“The bond that unites your true family is not blood, but respect and joy in each other’s lives.Richard Bach
Born into a large traditional family, I was conditioned to believe in the power of blood. Since my childhood, my only dream has been to live in a happy family where all generations come together to create an environment of love and support. This dream was shattered when I moved to the United States to live with my father’s family. I learned the biggest and most difficult lesson of my life in my teens and early twenties. I struggled with depression, anxiety, and the simple despair of all the shattered expectations I had. Despite all the pain I have suffered over the past decade, here are some of the lessons and reflections I would like to share with you.
1- Promoting Self-Confidence
A healthy state of mind is very helpful when dealing with difficult people. When I was a teenager I didn’t know how I was treated, so I accepted this degrading treatment until it damaged my self-esteem. At some point, I realized what I was like as a person, not how I was treated. The constant disrespectful and humiliating attitude of the elders in my family affected my self-awareness. This changed as I became aware of my own personality and behavior outside the family. I learned that the way someone treated me reflected their own insecurities and a lack of love and respect for themselves. Self-awareness was the first big step in saving me from toxicity.
2- Love Yourself
Starting with the lesson of self-awareness, self-love is the next step I have taken. Despite all the emotional and mental suffering caused by some of my family members, I remembered to pour love into my mind. I remembered all that I am and all that I have to offer the world. Although it was a harder struggle than with others, I managed to stay true to who I am. Aside from all the hate and negativity around me, I stayed strong to spread only love and positivity.
3- be your own hero
After having dealt with my internal struggles, I was ready to fight the external struggle. I broke the emotional bond with the poisonous family and resisted it. I began to rebel and speak out against their negative behavior and dared to warn them that their behavior was unacceptable. This provoked violent arguments and increased their anger, but I became stronger than ever to stand my ground. After all the arguments, fights, sleepless nights, and exhaustion, I was finally able to physically distance myself from this poisonous family.
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