6 Mistakes That Destroy Family Relationships

09 November, 2018
We must never forget that our parents and siblings are the only ones who will be there forever, no matter what happens. This is why it's so important to strengthen these special family relationships.

Family relationships should be your primary source of love, understanding, acceptance and support.

Unfortunately, there are many families whose relationships fail disastrously. This can break up the family bond and leave everyone feeling uncomfortable.

In order to figure out the reason, the first thing you need to do is find the root of the problem. Then you’ll be able to look for possible solutions.

Below we’ll go over 6 mistakes that can destroy family relationships before you even realize it.

1. Insults and criticism can destroy family relationships

Couple arguing

Words have power, and although it might not seem like it, they can cause a lot of damage and scar people for life.

Your family should be your source of support and encouragement which is why negative comments are so damaging in family relationships.

Many times in the heat of an argument, things are thoughtlessly said. This can usually be overlooked because it was said as a result of the intensity of the situation.

The problem is that this can leave open wounds in relationships between family members.

It’s important to avoid these types of situations because they take such a long time to heal. It’s better to stick to the old saying, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

If you have to something to say, it’s better to talk in a calm manner in order to be constructive, rather than to attack others.

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2. Gossip

Gossip, in all cases, is really damaging. It usually happens when you’re upset about something that has to do with the person you’re gossiping about.

Gossiping may make you feel better temporarily, but it won’t solve the problem. On the contrary, it reflects on your character and makes the other person lose trust in you.

The gossip will likely cause family members to takes sides. This only leads to further division within the family. You should discuss the problem in private with the person you’re having the disagreement with.

Calmly talk about the issues that are causing the tension, the reasons behind them and possible solutions to reconciliation.

If you can do this, you’ll strengthen the bond between the two of you.

3. Being exclusive

Including everyone is essential for the unity of the family itself. It’s important to make sure you include every family member in making decisions. This way they’ll feel included and truly part of the family.

When a family member is left out, this leads to feelings of inferiority and resentment.

If you’re throwing a party or planning a trip, invite everyone in your family. It’s up to them whether they decide to participate or not.

Helping everyone feel important is truly essential in family relationships.

After all, a family without any members isn’t a family.

4. Deception and lies

Woman watching her boyfriend cheat

Deception in any relationship is destructive. Sometimes it can take years, and even generations, for a lie to come out.

Remember that, in the end, the truth always prevails.

If you can’t be honest with your family, then who can you be honest with? Lying to family or even hiding little things takes it’s toll on relationships. This is because trust has been violated.

The bigger the lie, the greater the damage. Remember, your actions have consequences, both for you and those around you.

It’s best to recognize your mistakes and work with your family to repair the damage.

Being honest with your family shows them that you respect them.

5. Intolerance of differences

When you’re growing up, you live by your parents’ rules. Both you and your siblings receive the same discipline and guidance. However, this does not mean that you’re exact copies of each other.

Living under the same roof does not mean that you have to share the same opinions, political views, or even religious beliefs, for example.

Everyone needs to be able to accept the opinions, tastes and preferences of other family members.

If you’re constantly finding yourself in conflict with others and their differences, then you’ll end up damaging relationships between you and your family.

Accepting people as they are, for who they are is one of the many forms of love.

6. Not forgiving or asking to be forgiven

Family members hugging

Sincere apologies are a powerful glue in family relationships. No one is perfect, and even the best of families have arguments.

Words as simple as “I’m so sorry for…” can create strong family ties.

The message you send out when you apologize is that you care for the other person and don’t want there to be any hard feelings between the two of you.

You should read:

 Forgive and Let Go of the Past

It’s so important for family members to remember they need each other.

Also, holding grudges does nothing more than cause more damage. It’s important to learn to forgive and ask for forgiveness to strengthen family relationships.

  • Aquilino, W. S. (2006). Family relationships and support systems in emerging adulthood.