Why Growing Up In A Broken Family Should Not Dictate Your Parenting

October 25, 2017

broken pot

Growing up in a broken family was difficult. Our grandmother raised me and my sister until I was 12, after which we lived with my aunt. Our mother wasn't always there for us and we don't really talk now. My dad is what you would call 'semi-present'. He's there when you need him but, we really didn't have that dad-son relationship growing up.

While we did grow up with family, we lived independently. Our parents had their own other families too. As a child, I had all the reason in the world to act-out, to do stupid things, to make the wrong choices. But, I chose to walk a straight line.

Yes, I've made some poor choices in the past and some I'm not really proud of. But, I've moved past those. I made a conscious choice to become somebody better. A choice to do something better and to not let my parent's choices ruin my life. I promised myself that I was going to become a better parent. I looked for role models everywhere and they became my lifeline.

If you're someone like me who's afraid that you'll end up like your parents or scared that your kids might end up growing up in a broken family. You'll understand exactly how this feeling haunts you every day. Luckily, there are several things you can do now to address this. Things that will prevent your situation from dictating your parenting.


This is the first crucial step anyone could do. It sounds pretty simple but, it's definitely something you work on every day.

If your parents verbally abused you whenever they're worked up about something. You can use this awareness to avoid following the same behavior. You use this awareness of growing up in a broken family to deal with your stress differently.

Being aware makes you understand the first-hand experience of having a broken home and how it affects someone growing up. You have all the experience you need to avoid becoming your parents, you just have to know how to make use of it.

Role Models

Parents are your first role models. But, when that role model becomes someone you fear your brain becomes disoriented. Our brain naturally tells us that parents should protect us. But, the moment that they harm us, we lose that sense of security and our emotions become unstable.

It's never too late to look for good role models. Read articles or books about people you look up to. Get validation someplace else. Develop a new identity, one that is separate from your parents.

Talk About It

Start opening up, talk about your pain growing up in a broken family and reflect on those. Most people would rather avoid going down this road because they think that their past is unchangeable. But, there's a lot you can learn from simply reflecting.

It's a painful and gruesome process for some, especially those who grew up in an abusive home. But, this is the only way for you to avoid becoming the same person. It's the only way for you to have better relationships. Talking about your pain makes it real and it validates the pain and the hurt you felt.

You Are Better Than This

Don't let your pain shape you. You have to shape your pain. You shape it in a way that it doesn't hurt you, in a way that it doesn't make you feel weak and inferior.

I can't say that I'm a perfect parent. I still feel scared and worried about becoming my parents. It's a battle and I work on it every day. I try and develop good relationships with the people around me. I open up and talk about my pain.

I know some people may have an even harder experience but, knowing that you need to detach yourself from that experience is a good first step.

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