Difficult Relatives: Avoid or Engage?
We all have that one – at least one. The family member who pushes our buttons, challenges our foundation of self-worth or causes us to question our path. The holidays amp up the emotional repercussions of such relationships. Sometimes it feels hopeless, as if we’d be better off alone at home with a pint of Ben & Jerry’s.
I’ve had Akashic clients offer many reasons for avoiding family at the holidays. They say it feels hypocritical to “pretend” or cite their commitment of making self-care a priority. Many people choose not to engage with relatives, and instead surround themselves with people they’ve chosen to call family.
While I would never encourage anyone to place themselves in a toxic situation – abusive behavior, addiction, or anything else that feels dangerous – I will nudge you to be honest with yourself. Ask if there’s anything you need to give, receive or learn from being around the members of your family that drive you crazy. If the answer is yes, proceed with curiosity.
A Holiday Struggle
Paul was raised in a small conservative Baptist sect. His father was the pastor of the church and in the tiny town where they lived, most attended worship there. After Paul left home and made his way in the world, he began to realize that much of what he’d been taught to believe wasn’t true. It caused an internal schism, but he did his best to ride the fence because he didn’t want to hurt his family.
At first, he forced himself to go home for the holidays out of a sense of duty. Those occasions ended one of two ways. Paul stayed silent and resented everyone. Or he voiced his thoughts and then felt responsible for the arguments that resulted. Either way, it didn’t feel good and eventually he began to lie, cancelling at the last minute with some type of emergency.
He vacillated between guilt and obligation, which made him miserable. By the time he contacted me, all he wanted was peace of mind.
Facing the Deeper Truth
When I introduced Paul to the concept of a soul group and asked him to consider that he chose to be related to the people in his family, things began to shift. There is a freedom that comes from understanding that we created our families because relationships with them are necessary for us to better know who we are.
While working together, the Akashic Masters revealed details of past lives he’d shared with some of his immediate family. He discovered he had karma, or unfinished business, with one of his siblings. In their past life together, Paul and his brother had been father and son. As the father, Paul never believed his son would amount to anything. He ridiculed him and put him down every chance he had.
Paul admitted he treated his younger brother the same way in this lifetime and though he had always made the discomfort of going home about religion, he realized the real cause was much deeper and varied. He found the strength to visit for Christmas despite his apprehension. I encouraged him to stay curious, to see what showed up and to create the intention that he serve as a healing and loving force.
A Real Christmas Miracle
Paul found a way to offer his brother the love and support he couldn’t before. They never even discussed religion or politics because Paul kept the focus of the conversations on his brother. They talked about his job, his family, and issues at work. Paul was careful not to offer advice or criticize, but rather engaged his brother with praise for all he’d accomplished and expressed confidence that he could solve the challenges in front of him.
“It was one of the best holidays I’ve ever had,” he told me. The Akashic Masters offered him a chance to create the peace he wanted, and he did. Paul knows that he and his brother are very different people and they may never be close friends, but both of them now have the gift of resolved karma and the calm that accompanies it.
Your Mission… Should You Choose to Accept It
Your soul’s work is about completion of karma, learning about and using forgiveness, discovering self-love, developing compassion, growing in how you think and act, and being of service. Paul accomplished all of this in one trip home. Like Paul, your soul wants you to awaken to the memory that you are a divine soul, loved and loving. Period.
My wish for you this holiday season is that you become curious. Ask the Akashic Masters for guidance around family issues that disturb your peace and move closer to knowing the truth about who you are. To support you, I first offer you a prayer for Healing Family Relationships. Second, I’d like to give you The Infinite Connection guided meditation so you can connect with your family in this present moment. This meditation helps you to create new connections to the people in your life as you release old cord and connections from the past.
As always, I am here to offer whatever support you may need. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukah, Yule, Boxing Day, Kwanzaa or something else, en-JOY it!
Prayer for Healing Family Relationships
Mother, Father, Goddess, God, I give great thanks for the
blessings of my family of origin and the family that raised me.
I acknowledge and release any judgments I have of them and
I send them pure unconditional Love.
We are all divine souls on a journey and I bless you with your journey
as I go on my way, following my own Soul Path.
So it is. Blessed Be.