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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Your parents sound so much like mine! ESTP mother, motivated, dominant powerful. INTJ father – traditional, distant and not too understanding. Both of them don't understand me; they're proud of me in many ways, but they never understand me, my feelings or desires. My mother is still upset with me because i've made it clear I don't want marriage or children. My dad and I fall out regularly — I just accept that I see the world in a different quality, and I forgive them for their different view. Remember that they really do love you through it all.
 

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The worst thing about parents is that you cannot forgive them and you cannot hate or be angry at them. But somewhere, sometimes you are angry at them and you hate them, because you can't be and because you have to forgive them. Simply because they are your parents.
My parents are just narrow-minded and intolerant as well, hence we clash often together. But like I said, you can't hate them, because they are your parents. You have to love them, even if at times you don't want to. They love you, well even if only as a child and perhaps not as the individual you want to.
You owe them.
At least, that's the feeling I get from my parents. And this is why it makes it so very hard. Perhaps it is only me, but this relationship is like a never ending circle, it's a contradiction. You are angry at them, yet you have to love them and this results in adding more anger to the issue. It is like, or maybe not even like, it is a dysfunctional relationship and as much as I love them, it might be better if you love them from afar.
By afar, I meant not abandoning them, just... not seeing them every day, like you did as a child.
 

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I'm also an INFP and an HSP. I'm ennegram 4w3 to boot, adding to my inconsistency and insecurity.

I don't think my parents have helped me in many ways. But I realise they were often trying to.

That's the thing. My mother's constant small put downs, her crushing of my desires when they're not in line with hers, her intolerance of me sometimes and frequent misunderstanding of me, have no doubt had an adverse affect on me. But it's so much easier to bear when I remember that it was all from love, even if it was misplaced.

Parents are only human beings remember. Most would die for their children, regardless of disputes.
 

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Theres no need to forgive because im grateful for my parents efforts. There certainly times I was stressed adn they were stressed as well, They're human I dont expect them to be a model of perfection, I really don't operate well when people are yelling. But That just comes along with the good, theres bad too. I'd say my parents did a brilliant job for their circumstances and I hope that if I ever have children of my own I can live up to those standards.
I think we often forget or don't realize the role of a parent the many things they're trying to juggle and when things go wrong we just zoom in on our own pain and forget why it happened.

I feel like they've been really understanding with me in that i am a bit different though they will try to push me to go out and do things more which I can see as reasonable they haven't condemned me for my different traits but rather understand that they are both good and bad as they aren't balanced. I imagine myself being the son with whom will often visit and look out for them in their old age.
 

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I haven't talked to my parents since moving out 2 years ago. Like you, my parents weren't monsters, in the conventional sense.. I have been beaten quite badly though, but that would only happen twice a year or so. Still, the experience of fearing for your life from someone that is suppose to love you unconditionally had a huge impact on my self-worth. Like you also said, I do feel that they love me, but only because I'm their blood. They don't respect me in anyway, in which I still have a hard time not blaming myself.

I have an ENTP sister, ESFP younger sister, and ENFJ brother, and all of us have had some very rough times growing up. We've all reacted to the abuse in different ways. My ENTP sister blames herself for her punishment, and is visibly ashamed of how she acted before. She still resents them, however, but she places a lot of the blame on herself as well. My ESFP sister is in a very abusive relationship with her bf, in which she's been cheated on several times but still continues to date him. She is also very shy and has very low self-esteem but can put on a pretty good mask to cover it sometimes. My ENFJ brother thinks hes a monster, and has a short temper. He refuses to have children (hes 33 and married) or pets even because he thinks he may beat them like my dad beat us. He's also really shy.

Me, I'm the most shy, definitely the most awkward, but I feel like I'm also the most aware of the psychological damage our parents had on us, which has free'd me from blaming myself. I'm dealing with a lot of issues regarding my mental health, and I recently found out my aunt committed suicide so I think a lot of my issues are genetic. If I was "normal" I think I would have grown up the least affected from my upbringing, but well, I got other battles going on. Consequently, I think I am the worst off out of my siblings, but I'm hoping for the best.

edit: oh and no I am never forgiving them.
 

