Like many people I grew up in a dysfunctional family. I didn’t feel loved, wanted, supported or nurtured. It’s hard for a child to feel any of these things when your Mother laments daily that she wished she’d never had you.
Also like many people I grew being told by the same family, culture, teachers, books, movies and all manner of pop culture that ‘Family is everything’ or my sister’s favourite ‘Blood is thicker than water’ ( the same sister who hasn’t spoken to me for thirty years).
For seventeen years I just accepted on some level that it was just how it was. So my family didn’t want me, didn’t care about me and made me feel I was worthless and useless but…they were my family so I just had to accept it and get on with life.
Not surprisingly I left home at seventeen and high tailed it to London where I had taken a job as a nanny with a wonderful family who remain part of my life and to whom I owe so much for teaching me about family, love and kindness.
I had been with them for maybe a year when ‘Dad’ sat me down and said they had noticed the only time I was ever unhappy was after I had spoken to either of my parents. I wasn’t surprised but didn’t really understand why we were having this conversation.
Then he said something that had a profound impact on my life.
“ You don’t have to speak to them or see them if you don’t want to, you know”.
I didn’t know. I had no idea this was an option. I couldn’t believe that this man. This kind, loving amazing Father would suggest such a thing. I stumbled and told repeated all the mantras I’d been brainwashed with ‘but they’re family. Blood is thicker than water” etc and he shared with me how his childhood wasn’t happy. That he had been a sad, lonely unwanted child and that cutting his family out of his life had been the biggest gift to himself.
I did. Just like that. Given that they didn’t particularly like me or approve of me (imagine…almost 18 and without children or a ring on my finger and delusions of going off to see the world) it wasn’t difficult. I just stopped calling.
I stayed in touch with my Dad for a while but the last words he spoke to me were so cruel and vindictive…well they were his last words because I hung up but that’s another story.
Over the years in place of my so called family I have gathered an amazing network of soul family and friends. People who love, support, encourage and inspire me. Amazing people who love and accept me just as I am. I have a ‘soul Mama’, a wealth of soul sisters and a few brothers. I have an opening for a soul Dad if anyone’s interested in applying 🙂
I cannot begin to imagine how lost, lonely and filled with self loathing I would still be had I followed popular doctrine and accepted the way I was treated and made to feel about myself ‘because they’re family’.
Let me say this for you all loud and clear. YOU OWE YOUR PARENTS NOTHING. They had you. You didn’t have them. If they’re not holding up their end of the unconditional love, support, nurturing deal you have the right to free yourself from that and allow the people into your life that will fulfil those roles.
As a healer, so many of the beliefs and patterns I release from my clients have come from parents, guardians and carers (even those that were doing their best). One of the biggest parts of my personal healing process has been clearing the layers of hurt, betrayal, rejection, anger and sadness that I felt and stored in the deepest parts of myself.
There’s still things that come up. Still things I’m not ready to forgive even though I know that forgiveness will set me free. Maybe sharing this with you brings me a step closer to that.
I have an amazing life now. I don’t do anything I don’t want to do. I don’t accept obligations. I am responsible for nobody’s happiness but my own. I don’t need validation or approval. That doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate it and I gratefully receive it daily from friends and clients.
You deserve to be happy, to feel that you are good enough and anyone or anything that prevents that…let them go. Wish them well, mourn them, forgive them and free yourself to shine, blossom and be loved, appreciated and accepted.