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When you want to heal but your family doesn't

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So, I am pretty much obsessed with healing and anything 'therapeutic'. I believe there's almost nothing else to do, and I've made a lot of gains I think beyond my years in taking this route.

And it's likely not going to last much longer, but I moved back in with my parents maybe 9 months or so ago (hah, auspicious enough?). I made the most of it especially at the get go, played games about it like internally would tell myself "let's pretend it's Father's Day today" and stuff. I tried to take it as a life test akin to what the spiritual hippie teacher Ram Dass said about it: "If you think you're enlightened, go spend a week with your parents". Haha! Ha. Ha.... uh...

It went well that way for awhile, but as I'm looking at the tail end of it before a new career saves my butt and gets me out of here, I have one major general takeaway I need to address/cope with whether I stayed longer or truly left: I want to grow and heal and they don't. I saw this most clearly in how my otherwise super nutty health standards slipped, to the point now where I succumbed pretty bad to the worst, longest depression I've had in my time here. And I hate to even approach the realm of blaming but the fact is, I'm not mentally built to fully block out the anxious and foolish and emotionally selfish energies I just feel crawling on me very often with their presence. It's their nature or something, it just fundamentally does not want to face their emotional pains in ways that count and grow from it. But since I do and they don't, guess who gets to set the tone or the pace? They just don't value it, and so they kind of stomp on my efforts to maintain my health and well-being, to the point that my attempts to self-nurture have this pressure like it will be either A) ridiculed b/c they are nervous about it and can't help it or B) outright malign me for it. For example, one time after doing a very committed Yoga and meditation routine, my very Science as a dogma aetheist type mom used it against me out of the blue and told me I was "Mount Vesuvius" which I assume is some BS from the bible?? So I'm like, whatever I don't care what she thinks, but now in retrospect I have to admit, that I really did start tapering my efforts off since then. I could give a dozen examples just like that.

So, in summary, I can only say that I just don't know what to do to both A) maintain my stake, firmly in the grounds of "I know what's best for me, do not tempt me away from it!" and B) respect their decision not to heal at this time. Because instead, it just becomes C) I resent the he77 out of them for disrupting my flow while they feel bad about themselves for not making as much of a commitment to self-healing (and therapy specifically, b/c they both def need it over their own broken home issues but refuse to admit it!). They've often accused me not-so-subtly of being a 'know-it-all' and the like, while I'm just like "well look at how much better behaved your dog is when I'm around, hellO!!" It's like they know I'm right, but deride me exactly FOR being right!!! Then act superior about it, as though I'm being inconsistent or something, which is total gaslighting (whether they're smart enough to see that they are) because what's really happening is that I am having too hard of a time triangulating around their ridiculous aversion to my self-therapy.

Anyway, I'm just going off at this point, I'll wrap it up with the idea that: It's just too flip-forking hard to anywhere near relentlessly heal yourself when you are around others almost every day who just don't give a crap. It's so sad. Especially when I'm the youth, and they should have been taking responsibility for their own emotional issues long ago. In fact I'll just go off again so I'll only say this, but I can't help but to see from this dynamic now as an adult when I'm not totally vulnerable wet clay to them but.... maybe this same dynamic of "parent in need of parenting" has something to do with the very reason I need more healing than normal?? Again, this is all true in my view, and on top of it, I think they are just too emotionally and psychologically (or psychically?) dumb to even get all this. So I am likely able to leave the situation, which is good, but it's with all this baggage in the back of my mind.

SO frustrating. Rar.

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  • 3 weeks later...

with my own patents it was always a situation here they always knew better about EVERYTHING and i knew there was no changing that. there was a time where as an adult i finally stood up for myself and they thought that my husbad changed me lol. no. i now dont have to be your trained dog needing your praise and your food.

im no longer back talking. im me.

parents are the know it all in our cases and they have NO IDEA they need to be healed. i try to welcome my daughters thoughts every time she speaks. 

now im babbling. i get everythi g you are saying.

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The dynamic you mentioned with your husband reminds me... my parents tried to lay some of the same nonsense down over my sister and her husband, and I was just like.... who (at least in large part) made/shaped/conditioned her? They didn't like that at all.

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  • 1 month later...


One observation is that although you're aware your family uses an unhealthy approach, you're still perhaps in a power struggle.  Sometimes we try and try, but there's nothing we can do.  There's knowing that on the surface; and then there's fully accepting it, and I say that out of love.

But to answer your post: it becomes a matter of self-protection and self-survival needing to trump all (which you know).  

I'd say do your best to get through the situation if you have to be in it / you're not able to currently relocate.  Once you are able to relocate, I would definitely do so, and from that point would carefully consider the level of contact you maintain in the future.  When family is manipulative, we have no choice except to disconnect in some fashion...  I don't know why life sees fit to challenge many of us with difficult family dynamics; but finding our way through, mostly alone, seems to be what we're called to do.

I've been in a somewhat similar situation regarding family who are emotional vampires.  It definitely does create wounds and an increased need for approval / validation -versus- those who came from healthy dynamics.  But that doesn't mean it's insurmountable.  From what I've read while here, you're tenacious, which works in your favor.  :flowers:

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  • 4 years later...

I do anything possible to feel better.  I hate feeling like crap with depression.  Will always seek help through my psychiatrist.  My father finally began seeing a psychiatrist again after 11 years.  He never had a good one till now.  Before this new development, he refused seeing a psychiatrist because he feels our family always tries to control him.  He is a narcissist, victim and bipolar with multiple manic episodes throughout his life.  He is 83 now and has not an episode since 2012.  It is incredibly hard to endure these episodes and we all know the family suffers the most while they like being manic, at least he does.  I am bipolar and hate being in the midst of an episode, which I have not had since the 90's.  

Since he is aging and showing signs of dementia, we feel the volatility is getting extremely worse.  It is unbearable and it has completely fractured our relationship.  I don't care anymore.  I am glad his new Dr is part of a Sr. mental health clinic with dementia testing available.  His next session will include my mom and I.  We will suggest this testing and his Psychiatrist is on board with this as well.

Has anyone experienced this type of situation and how do you survive it or live with it now?

Thanks for listening.  I will post an update after his next session.        


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