Family conflicts leave us feeling angry, hurt, sad, rejected and often helpless. This gives rise to the common response of avoiding conflicts. We often find ourselves giving or being given the advice to stay calm, adjust and not fight, not argue, not create a source of tension. This comes from the seemingly obvious assumption that conflicts are bad and the fewer conflicts we have with people, especially family, the better it is for our relationship.
On 6th June 2017, Samvedna Senior Care Foundation conducted a workshop on Intergenerational Bonding at the summer camp organized by Desire Society, Gurgaon, www.desiresociety.org. Desire Society is an NGO supporting HIV infected or affected children all over India.
Every individual right from birth to death is experiences different environments. External factors like time, culture, society and economic status play a significant role in shaping one’s personality, beliefs and values. Difference in experiences is one of the defining reasons for an individual’s outlook in life. Despite the differences people for a quality life it is important to work towards living in harmony. This is possible only when the difference of opinion is accepted, respected and understood.
“My mother in law and I experience a lot of conflict when comes to raising my teenage daughter. Both of us have different approaches and sometimes it gets very difficult to get a common ground, ensuing daily drama in the house…”
“My son has an erratic work schedule. His lifestyle and habits have been at the receiving end since then. I at times tell him to monitor it, but he either gets irritated or angry. I really don’t know how to make sure the message reaches him…”
Today there is more and more conversation amongst seniors on their living arrangement post retirement. Various organizations have now thrown up independent assisted residential options for seniors and also services to help seniors age in place. Should one choose to age in place or to move to a senior living community?
The role of children reverses from being cared by their parents to becoming caregivers of their parents. This shift in roles may not be easily accepted by all parents. They are likely to be reluctant to give up their independence and allow their children to make decisions for them. Even though the children grow up as adults their parents see them as children only and communicating to them that they need professional help can lead to a power struggle and hurt feelings.
When seniors reach the age of retirement they often come up with a question….now what? All of a sudden they find themselves with ample free time and old age can be a lonely time in a person’s life. Some people lose their significant other; others have family or friends that move away and some develop health issues that prevent them from leaving the house. Living without a purpose is enough of a reason for many elderly people to isolate themselves from any social interaction and often go into depression.
The relationship between a grandchild and grandparent is a very special one. You will mostly find that grandparents are kind and compassionate towards their grand children. They are good, and that is the main reason why grandchildren like them. While grandparents act as an authority figure and provide unconditional love, they also get to spoil their grandkids. But beyond that, grandparents also wield incredible influence.