Virtually every family has experienced some sort of conflict between its members. Maybe it’s a fight between siblings over who gets their mother’s china, or an argument between spouses about parenting or a disagreement with one’s in-laws about rules related to the children. Whatever it might be, familial conflict is unavoidable.
The reason that family conflict is so common is due to the emotional connections we have with our family members. We love our families, and will do anything for them. Although we love them, we do not always like them, however. Our emotional connections feed our reactions to the judgments and input our families provide, which can make us feel out of control, disrespected, and unheard. When this happens, our emotions guide our decisions, causing us to act out in hurtful, impulsive ways. It is important to remember that our feelings are valid all the time. What we do with our feelings, though, might not be.