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my parents were good providers, never abused me and didn't spoil me (this is often not mentioned, but I count not being spoiled among my blessings) so before I bitch about them I don't want to make it sound like they were terrible parents, they simply get on my nerves and need to learn a thing or two (or two thousand) about personal boundaries

the way they communicate with me gets on my nerves and I feel like I have to constantly check them when they try to cross my boundaries. they they get upset and extremely emotional and irrational (even by age 10, I would think "I'm the kid, why am I the one having to be the rational one here?") and my stance is "you messed with the bull, you got the horns. next time I request you nicely to leave, not touch my stuff or mind your own business when I say I don't want to talk to you about something, do it because I am telling you, not asking you. I ask them several times and they don't do it, so then I think "okay, I'll make them do it" so I do and then they get all upset and bitch about how I'm "insensitive" and disrespectful" and I'm like "seriously? you are the one who is refusing to stay out of my business and I'm being disrespectful? as for my "lack of sensitivity", it was there is abundance the several times I've asked you politely, but you insist on not taking me seriously unless I am forceful, so yes, I am a pushy, ruthless bitch when I need to be to the point across that you do not cross my boundaries without my permission. you brought this upon yourself, now own up to it and deal with the consequences of your behavior" they of course retaliate by resorting to petty attempts at ad hominem and red herring, both of which I call them out on immediately.
seriously though, I'm not hard to live with, just
- respect my boundaries (or, rest assured, I will make you)
- control and take responsibility for your own emotions
- similarly, take responsibility when you've done something wrong.
- don't make me tell you 17 times to do something as basic as don't touch my stuff. I'm a pretty forgiving person of accidents and first offenses, but I punish repeat offenses with increasing severity, whether you are a 5 year old, a peer, an old man or a CEO.
 

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Of course I forgave my parents.
I forgave them eventually and by the time I was in my 20s.
I did so by sharing with other kids similar to my age, and when I found out that I am not the worst one, I appreciated more then and that indeed I was "normal" to think that way.
I also forgave my parents, when I met other parents too, of my friends and they gave me wisdom and said, "it is hard to be a mother because".... and that made me forgave my mom.
I also forgave my mom when a friend's mom said, "it is hard to be a single mother raising children on her own practically"....
I was indeed a little bit selfish because I could not relate my feelings to them, and hence I judged them so much more.
Now that I am indeed an adult, and scared to have kids because I fear that I will starve them, and I fear that I cannot give them a good start in life, or to have an education like I did. I appreciate my mother so much more....
She did her best in her own circumstances, and she raised us the best way that she could have done, and for that, I am eternally grateful. She gave me wings to fly... and I flew. :)

When I think back, I am grateful and thankful for the reassuring words too from my friends' moms... Cos they gave me an insight into motherhood, and being women that I never knew of. I remember being bowled over by this.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
@Paphorial I think the main thing to remember is that in their head they care, it just reflects in different ways. The way you think may be very alien to some people, but I think it's a sacred way of thinking and feeling that makes some people feel alienated because they cannot comprehend it :)
 

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My father denied paternity - I later got DNA test that confirmed I am -and we grew up hearing my mom accused of ongoing adultry -the old bastard was in his heart a scared little kid who never grew up. Because I spoke harshly to my younger brother for lying about something I had made, him saying its mine! and even though it was obvious it wasn't I had to give it to him. Then I was whipped with a hard cotton plowline. For months I planned his murder. Did not do it -

As an adult, when my old man was in the nursing home, before his mind went, he said an often repeated "All you will ever do is shit and fall down in it."
No, I will never forgive him. The Holy Bible says it would have been better that amillstone be tied around his neck and him thrown into the sea -Sounds nice to me!

But I did move on, left him to God. I realized that my self- directed anger was that of a little child that needed security and approval. I was no longer that child, and I did not need him. I do not want him. I went to his funeral to make sure he was dead. I do not know where he is buried. Nor care.

