Stop Blaming Your Parents for Your Problems
Blame is one of the surest ways to stay in a problem. In blaming another, we give away our power. Understanding enables us to rise above the issue and take control of our future.
– Louise L. Hay, Your Can Heal Your Life
I could end the post right there. Maybe you didn’t recognize it, but Louise just dropped some seriously heavy knowledge on us. The power in that statement is so huge my ignorant twenty-something brain can barely handle it. All hail, Louise.
It may also be difficult to process if you’re not ready to accept responsibility for the life you’re creating for yourself, and that you have been an active participant in every decision that has brought you to where you are right now. I’ve been there.
It’s way easier to blame our parents for our malfunctions. And let’s be honest, it can feel slightly gratifying to be absolved from everything we don’t like about our surroundings or ourselves. There’s a sense of relief to determine the cause of our faults to be someone else. We can even band with others and commiserate collectively over the people who royally messed us up.
Think about it – how often do we attribute the less-than-savory sides of ourselves to the damage our parents wreaked on us during those formative years? “My dad drank, so I drink.” “My mom wasn’t financially responsible, so she’s the reason I don’t know how to manage my money.” “My parents had a tumultuous relationship so every relationship I have is doomed to fail.”
It’s taken a lot of practice in learning some simple truths (even though they don’t always seem simple) to stop placing blame on my parents and other adults whom I’d like to give credit to for my adolescent and young adult angst.
When we’re young, we have a tendency to see our parents (and many adults for that matter) as these infallible beings that can do no wrong. Then we get older. We start seeing things through our new adult lenses and the perspective greatly changes.
We may even start to notice that parents are…just people. It’s kind of a “holy shit” moment. So you’re saying that parents really have no idea either, and are just trying to figure it all out as they go along? No way.
Because we now see them as real humans, flaws and all, we seek to identify the sources of what have now become our own issues. They did this to us, after all. We didn’t ask for any of this.
Enter more Louise wisdom:
We are all victims of victims, and they could not possibly have taught us anything they did knot know. If your mother did not know how to love herself, or your father did not how to love himself, then it would be impossible for them to teach you to love yourself. They were doing the best they could with what they had been taught as children.
When I first read that statement, it pretty much blew my mind (in a good way). It was like wearing the adult lenses, and then getting the extra residue cleaned off. So instead of just seeing parents as these normal people who are capable of making mistakes but still to blame for all our issues, they’re normal people who have done and are continuing to do…the best they can?
I think this is where a very important point comes in – people cannot teach us what they themselves don’t know and did not learn. This includes our parents. Yes, you take on a certain number of responsibilities when you choose to bring a life into this world. But you aren’t granted this ethereal wisdom upon doing so. You’re still the same person with the same set of tools that you have been using to get through every stage of life that brought you to this one. Again, we are ALL doing the best that we can.
Louise Hay also encourages that you spend the time to understand what your parents’ childhoods were like. Have you ever sat down with one or both of your parents to find out what life was like for them growing up? It might reveal a lot, and help you drop some of that misplaced blame and judgment.
The prize in all of this letting go of the blame and resentment is your own inner peace. Imagine what you could accomplish with all this extra mental energy that you’ve been spending on blaming others. You can finally forgive and get back to being awesome. So what are you waiting for?