- A blind grandfather who is cranky pretty much 24-7.
- A grandmother hooked on caregiving and babies.
- A single mom struggling to figure out life and balance her social life with her family life.
From my sons’ vantage points, we look like cartoon people, with magnified faults and very little to admire.
I try to explain to my boys that EVERY FAMILY is DYSFUNCTIONAL in it’s own way.
They live our family day in and day out so they get to know all our flaws.
Of course their friends’ families seem stable and functional. Those are families they only VISIT from time to time so they never see the weird inner working of those families.
Eventually, as you grow up and out of teenage angst, I think you come to VALUE your weird family members in all their DYSFUCTIONAL glory because you start to see the good qualities they possess as well.
For instance, my dad may be a cranky blind man but he is the most generous man when it comes to his friends and family. He’s always up to buy you dinner or share a glass of wine with you. Nothing makes him happier than hearing his grandson’s’ laughter.
And my mom, though she may have an unusual obsession with taking care of little ones also is the FIRST ONE who will get in line to help you with a GRUELING TASK – like cleaning up after a party or straightening up your house.
And me? We’ll I might do odd things like go to Burning Man and wear costumes, but I will always go the extra mile for my friends and family, when they need a little help.
The trick is, and I think my sons miss this ENTIRELY, that you have to focus on all the positive things about your family when there are negative things you can focus on as well.
No one is perfect.
But if I had to be born and do it all over again, I’d choose the exact same people to go through life with as I had this go round.