I could have done better raising my sons, but they were loved and not mistreated. They were accepted.

My mother was a victim -but she could have left him. It was not the family way - and she was so neurotic she did not understand that all that was just not normal. I have no real feelings about her - hardly remember her - she is buried by him, wherever that is.
 

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@Paphorial - You have to remember that, each person is different, and each person has a role to play in their life time, depending on the age that they are. If you are under 18, then you are a child. If you have a child, then you are a parent. If you are an offspring, then you have a duty to learn and to fend for yourself. Ironically comparing yourself on the same level as your parents, does not make sense. I remember thinking that I won't ever raise a child like my parents did for me. Now I take that back and also try and put some form of discipline in place too. For me, there were parts of my own upbringing that I detested, and how my life was unhappy, but to be frank with you, I probably did not register it too much, or rather I have forgotten them in my life time, sometimes it comes up and then other times it is gone. I do have and had rationalised a lot of them too. Even though sometimes you may hear people be "happy", but underneath, they could be sad too, for different reasons. That is how human is... You have to learn on how to let go of the hurt. For me, I rationalised this. I questioned what love is. I questioned whether my mother loved me. She did. Just differently. I also now realise what love is too. It is such an excruciating pain. Really really painful. But as you seek some form of enlightenment, and self control and so forth, then the pain is not so bad. Humans can have strong will power... that is where God/something resides.


@Acey - I just wanted to share with you a link to a forum, which explored the topics which you discussed here. British Chinese Online Discussion Board - Powered by vBulletin - I think the old threads regarding caning and so forth resides in the ID Parade...There are many BBC/CBC/ABCBBT etc etc etc on there, sharing their own live's experiences and asking questions openly.

For myself, I was not caned as some of my brothers did when they were a child. I seemed to be the golden child in my family (the youngest girl of 4 children) and maybe why my brothers hated me so much when I was younger. Obviously, I turned out to be more of a Tomboy to defend myself. i.e. I be one of them. I remember this well. Sometimes there is indeed no right or wrong. Maybe because I still kept my family ties with my family and extended family such that, I found out all the pains, ills, sufferings the different adults had over the course of our lifetime. Empathy, compassion, regrets, drama.... Support. Motivation. Intents. For Chinese family, filial piety is important. I am also glad to be of service to my siblings too, when I see them break down, and we console each other of the past, and address that. I seeked from external information, they just held it in their own hearts, but now, I think everything seems to be at a karma point. Peaceful.

About discipline and parenting, this is not just something isolated to a culture. It does exist everywhere. I remember talking to some English colleagues, and frequented some online forums too in the UK, and I realised that in the past, where UK is concerned, the discipline occurred at the school level, and at the social level and not at the personal and family level. Maybe this is the difference. People used to be caned at school if they were disobedient, or rather, they are "in their shadow" with their anger. In any culture, tribes and so forth, there is a suppression of the release of this anger within each of us. Some call it demon, other call it the devil. Some call it evil. It just depends on how extreme this anger manifested itself.

Sometimes I do question how Chinese culture is. I have been thinking about this for so many years.
caring for your parents - British Chinese Online Discussion Board The expectation is there. I was unsure if I could even deliver, but a part of me has seen examples of that, when the child do not let the shadow take over, and if over the course of their lifetime, or that they find the willpower to overcome this, then they could indeed also reduces their' parents shadow too. Cos by guilt tripping them into suffering themselves, it reduces the ego..... That emotion is very powerful. You learn humility.... In the UK, there is a famous movie of how society can be if the ego is not reduced. A Clockwork Orange.... Well, it is not what it is. I applaud the many men and woemn in the world that can control their own negative emotions, ideas, and so forth in order to learn to forgive, find enlightenment and live a happier life for themselves.

When my parents see that my brothers were getting out of hand, they gave them manual work to do. Whenever I used to be criticised at home, and I was mad, I asked for waitressing work too, and washing dishes in order to release my frustrations and anger. It really disciplines you and makes you think. It's an indirect motivational force, and you can indeed channel it... you can.
 

