "seamanship" can do, that alone may help more than you can imagine.

You might try books, like Melody Beattie's Co-dependent No More. Libaries often have these. It doesn't matter if no one in your family abuses alcohol and drugs. If your parents are manufacturing family dramas on a daily basis in the hopes of getting what they want, then learning how to navigate these rough waters in a healthy way could be a huge help for you. If there is alcohol or drug abuse in the equation, then try Ala-Teen. Most of all, though, find an adult to talk to on both an emergency and a regular basis. Do not try to navigate the anxiety and strain of a severe and ongoing strife between your parents alone.

May God bless you and guide you. Try these prayers, to remind where peace can and cannot be found:

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will direct your paths.
*Proverbs 3, 5-6 *

The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.

--Reinhold Niebuhr


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