Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Ties That Bind Us Together

The bestselling author and humorist Erma Bombeck perfectly defined the concept of a family when she wrote: “We are a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together.” Perhaps the common answer to the question, “What is a happy family?” can be answered in six words: nice home, enough money, good relationships. Some would say that even if troubles come, the family always stays together to face life as a “team.” The importance of the family simply cannot be overstated. The family is where we find historical roots, a sense of comfort and security, acceptance, love, and mutual support. But the reality is that not all families turn out to be happy and everyone has a family waiting for them at home. Many families experience heartbreak and break-ups, leaving the married couple and their children in a state of depression. Aside from separation and divorce, many families also struggle with other problems like the death of a loved one, financial difficulties, and parent-child conflicts. Having a family problem is one of the most difficult experiences in life. When a person loses the intense love, trust, and all the things in between --- all hope crumbles and emotional darkness sets in. Dealing with such an ordeal can be especially hard for someone who is prone to lose emotionally control and stability. Individuals with depression is a mental condition that makes a person feels no energy at all. They are deprived of being in a state of “happiness.” When dealing with depression, one cannot concentrate on their everyday activities. Often, they are psychologically paralyzed by their family problems. Inside the family, depression becomes the pervading atmosphere as problems mount and resolution of these problems seem far from coming. Seeing one family member saddled by depression can make them feel depressed in some way too. Managing depression within a family can be a really tough undertaking. In many cases, people with depression may need outside help. When dealing with depression, the family's first priority is to fully stop whatever depressive thoughts that one family member might have. Some families solve this kind of ordeal through open communication. It is important for each member to know each other's responsibilities, activities, and issues that concern other family members. Being open to one another will open a window of familiarity, sense of understanding, and love. Still, others need help that can only be had through family counseling. Counseling is crucial for families that are experiencing relational, psychological, and financial difficulties. It is essential to be open and share all the issues that the family is having so that the counselor can provide meaningful ideas and suggestions on how to the depressed or troubled family can cope with their problems and eventually regain their sense of happiness and fulfillment.

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