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I've learned too that a dysfunctional family doesn't have to be abusive. Your parents sound pretty much like mine as far as the mother-father dynamic goes. My mom has terrible control over her emotions and cannot be wrong about anything. Even if you argue her into a logical corner, she comes up with some special permission that allows her to be right. She would deny it to her grave but oh my god is she materialistic and image-conscious, which I find repulsive. She also handles stress (largely self-inflicted, mind you) incredibly poorly. She's useless in crisis moments and chronically overreacts and over-emotes. My dad on the other hand is pretty much the opposite end of the spectrum -- reserved, perhaps a bit too much so, gives little practical advice, and seldom confronts problems. My description of him is short because there's not much else -- he likes gardening and cars I guess. He comes through when it counts. And my mom is always ready to help me at a moment's notice.

My folks aren't bad people; they just had no idea how to raise a kid like me. We luckily share some underlying attitudes, cultural interests, and senses of humor. However, in general, my parents had little capacity for involvement in my interests and no capacity to relate to me as a person. They tried to be supportive, but usually in misguided and off-putting flashes of overinvolvement. I remember wanting to make them happy and seeing them as sources of comfort, but not seeing them as role models or sources of support. I feel this weird, apprehensive half-love for them.

My grandma was who I really bonded with and looked up to when I was younger, and she died a few years ago. She really knew how to engage my curiosity about the world.

I look back on a wonderful childhood, but most of those moments didn't include my immediate family. I'm actually okay with that, so I don't find a need to resolve anything with my parents. I've forgiven them in my mind, and they've acknowledged some shortcomings. Not all of them, but enough. We know we love each other, though I think I'll always have to hide my apprehension and the full extent to which they set my screws loose. It would just be cruel to bring up at this point!
 

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Yes, I've always been one to try to reach forgiveness as quickly as possible, so....although there are plenty of things that would have made my childhood a lot nicer had they been different, I don't hold a grudge against my parents for the way things were. I guess I've just always kind of understood who they are and why they do things the way they do and so it helps me not hold things against them. I really like both of my parents, even though they can be very exasperating.
 

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Aha, you are me, seriously. ^^ Your parents sound like the same as my own parents. Fourtantely enough, my (ENTJ) mother realized a couple of years ago on how she used to treat me, and she told me she was sorry for being abusive. Since then, we have gotten along much better. My (ISTJ) dad was always cold and distant towards me, and sometimes I do feel bitter towards him for being like that, but in contrast to how it was back then, I'd say we're getting along better too.

If I were you, I'd confront them. I know, it's such a perplexing thing to think about, being a sensitive and non-confrontational INFP, but it has to be done. You have to tell them how you feel, how they made you feel. You don't have to yell or be angry, just be calm and collected. This will bother the hell out of them but it will also make them listen to you. At worst, they will blow you off, in which I'll tell you this: You did NOT deserve their terrible treatment towards you. We often forget that parents, at the end of the day, are people too, with their own issues and problems too. Your parents were probably brought up not too well either, and they carried this resentment in adulthood and finally unleashed the fury on the one person who knows will take it: You. You because they know you won't fight back, you because they know you won't punish them like their parents punished them, you because they sensed you were "different" and too sensitive to stand up for yourself. This is not your fault. At the same time, it is not THEIR fault either; their inner worlds are probably deeply flawed and troubled that they have to hurt their own child just to feel better.

At best, they'll realize their mistakes and apologize. And you should forgive them for the reasons I've stated above. They're humans. They're hurt. They're scared. They probably cry at night and wish that the dreams they used to have wasn't so far away now. They love you but they just don't know how to express it. Forgive them, OP. Take this as a life lesson to treat your OWN child even better than your parents could have treated you. Think of it as a blessing in a disguise. :)

Hope I helped!
 

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This may sound rude, but I forgot this as well... Mothers are also females too. If their feelings are invalidated by their husband, or indeed even by their children, it is quite emotionally upsetting too? Especially if each of your action is supposed to be done with love, but it is not felt, or reciprocated, the resentments (negative feelings), build up over time and it creates a wall....

