Everyone gets mad at their ex and almost everyone says negative stuff about their ex’s behavior or personality. Lots of people even do so while living in the same house together. It may be normal but it is no less destructive or hurtful. Think about these simple statements: “His father is a piece of crap (nice word inserted).” “Her mother doesn’t care about anyone but herself.” Now if you or your family spent years telling your child wonderful things like; “Oh my God, you look just like your father, you have your mother’s eyes” and even the classic; “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” then here is the possible childhood interpretation of the preceding pronouncements about their parents. “I’m just like my father so I must be ½ of a piece of crap too” and “since my mother doesn’t care about anyone she must not care about me, hence internalized as I’m worthless and unlovable.”
I’m not going to belabor these points, you get it. As a person who has spent 30 years of his life helping addicts and others with damaged self esteem I promise you that the mind of the modern child, who is taught genetics in elementary school, will interpret these careless character assassinations personally and take them quite to heart.
We all know anger is a negative emotion but it is also a destructive one. It gets on everybody in the room. I know you don’t want to intentionally hurt your child but are you protecting them from unrestrained momentary lapses in judgment? Are you protecting them from unbridled anger and resentment?
Let them keep the innocence of how they view their forefathers until they are required to face grown up issues. If they need to know something the best recommendation that I can make is to let someone impartial speak to them; a clergy, a counselor or even their elder siblings.
Love is more than a hug, a nice gesture or a smile; love is also sacrifice, so perhaps our sacrificing our anger and resentment to a time where it is actually productive is called for. If we still have this type of anger and if we cannot control it, perhaps we need some professional or spiritual help too.
Emmanuel S. John
Learn more @ addictioninthefamily.com
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