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  • Writer's picturekellyharveylpc

Thoughts for Saint Patrick's Day

Updated: Mar 8, 2023

Luck of the Irish to you! Holiday seem to offer opportunities for understanding family dynamics in new ways. When we have been in therapy a while, we develop new awareness of helpful and unhelpful patterns, and these can really stand out when the family gets together. Some of the insights that I have heard in the past include:

  • "My family drinks a lot! Everyone gets wasted, and no one listens to each other."

  • "It doesn't matter what I say to my brother. There is no correct answer. If they are in "that" mood, I am going to be the target of abuse."

  • "It wasn't my fault. There was nothing I could have done to earn my parent’s love. They don't express love to anyone. It's not me."

  • "I did not deserve the abuse I endured as a child."

  • "I do not have to tolerate the abuse in my adult life, from my family or anyone else."

On the other hand, I have also heard:

  • "I am so lucky to be alive!"

  • "I have amazing friends/parents/partner!"

  • "I have come so far."

  • "Things have gotten so much better than I ever imagined they could."

It's important to acknowledge both the challenges and the joys that come with family dynamics, especially during a holiday season. It can be a time of reflection, growth, and healing. By recognizing and understanding our family patterns, we can work towards creating healthier relationships and breaking cycles of dysfunction. Whether it's setting boundaries, seeking therapy, or simply taking time for self-care, it's never too late to make positive changes in our lives. So here's to a happy and healthy holiday season, filled with love, growth, and new beginnings!

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