As children, we may want validation of our own too, but... if you see each relationship with its due respect. Then maybe things will be easier. I dunno why I naturally tried to unreverse this kind of karma in my life, but I am glad I did. Maybe it was expected... But in doing so, it allowed me to see people for who they are, and how flawed, and how fragile, we all are.... Over time, if we see things this way, it creates a big bunch of compassion in our heart. The energy instilled in us may be negative in upbringing, but it does not mean that it cannot be dispelled, or reversed. Or displaced into useful places. Physical work against anger can be a good thing...
 

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Yeah I forgave my parents, but I forgave them because they are my parents and that's how I see them. It's hard to figure out how to communicate when you're on top of this, and I can clearly feel their need to put me in a child position when i don't understand something. Which is okay sometimes, if I wouldn't freaking live at home. :sad:
 
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I fully and completely forgave my father at the age of 18.

My father and I had a terrible relationship growing up and times were often rough. He was clinically depressed and mentally unstable to the point that he could not hold down a job for the majority of my childhood and teenage years. He was also clinically obsessive compulsive and chose me as a scapegoat to criticize constantly once I got to the age of 13ish. Let's add into the picture that he is an ESTJ. And here is the recipe for an emotional war-zone at home:

Obsessive compulsive out-of-work ESTJ that is always home and ready to criticize and harp on you (because he's ill).

+

Impressionable, emotional, adolescent disorganized INFP trying to find her way in the world and who reacts emotionally when she feels attacked or criticized

=

A tumultuous home-life and many escalating arguments and tearful flights up the stairs into bedrooms, doors slamming and "why me" cries to heaven...lol



But.. my freshmen year at college something awesome and unexpected happened. I took a beginners acting class and one of the assignments was to bring in a picture of someone we needed to forgive. We were to address the person as if speaking to them and really forgive them actively in front of the class. So, before the class, I searched out a picture of my father and then I wrote out all of my thoughts, pains, memories of fear and disappointment from my childhood and teenage years. I thought about everything.. about how my father didn't choose his illness, about how his father was overly critical to him as a child and committed suicide when my father was in his 20's and how my father was forced to carry the burden of that loss, about how I knew deep down that my father only wanted the best for me but didn't always have the capacity to act in that... and then, in front of a class of 15 or so peers I didn't know so well I addressed my father, cried it out, told him how he made me feel all those years, and at the end of it all, I got of the courage to mutter, "but I forgive you" and I did... I fully let go of resentment and hurt I had harbored.

Probably was the most useful acting class I ever took. I had no idea that it would influence me in such a way to mend a broken family relationship so that when I went back home we could start anew.

I love my father. I think he's great. We have a great relationship. He's quirky, funny, weird, likes to help people, loves astronomy and sharing his joys and interests with others, and he's still a little obsessive compulsive but is so much more balanced these days. He had to go through his own healing and forgive his father for what happened, and that took place not long before the time I forgave him.

Forgiveness is so good, if you can find it... It may take time though. For me, I really needed to be away from my father at college to really see things more objectively. It just worked out well. And sometimes absence does make the heart grow fonder.
 

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One question to all (who say I FORGIVE MY PARENTS)- "have you forgiven yourself, for behaving badly in the time when you supposed that you were upset/angry with them ?"

See they are PARENTS, The person who gives birth to you, the woman whose womb you were in, and the man whose tiny little though part you were.
You are the produce of both them together, the proof of their love. - So they probably cant hate you. Am I right ?

You know, a person as "ADOLF HITLER", never did anything wrong or bad in his own beliefs, for him he was the most correct person in the entire world.
It is the same for everyone, NO ONE IN THEIR SENSES DOES ANYTHING WRONG OR INAPPROPRIATE. Its just our perceptions. I can totally understand your grievances, but if you consider yourself to be mature enough to understand the world, just try to begin by understanding your mom and dad. (MAybe they behaved badly (or in a wrong way) because nobody understood them when they were young...Lets not keep them deprived of the beautiful emotion known as "UNDERSTANDING" ....
 
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