"We put the fun in dysfunctional!" is a common saying heard from within the .
My family is not the expected average healthy family, but I feel my .
dysfunctional family is not the worst-case scenario. After surviving many unpleasant .
fights and divorce, I came to the realization that many other families have it even harder. .
I believe alcoholism, controlling parents, and abuse are the three main influences in a .
dysfunctional family. To lengthen my observation I reviewed the patterns and common .
behaviors between each effect.
Parents that are too controlling over their child's life can definitely make a family .
dysfunctional. Controlling parents fail to allow their children to assume responsibilities .
appropriate for their age. These parents continue dominating and making decisions for .
their children well beyond the age at which this is necessary. Controlling parents are .
often driven by a fear of becoming unnecessary to their children. The main .
problem in this behavior reflects on the parents.
Alcoholic families tend to be chaotic and unpredictable. Rules that apply one day .
don't apply the next. Promises are neither kept nor remembered. Parents may be strict at .
times and indifferent at others. In addition, discussion about the alcohol use or related .
family problems is usually nonexistent. Family members are usually expected to keep .
problems a secret, therefore preventing anyone from seeking help. All of these factors .
leave children feeling insecure, frustrated, and angry. This is one of the worst key .
elements a dysfunctional family can have. Although the parent is an alcoholic they can be .
both abusive and controlling at the same time.
Abuse can be verbal or physical. Verbal abuse, such as frequent belittling .
criticism, can have lasting effects. Criticism can be aimed at the child's looks, .
intelligence, capabilities, or basic value. Some verbal abusers are very direct, while others .
use subtle put-downs disguised as humor.