1) You Aren't Responsible For What Your Parents Did To You As a Child, They Are
2) You Are Responsible For What You Do With Your Life Now, Your Parents Aren't
Healing from growing up controlled has three steps:
Step One: Emotionally leaving home by separating from the hurtful aspects of your upbringing, parents and family role.
Step Two: Bringing balance to your relationship with your parents.
Step Three: Redefining your life.
Emotional healing is like physical healing. If you cut your finger, you clean the wound and protect it from infection with a bandage. If you break your leg, you set the bone and wear a cast to protect from further trauma. This allows your body’s natural healing process to work.
It’s the same with emotional healing. When you’re emotionally wounded by a controlling childhood, "cleaning" the wound means facing your true past and speaking about it. And the "bandage" or "cast" that protects these wounds from further injury is emotionally leaving home. This doesn’t necessarily mean a physical separation from your parents, but it may entail letting go of counterproductive links with them and your upbringing.
You cannot mend a broken bone faster by telling it to "heal quicker." Healing a broken leg means wearing a cast, which can make walking difficult. Similarly, emotional healing may mean changes in habits that at first feel awkward.
Like physical healing, emotional healing can happen 24 hours a day without conscious effort. You may not know exactly how a cut heals; you just notice that each day it gets a little healthier. Similarly, people who begin emotionally separating from a controlled upbringing frequently notice over time that they develop more positive values and a greater sense of freedom, often without knowing precisely how.
Emotional separation opens the way for you to bring balance to your relationship with your parents, whether they are living or dead. Emotional separation also permits you to redefine your life and yourself in terms of who you really are and where you really want to go, not in terms of your parents or your past.
Characteristics of Healthier vs. Controlling Families
| Nurturing Love |
| Conditional Love |
| Respect |
| Disrespect |
| Open Communication |
| Stifled Speech |
| Emotional Freedom |
| Emotional Intolerance |
| Encouragement |
| Ridicule |
| Consistent Parenting |
| Dogmatic or Chaotic Parenting |
| Encouragement of an inner Life |
| Denial of an Inner Life |
| Social Connections |
| Social Dysfunction|
Smothering Terrified of feeling alone, Smothering parents emotionally engulf their children. Their overbearing presence discourages independence and cultivates a tyranny of repetition in their children’s identities, thoughts and feelings.
Abusing Perched atop a volcano of resentment, Abusing parents verbally or emotionally bully — or physically or sexually abuse — their children. When they’re enraged, Abusing parents view their children as threats and treat them accordingly.
Childlike Feeling incapable or needy, Childlike parents offer their children little protection. Childlike parents, woefully uncomfortable with themselves, encourage their children to take care of them, thereby controlling through role-reversal.
Perfectionistic Paranoid about flaws, Perfectionistic parents drive their children to be the best and the brightest. These parents fixate on order, prestige, power and/or perfect appearances.