Being The Problem.

20 Apr 2016

I was watching a program on television about a family being helped by a pyschologist. Most members of the family felt one person, the teenage son, was causing all the problems due to his behaviour.

Instead of identifying with the parents I found myself sympathising with the the son, the one whose disruptive behaviour made it hard for everyone.

That was a long time ago, but as I watched more, I found myself back in time when no one wanted to invite me anywhere as they didn't know who would turn up - silent sad Leah who would sit like a lump of lead and mope or wild Leah who was so unpredictable and talked so fast and so much that it was exhausting just listening to her. My family would feel like they were walking on eggshells if manic Leah turned up and even though sad Leah was like a damp cloth to any party, she was far preferable to tornado Leah.

When I was high I thought I brightened up family gatherings with my witty conversation and my engaging stories, I had no comprehension that no one could understand half of what I said and they found my behaviour very strange, frustrating and at times confronting. I could go from being sweet to being so argumentative and hostile, that my family thought I may hurt someone.

The program made me cry because I thought of the discomfort and emotional agony I put my family through nearly 40 years ago. I wanted to hug both the parents and the son because I could feel the pain and frustration of both.

At the time I had no idea of what my family was feeling or coping with. Even if I did know I would have had no understanding. I would have found their concerns so simple and petty as I felt so superior.

I was sick but I chose to be in denial. I was reminded of how much chaos my behaviour caused my family and friends.

I am proud I have come a long way since then. I know I should not dwell on the difficult past, but by exploring past actions it is possible to see how changes in behaviour have had a positive effect on relationships.

What is one thing you have changed in your behaviour that has resulted in positive results?


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