Author: Suzanne Wirth
Date: 2015-03-16

Everyone has a story about their past. Some of the stories are sweet and comforting and others are scary and sad. Some people were raised in a single parent household and some by their grandparents. Anyone who has survived childhood and made it to adulthood has had some help; if not a home perhaps an agency but everyone got help somewhere. Nowadays the two biological parent household is a rarity. The divorce rate has skyrocketed and non-traditional families are in the majority. As a species we parent our children long after their birth giving them whatever they need to survive. Most parents do the best that they can do given what they have been taught and what they themselves experienced when they were a child. As a counselor I listen to each person’s story. These stories can be heartbreaking when they talk about tales of abuse and neglect. Sometimes there is a substance abuse problem or a gambling issue that tears the fabric of the family. Or sometimes, as in our case it’s the death and absence of the Father, which stressed the family’s survival. Children who lose a parent when they are young actually lose both parents for a while, one to death and the other to grief. Homes where there is a substance abuse problem or a debilitating disease also lose their parent’s attention as the identified problem consumes the family’s energy. Somehow someway you have survived those vulnerable years and have now become an adult. So why is the Family of Origin so important to a person’s adulthood? Think about it like this…. If you were building a house you would first build a solid foundation. Life is like that too with our childhood as the foundation for our life; crooked foundation makes the house crooked, dysfunctional homes and families produce adulthoods without the stability to weather the storms. And like it or not the storms will come. If you have a solid foundation and know that you matter and are loved weathering life’s storms becomes more manageable.

Family of origin is best described as the family that you grew up with and the lessons you learned in that family. At some point in time no matter where you came from it is time to decide where you are going. You then become the author of your own story. It was once said that it is less important what happens to you than it is how you respond to what has happened. The time to write your new story is now. Edgar Cayce said that,” You can have whatever you want, as long as you are willing to share it with others and you are willing to pay the price of growth that is involved.” Think about these wise words as you write your own story.